Letters to the Editor for April 17, 2012

When in doubt, call a ‘snow day’

In response to the Washougal School District considering putting changes into affect regarding snow days, here’s my opinion.

As someone who has had children in the Washougal School District for 21 years and lives in one of the outlying areas, I’m very concerned about any potential changes. While folks in town wonder why there is school when there is just a skiff of snow or it’s raining, I’m wondering on other days why there is school when we have 6 inches of snow and the roads are treacherous.

I can sympathize with parents who don’t want to leave their kids home alone, but I fear for the safety of parents and students (and teachers), who have to drive from outlying areas when there is school but no bus service. Driving on snowy, icy roads is bad enough when you are an adult, but I shudder to think of all the accidents waiting to happen with 16- to 18-year-old drivers trying to get to school.

It would be interesting to see what percentage of students come from Mt. Norway, Bear Prairie, Mt. Pleasant, Hughes, Skye, the Columbia River Gorge, etc. I’m guessing nearly as many people in the outlying areas are getting snow when the “townies” aren’t.

I realize that this winter since our new superintendent started, we have had very unusual weather, in the fact that we’ve had snow throughout March. Usually, there are only a handful of snow days or late starts each school year.

With the automated phone system in place, there are no surprises any more whether there is school or not. I say keep ALL the kids safe, and if in doubt, call a snow day. It’s worked for years!

Laurie Johnson, Washougal

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