Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS) lost a third day of instruction on Wednesday, January 17 after closing schools due to unsafe weather and road conditions affecting school transportation. With little flexibility in the 2017-2018 school calendar due to constraints imposed by Governor Larry Hogan’s school calendar Executive Order, teachers and students now will be required to attend school on February 9, 2018, to meet the State’s 180-day mandated school year.
The teacher professional development day originally scheduled for February 9 has been cancelled. Schools will follow a B Day schedule on both February 8 and 9.
Any additional school closures will impact Spring Break. One additional emergency school closure will require attendance on April 5 and a second emergency closure will require students and staff to come to school on April 6. PGCPS developed its school calendar to meet Governor Hogan’s requirements for students to have a school year beginning after Labor Day and ending by June 15. So far this school year, PGCPS has closed schools due to unsafe weather conditions on January 4, 5 and 17.
School delays or closures greatly impact students, families and staff. The decision to delay or close schools is based on safety and a variety of other factors, including National Weather Service reports, recommendations from PGCPS transportation supervisors and building maintenance directors, who survey conditions throughout the county as early as 3 a.m. Facility staff report on power outages, HVAC/heat issues and any plumbing issues that could impact schools and offices. PGCPS executive staff members communicate with County government agencies. The school system’s top consideration is safety for buses, motorists and students who walk to school.
By 4:30 a.m., the Chief Operating Officer recommends a delay or closure and provides additional information to support the recommendation to Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Kevin M. Maxwell, who makes a final decision.