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Posted at 4:53 AM ET, 12/17/2010

School delays or closings around region

By Washington Post staff


Schools that are closed on Friday or opening late because of weather conditions include:

MARYLAND
Montgomery County Public Schools -- delayed two hours. No half-day programs.
Prince George's County Public Schools -- delayed two hours. No half-day programs. Central offices open on time.
Howard County Public Schools -- delayed two hours. No half-day programs. No half-day morning programs.
Anne Arundel Public Schools -- delayed two hours. No morning half-day pre-kindergarten or ECI classes.
St. Mary's County Public Schools -- closed Friday. Code 2 for employees.
Charles County Public Schools -- closed Friday.


VIRGINIA

Fairfax County Public Schools -- delayed two hours. Offices open.
Loudoun County Public Schools -- delayed two hours.
Culpeper County Public Schools -- closed Friday. Twelve-month employees report at 10 a.m.
Fauquier County Public Schools -- closed; administrative offices open at 10 a.m. Liberal leave is in effect.
Manassas City Public Schools -- delayed two hours.
Prince William County Public Schools -- closed. Code Red for employees.
Spotsylvania County Schools -- closed Friday. Code 2 for 12-month employees.
Stafford County Public Schools-- closed; employees Code 2.

DISTRICT
no reports




Thursday's school closing information:


D.C. area systems that will close one hour early: In Maryland: Anne Arundel County Schools; In Virginia: Prince William County Schools.

D.C. area systems that will close two hours early: In Maryland: Prince George's County Schools. In Virginia: Fairfax and Loudoun county school systems.

Manassas City Schools will close early. Osbourn High School and Metz Middle School will close at 12:30 p.m.; Mayfield Intermediate will close at 1 p.m. and all elementary schools will close at 1:30 p.m.

Alexandria City Public Schools are also closing early. Elementary schools will close at 1 p.m.; secondary schools will close at 2 p.m. All after-school and evening activities are canceled, but the school board meeting is not canceled. UPDATE, 12:10 p.m.: The school board meeting has been canceled.

We'll update you as we receive word about closings in other area districts.

Update, 2:15 p.m.

Howard County Public Schools have canceled all after-school and evening activities. Arlington Public Schools have also canceled all after-school and evening activities. Extended Day will remain open until the normal closing time at 6 p.m. Also, the school board will meet at 7:30 p.m. as previously scheduled.

Update, 11:20 a.m.

Prince William County Schools will close an hour early today. All after-school and evening activities in addition to the after-school SACC program are canceled. In addition, Anne Arundel County Schools will also close an hour early today. No after-school or evening activities.

Update: 10:45 a.m.

Prince George's County joins the list of area school systems that will be closing two hours early today. Officials say all after-schools and evening activities have been canceled.

updated 10:25 a.m.

Update: Loudoun County and Fairfax County public schools will close 2 hours early.


Forecasts of inclement weather on Thursday prompted schools in most outer counties to cancel classes, hours before the first flakes fell.

The following school systems said they would be closed:

In Maryland: Charles County Public Schools, Calvert County Public Schools, St. Mary's County Public Schools

In Virginia: Fauquier County Public Schools, Spotsylvania County Public Schools, Stafford County Public Schools.

Culpeper County Public Schools announced a two-hour delay, and officials said they will decide by 8 a.m. whether to close altogether.

Thursday's forecast includes highs just below freezing and snow accumulations of one to two inches in most of the area, with three to five inches possible further to the south and west. Snow was falling in West Virginia before dawn, and meteorologists said flakes would arrive in the Washington area by late morning.

By Washington Post staff  | December 17, 2010; 4:53 AM ET
Categories:  Education, Weather  
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Comments

Are you kidding me?
Back when I was going to Fairfax County schools (60s and 70s), it took a lot more snow than this to have early closings. Bunch of weather wimps. Suck it up and live with it or move to Florida.

