(JTA) — Virginia Beach City Public Schools will hold three make-up days due to snow days taken during last month’s major snow storm on Saturdays.
“We hope our community could be reassured that our religious needs can be met; we don’t want anyone to pay a price for the snow that came upon us,” Rabbi Israel Zoberman of Beth Chaverim, a Reform congregation in Virginia Beach, told local media.
“I would like to believe that someone overlooked the fact that on Saturday Jews meet at worship. We also have pre-arranged special events such as bar mitzvahs and bat mitzvahs,” he told WAVY-TV.
School board member Leonard Tengco told WVEC TV, the local ABC affiliate, that the school district’s online calendar has stated “for years” that Saturdays are an option for makeup days.
The three Saturday makeup days are February 15, March 29, and April 26.
“Designating makeup days for time lost due to inclement weather is one of the most unpopular decisions a superintendent makes. There is never a day that is convenient for all of our students, staff and families,” Dr. Sheila Magula, superintendent of Virginia Beach Schools, said in a statement.
At least one seventh grade boys bar mitzvah is scheduled for one of the makeup days. Phillip Goldstein will be called to the torah on April 26. He is worried that none of his friends will be able to attend the Saturday morning service, according to The Virginian-Pilot columnist Kerry Dougherty.