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Saturday, October 25, 2014

After Sandy, Bellmore schools adjust schedules

Class will be in session for students in every school district in the Bellmores on days that were originally slated for February break, officials said.

Administrators in the Bellmore, North Bellmore and Bellmore-Merrick Central High School districts have all approved changes to their schools’ calendars, which were devised to make up instructional days lost in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. In each of the three districts, Feb. 20, 21 and 22 were officially made school days for students, in addition Feb. 19 in North Bellmore and other adjustments in each district.

All 19 schools in the Bellmores and Merricks were closed for five or more days after Sandy’s high winds knocked out power across the area and caused flooding in southern parts of the community, with snow falling a few days after students’ return to school. The area’s five superintendents have communicated with one another and staff members within their districts to come up with similar plans to make up for lost time.

The Bellmore Public Schools will be in session from Feb. 20 to 22, as explained in a letter to parents from Dr. Joseph Famularo. The superintendent said March 18 will also be an instructional day rather than being dedicated to parent/teacher conferences, which will now be in the evening. Finally, Famularo explained that the district had planned to hold a staff development day in March, but will no longer do so to make up an additional school day for students.

Famularo said that he wanted to thank the Bellmore community, particularly the students and parents at the Charles A. Reinhard Early Childhood Education Center and the Winthrop Avenue and Shore Road schools, for their understanding in the “extraordinary times” after the hurricane.

“The district has had tremendous support from parents and staff throughout this unprecedented situation,” he said. “We have and will continue to work with our Bellmore families in need.”

Arnold Goldstein, the North Bellmore superintendent, said his community has also been cooperative since the calendar revision process began. The district’s new calendar was approved by the Board of Education on Dec. 11.

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