School Closures

 I probably don’t have to remind anyone that last week’s weather was miserable.  Despite the bitter cold, the District took some heat (pun intended) from parents and community members for keeping the schools open. After taking phone calls, receiving emails and reading Facebook posts, I realized that I needed to make a statement about the issues considered when closing schools.  In case you missed it, here is the link to that message which was posted on Facebook, our webpage and included in the messages put out by the media:  I hope it helps you answer any questions you might get from parents and community members.


I also want to take this opportunity to thank EVERYONE that worked at East Middle School last Thursday. I know that every employee that was there did their part to make it a day of learning despite not having any water.  It was an amazing feat of teamwork that took place from 6:15 am to 6:15 pm when the water was turned back on.


On Friday and over the weekend, I heard from several community members that had friends, relatives and neighbors working at EMS.  These community members told me that the employees they knew said that not having water was unpleasant, but it didn’t prevent education from happening.  These community members commented about how positive the employees were and how committed they are to educating even in difficult circumstances!  I thank these employees for “riding for the brand” as their comments made these people love GFPS just a little more.


Let’s hope that this week is the worst that Mother Nature will serve up this winter.  If it isn’t, please know that I am committed to student and employee safety above all and I will make decisions about school closures based on the common good.  I will also base my decision on my belief that having students in warm, safe and supervised schools is usually the right thing to do.


Take care.  Stay safe.  Be well.