School district responds to “snowpocalypse” concerns

By Ritika Khanal and Annika Prom

The Edmonds School District (ESD) announced all schools and related programs will be closed Thursday, Feb. 14, due to unsafe weather conditions. This closure marks the ninth snow day affecting the district this school year. Some community members are questioning why school is canceled on Thursday.

In response, the ESD posted a message accompanying photos on their Facebook page.

“We still have hazardous conditions on many bus routes and side streets. We also have on-campus concerns with snow & ice that our facilities department is working to address,” the ESD wrote.

The ESD posted images of some schools and residential roads, which they took on Wednesday afternoon. These photos contributed to their decision to cancel school on Thursday. These photos show fallen tree branches, hanging icicles, blocked sidewalks and icy driveways.

Additionally, the ESD provided an in-depth explanation about the checklist they use to call snow days, which can be found on the district website.

While main roads are primarily clear of snow, we continue to have hazardous conditions on many bus routes and neighborhood streets around our schools,” the ESD wrote.

Facility workers are currently addressing snow and ice concerns, as weather forecasts predict water on roadways will likely freeze overnight. Right now, “all school driveways, parking lots and bus loops must be plowed” and “many sidewalks are still covered by deep snow and ice.” Workers  are also making efforts to remove icicles, snow slide-offs and fallen tree branches.

According to the National Weather Service, this is Seattle’s snowiest February since 1945. Consequently, government officials and school district officials scrambled to adjust to this unexpected snow through cancellations; many students and community members took to social media to express their opinions regarding the ESD’s decision to cancel school for the fourth consecutive day this week.

“I can’t leave my driveway and we only have one car that can handle the snow, no school,” senior Abbi Johnson responded to a Hawkeye poll about snow days.

Others are simply concerned about having to make up days at the end of the year.

Freshman Austin Davis prefers a late start schedule over a snow day.

“[Late starts are] good because I don’t want school in July,” Davis wrote.

“Please know that we never make these decisions lightly. Safety is our primary concern,” the ESD wrote on their Facebook page.

TEMPO Executive Editor Marianne Nacanaynay created a map of snow conditions around the community, as reported by students. Check it out below. To add snow conditions around your area, click here.