TOM BEAN, TX - In honor of Memorial Day most students across the country had a three day weekend. But several schools across Texas, including one in Grayson County, held class.
School was in session at Tom Bean I.S.D. on the Memorial Day holiday, a decision that was upsetting to some parents we talked to.
Students of Tom Bean Independent School District reported to class on Memorial Day while other area school districts were closed in observance of the national holiday.
"I wasn't pleased that they decided to go to school on Memorial Day. I would've preferred them to continue school through Friday so everybody could be off to observe the Memorial Day holiday," said Monty Ulmer, a Tom Bean I.S.D. parent.
Tom Bean I.S.D. also held school on Good Friday. Both were bad weather makeup days. We asked interim superintendent Larry Blair if he felt that holding school on Memorial Day was disrespectful.
"Yes, I do. I agree with that. I think we should honor both Memorial Day and Good Friday. Unfortunately, the district did not do that when it developed the calendar. Unfortunately, the law is the law. Unfortunately, we obeyed the law," said Blair.
Blair, who did not hold this position when the calendar was adopted, said the law required the school district to set aside makeup days.
"The state requires that we develop a calendar and it has to have at least two bad weather days built into it, in case of the very thing that happened this last winter. What this district did when they developed the calendar last year was, unfortunately, built the days that were holidays," said Blair
Blair said the calendar is developed by the school, and it must be reviewed by a committee made up of school administrators, teachers and parents before it goes to the school board for final approval.
"I'm somewhat disappointed that folks didn't know that because it was public information a year ago," said Blair.
Some parents we talked to, who declined to go on camera, said the extra school day was not much of an inconvenience to them. But others, like Monty Ulmer, said more options should have been considered.
"A lot of parents make Memorial weekend plans. It's a three day holiday. Working class people, like myself, don't get a chance to get off three days. And for their kids to have to go back to school, I thought was uncalled for."