School Closings Leave Parents in a Bind
COLUMBIA - Columbia Public Schools closed schools Monday, and schools will be closed again Tuesday. It's the same situation for many schools in the mid-Missouri area, but don't expect to see children playing outside.
Sub-zero temperatures have forced kids inside. Combine the snow day with the recent winter break, and parents are having difficulty watching kids.
"I had to call in sick to work," said a parent who chose not to be identified. "You don't get work off for snow days, and I'm a single parent, so this is pretty difficult on me to make sure my kids are safe."
Another parent had the day off to watch his kids, but echoed some of the same concerns.
"They just had two weeks off, and they can't go outside, so they're getting a little crazy," said Matthew Stone, a father of five.
Stone, who works as a firefighter and paramedic, said the difficulty is worth it to keep kids safe from the elements.
"The ten-year-old is fine, but I have a seven-year-old and a five-year-old, and they're too young to realize just how cold it is out there."
Columbia Public Schools spokeswoman Michelle Baumstark said the school district does not have a specific policy on when to close school because so many factors are involved including windchill, road safety, sidewalk safety, and operation of school buses.
For a full list of current school closings, click here.