Tough Call for School Superintendents

Posted at 5:42 AM, Feb 07, 2013
and last updated 2013-02-07 06:08:52-05

MONTCALM COUNTY, Mich. — It is no quick or easy decision when school superintendents have to make the call are faced with whether to cancel school due to snow. Kyle Hamlin, superintendent of Lakeview Schools in Montcalm County, said it is his least favorite thing to do.

According to Hamlin, the district has 260 miles of roads that buses and students drive to and from school. On days when the snow causes a problem, administrators hit the road early, around 2:30 a.m. Hamlin said they likely drive a combined 90 miles to see how the roads are affected.

While the main roads may seem clear and easy to drive, it is the side roads that Hamlin has to consider.

“Particularly, with high school students, can they drive safe?” said Hamlin. “When we’re out driving those roads, that’s a big gauge as to whether or not kids can get to and from school, safely. Can a kid stand at the bus stop without someone sliding off and hitting them, and can our buses make it down the side road.”

The district has already used five snow days and have two more remaining. Any days past the seven allotted during the school year will have to be made up during the year on scheduled days off, or at the end of the year.

The last day of school in the Lakeview district is Friday, June 7.