No More Snow Days? Maine District Tests Controversial Policy - NECN
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No More Snow Days? Maine District Tests Controversial Policy

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    Maine School District Does Away With Snow Days

    Friday was the first snow day for many students, but for one district in Maine, students will still have to go to class online on snow days beginning in December.

    (Published Friday, Nov. 16, 2018)

    In Camden, Maine, the first snow day of the school year might be the last.

    Starting in December, the MSAD 28 school district, which includes Camden and four surrounding towns, will try "remote school days" instead of giving the students a day off.

    Teachers will assign work for students to do at home. Grades K-6 will complete non-technology-based projects, and grades 7-12 will be required to complete assignments online. If they turn in their work on time, it will count as a day of instruction. It will be a work day for teachers, too — they will have to be online and responding to students over email.

    "It's really students we need to buy into this idea," said Superintendent Maria Libby in a video message to parents posted online. "There are a lot of benefits for students I hope they can appreciate and understand."

    Clerk Pulls Out Machete on Would-Be Robber

    [NATL] Clerk Pulls Out Machete on Would-Be Robber

    A would-be robber armed with a knife had a surprise in store when an Alabama store clerk pulled out a machete in defense. The two's brief knife fight was caught on camera before the clerk runs out to damage the robber's car.

    According to police, suspect Seth Holcomb walked up to the counter to make a purchase. He leaves the store and then comes back in as if to make a second purchase. Then, he pulled out a knife at the counter. What he didn't expect was that the clerk would pull out a machete of his own.

    (Published Wednesday, March 20, 2019)

    Libby said remote school days will cut down on make-up days that tend to extend the school year into the summer. She said it will also teach students valuable life skills.

    "This will give them a taste of what their lives might be like where they may have a job in which they work remotely and work from home," said Libby. "They do need to display that discipline and independence."

    The district will try remote school days twice this year and evaluate their effectiveness.

    The concept is getting mixed reaction among students and parents in the district.

    "I think it's great," said parent Meghan Brady. "I think it adds structure to an otherwise unstructured day."

    She said it will be better for her kids to avoid make-up days at the end of the year.

    YouTube Mom Accused of Abusing Foster Kids for Clicks

    [NATL] YouTube Mom Accused of Abusing Foster Kids for Clicks

    Machelle Hackney of Maricopa, Arizona, is accused of forcing her adopted children to participate in her YouTube channel and abusing them if they did not recall their lines or perform as directed. Hackney's channel had accrued hundreds of millions of views since she joined in 2012.

    (Published Wednesday, March 20, 2019)

    "Summer in Maine is short. It would be great to have as much time as possible," she said.

    Camden high school student Angus Carter is skeptical.

    "People don't do their homework anyways, so they're not going to do it when they're not at school," he said. "I'll do the work because I don't want to get bad grades, but I'm going to be annoyed the whole time."

    If students have issues connecting to the internet at home, the district is planning to provide a hot spot device so they can establish a better connection.

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