Parents Question Winfield District's Decision To Have School Friday

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Friday, February 22, 2013

Most area schools are out because of the winter blast. But there’s one district that stands out from the rest: Winfield. Their school was out Thursday due to the snow, but it’s back open today.

School's in session at the Whittier Elementary School, just like all the Winfield public schools. That's what's got some parents upset. They feel school should have been called off because of the snow."

Snowfall amounts in Cowley County, including Winfield, were up to eight inches by Thursday afternoon. Schools were called off midday Wednesday and Thursday. Some Parents, like Kendra Gard, were surprised to wake up Friday morning to find out school was in session.

“Well, it was a little bit frustrating and disappointing,” she said. “I'm a parent of several kids in the district and also a teacher and would rather have stayed home than being on these roads.”

She’s not the only one. Sharon Prouty and her daughter kept the children home out of concern for their safety.

“Even ten miles to the south, Arkansas City was closed today,” Prouty said. “Oxford's closed. Wellington's closed. Lot of Wichita's closed. Andover's closed. All of our surrounding area, we are the only school having session today.”

Ark City, however, was closed due to parent-teacher conferences, says Winfield Superintendent J.K. Campbell, who feels students were better off in school Friday.

“When kids are at school, we know they're learning,” Campbell said. “We know they're warm. We know they're in a safe environment.”

He says Winfield has used one of its two budgeted snow days and might need the other one next week.

“It's appropriate to have school,” he said.

It's always going to be a judgment call whether or not to call of school because of snow. And the superintendent says he stands by his decision.

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