Snow Day School Decisions Not As Easy As ABC

UPDATED: Tuesday December 10, 2013 7:03 PM

As the morning routine got started on Tuesday, many parents say they saw the snow and just knew what would happen next.

"I was assuming there would probably be a two hour delay," said Sarah Baughman, whose children attend school in the Olentangy Local School District.

And sure enough, all morning on 10TV News, reports of delays scrolled across the bottom of the screen.

In fact, some districts that started off with delays ended up closing for the day, but not all.

That left for a slow commute this morning.

Olentangy Local Schools was one of the districts that opened at its regular time.

A spokesperson says the district made the decision to close Friday because the forecast called for snow and ice in the morning, with a second heavy band of snow in the afternoon. The decision was different today because they said the snow was scheduled to end early and there wouldn't be any ice.

"When you are trying to transport students by bus, which is always the basis for your decision, ice is a much bigger factor contributing to safety than snow," said Olentangy Local Schools Spokesperson Michael Straughter, “Those wheels on a school bus, and if you get up close to them you will see, they are designed to really grip and track the road”

Worthington Schools spokesperson Vickie Gnezda says her district opened on time because the roads were only snow covered but, again, no ice.

A point echoed by Westerville City Schools spokesperson Matt Davis who issued the following statement:

The district made the decision for Friday based on that days forecast which called for snow and ice in the morning and throughout the day, with a second heavy band of snow arriving during the afternoon. Based on the conditions and forecast, school was canceled on Friday, December 6, along with evening activities. Additionally, because of the amount of ice, snowfall and weather conditions, the district also made the decision to cancel some Saturday morning activities."
As for today, although the forecast and road conditions were worse than what were predicted, the forecast only called for snow in the early morning hours and not throughout the day.
Although some buses were delayed, the district had no accidents and student were delivered to their destination safely.

The safety of our students is a priority and the decision to open/close schools or modify the school day schedule is based upon a careful analysis of all relevant factors, such as:
•    Information on road conditions from transportation staff and from local law enforcements and road crews; We must give careful consideration to the most dangerous roads in the district; they can be treacherous, even if your street looks clear.
•    Whether precipitation is expected to continue throughout the day;
•    Weather predictions (including those from a weather alert service);
•    Storm timing;
•    What other districts are doing

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