Every teenager longs for it: A SNOW DAY!! Teenagers sit in front of the local news at 4:30 a.m. watching the names of the local school districts go by, praying for the name of their school district to appear. They know the name of the school district that is listed just after their school district, so if the list goes on and on and hits THAT school district without listing their own, they are crestfallen until the next alphabetical list, when the anticipation builds up all over again….
Today, the Kansas City area will be facing this dilemma a second time within the past week, and school officials will have to decide whether or not to cancel school. Obviously, the safety of kids is the number one priority for any “snow day” decision. Not only does this decision include considering dangerous streets because of precipitation affecting transportation, but it also includes temperatures falling extremely low and kids outside either walking to school or waiting for the bus.
As of early Monday morning (2/25), the latest weather news in Kansas City is this: Precipitation will start between 3:00 and 4:00 p.m. That will become heavy snow, up to two inches per hour, for several hours. In addition, winds will be blowing at approximately 30 mph, so we are to expect blizzard-like, white-out conditions, mostly overnight (www.kmbc.com ). The KC metro area could reach accumulations up to 10-14”. Some schools have already started announcing early release times for today. Surely we will see a huge round of school cancellations for Tuesday.,
Inevitably, any time school is cancelled, the District-Powers-That-Be end up fielding a barrage of phone calls from parents with varying, yet intense opinions. Give these school officials a break! Safety is NUMBER ONE! As a teen mentor, I narrow the focus down to this: Teen drivers are obviously the least-experienced drivers on the road. Most of them do not know how to deal with snow-packed on/off ramps, iced-over bridges and overpasses, or are even aware of the concept of ‘black ice’. I don’t want my kids driving in any of these conditions, especially in the dark. If that means I have to find childcare for younger students or even take some time off of work in order to keep those teen drivers off of the road, for their safety and for mine, it is worth it,
This is not the time to let your teenager invite all of his/her friends over for a get together; that defeats the entire purpose of cancelling school. Technology is such that your teen can communicate with just about anyone through various methods while still remaining toasty-warm and SAFE in your residence.
In fact, this time period in the school year is known to teachers as the, “third-quarter slump” because now is when teens get extra lazy about taking care of their school assignments. It would be a great idea to check in with your teen’s online gradebook, assignment sheets, any past-due assignments, and help them get caught up. Because your teens are most likely at school today, make sure they raid their lockers for any books, folders or other supplies they might need for catching up with their schoolwork. Sounds like a bummer, but it will help their grades later.
Overall, if school is cancelled, trust that there is a good reason why and keep your kids safe at home.