Friday, January 26, 2001
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Posted on: Friday, January 26, 2001

Super Bowl holiday on Guam

Associated Press

HAGATNA, Guam - How popular is the Super Bowl?

It’s popular enough on the Western Pacific island of Guam for school officials to declare a holiday.

High absentee rates among students and staff contributed to the Department of Education calendar committee’s decision to not hold classes Jan. 29 and designate it as a flexible makeup day, officials said yesterday.

Flexible makeup days were put on the school calendar as days to make up for missed classes, in case of typhoons, power outages or any unforeseen event that prevents classes from being held.

"Because many students and staff traditionally don’t show up for school on Super Bowl Monday, the department decided to hold the makeup day this year on the day of the football game," Department of Education spokesman Tony Diaz said.

The Joint Calendar Committee, comprised of representatives of the DOE administration and the Guam Federation Teachers, scheduled Jan. 29 as a flexible day after considering the substantial number of absences of teachers, staff and students during past Super Bowls, GFT president John Burch said.

"I do know that this Monday is controversial," Burch said. "Throughout the years, we noticed that Super Bowl Monday is a loss to instructional time. There is a high absentee rate throughout Guam and it affects our teachers, and it affects our students."

Guam, with a population of 152,000, is 3,800 miles west of Hawaii and is west of the International Dateline.

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