Florence Education Relief Offers Flexibility on School Calendars and Compensation

Raleigh, N.C. – An act to provide school calendar and employee pay flexibility to school districts affected by Hurricane Florence was filed in the North Carolina General Assembly on Tuesday morning.

House Bill 3 School Calendar & Pay/Hurricane Florence allows school districts located in counties under a major disaster declaration by the President of the United States as a result of Hurricane Florence to deem up to 20 school days, or the equivalent hours of instructional time, completed.

The proposal allows school districts to make up any number of instructional days or hours missed but also provides the option to waive the missed class time.

School districts that missed class time due to Hurricane Florence but are not located in a county under a federal disaster declaration from the storm would be required to make up either the first two instructional days missed, or the class time necessary to complete 185 instructional days, whichever is lower.

To provide income stability to school staff, the act requires educators and employees be compensated the same as if they had worked any scheduled instructional days deemed completed by the public school unit during September and October of 2018.

The legislation also allots $6.5 million in nonrecurring funds for the 2018-19 fiscal year to fund the authorized compensation for employees whose income is normally supported by school meal receipts or federal funds that will not be appropriated to North Carolina due to the missed school days.

The bill further requires the Superintendent of Public Instruction to report to legislative appropriations and education committees on its implementation by school districts before March 15, 2019.  The report must detail all missed days, make-up days, and days deemed completed, as well as any compensation provided to employees, as a result of the legislation