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Arlington Public Schools Closed Friday

by ARLnow.com January 27, 2011 at 6:04 pm 3,116 39 Comments

With many side streets still snow-covered, with power still out in many areas, and with a refreeze predicted tonight, Arlington County Schools have decided to remain closed Friday.

It’s the third day in a row that schools have been affected by weather. Schools were closed Thursday and let out two hours early on Wednesday.

Although schools will be closed, administrative offices remain open.

  • Whitney Wilson

    While I recognize that I don’t have all the information available to the Superintendent, this seems like a mistake.

    • Well at least we know you are fond of making predictions while at the same time you admit ignorance.

  • Southie

    Agreed, it’s appalling that Arlington County can’t clear 5″ of snow from the roads in over 24 hours. Maybe they could do a 2-hour delay if they are concerned about refreezing tonight, but cancelling for a second day (really, a third–snow ended on Wednesday) is nuts.

  • Kimberly

    I’m sorry…how can we know at 6pm today what the roads and such will be like 12 hours from now???

  • david

    I think that they may have jumped the gun on this one. Though I do appreciate the early notice for planning purposes.

  • Jake55

    I stuck to VDOT maintained roads today and had no problem. What’s up with the ARL Dept of Sewers, Trash, Environment, Homeless, and Roads dept?

    • mehoo

      I think the greater traffic on VDOT roads creates more friction and heat to break up snow and ice. Clearing every little side street takes longer and more work.

  • NICH

    If school were held tomorrow and a kid was killed by an out of control car that had slid on ice, everyone would be screaming at the ACPS as to why school wasn’t canceled.

    • Arlington Dad

      Then let’s cancel school everyday. Your nightmare scenario is just as likely to happen in the rain or the dark or on a perfectly sunny day. God forbid people actually take responsibility for themselves.

      • grandpa

        Hey, Dad? Guess what? No, it’s much much more likely to happen in snow and ice.

        I’m the first person to make fun of losers who whine about snow, or getting their kids to school. My kids walk often despite having bus service. I was surprised the schools were closed too.

        But today was a good day to stay home.

  • Power Outage

    Maybe they canceled school because of power outages at some of their schools.

    • JLH

      That has happened in the past and they list the schools with no power as having no school.

  • AllenB

    And if they didn’t cancel school, a whole other bunch of second-guessers would be here saying how dare they not cancel, it’s not safe out there.

    • jan

      right you are

  • BoredHouseWife

    We might get a clipper tomorrow and considering the fail that was yesterday they are playing it safe.

    • mehoo

      The snow’s coming down now. An inch is predicted. It will cover all the ice on the roads now – very hazardous.

  • charlie

    i’m amazed at how my neighborhood kids can make it to the sledding hill, friends across town, and other places when school is closed.
    I guess ACPS doesn’t want their safety on its dime. I understand that.
    But boy are kids become wimps. (How old am I?)

    • mehoo

      They’re not wimps – like you said, they made it to sledding hills just fine.

  • nadnerb

    I thought they called it a bit early… but they still haven’t plowed my street.

  • mehoo

    Another factor is probably kids walking on streets because of snow on sidewalks (or no sidewalks) or standing in streets to wait for the bus. Dangerous.

    • Arlington Dad

      Boo hoo. We can walk to school just fine thanks, snow or no snow.

      • grandpa

        Not everyone can walk to school, Dad. And walking can be very dangerous when snow covers ice.

        I think you’re stuck at home with your kids for the second day in a row and it’s driving you crazy right about now, huh?

        • Arlington Dad

          I’m sorry, but I call B.S. Making parents take vacation time they don’t have and may not be able to afford when they can get around perfectly well and are in fact expected to be at work is inappropriate. Not everyone can walk, but a lot of people do, and a lot more people drive their kids every day. If you think it’s unsafe please feel free to keep your kid at home. Why the inconvenience for everyone else?

          • grandpa

            The schools consider the safety of your kids and the chances that the entire schedule will be disrupted anyway when considering weather delays, not convenience to parents.

            If you think school is a babysitting service so you can go to work, why don’t you hire one?

