Spring Break Cut Short in Harford County Public Schools; Inclement Weather Make-up Days Activated April 14-16

Wintry weather in recent days has forced school closings, activating scheduled make-up days that will shorten spring break for students and teachers in Harford County Public Schools.

As a result of three recent closures, on January 29, February 5, and February 6, school will now be in session on April 14, 15, and 16. Harford County Public Schools identified the three days in April as “potential inclement weather make-up days” in the 2013-14 school calendar.

Had they not been used as make-up days, April 14 and 15 were going to be days off from school for students, and professional development days for teachers. April 16 was to be the start of spring break for teachers.

Now, spring break for students and teachers will run from Thursday, April 17 through Monday, April 21.

No additional inclement weather make-up days have been planned in the 2013-14 school calendar, which by state law must provide for a minimum of 180 days for students. The last day of school for students in grades K-11 is June 13, 2014.

The state education department has granted waivers of the 180-day requirement in years past, but waivers are only considered after the end of the winter season.

For the 2014-15 school year, Harford County Public Schools will not use spring break as a source for inclement weather make-up days. Instead, the school calendar has a total of 188 days, with June 19, 2015 listed as the last possible day of school. If inclement weather days are not used, a maximum of eight days may be removed from the end of the school year.

Below is the Web site posting from HCPS activating the last of the inclement weather make-up days in the 2013-14 school calendar.

“As of Thursday, February 06, 2014:

Per the Board-approved calendar for this school year, the last day of school for students (K-11) is Friday, June 13, and for Pre-K students the last day is June 11. As an employee, should you have questions regarding your work schedule, please contact your immediate supervisor. Below is the sequentially ordered list of make-up days to be used. Dates with a line through them below are dates identified as inclement weather make-up days that have been used and will now be dates when schools are in session.

1. Tuesday, June 10
2. Wednesday, June 11
3. Thursday, June 12
4. Friday, June 13
5. Monday, April 14
6. Tuesday, April 15
7. Wednesday, April 16

Schools will now be in session April 14-16, 2014. We will continue to provide updates as needed. Waivers for days used must be granted by the Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) and are not automatic regardless of ‘State of Emergency’ status as declared by the Governor during an inclement weather event. Please note that waivers will not be considered by MSDE until the end of snow/inclement weather season.

In addition, Monday, April 14, and Tuesday, April 15, are currently paid non-work days for 10-month employees (with the exception of inclusion helpers and bus drivers/attendants) per the agreement with Harford County Education Services for the 2013-14 contract year. However, as stated in the original announcement on October 16, these dates may be adjusted should they be required as inclement weather make-up days.”


  1. Common sense says

    Cancel the entire spring break, with over an entire month and more of possible winter storms a high possibility, it seems to be the most common sense.

    Students have gotten enough days off so far, enjoy it now.

  2. none says

    But I already made reservations and bought unrefundable airfare. HCPS is stupid. It was only a little cold and a little snow and ice. The kids could have gone in.

    • louise34 says

      You’re dumb. Why would you buy non-refundable airfare and reservations on days that you knew school may be in session?

      And HCPS makes the best decision they possibly can for the county. “A little cold” was a wind chill of -12, and “a little snow and ice” was actually varied amounts all over the county.

      Not sure if you knew this or not, but HCPS’s inclement weather decisions aren’t solely based on your needs and wants. The system has to consider all types of variables in its decision. And I don’t always totally agree with their decisions– but I appreciate how difficult it must be to make one decision that impacts hundreds of thousands of people.

      BTW– people complain about EVERYTHING. People complained that the kids even went in on Monday. People complained that school was canceled today. This seems like one consistent fact of life…people will complain about, literally, everything.

    • Brian Makarios says

      Do you need HCPS to grant you permission to take your family on a vacation? They are your kids. Buy the tickets whenever you want and take your kids whenver you want!

