A new school year will be upon us before you know it, and everyone involved is hoping for a more gentle winter this time around – if only to avoid any controversy about makeup days.

Virtually two weeks of instructional time were interrupted for students of Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools in the last year due to bad weather.

Assistant Superintendent Todd LoFrese said that a state calendar law that prohibits adding makeup days any later than the Friday closest to June 11 has made scheduling unnecessarily difficult.

LoFrese said that CHCCS will try its best in the next school year to avoid stoking controversy by adding Saturdays, and Memorial Day, as makeup days.

“We brought recommendations for calendar revisions back to the school board,” said LoFrese, “and the board approved those revisions for this calendar as well as next year’s calendar, to make some changes to try to give us a little more buffer – more options in the spring, when we may need those days the most.”

Many dates on the schools calendar have been added from March through June as possible make-up days, and those have been arranged in order of priority.

The days that are likely to be the most controversial, he added, have been put near the bottom on the list of options.

“Knock on wood, hoping that we don’t have something like we’ve had in the past, we’re pretty confident that even if we do have a rough winter, that many of the challenges we faced this year, we’ve put steps in place to avoid having those next year.”

LoFrese said that school board members will continue to discuss options such as increasing time in the instructional day.

And school system administrators will continue talking to lawmakers in Raleigh.

“We’re going to continue to advocate with our local legislators, and advocate at the state level for more flexibility with the calendar law,” said LoFrese.