Posted by: mfrieden | December 16, 2010 10:32 AM | Report abuse

They don't want the school bus sliding off the road & killing all the widdle boys & girls.

Posted by: TaxiDriver | December 16, 2010 10:35 AM | Report abuse

"it took a lot more snow than this to have early closings"

Blame the lawyers, bro.

Can you imagine the law suits that would result if a school bus was involved in an accident during snowy weather no matter how minor?

Lawyers would be salivating at the possible damage awards of a school bus accident.

Posted by: montana123 | December 16, 2010 10:41 AM | Report abuse

Well aren't we smug. Okay, YOUR job is to get 100,000 students home in 3 shifts (remember, the same bus and driver will be used for HS, middle school, and elementary schools) in a two-hour timeframe.

And it is snowing in the DC area, with all attendant road woes.

What is your better idea?

Posted by: teo_68 | December 16, 2010 10:46 AM | Report abuse

The reason the schools close early is due to the significant number of people who struggle driving in this weather. You know the ones--clear one little spot off their windows to see out of and leave the rest of the windows covered, driving on near-bald tires, going fast in their SUVs because they think 4-wheel drive means they can stop on a dime. And of course taxi drivers who barely follow the traffic laws on a bright sunny day let alone a snowy one.

Posted by: Haywood2 | December 16, 2010 10:49 AM | Report abuse

Oh, those crazy lawyers trying to make our community a safer place for our children--the shame!

Posted by: EasyDecisions | December 16, 2010 10:50 AM | Report abuse

Prince William County is closing one hour early (just got a recorded message from the kids' school).

Posted by: fall_line | December 16, 2010 10:51 AM | Report abuse

You are all missing the obvious: People in DC are sissies. It's been empirically proven time and again. And their ineptness attracts other inept people.

Posted by: Wallenstein | December 16, 2010 10:52 AM | Report abuse

"Blame the lawyers, bro."

It isn't the lawyers, it's the people that hire them and the judges that feed them.

Posted by: jake8 | December 16, 2010 10:56 AM | Report abuse

I think it is insane they are closing, but at the same time in the 60's, 70's, and 80's we didn't have same the number of cars out on the roads.

Too many people.

Posted by: asdf9876 | December 16, 2010 11:04 AM | Report abuse

You are all missing the obvious: People in DC are sissies. It's been empirically proven time and again. And their ineptness attracts other inept people.

Posted by: Wallenstein

A little silly to be closing early, but I'll never understand people equate our general lack of driving ability in snow to rank us as "sissies." A superior ability to drive in snow does not make one tougher than one who cannot.

Posted by: BigBubba1 | December 16, 2010 11:17 AM | Report abuse

I'm guessing a few of you don't have school age children. Not quite 10 years ago, on a snowy day, there was a school bus accident in which several children were killed. There were also many buses that were stuck in the snow ... children were trapped on the buses for hours. The decision to close the schools was not made until it was too late for the kids to get home safely. I'd rather my kids be safe and schools be closed - if being a caring parent makes me a wimp, then I proudly say I'm a wimp.

Posted by: ounanm1 | December 16, 2010 11:17 AM | Report abuse

I wonder if Montgomery County is going to announce schools closing 2 hours early at 2 hours and 15 minutes before school ends like they did when I was in school.

Posted by: DethBlosm | December 16, 2010 11:17 AM | Report abuse

Well, it's not the snow that causes the problems on the road as much as it's the ice.

Just last week when we got that little unexpected dusting on the roads, there were a lot of cars that were sliding off the road. I counted six car carcasses on Rt 97 on one two mile stretch alone. Mind you, at that section the road is hilly and twisty, but it was the black ice that caused the troubles. Not the snow per se.

As for the bad "DC drivers", well, how many of the people on the roads today were raised in this area? Most people who currently live here learned to drive elsewhere.

Being the person to make the call to close/delay/dismiss early is a job for which I could not be paid enough. Let's chalk this up to giving the bus drivers and road crews a little refresher training for the upcoming winter and shrug it off.

