District 186 Should Cancel School on January 28, 2014
Springfield Public School District 186, a district with tens of thousands of students and a high rate of poverty, plans to resume classes tomorrow, January 28, 2014, despite weather reports saying it will be cold enough to get frostbite within as little as 15 minutes. This creates an unsafe and hazardous environment for students waiting for the bus or walking to school. Many schools in the district do not have proper heating systems to deal with such extreme weather conditions. This does not make for a safe learning environment, as promised in the district's student handbook under "Conduct, School Culture & Rights: Springfield School District 186 remains committed to the goal of SAFE SCHOOLS and an orderly process of instruction...Reaching this goal has required that EVERYONE - members of the Board of Education, central office personnel, school administration, teachers, parents and students - assume his or her share of responsibility toward attainment of that goal. To do otherwise would be a great disservice to the young people of Springfield." And because of the district's high rate of poverty, many students are left in the cold to wait for the bus with little more than a t shirt and pants. District 186 also does not have an adequately established system for determining when to cancel classes, making it difficult to plan ahead for the weather.