In a recent letter, the Windsor Unified School District (WUSD) announced it has updated its 2020-21 school calendar. The first part of the update reflected the fact that due to a public safety power shutoff (PSPS) on Aug. 17, which affected much of Windsor and made the opening of school a day later, on Aug. 18.

That incident — and changing the calendar to reflect it — has triggered a change in the use of Emergency Weather Days. At the Feb. 4, 2020 meeting the board of trustees voted to add in emergency weather space in the calendar

“A new school schedule for the coming year was approved, which will factor in the distressingly familiar need for disaster days in the school calendar. For the 2020-21 school year, spring break will run from March 22 to March 26, but the week after, March 29 to April 2 will be set aside as an Emergency Weather Week,” read a report in the Times. “Should there be no lost school days to that point in the calendar, then staff and students will get that week off. Should there be a partial loss of days but not a full five, they shall be schedule to return at the end of the week, for example if they’ve missed two days of school, school shall resume on Thursday, April 1.”

“We are working with the advice with our state department of education to build own emergency days. We know we are more likely to get good instruction in middle of the year than end of the year,” said then-superintendent Brandon Krueger in the Times article, referring to previous attempts at emergency makeup by tacking on extra days to the end of the school year.

At the time, board members and the superintendent cautioned that neither staff nor families should count on this “extra” vacation. This warning proved to be prophetic, as between the most recent calendar change, and a another missed day due to PSPS, the district announced that students will return to classed on Wednesday, March 31, 2021, following spring break. This will extend spring break by two days, March 29 and March 30, but utilizes the rest of the Emergency Weather Week to make up for instruction losses due to PSPS.

The full and updated calendar — in English and Spanish — can be found here.

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