White Bear Lake Opts to Stay Open Tuesday While Many Districts Cancel Classes

Updated: 01/27/2014 11:12 PM KSTP.com By: Brandi Powell

Photo: Photo: KSTP/File

With Tuesday morning temperatures expected to be near 20 degrees below zero with wind chills of 25 to 40 degrees below zero in the metro, many schools have announced closures.

Minneapolis Public Schools, St. Paul Public Schools, along with the Anoka-Hennepin School District, are some of the larger districts that have announced Tuesday closures. Many districts were also closed Monday due to the cold.

Meanwhile, White Bear Lake Area schools is one of the districts that has opted to hold classes Tuesday. A message on the district's website states, "We are confident we can safely transport students (Tuesday) on or close to schedule. After four days off in January as a result of weather, we believe it's important for us to offer the opportunity for students to be back in school and learning. We are committed to do whatever it takes to assure student safety."

The district noted that if families decide to keep their children home, the district supports those decisions that are made for the safety and health of students.

A full list of school closing announcements can be found here.

The closings come three weeks after Gov. Mark Dayton announced all schools would be closed on Jan. 6, when temps were expected to reach a high of 15 below and a low of 30 below.

We know kids get excited to see that school alert scroll along the bottom of their television screens. But a day off often means a day on somewhere else in the school year.

Edina School district staff tell KSTP, at the school board meeting Monday night, they planned to look at a new proposal about when some days will be made up.

It was not originally on the agenda. But, it was added to the agenda after school was canceled Monday, and is canceled again Tuesday for the district.
For kids, there's nothing like extra play-time. But for parents, "I have kind of mixed feelings about it because obviously I would prefer that that they were in school and they were getting their education but I also think that safety is more important," Katherine Perry said. Her two children go to Edina schools.

"With another day off from school they just needed to get out of the house," Zeny McCoy said. Her three children are in Edina schools. "I needed to get out of the house!"

But only after they finish their school work. "Our instructors for the grade school and the high school have sent out messages to parents saying if you could do a little work at home that would be fabulous," McCoy said.
Knowing what needs to be accomplished, helps.
"So they definitely have more homework and so in that case I really think the administration is really staying on top of that and watching the amount of days that we're missing," McCoy said.
So that students don't miss out when the time comes for Spring statewide testing.
"The state standardized tests are administered during a window of time and it's about 2 months long," Josh Collins said. He is Communications Director for Minnesota Department of Education. "So that provides some flexibility for districts as they are planning for moving into that testing season."
So that students don't fall behind.
For some districts, Tuesday's cancelation means a fifth day of school off this school year for cold weather. It means more districts may end up trying to figure out how to make up days.
State statutes require most grades to have 165 days of class.