            Next time you get a snow day off from work, be sure to go in to the office anyway. Every argument you’ve made against school closings can be made against work closings too.

          • Arlington Dad

            Um, I don’t know where you work, but my office follows the government. If the government is closed there is usually a good reason. The same cannot be said for the school systems of Arlington, Fairfax, and the worst offender Montgomery County.

          • mehoo


  • Larchmont

    There is a good chance the bus would get stuck this morning on the iced over hill in our neighborhood. Yes, it’s on the bus route. And I drove around several people walking in the streets due to impassable sidewalks. Not just a few inches of snow on them but piled up “frozen” snow plow droppings. Glad it wasn’t a pack of school kids, especially my elementary school kid.

  • CJR

    Anyone who lives in VA square area (and other arlington areas), if you really want to get pissed off, go take a look at how well the streets in Lyon Village are plowed, even the tertiary roads and cul-de-sacs (in Lyon Village) compared to the main throughfares in VA Square area such as Lincoln and Monroe which pass right in front of Arlington Science Focus school, Nelson, 13th Street, the Kirkwood/ 14th St. N intersection where a shcool bus accident happened last year. Is that snow plow driver skill? does Lyon Village privately contract? just curious since it was such a stark contrast between the two neighborhood – and I drove through both just to make sure it wasn’t a limited sampling of streets and the difference happens across Kirkwood.

    • charlie

      they are preparing for when all their streets will be in total darkness next winter as the Baptist affordable housing towers over creating an endless shadow.

  • cabanagirl

    Was walking to the Columbia Pike library to pick up a book when I fell — hard on my right wrist — on some snow-covered ice by the S. Highland side of Patrick Henry ES. We cleared our sidewalk within the ‘required time’ and yet there are wide sections of snow-covered ice on the school’s sidewalks. So much for the snow removal ordinance.

  • Lou

    Considering it is snowing pretty hard in DC right now and they are calling for another inch, they probably made the right decision.

  • Arlington Dad

    Look the fact is if the federal government is open and we’re expected to go to work, there is no legitimate reason for the schools to be closed. They usually blame the buses (which for some reason are perfectly capable of running in slush in New York but apparently cannot here), but if that’s the case just cancel bus service and let parents get their kids to school another way. On a day like today, there’s just no basis for it. It costs parents vacation days, customers, work obligations, and it is unnecessary. Plow the school parking lots promptly and get on with it.

    • grandpa

      Well, no, adults and kids are different.

      • Arlington Dad

        How? If the parents can get around, so can the kids, especially given that it is the parents who are taking them there.

        • grandpa

          Kids aren’t as smart or responsible, and those who are unsupervised by adults may end up doing unsafe things while standing in the street waiting for buses or walking to school. You should know that.

          Bet you’d be the first to whine if there were an accident. But that’s just a guess.

          Hope you have a better weekend with the kids. Take them to a movie or something and get out of the house.

  • Arlington Dad

    I am out of the house. I actually had to work today. But my wife is now burning vacation she doesn’t have. As someone who grew up in the northeast, I am very used to commuting in snow, going to school in the snow, and this region (I have now lived here for 20 years) never gets a clue. I’m tired of local governments here making policy decisions based on the least common denominator. It’s not like that elsewhere and it needn’t be here.

    But you are part of the problem. You think it is the county’s responsibility to protect people from doing unsafe things. I say, if you are a parent who utilizes the bus system and you think it is unsafe, take your kid to school yourself. If you are afraid to drive a mile to school on a day like today stay home.

    • Andrew

      Did the waaambulance take you to work?

    • Andrew

      “I’m tired of local governments here making policy decisions based on the least common denominator. It’s not like that elsewhere and it needn’t be here.”

      I have lived in Florida, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, Texas and now Virginia. Trust me, it is like that everywhere.

  • Teacher

    Did you ever consider that there are teachers, myself included, that DO NOT live in Arlington county, and that we have to drive in from other counties where the weather is worse?? The safety of everyone is taken into consideration…students AND staff! Quit whining and suck it up. That is part of being a parent and having kids in school. Snow days!


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