At issue in this matter is the requirement in rule 12.1(7) that "[t]he board and authorities in charge of an accredited nonpublic school shall notify the department annually of their decision to have a calendar based on days or based on hours."
Effective July 1, 2014, school districts and accredited nonpublic schools have the option to choose between 180 days or 1,080 hours of instruction. School boards and authorities in charge of an accredited nonpublic school are authorized to determine the days or hours of their school calendars; however, public schools must hold a public hearing prior to adoption. Schools and school districts are required to report this decision annually to the department
On May 10, 2015, South Central Calhoun was hit by a tornado that caused significant damage to the high school and resulted in a loss of power to other schools in the district. As a result the high school is uninhabitable for the remainder of the school year and the elementary and middle schools were closed until power was restored.
Granting this waiver would not have a "negative impact on the student achievement of any person." To the contrary, the ability of South Central Calhoun to operate a calendar on hours instead of days will enhance the ability of the district to have flexibility in their calendar due to the natural disaster that rendered the district unable to operate the current school calendar as planned.
The petition for waiver is GRANTED.