An unusually high number of school closings were reported Tuesday in the Twin Cities metro, but Minneapolis and St. Paul were not among the districts taking the day off.
Anoka-Hennepin, which in the largest school district in Minnesota with 39,000 students, was among Tuesday's closures. Other major metro districts to close include: Burnsville, Inver Grove Heights, Prior-Lake Savage, Wayzata and White Bear Lake.
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WHY ST. PAUL SCHOOLS STAYED OPEN
St. Paul Public Schools spokeswoman Toya Stewart Downey released the following statement on Tuesday's decision:
The decision to close the school system is no simple matter. The safety and well being of students and staff is our top priority. The expectation is that schools will remain open, if at all possible, for uninterrupted student learning on scheduled school days. Before making the decision to close school due to extreme weather, Superintendent Silva consults with a variety of experts both within and outside the district. SPPS transportation personnel travel various bus routes to confirm accessibility. The district makes it a practice to decide by 5:30 a.m. whether school will be dismissed that day.
In this instance, all sources indicated that travel to school was safe and in the best interest of our students. Many families do not have child care, family leave or the resources to provide a safe setting for their children if school is canceled. The safety and well being of students and staff is the school district's top priority.
All student absences and/or tardies related to today's weather will be considered excused.
EARLY RELEASE, NO PM ACTIVITIES IN ST. PAUL
All SPPS schools typically dismissed at 2 p.m. will be dismissed instead at 1:15 p.m. in an effort to avoid delays for later buses. This includes both middle and high schools. Exceptions are Washington Secondary and Humboldt Secondary, who will dismiss at their regular 3 p.m. time.
No afternoon Pre-K
All after-school Pre-K-12 student programs (including extra-curricular activities, Parent Academy, athletics, field trips, and events) are canceled. Discovery Club, however, will remain open after school.
Adult Community Education classes are canceled (including classes at the Hubbs Center, school and community sites, Area Learning Centers and evening high school.)
All meetings scheduled at school district buildings are canceled. The only exception is the Committee of the Board meeting scheduled for 4:30 p.m. at the Saint Paul Public School Administration building, 360 Colborne St. That meeting will proceed as planned.
MINNEAPOLIS CANCELS AFTER-SCHOOL ACTIVITIES
Minneapolis Public Schools has canceled all after-school activities, including Community Education youth enrichment classes, ALC after-school activities and MPS athletic events, for today.
Minneapolis Kids sites will remain open until parents pick up their children. Community Education adult evening classes and adult enrichment activities will operate as normal. Special evening events that do not involve after-school busing, such as the Viva City fringe performance at the Cedar Cultural Center, will continue. The Minnesota State High School League will determine the status of basketball sectional play. Parents should contact their school's athletic office for updates.
Families with questions about a specific activity or event should contact their child's school.