MI FAQs for Parents/Students

 1.   What is an AMI day?

AMI stands for Alternative Methods of Instruction. An AMI day is a day in which school is cancelled (e.g. in the case of inclement weather) but students do not have to make up the day because they will be provided the opportunity to complete “Weather Work” assignments over a specified period.

2.   How does TASD get to use AMI days now, but have not done it in the past?

Act 862 of 2017 allows a public school district and open-enrollment public charter school to develop a plan for alternative methods of instruction to be used on days when the superintendent closes school due to exceptional or emergency circumstances. As stated in the legislation, the Commissioner of Education may grant up to the equivalent of ten (10) student attendance days for public school districts that have an alternative instruction plan approved by the Commissioner of Education for the use of alternative methods of instruction, including without limitation virtual learning, on days when the public school district is closed due to exceptional or emergency circumstances such as: contagious disease outbreak, inclement weather, or other acts of God, or utility outage.  The public school district’s alternative instruction plan shall demonstrate how teaching and learning in the public school district will not be negatively impacted by the use of alternative methods of instruction.

Districts had the opportunity to submit an application to the Commissioner of Education requesting the use of AMI days. The Texarkana Arkansas School District submitted the application and five (5) AMI days were approved for the 2018-2019 school year.

3.   How does this impact the “snow days” built into the calendar?

If a school day is cancelled and declared an AMI Day, then the snow days on the calendar will not be utilized for make up days.

4.   Does this mean my child will not be able to play in the snow because they will be required to complete school work that day?

No! Students will have at least five days after returning to school to complete the Weather Work assignment.

5.   What if teachers send home Weather Work and then school is not closed?

If school is not closed, the student will not be required to complete the Weather Work assignment.

6.   What if the snow is unexpected and the work is not sent home?

The Weather Work assignments would, in that case, be sent home after students return to school. They would still have multiple days to complete the work.

7.   How does this impact my child’s attendance?

If the student completes the Weather Work assignment and submits it to the teacher by the due date, they would be counted as “present” for the AMI day.

8.   How long will students have to complete the AMI assignments?

The due date will be on the 5th day after returning to school.

9.   What if my child is ill on an AMI day?

As long as they complete the Weather Work assignment by the due date, they will be counted “present” for the AMI day.

10. How will assignments be given to students?

Weather Work assignments may be given electronically (e.g. through Google Classroom) or by a packet sent home from school.

11. How will Dr. Kesler determine an AMI Day?

We know it will be a work in progress and there will still be questions. Superintendent Dr. Kesler will use the same criteria as in the past when deciding if school should be closed. If it is not safe in any part of the district, we will close school. We will not risk the safety of any of our students and staff. However, If we feel it’s safe and we can go to school, we will go to school. In the end, we’ll do what’s best for our children and we feel having the option to use AMI Days when it’s necessary, will prevent us from adding on days to the school year.