Network News

X My Profile
View More Activity
The new Washington
Post Weather website
Jump to CWG's
Latest Full Forecast
Outside now? Radar, temps
and more: Weather Wall
Follow us on Twitter (@capitalweather) and become a fan on Facebook
Posted at 9:15 PM ET, 01/26/2009

Snow Forecast May Cause Dilemma for Schools

By Jason Samenow

Winter Weather Advisory 4 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday
Winter Storm Watch Tuesday Evening through Wednesday Afternoon

* CWG's Full Forecast for Tues-Wed Storm, and Beyond *

School administrators will have a tough call early tomorrow. When they're making their decision around 4 a.m. about whether to hold or delay school, the snow will just be beginning or may have not even begun. Our best estimate is that snow will begin between 4 a.m. and 10 a.m. from southwest to northeast.

By mid-morning, it should be snowing in most places, with an inch or two likely during the day before any changeover to ice -- most likely in the evening.

So, will administrators send students in on time and possibly dismiss them early? Will they delay school and close depending on how bad it gets later on? Or, will they tough it out, and hold classes throughout the snow?

I think the snow will start late enough (and/or at a light enough intensity) that most schools will open on time, but an early closing is a possibility in many school systems -- except probably DC where crippling snow or ice is typically required for school disruption. It wouldn't completely surprise me if a few school systems close tomorrow before a flake has even fallen in light of the fact no school days have been used up this year and to err on the side of caution.


DC Schools:

Maryland and Virginia Schools:

Note: Fairfax County schools are closed due to a teacher workday tomorrow.

SchoolCast for Wednesday will appear tomorrow evening around this time.

By Jason Samenow  | January 26, 2009; 9:15 PM ET
Categories:  Updates  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: PM Update: Tues-Wed Storm Still on Track
Next: Forecast: Some Shovelable Snow, Then Ice & Rain


I don't know who wants a day off more - me or my kids!

Posted by: someonelikeyou | January 26, 2009 9:31 PM | Report abuse

OMG, people, it's an inch or two of snow. It's not a national calamity.

Posted by: vancouver1999 | January 26, 2009 9:38 PM | Report abuse

Looks to me like we still have at least 12 hrs to go before precip gets here--it's only now pushing into OH from IN. Plus the leading edge looks pretty far north to me...

Posted by: gfp76 | January 26, 2009 9:50 PM | Report abuse

Vancouver, you're CLEARLY on the wrong blog. :) Us southern folk sure get excited for even a flake or two. Try it! It'll make you feel like a kid again...

Posted by: AnneinSand | January 26, 2009 10:05 PM | Report abuse

This is like a super-duper-deluxe schoolcast! Thanks for the long and detailed post!

Posted by: PeterBethesda | January 26, 2009 10:08 PM | Report abuse

From past experience, schools will be closed Wednesday on the mere mention of snow in the forecast. Three inches and kids will be off the whole week.

Don't do the homework, kids!

Posted by: dcwarren | January 26, 2009 10:21 PM | Report abuse

If I overprepare my arguments, does that make it more likely this will be a whopper of storm and the MoCo courts will be closed along with school?

Posted by: epjd | January 26, 2009 10:28 PM | Report abuse

NWS now has 2-4 inches of snow tomorrow for Sterling, and then an inch or less of snow and sleet followed by 0.2-0.4" of ice tomorrow night. I don't know if this has any influence on their thoughts, but the 0Z GFS run keeps the cold air in for a little longer, maybe delaying the change-over to rain.

Posted by: Sterlingva | January 26, 2009 10:46 PM | Report abuse

(Nice to have a link on the top of the Washington Post home page, no?)

Posted by: Sterlingva | January 26, 2009 10:51 PM | Report abuse

Latest data definitely looks more promising for snow/ice fans.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | January 26, 2009 10:56 PM | Report abuse

Unfortunately, our American models have some issue in these SW flow events...and it has teased the MA all the way to NYC, all winter....and I'm afraid is doing it again....the NAM has been spitting out some pretty varied solutions over the last 4 runs, and now the GFS decides to have another piece of energy become the dominate piece, and shows 2 or 3 waves of precip....with north and south waverings.... what to do??? Know their limitations and take a strong dose of the Euro....if it holds it's solution from 12z.

Posted by: clintonportis17 | January 26, 2009 11:01 PM | Report abuse

Another good day of striper fishing at 301 Bridge 2day, caught 16, 4 were 20-32lbs. The cold weather this yr appears 2 have brought the fish in this yr. Looks 2-3" b4 change over to rain, leaving a sloppy mess.

Posted by: VaTechBob | January 26, 2009 11:06 PM | Report abuse

Please, people, only an inch of snow is predicted. DC is the laughing stock of the country when it comes to our collective fear of snow, not to mention the idiot school administrators who are afraid of lawsuits if they don't close schools with a few flakes on the roads. So join all the others and run to the grocery store and scream at the top of your lungs - milk, bread, toilet paper!

Posted by: mfrieden | January 26, 2009 11:07 PM | Report abuse


Should we take the 00zGFS seriously!? These models must be driving the NWS offices CRAZY!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: clintonportis17 | January 26, 2009 11:07 PM | Report abuse

mfrieden, i don't know what school system you are thinking of. Dr. Smith in Arlington is NOTORIOUS for not closing or delaying school. I can recall one morning in which buses were getting stuck on Glebe Road and kids were having to get out to wait for other buses. Plus, there was another morning when the bus drivers, on mass, refused to drive because the roads were so bad.

I mean, really, if you had a five-year-old, would you want them on an icy or snowy road with all those crazy DC drivers? especially in a giant metal box with no seatbelts.

Posted by: dinergirl | January 26, 2009 11:39 PM | Report abuse

Yes, I recall one morning where Arlington School buses where stuck on 23rd street in Crystal City, and students had to get off. Whether you agree with his calls or not, Dr. Smith IS known for not closing or delaying schools in Arlington.

Posted by: Snowlover2 | January 26, 2009 11:46 PM | Report abuse

Oh, and sorry for the typos (sheepish smile). Didn't check before posting...

Posted by: Snowlover2 | January 26, 2009 11:49 PM | Report abuse


Not sure what you're reading but I'm not sensing fear. Rather I am sensing a lot of excited adults and kids who want to see some nice snow flakes for once. Way to be a scrooge. BTW - My wife and I were in Toronto last year and drove back to Niagara during a small snowstorm of 2-3". I never saw traffic come to a complete standstill like I did there. The roads were terrible, people were in the ditch, and traffic never went above 20mph. This was in Canada - took us over 4 hours to get to the hotel!!! It's not just DC, it's universal.

Posted by: schrute | January 27, 2009 12:04 AM | Report abuse


Sure--I don't think the 0z GFS is unreasonable...perhaps a little cold...but we do have a pretty cold air in place and it won't be easy to dislodge.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | January 27, 2009 12:30 AM | Report abuse

Anne Arundel County students already have Tuesday and Wednesday off due to teacher in-service days. If AA County institutes a "Code Red" and closes all schools, this will push back the student's return i.e. one day cancelation-students return Friday.....two cancelations-students return on Monday. Parents/Students should monitor the AA County school website for further information

Posted by: anti1clint | January 27, 2009 1:20 AM | Report abuse

How does it look more promising? More snow/ice early or late?

Posted by: mandarb77 | January 27, 2009 1:43 AM | Report abuse

The comments to this entry are closed.

RSS Feed
Subscribe to The Post

© 2012 The Washington Post Company