    • Jack Rabbit says

      Good god it’s amazing how stupid some people are that respond here. None you should be ashamed of yourself for trolling up the clueless idiots.

  3. haha says

    “But I already made reservations and bought unrefundable airfare. HCPS is stupid. It was only a little cold and a little snow and ice. The kids could have gone in.”…..

    eh….who’s stupid?

  4. Mom says

    If you read your school calendar, you would know that this was a possibility. Don’t plan vacations for those days or don’t complain if you did and now they are school days. Duh!

  5. Wipe first says

    Wipe your ass with those bogus “unexcused absence” letters. School’s can’t afford to have kids fail.

  6. Real says

    So someone please tell me why they didn’t go to school today? My job takes me all over the county and the roads were fine. Days like today and the day a couple weeks ago when they said it was too cold (even thought the temp was within 5 degrees on four other open days when school was open) are just ridiculous. Or how about the day in the fall they closed for rain and the sun came out. If they would just go to school on these kinds of days we wouldn’t even be having this conversation. We have plans for Spring Break and we are going whether school is open or not. That’s how you make decisions.

    • Really??? says

      As of this morning, there were still a number of neighborhoods without power; and I believe Patterson Mill school was still being used as an emergency shelter, in addition to the libraries open as warming shelters. Even this afternoon, the BGE outage map is still showing numerous outages scattered across the county.

      You can’t have students in school at the same time it is being used for a shelter.

    • Jack Rabbit says

      It’s amazing as a specie we have made it as long as we have. 200 years ago what did people do in the cold with no electric?

      • HarfordResident says

        That’s funny, I was just telling someone the other day, that when I was in college (late 70’s/early 80’s), we had a single pay phone at the end of each dorm court, and that’s how we all called home. How did we all survive without a smart phone?? ; )

  7. The Money Tree says

    They closed school today because the roads are very windy in the far north and the kids have to fight off wild boar nearly every day that’s why the buses have to drop the kids off in front of thier houses.

    • Cassandra says

      Actually Money Tree, The schools were closed because some of them were being used to shelter people who had no power. Patterson Mill was one of the schools used, and therefore could not be used for school. Sorry to disappoint but it wasn’t just us up North who lost power. Several of our Schools didn’t have power but I am sure that our kids couild learn in the dark with no water to flush toilets etc. Heck they might even have pork BBQ for lunch. As ignorant as you are of the facts you sure do love being the center of the Ruckus don’t you??

  8. Looking for the good life says

    Money Tree, Yes the children. are dropped on the same side of the road that they live on. Sadly some people who don’t live in the area tend to jump the bus lights and go around stopped busses which puts the children at risk. Would you really rather see a child killed to prove your point?? I think that you are more excited to stir the pot then to actually contribute anything useful. I pity someone who has to harass innocent children to feel better about themselves. “They closed school today because the roads are very windy in the far north and the kids have to fight off wild boar nearly every day that’s why the buses have to drop the kids off in front of thier houses.” You really need to get a hobby or better yet run for County Executive so that you can just “Get rid of those damn Yankees in North Harford.”!!!

  9. harford county mom says

    Thank you for putting this information out there for those who might not have been aware of the schedule change.
    I can only speak for myself but on the job, sometimes planned vacations days get changed due to unforeseen circumstances. If plans really can’t be change, then the parents can apply to the principle to get permission for the absence of up to 5 days. School work can be sent home. A student can’t have more than 4 unlawful absences a quarter. If the principal agrees than the absence is lawful. It depends on how the child is doing in school.

  10. Concerned Citizen says

    I think the kids should be in school year-round. Seems like every time you turn around, school is closed for holidays, development days, planning days, teacher meeting days, snow days and sometimes when a few raindrops fall. No wonder US kids fall well below its counterparts in many other countries who actually take education seriously. What’s a few days added due to the calendar? We really do need to stop complaining.

    • ? says

      And I am sure you are willing to support the increased cost of year round schooling thought raised taxes?