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It is not just our schools who close due to snow

Discussion in 'Personal' started by TCSC47, Feb 16, 2016.

  1. TCSC47

    TCSC47 Star commenter

    I get fed up with the stick that UK schools get if they have to close because of bad weather. The headlines in our anti-school gutter media go on and on that schools are giving in too easily. It wouldn't happen abroad.

    Well, it does. http://montreal.ctvnews.ca/school-closures-due-to-tuesday-s-storm-1.2779502

    In this case a whole load of schools in Montreal closed today, one of them Vanguard School in St. Laurent which was a school I went to. It is in the middle of a highly populated urban area and pretty much all of the kids could walk to school. As a child I remember many school closures.

    Even though the Canadians are well used to snow and have plenty of resources to deal with it, they know when to step back and let nature take its course. In the UK however, there is great pressure to keep our schools open no matter what. And why -- partly because we don't value our teachers and our children's education like the Canadians do theirs, but mainly because UK schools are simply considered one big child minding service.

    In the Midlands where I live, we get snow only every two or three years so it is quite reasonable for the community to shut down. But no, we are at the beck and call of parents who just want to dump their kids on us because they have to go to work and don't want to take on their responsibility to provide child care.

    Education pretty much stops in schools anyway when there is a lot of snow. The children come to school in totally inappropriate clothing, and sit in class cold, dripping wet and complaining all day, their suffering further increased by the inadequate heating systems. Unhealthy and unproductive, but great copy for the gutter media to once more have yet another go at lazy teachers.
    Alf58, Dragonlady30 and kibosh like this.
  2. irs1054

    irs1054 Star commenter

    I find it so amusing that some people in this country seem to think that we can operate completely independent of the weather.

    Weather can and will affect us some of the time. Like with the trains, you can either winterize trains at a cost which will send the ticket price (further) through the stratosphere or you can not do it and accept there will be days when the trains don't run.

    The main reason schools I have been in, have closed due to snow has been because few, if any, teachers (and students) have managed to get in because the roads have been blocked. I remember one time, listening to the radio during a snowstorm and hearing traffic reports one after another telling which roads were blocked until finally the town where the school was, became completely cut off. Since more than half the students were bussed in from outside the town (as well most of the teachers not living in the town) it was obvious the school couldn't open.

    I remember one HT on TV saying he would never close under any circumstances and expected teachers (and students) to come in regardless. I just wonder what risk assessment he would produce in defence of any court case that happened because of injury as a result of the weather.
    kibosh likes this.
  3. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    When the weather is really bad, the police often say 'only drive if your journey is really necessary' - don't think they mean teachers going to a (probably closed) school...
    redlamp2 likes this.
  4. Dragonlady30

    Dragonlady30 Star commenter

    Not to mention the false reasoning of some parents, blaming the teachers for closing the schools. In my experience, teachers feature below the caretaker in the pecking order in many schools.
  5. jubilee

    jubilee Star commenter

    If you give parents more choice when selecting a school for their child ... and many then select a school out of their home area ... and you have such behaviour issues that teachers generally want to live outside the catchment area for their schools to avoid having their windows smashed in or egged ... you create the conditions for more schools having to close when the weather is inclement.
  6. peakster

    peakster Star commenter

    To be fair they get a tad more snow in Canada than you get over here.

    I lived there for five years so I can attest to this.

    However in Canada they know how to deal with it and the country doesn't just grind to a halt.

    Incidentally we haven't had a snow day for a few years now.
  7. Mangleworzle

    Mangleworzle Star commenter

    I used to love snow days, a sort of gentle anarchy descended because the whole world looked different.

    Only had very few when the boys were young and at school, they were magical times to spend with the family, a real gift.
  8. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    I've struggled in when it was more like something Amundsen would have relished and been sent home when there was but a single flake. It never made any sense to me.
  9. jubilee

    jubilee Star commenter

    I worked on supply at a school (Rawtenstall) that would regularly close when snow and ice made the big hill up to the school impassable. The trouble was that I had to leave at 7.15 to get there on time as I live 47 miles away. I'd get a call on my mobile about halfway there and would pull over to take it. I'd then have to turn around and go home. As a daily paid teacher, I lost a day's pay and had petrol costs!
  10. grumpydogwoman

    grumpydogwoman Star commenter

    Oh, yes. I've done that. Before mobiles. You arrive, having slogged your guts out to get there, only to find it's closed!!!!
  11. Doitforfree

    Doitforfree Star commenter

    My relatives in the US regualrly get snow days when there's no snow to speak of, and they live in an area where snow is expected so they're allegedly prepared for it. But if they have mroe then a couple of snow days the extra ones are taken off their summer holiday! I would always book a holiday away for the first week, just in case. What a bonkers system, and not at all set up for the weather conditions they get every year.
  12. sabrinakat

    sabrinakat Star commenter

    My mother used to laugh when the federal government in DC closed down when there was half an inch of snow - she was from upstate NY state where they went to school almost in blizzards. (I believe her).

    We did get bad snow at times and yes, too many snow days could be added to the end of the school year in June!

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