Snow days or lately, “weather days,” spark much joy for some parents, but they create chaos for others. Recently, parents have been forced to scramble and shift their schedules as weather conditions prompted schools to shut down. In many households, some parents have to adjust their schedules by dropping their kids off at a babysitter, moving their work-from-home space, making the tough decision to call off work, or even resorting to taking their kids to work with them.
From understanding parents to frustrated, stressed parents.
For many parents, this can become frustrating, especially when school is canceled multiple days in a row. In the past few weeks in Michigan, hundreds of schools have canceled classes because of snow, freezing rain, and lousy road conditions. Many school districts in Michigan have already had three snow days within ten days. Bridge Michigan reported that Michigan allows school districts to take up to six days off for inclement weather and other emergencies. They also note that a district can ask the state for waivers for more days.
Recently, Mayor Cherelle Parker and other Philly city officials declared a Snow Emergency on Friday, Jan 19. The School District of Philadelphia was ultimately closed that Friday due to the hazardous weather. This was also the case for Pennsylvania’s neighboring state, New Jersey.
Safety is the priority.
Student and faculty safety is the reason why many schools declare snow days or weather days. Typically, the decision to cancel school is made in collaboration with the school district superintendent and transportation director for the school district. Some officials even do their own research by getting in their cars and driving on the roads to get a better feel for the conditions.
Once they determine how the conditions are based on their own findings or research through platforms such as the National Weather Service, parents are alerted. They can be alerted through different avenues such as text messages, automated phone calls, the official school site, posts on social media, and multiple news outlets.
And, of course, parents are going to “alert” all of their friends and family via their social media feeds about how they feel about school cancellations.