Some West Virginia schools nix spring break

West Virginia schools are scrambling to make up the days that were missed during the teachers’ strike, and some have canceled spring break to get back on schedule.

Students across the state went back to school Wednesday after the strike of nine school days.

“The nine days lost are nine days that are contractually our employees are required to make up. But most importantly are days our students need to be given back so that they can learn what they need to learn,” West Virginia State Schools Superintendent Steven Paine told CNN affiliate WSAZ in Huntington.

Teachers and lawmakers agreed this week to a deal that gives a 5 percent pay raise to state teachers, school staff and police, ending the strike that began Feb. 22.

Decisions about scheduling are up to individual school boards, and many districts are still finalizing their plans.

Putnam County, about a half-hour northwest of Charleston, announced it was canceling an instructional day in March and the spring break in April. It also will extend the school year from May 29 until June 4.

Students will be given excused absences if parents take them out of school for vacation.

Kimberly Herdman, whose daughter is a third-grader in Putnam, told CNN her family had already canceled spring break plans because of the strike.

She said they might have gone ahead if they had known absences would be excused.

“We were going to go to Disney. But we can’t reschedule because my husband has his vacations picked out for the year already,” she said.

Herdman said her daughter Sydney is just happy to be back at school, “but not the homework part.”