I think a lot of the adults are just jealous because they don't get to leave early!

Posted by: Skowronek | December 16, 2010 11:22 AM | Report abuse

"Oh, those crazy lawyers trying to make our community a safer place for our children--the shame!"

Do you really believe that hooey? C'mon, tell me you're joking.

To the contrary. The more serious the school bus crash, the more kiddies are killed or seriously injured, the bigger the payouts to lawyers from lawsuits.

Lawyers are in it to make a buck.

Lastly, lawyers making the community safer for our children!?

Sheeeet!

Gimme a break, man!

Posted by: montana123 | December 16, 2010 11:23 AM | Report abuse

Yes, yes, we know. When YOU were a kid growing up in Minnesota or Michigan or wherever, you walked through 2 feet of snow to get to kindergarten and killed black bears and delivered meals to shut-ins all along the 10-mile route. That was very brave of you. Now please just get over the fact that this area is different, or move back up north.

Posted by: TheLeaver | December 16, 2010 11:24 AM | Report abuse

Yes, yes, we know. When YOU were a kid growing up in Minnesota or Michigan or wherever, you walked through 2 feet of snow to get to kindergarten and killed black bears and delivered meals to shut-ins all along the 10-mile route. That was very brave of you. Now please just get over the fact that this area is different, or move back up north.

Posted by: TheLeaver | December 16, 2010 11:26 AM | Report abuse

I think comparing travel to the 60s and 70s is silly given the increased number of drivers/traffic on the road today. The beltway wasn't even completed until'64. Let the children be safe and enjoy the upcoming holidays. Being willing to risk childrens'lives just to claim you aren't a sissy is juvenile.

Posted by: 12345leavemealone | December 16, 2010 11:32 AM | Report abuse

A little silly to be closing early, but I'll never understand people equate our general lack of driving ability in snow to rank us as "sissies." A superior ability to drive in snow does not make one tougher than one who cannot.
===

It is not the lack of skill, per se. It is the panic that accompanies said failing.

Posted by: mason08 | December 16, 2010 11:33 AM | Report abuse

Lawyers would be salivating at the possible damage awards of a school bus accident.

Posted by: montana123
*********************
Wow, finally paying the child support, huh?

Posted by: LABC | December 16, 2010 11:46 AM | Report abuse

you know, it is possible that there might be some good lawyers and some bad lawyers.

Posted by: joew22 | December 16, 2010 11:59 AM | Report abuse

Most people born in DC are used to snow and can drive in it. The problem is that many of the the folks in DC are not from DC and many are from areas that don't experience snow.

Posted by: oakiedokie | December 16, 2010 11:59 AM | Report abuse

I've never understood these early school closings for a couple inches of snow. Since when is it safer to send everybody home before area jurisdictions can get all the roads treated? Seems it would be safer to let the school day continue normally, since the temperature today won't be any more of a problem later than it is right now (below freezing).

But this is just a native of the Ohio-to-Upstate New York snowbelt talking...

Posted by: Kathy8 | December 16, 2010 12:03 PM | Report abuse

In my not-so-humble-opinion the problem is that we've become so risk averse. Just ask the TSA. Won't someone think of the children!!!???

Posted by: mikem1 | December 16, 2010 12:04 PM | Report abuse

A little silly to be closing early, but I'll never understand people equate our general lack of driving ability in snow to rank us as "sissies." A superior ability to drive in snow does not make one tougher than one who cannot.

Posted by: BigBubba1
-----------------------------
I hate to have to tell you this, but it does. And that's a fact, not an opinion. Driving in inclement weather requires mental toughness. People around here are, shall we say, a bit delicate.

Posted by: Wallenstein | December 16, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Some people who are not from the area may be able to drive in snowy conditions when there is limited traffic. The DC area's high traffic volume makes driving in any inclement weather much more dangerous. I've seen people try to cross 4 lanes of the beltway as if they are on a 2 lane highway in the middle of no where.

