Local News

January 11, 2011

All public schools in Whitfield and Murray closed Wednesday

Whitfield County Schools, Dalton Public Schools and Murray County Schools will be closed again on Wednesday, the third day in a row.

No decisions had been made for Thursday.

“We will continue to monitor the weather and road conditions,” said Whitfield schools spokesman Eric Beavers. “People can stay up-to-date with us online at Twitter, Facebook, our blog (whitfieldschools.wordpress.com) and the school district website (www.whitfield.k12.ga.us).”

Dalton officials also announce closings on Twitter, Facebook and at www.daltonpublicschools.com.

State law requires school systems to begin making up lost time if they miss more than four days in one year. Beavers said officials will have to review the school calendar and “available options” if they are faced with that decision. Tuesday was the third snow day this school year.

Beavers did say the weather has not affected the district’s testing schedule. He said school officials will continue to make closing decisions based on “the safety of our students, their families, and our staff.”

“We share information with local emergency management officials and the road department and monitor the National Weather Service while keeping an eye on local conditions,” he said.

Dalton schools spokeswoman Deana Farmer said that school district has also closed three days as of Tuesday.

“ ... No final decisions have been made at this time regarding school or work calendars,” she said. “Any changes to these calendars will be communicated to students’ families and employees through routine school communication channels such as e-mail, Parent Portal, letters, etc.

“While many types of information from local and state sources are considered in making school closure decisions, the safety of students and staff always drives the decision and will continue to do so in the future,” Farmer said.

Allison Oxford of Murray County Schools said officials have the option to add extra minutes to their school calendar to make up for lost time. She said they’re also able to offer some classes or parts of classes online for middle and high school students only as part of the make-up process. Decisions on how to make up lost time will be made later if needed, she said.

Dalton State College typically announces closings in the early morning or sometimes the evening before, college spokeswoman Pam Partain said. She said Dalton State students and staff will receive notifications by text message or at their home and cell phones. The public can visit www.daltonstate.edu for information.

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