Cold snap forces administrators to close school
by Hawkins Teague
Jan 30, 2008 | 0 0 comments | 2 2 recommendations | email to a friend | print
While Trigg County children were undoubtedly delighted when school was canceled on Jan. 22, parents might have been a little confused, since roads were wet and the air was above freezing at the time students would have been filing into class.

Superintendent Tim McGinnis said it is tricky deciding whether or not to cancel classes on days like last Tuesday, but that he stood by his decision despite his desire to get in as many instructional days as possible before students take accountability tests in April.

“I’ve checked roads at a district level for 15 years, but yesterday was as unusual as any day has ever been,” McGinnis said last Wednesday.

McGinnis said he got out of bed at two o’clock that morning when the temperature was 38.5 degrees Farenheit. He said that he, Matt Ladd, the district’s director of operations, and Director of Transportation Mark Harris each take a different section of the county the safety of all the different types of roads. Ladd drives in the northeast part of the county toward Cerulean, Harris takes the south side and McGinnis takes the northwest side in his Jeep.

“It gives me a pretty good flavor of what the roads are like,” McGinnis said.

There are many variables that are considered before deciding to have school, McGinnis said. He checks the surface of concrete and bridges. He compares chip-and-seal roads to asphalt and pays attention to whether or not the roads have been treated with salt by state workers. Even when the temperature is above freezing it’s important to consider that the air temperature and road temperature are two different things, he said. It also matters how windy it is, since strong winds will usually blow water off the roads before it can freeze. McGinnis said he also compares the north sides of hills to the south sides. While driving up Will Jackson Road on Jan. 22, he said he became worried.

Read the Superintendent's explanation in full in your Cadiz Record.
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