Posted by: 12345leavemealone | December 16, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

Oh, those crazy lawyers trying to make our community a safer place for our children--the shame!
Posted by: EasyDecisions

Do you really believe that hooey? C'mon, tell me you're joking.

To the contrary. The more serious the school bus crash, the more kiddies are killed or seriously injured, the bigger the payouts to lawyers from lawsuits.

Lawyers are in it to make a buck.

Lastly, lawyers making the community safer for our children!?

Sheeeet!

Gimme a break, man!

Posted by: montana123
__________________________________________

Zweeng! That's the missed satire sailing right over your head.

Posted by: sjcsando | December 16, 2010 12:10 PM | Report abuse

I hate to have to tell you this, but it does. And that's a fact, not an opinion. Driving in inclement weather requires mental toughness. People around here are, shall we say, a bit delicate.

Posted by: Wallenstein
________________
It's a fact based on opinion. Define mental 'toughness'? What does driving in one of the most congested areas in the country require regardless of inclement weather?

Posted by: 12345leavemealone | December 16, 2010 12:14 PM | Report abuse

Why are they not shutting down the government. There is going to be carnage at rush hour if they don't. It is accumulating and there is no sign of snow ploughs.

Posted by: edwardallen54 | December 16, 2010 12:15 PM | Report abuse

MCPS will stay open for the full day. They are worried about their budget not passing so they don't want to look like they aren't worth the continued investment.

Posted by: 12345leavemealone | December 16, 2010 12:23 PM | Report abuse

While we are commenting on bad drivers, let's not forget the PG County Police. Car #4749 last night drove straight through a light at the intersection of Suitland Road on Southern Ave from the turn-only lane with no lights, no siren, no turn signal or indication that he wanted over...all while talking on his cell phone and nearly taking off my front bumper.

Posted by: CalmTruth | December 16, 2010 12:26 PM | Report abuse

Grumpy old man: When I was a kid, we walked up hill to school - BOTH ways - in the snow - and we liked it! ;)
.
One of my favorite SNL characters from Dana Carvey

Posted by: B-rod | December 16, 2010 12:35 PM | Report abuse

"That's the missed satire sailing right over your head."

Satire? How about a bomb of a joke?

Posted by: montana123 | December 16, 2010 12:37 PM | Report abuse

Having grown up in the DC area for 21 years and now living in the Midwest for 13 I can tell you we get a kick out of schools closing for a few inches of snow :) we had another 4 inches last night here and everything was open and on time

Posted by: ChiCaps | December 16, 2010 12:40 PM | Report abuse

LOL at these post. It was great growing up in Mo County. The threat of snow would cancel school for the day.

Posted by: joeg2002 | December 16, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Lawyers would be salivating at the possible damage awards of a school bus accident.

Posted by: montana123
*********************
Wow, finally paying the child support, huh?

*****************************************
No. Just ranting at the "parasite class." Don't worry lawyers aren't going away soon.

In America we might not be able to make anything the rest of the world wants to buy but we sure excel at financial scams and lawsuits.

Posted by: montana123 | December 16, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Are you kidding me?
Back when I was going to Fairfax County schools (60s and 70s), it took a lot more snow than this to have early closings. Bunch of weather wimps. Suck it up and live with it or move to Florida.
Posted by: mfrieden
_______________________________________
And back when I was going to local schools (Arlington Co.)in the 50's and 60's and schools closed due to snow, our parents talked about walking 10 miles through a foot of snow to get to school. Guess it's all relative. ;-)

Posted by: seaduck2001 | December 16, 2010 12:45 PM | Report abuse

There's a little more traffic now and a few more kids than back in the day.

Posted by: pbassjbass | December 16, 2010 12:55 PM | Report abuse

Not so much the lawyers as out fellow citizens who sit on juries and think we should just dump money on people who have something happen to them.

