When the going gets tough, D.C. stays home

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We are embarrassed and enraged that Fairfax County again has closed its public schools. Does another place in the United States, or any cold-weather nation, deprive its students of school because of the weather?

What is the economic cost of thousands of parents being forced to stay home to take care of their kids rather than earning money? What is the academic cost of students missing lessons in math, science and reading? What lesson do we send to students when classes are canceled at the first sign of inclement weather: When the going gets tough, the tough stay home?

Did schools close for a couple inches of snow in days gone by? Are the roads more dangerous today? Are today’s buses and cars less safe? I think not. A more likely explanation: Today’s school officials, while well-meaning, are risk-averse and perhaps fearful of lawsuits. It is a sad lesson we are teaching the next generation.

Jon and Eike Gundersen, McLean

I’m a new Virginia resident from New Jersey. This winter has given me multiple opportunities to marvel at how Virginia fails to function in the face of fairly normal winter weather. My children’s schools have closed multiple times already; classes were canceled Thursday, for the third day in a week, simply because it was cold.

Why do so few people think it is strange that Prince William County schools shut down because of cold? Let the government do what it needs to do to keep roads clear, and let the children continue their instruction — just as they do pretty much everywhere north of the Washington area.

Mark Pertuit, Woodbridge

Regarding the Jan. 23 Metro story “Days of frigid weather will let snow stick around”:

Thumbs up to the U.S. Postal Service, which delivered my mail in the snow amid an avalanche of local and federal closures.

Tom Bickerton, Vienna



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