Hundreds Of Students Spend Memorial Day In School

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Hundreds Of Students Spend Memorial Day In School

CREATED May 27, 2014
by Aundrea Cline-Thomas

TULLAHOMA, Tenn. - Memorial Day gives most a day off to remember to the sacrifices of the brave men and women in uniform. Meanwhile, hundreds of students in Tullahoma spent the day in school.

“I know they didn't want to get up and go this morning,” mother Monica Stephens said about her 9-year-old. “I think it's crazy (be)cause no other kids are in school.”

“We were shocked at first because I assumed he would be out,” said parent Jill Reed.

Memorial Day is often observed by the district, but this wasn't the first time it's been designated as a full school day.

“Today is the day to thank all our soldiers for being the men they are and women,” Stephens stressed. “Today is a day to celebrate their victories.”

“We've had several calls,” Director of Schools Dr. Dan Lawson said. “We've had several expressions of concerns.”

By law, students must have 180 school days. When creating the calendar districts also consider preferences that include not starting the year too early or ending the too late.

“Do we want to be in school for Martin Luther King day in January? No we didn't. Do we want to be in School on President's Day in February? No,” Dr. Lawson explained about the process to create a calendar last year. “Do we want to be in school on Good Friday? No we don't want to do that.”

After all of those considerations, Monday, May 26, ended up being a school day on the 2014 calendar.

“They were having a big water slide. It was water day so he was very excited,” Reed said about her kindergartner.

She joined in the fun at East Lincoln Elementary by spending most of the day with her son.

“I work. You know all school hours I'm at work. I don't get to see much. So I enjoyed spending the day with him,” she said.

Lawson hoped the field day would give parents an opportunity to participate in school activities.

“I certainly don't suppose you're any less or more patriotic based on your work schedules,” he said.

A veteran himself, Lawson said the district's decision doesn't minimize the importance of Memorial Day.

The holiday is scheduled as a full school day again next year. However, that could change. Next week, school leaders will hold a study session to discuss it. What's different is that next year Good Friday falls during spring break therefore it won’t have to be a separate day off.

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