Life is not risk free and nothing can make it that way. Accidents are not excuses to "get paid". The parasites aren't the lawyers, they the people that leech off the system and the juries that pay them.

Speaking of parasites, like a gambler with money to spend, the schools just can't wait use those snow days burning holes in their pockets. With all the off days during the school year, it is a wonder the kids get any time in the summer off.

As a kid, I had wonderful summers with my family and friends because my school ended around memorial day and did not start until after labor day.

Posted by: mi-ti-bear | December 16, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

Quit it with the lawyer comments. Despite all the folklore, school districts DO NOT get routinely sued over their decision to close/open. Just like your workplace does not get sued if you have to report to work and you get into an accident. Lawyers are smart enough to know that those cases, if they are brought to begin with, are almost always thrown out of court by the judge. You can feel free to be one of the morons calling the school to complain about their decision, but this is not the work of 'evil lawyers.'
I grew up in Rochester and we never closed. We also did not have near the traffic that exists here, and we also did not have a transitory population arriving with driving skills that were not fit for the area. Yes, people here are ninnies, but I learned long ago that this is just part of the package, and it sounds stupid to complain about it every single year.

Posted by: 1Reader | December 16, 2010 1:05 PM | Report abuse

I hate to have to tell you this, but it does. And that's a fact, not an opinion. Driving in inclement weather requires mental toughness. People around here are, shall we say, a bit delicate.

Posted by: Wallenstein

You didn't hate having to tell me that. Perhaps driving in snow well is more indicative of more experience in driving in snow than it is an indication of "mental toughness." To paint the DC area as one of lacking mental toughness is a very long stretch. I think you'd have to say that about most every area that get's low snow totals for the year.

Posted by: BigBubba1 | December 16, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

Of course the majority of DC drivers can't even begin to navigate a vehicle through snow. They work for the government. They are paid NOT to think for themselves or be responsible for their actions. How could we possibly expect them to drive like intelligent lifeforms?

Posted by: smash44 | December 16, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse

When will DC drivers stop blaming the weather for their inability to operate a vehicle? Slow down!

Posted by: CubsFan | December 16, 2010 2:42 PM | Report abuse

"I'm guessing a few of you don't have school age children"

Yes, and tomorrow's headline will be:
"Area Parents Ticked Off Because Schools Released Early"

Posted by: BEEPEE | December 16, 2010 3:13 PM | Report abuse

As we used to say in my Army office when it snowed:

ABANDON YOUR CAR NOW!!!

Posted by: 809212876 | December 16, 2010 5:40 PM | Report abuse

Actually, beepee, I'm one of those goofy parents who has back up plans in place in case my kids get out of school early. I stayed at work in DC until 6:30 pm to avoid traffic - my kids were picked from school at 2:30 pm and have been home playing in the snow all afternoon. I have no problem with the schools closing early.

Posted by: ounanm1 | December 16, 2010 6:35 PM | Report abuse

you know, it's possible there are some good government workers and some bad government workers (to paraphrase joew22).

Grew up in western PA and literally learned to drive in the snow (my birthday was in October and winter came early that year). Having said that, DC gets a lot more variation in temperature than western PA, so as a result, the snow melts and re-freezes much more often. That means unexpectedly icy roads (black ice) which is treacherous for both inexperienced and experienced winter drivers.

Posted by: wondering123 | December 16, 2010 6:35 PM | Report abuse

Post staff: What happened to posting delays/closings on a constant URL, so that it could be easily accessed? http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/metro/weather/closingspage.html. That seemed like a great idea. Please return to it!

Posted by: dgallaugher | December 17, 2010 9:46 AM | Report abuse

I'm originally from Buffalo, NY and recently moved here from Denver, CO. Why do the kids not have school today? Oh my...a couple of inches and shut the city down. Give me a break!!!!

Posted by: OPnewyork | December 17, 2010 10:06 AM | Report abuse

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