Schools may see more delays and less snow days this winter - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Schools may see more delays and less snow days this winter

By Brad Underwood – bio | email

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) -  Fewer snow days are available to Ohio schools this year, so delays could be a trend this winter. This year schools are allowed three calamity days, thats down from five in 2009. In 2011, two days will be given, and the following year just one.

State budget cuts have limited the number of snow days schools can take, but area superintendents say the number doesn't matter - it's all about safety.

"It's the whole idea of making sure our kids are safe," said Forest Hills superintendent Dallas Jackson. "A two hour delay is just that. It gives the school system an opportunity to either make sure the road conditions have improved or the weather has improved so that we can safely put our busses on the street."

In Norwood, buses aren't used for students. The majority of kids live in within walking distance.

"We don't even have a lot of students that drive, so a lot of our students walk, so what I have to be concerned about is our students walking," said Norwood superintendent Rob Amodio. "If it's a fresh snow, our residence probably haven't gotten out to shovel the sidewalk, so our kids, however young or however old, are usually walking in the street."

Amodio says schools might be more inclined to call delays when the weather gets in order to save a snow day.

"I would anticipate you would see more delays," he said. "Not being able to speak for others, but that's really the only tool left in our box other than canceling school."

One Norwood parent doesn't seem to mind that schools get less snow days.

"Last year there was a lot of snow and we had extra days we had to make up. It kind of ruined vacation time," said parent Josh Jackson.

School leaders suggest that cutting calamity days is a way of adding class time without spending more money.

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