Blizzard Blows Away Vacation Days, Disrupts Schedules


Time definitely does fly. Photo credit to Gresham High School Blog.
Time definitely does fly. Photo credit to Gresham High School Blog.

By: Sam Bailey-Loomis

After the Northeast was plummeted with approximately three feet or more of snow, schools, businesses, and organizations closed for days starting February 8th. The snowstorm and ensuing six-day endeavor has disrupted schedules in many areas of the Branford High School community.

After being snowed in for days, and wondering when school be back in session, parents and students from all levels of the Branford School System received multiple updates from the superintendent of schools, Hamlet Hernandez, and the School Board Alert System about closings and updates.

After many days of school closing, a letter released by the superintendent to the school community that describes the conditions in which the blizzard has left the schools and their calendars.

“Currently, the proved calendar states the manner by which closing dates are made up; including the process should there be more than ten closing days… Any additional closings would be made up during the April vacation commencing on April 15,” according to the letter published by Hernandez.

But then he goes on to explain that Branford Public Schools will have school this upcoming Tuesday, February 19th, which was originally a day off, to provide “a greater degree of continuity for our students and staff”.

In addition to the complications that affected the school day schedule, the snow also interfered with the student registration schedule that the Guidance secretary, Sandy Wynne, was in charge of organizing and rescheduling.

“I’ve had over a hundred appointments to reschedule, I’ve got 50 of them maybe. This is awful, this is the worst it’s been in the 28 years I’ve worked here. It’s never been this bad,” she said in an interview. She went on to explain how she’s spent almost all of her time reorganizing and that “it’s been hard because people are working so you have to leave messages and then they call back and say that time is not good. There’s just no place to fit them in (students appointments).”

As much as the faculty has been impacted by this phenomenal storm, the seniors at Branford High School are despairing over the news that graduation day is moved even further back to June 25th.  After the time lost to Hurricane Sandy back in October, small one or two-day closings, and after the blizzard “Nemo”, students should expect to be in school until the end of June.

In total, Branford High School has missed 10 days of schools due to Hurricane Sandy and the recent snowstorm.  For many students, theres is also concern about the upcoming AP exams in May. Missing two weeks of school has certainly impacted AP classes as students and teachers try to adjust to the shorter amount of school days left to prepare for the exam.

Although, there may be some good news coming soon. Amy Olszewski, a guidance counselor and AP Coordinator, stated that “some of the exams will be moved to later but I need to coordinate with the College Board.”

Buzz Reporter Kelly Du contributed to this report.