Deciding whether or not to cancel school is tough task for Portland


Being a Portland area school administrator is a tough job this week.

Looking at a wish-washy weather forecast, trying to decide to delay or cancel school is no easy task. But that’s exactly what Teri Brady has to do.

Brady is the director of student transportation for Portland Public Schools and early Thursday morning, she’ll be asking some very important questions.

“Can we travel safely with a bus? Can parents and families get to school? Maybe even kids walking?”

On winter weather days, Brady’s staff starts driving around at 4 a.m. to test conditions for buses and cars. But with possible snow and ice not arriving until midday, the decision to cancel school, delay it or send kids home early will be difficult.

“We’re weighing the safety of getting them home in our vehicles,” said Brady. “Then we’re weighing the safety of delivering them home to empty houses. If we deliver them early, who’s going to be home to receive them? We’re going to be very cautionary tomorrow.”

Hope Cousineau’s two sons go to Forest Park Elementary School in the West Hills where icy roads can be very dangerous. It’s their first winter in Portland and she’s a bit anxious about being able to get around.

Cousineau hopes school district leaders think of safety first, even if it means canceling school.

“If it’s a safety issue, definitely,” said Cousineau. “I’d rather not risk people driving around in conditions that might be too icy.”

An updated list of school closures can be found at this link:

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