Colder temperatures are settling in across much of the United States. With that, comes school closings.
Closing school is a tough call. The decision often requires hours of preparation and discussion among school administrators, local officials, road crews and meteorologists.
While students may enjoy an unexpected mid-week play day, parents and school administrators feel differently. Here are a few reasons why:
1. Weather Forecasts Can Be Wrong.
Mother Nature is unpredictable. With every winter storm threat, superintendents wake up in the early hours of the morning to check out weather maps and local road conditions. Even after all that research, weather forecasts aren’t guarantees. Most school leaders said they take a better-safe-than-sorry approach, but it can be hard to do as the number of days off climbs.
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2. Students Could Go Hungry.
School administrators know that school might be the only place where some students eat a healthy meal or experience a safe, supervised, warm environment.
3. Weather-Related School Closures Can Be Costly.
Wild weather almost always means extra costs for schools, from storm cleanup to snow removal to staff overtime. But school closures can hurt the budget in deeper ways, especially if the days off begin to pile up. For example, it may lead to cuts if standardized test scores decrease.
4. School Closures Means Less Time to Learn.
We all know about Summer Learning Loss. Research shows that summers without quality learning opportunities put our nation’s youth at risk for falling behind in core subjects like math and reading. Having too many snow days during the school year can have the same effect. To help prevent this, an increasing number of school districts are using e-learning to keep class in session during inclimate weather. There are many benefits to using e-learning for school administrators, teachers and students, including:
- Administrators Avoid Adding Makeup Days to School Calendars
- Teachers Can Continue with Lesson Plans as Scheduled
- Students Ask Questions More Freely in Online Settings
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