WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - The shofar - or rams horn - helps ring in the Jewish new year.
Jacob Weinshank, a tenth grader at Centennial High School , won't be at his synagogue to hear it.
"There's going to be a test on that day so I'm trying to study up and focus on my grades," said Weinshank.
Unlike Martin, Palm Beach, Broward and Miami-Dade counties, St. Lucie schools are in session on Rosh Hashanah.
Parents complained, but got a letter back from superintendent Genelle Yost, saying it would be "extremely disruptive" to change the calendar this late.
Students will be offered excused absences instead.
"I'm proud of the decision that he made," said Bill Weinshank, Jacob's father. "But I'm also disappointed he won't be next to us on Rosh Hashanah. It angers me he has to make a decision like that at all."
Parents are especially upset because the board approved a calendar that provides a day off on Friday the 13th, which some say is pointless.
Yom Kippour isn't observed until Friday night.
A local rabbi says they'd like more sensitivity for a growing Jewish population in St. Lucie County.
"It's the most profound days where we get together as a community. It's not an easy day. It's a day spent deeply in prayer," said Shafir Lobb, the rabbi at Temple Beth El Israel in Port St. Lucie. "It's an unfortunate oversight. I don't think malicious intent was there."
The superintendent said in her letter the district is committed to being responsive to community needs while still equipping students to succeed.
Jacob Weinshank says no community need could be greater than this.
"It is a Jewish holiday and it should be respected like other holidays," said Weinshank.
Parents hope the board will hear their calls for next year to observe both Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippour.