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Update: Early release for all students on Monday, April 8, 2024

March 13, 2024

Dear Parents, Guardians, and Staff,

After careful review of new information regarding the total solar eclipse event on Monday, April 8, 2024, we have determined that the best course of action is to have an early release for all students on Monday, April 8th. Elementary schools will be dismissed at 12:30 p.m. Ray Middle School and Baker High School will dismiss at 1:30 p.m. and Durgee Junior High School will dismiss at 1:40 p.m.

While I do still wholeheartedly believe that staying open for our regular school day allows for  incredible learning opportunities for our students, I have to take other factors into consideration. Our students' safety and well-being is our primary concern, and according to experts, the proximity of our location to this rare event could cause potential challenges. The state is preparing for approximately 500,000 visitors and how that impacts our area is difficult to predict. 

The Onondaga County Emergency Management Services has expressed potential concerns, all dependent on clear weather conditions, that traffic after the event could negatively impact student and staff safety. Officials do not anticipate concerns immediately before or during the eclipse since most travelers will be at their sightseeing locations. 

Additionally, I have to take into consideration the attendance of our teachers, support staff, and bus drivers, many of whom have children in neighboring school districts that have already announced that they will have a reduced school day. 

The learning opportunities that were planned for the total solar eclipse will still take place in our classrooms leading up to and on the morning of April 8th, and students will have the option, with parent/guardian permission, to receive solar eclipse glasses to use at home. The early release time will also give students the opportunity to eat lunch at school before dismissal. Information on athletics practices will be communicated closer to the date.

Thank you for your understanding. 

As always, please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have. 


Dr. Joseph M. DeBarbieri
Superintendent of Schools