PARKERSBURG - Wood County Schools officials say four planned two-hour delay days were in response to teacher requests for additional collaboration time, but clarified teachers did not request the delays.
The Wood County Board of Education last week approved delays to the start of school for Dec. 5, Jan. 30, March 6 and May 1. That time will be used for teachers to review student data and collaborate on classroom initiatives with other teachers.
Judy Johnson, director of curriculum and instruction for Wood County Schools, said the delays are in response to teacher requests for more collaborative time. Officials held district leadership team meetings in August and October with administrator and teacher representatives from area schools.
"We said 'what can we do to help you?' and a lot of it was we need more time to meet and plan and collaborate," she said.
Administrators looked at other school systems which used either delayed start times or early dismissals.
"We thought it would be the least disruptive to families doing the two-hour delays," she said. "Other school systems have had very good results with this."
Superintendent Pat Law previously said adding hours to the school day or additional work days would require the school system to pay about 1,200 for hours worked outside of their contracts.
Law was out of the office Friday and directed questions about the delay days to Johnson.
Johnson said Wood County Schools teachers did not ask for the two-hour delays.
"They didn't ask for a two hour deal," she said. "They did ask for more collaboration time, and we felt this was a way to address that."
Johnson said during on the two-hour delay days, teachers will have a strict format to work with concerning their collaboration, and each group will be expected to produce goals for the time between delay days.
"They will have to produce something for us to tell us what they discussed, what they plan to do to achieve the goals they've set, and how they are going to monitor those goals," she said.