Wednesday, January 16, 2008

A Quick Poll on Getting to School Yesterday

Late start/snow days are tricky things to call. When it was snowing Monday my son was excited that he might have a late start. He got up and checked the website; no late start so off he trudged (we live two blocks away from school). He gets there and the class had 8 kids. He said gradually, through the first period or two, kids came in and the office finally announced that no kid needed a pink "excused" slip to get to first or second period.

I heard from another friend her child's bus to Salmon Bay never came and she took her daughter to school.

Did anyone else have problems?

I think this was tough to call because we usually get warmer temps to melt it (or at least not freeze it to ice) but it seems like that didn't happen this time.


Anonymous said...

some late teachers, lots of missing / late kids, and some real white knuckles on the ride.

it should have been late arrival.

Anonymous said...

My son told me the same story about Roosevelt. Only nine kids in class when the bell rang. He got to school on time, but mostly because at the bus stop, they heard rumors that the buses were getting stuck. So one girl called her dad and he came by and took them to school. On the way they passed a metro bus stuck on the hill.

From the way I heard the story of the intercom message, I got the impression that teachers were being sticklers for pink slips to express their disapproval with the decision to start on time. But that may just be me reading into it.

I don't think it was tough to call. Buses are on the road and kids are on their way well before sunrise. Well before any ice would be expected to melt. It should have been late arrival.

Anonymous said...

My daughter takes metro to Eckstein. We watched 3 metro buses slide down our hill backwards before 7am. Then a friend with 4 wheel drive offered to take my daughter to school. Ten kids were in her homeroom when the bell rang. Eckstein did not require late slips until 4th period.

It was still icy when I drove to the elementary school at 9:00 where another bus was stuck blocking school drop off traffic.

It should have been a late start.

Anonymous said...

I heard on the news last night that 1/2 of the 24 snow/whatever trucks were out -

I made my grown in Dorchestor wife look up what Boston has ---
550 snow / whatever vehicles, for 1/2 the square miles!

I've lived in both cities for over a decade each, and Boston needs far more snow / whatever vehicles than we need.

But, there are about 550 reasons that, for the least amount of snow, this city turns into 1 huge skating rink.

Anonymous said...

Should have been a late start. My son's bus to middle school was stuck behind a disabled metro bus. This was at 7:00am. The streets were nothing but ice. Since the bus wasn't going anywhere, my husband took my son to school, and said it was very icy and a little scary.

By 9:00 the main problem getting our daughter to elementary school was the traffic backup. The main roads were OK by then, and the side streets were at least passable. --Lisa

Anonymous said...

When it is only a handful of schools in the north end? That makes no sense. Late starts for weather should be used when it impacts all or most of the district.

Jet City mom said...

It should have been late start. I took my daughter to school, because I knew the buses would be late on our hill. She was there on time, but she commented that many teachers didn't try to make it in.

Melissa Westbrook said...

Turns out that Superintendent Goodloe-Johnson canceled a scheduled bus tour of one area (only attending the lunch in the cafeteria at Hamilton) because of the weather. She likely was depending on the people in Transportation and their opinion but it seems hard to not know that our city has a lot of different geography to consider.

Anonymous said...

To anonymous that commented on "only a handful of schools in the north end" should not cause a late start...

I recall a couple of days last year when snow only affected "a few schools" in the south end, but that was enough to shut the district down for 2 days. Perspective is a funny thing.

Anonymous said...

The icy conditions started just above the I-90, hardly a north end only situation. It should have been a late start, as I figured when my 9th grader left our house to catch his bus at 7am and nearly slipped and fell before he even reached the gate.

Anonymous said...

I took my daughter to school, then my son to childcare to take my other daughter to co-op preschool. 75th Ave NE was an ice rink cars had to take turns going down the hill and there were cars slipping all over the place. I have 4 wheel drive and it was so slippery that got off 75th and went on side streets where there was snow to provide some traction.

I had no problem getting my daughter to school since the school is 2 blocks away. She did tell me that they couldn't go outside and play for the first 2 recesses since the principal thought it was too dangerous.

After that, getting my other 2 kids off was a nightmare - traffic was awful due to the ice. We were a half hour late for co-op where we are usually early.

My opinion is it should have been 2 hours late. For schools not affected, the district should work out something (should they break the district out in sub-divisions for weather for 2 hour delays?). I also think the city could have done a much better job sanding the roads. Last year my daughter fell really bad on one of those 2 hour delay days and I felt the playground was dangerous just to walk on - sand or salt should have been put down.

Anonymous said...

handful of schools in the north end?

I work retail in the north end. I walked to work. Left my house at 9:20 and conditions were so bad the mile walk took me 40 minutes. Got a call from my coworkers who were driving in from the South end and were stuck. at 10 am they were at 23rd and Madison. They made it to work (near University Village) 40 minutes later. Said the Central District was a sheet of ice.

Anonymous said...

The students live, for the most part, in the city of Seattle. The decision to have school on time was a complete disregard for the teachers and bus drivers who live all over the region. Was there any attempt to assess the conditions where not only the students live, but the teachers and staff as well? Penny wise and pound foolish. Or was is just perception? It wasn't really icy because someone downtown decided it wasn't. It was icy in the central district at midnight after the hour plus hail storm.

Anonymous said...

Well put..... the students all live "in the city of Seattle." Therefore, all the students in this district have the right to get to school safely, even if the ice only affects a "handful of schools in the north end". (which it clearly did not) I guess anonymous would say that we "privileged, white, affluent, whiney" northenders are just asking for even MORE special privileges because we didn't think that the ice-covered roads were safe for travel by school buses. The district could have called a late start, and not had to make up the day in summer.

Anonymous said...

Enough. District made a mistake. Tough call. Get on with the important business.

The other threads on this blog are about important issues that have long-term impacts on the education of children.

It's fun to gripe about the horrors of winter, but also add something to the more substantive conversations, please!

Anonymous said...

This discussion has turned from "district made a mistake" to the white privileged north end families. Somehow, white, affluent, and north end always get thrown into any conversation no matter the subject. It's so odd. Its so blatantly racist. It's so old. But it still never fails to amaze me when someone throws it in the conversation. This one is one of the best ones yet though, and will have me laughing about it for a while.