Lawmakers explore increasing snow days for Ohio school districts

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Ohio lawmakers are moving to give back to snowbound school districts two calamity days they lost under former Gov. Ted Strickland.

The state Senate Education Committee on Tuesday held a hearing on a plan to increase the current allotment of three "snow days" to the old five days.

The bill's sponsor tells The Blade that schools in his part of northeastern Ohio already have closed more than three times this winter. Sen. Tim Grendell of Chesterland says the make-up days that must then be added to the end of the school year can be unproductive and expensive.

Nearly all school districts in northwest Ohio have surpassed their three calamity day limit for the year. Toledo Public Schools has closed three times this year.

Perrysburg Schools have used over three days, with at least a few more weeks left of winter. Superintendent Tom Holser says it can be a challenge sticking to so few state allowed "snow days." Holser says if it TMs necessary, he TMd rather make up calamity days at the end of the year. If it's bad, it's bad and it doesn't matter if you don't have any days or one day to give. You need to call school off, said Holser.

Gov. John Kasich supports more calamity days. State Sen. Peggy Lehner, who chairs the education panel, tells the Dayton Daily News lawmakers want to pass a bill next month. If passed, an increase in calamity days, up to five days, would not go into effect until the 2011-2012 school year.

(The Associated Press contributed to this article.)

What do you think? Do our kids need more snow days? Should there be a limit in the first place? Let us know your thoughts by leaving a comment below.