Unplanned vacation is greeted by students
Last week's ice storm was all bad news, at least for the Baldwin School District students who received three days of unplanned vacation. And, Marion Springs Elementary School students received a fourth day off when power still wasn't restored to the school by Monday.
"It was just dang-gum nasty three days of weather," said Supt. James White.
It started Tuesday evening and the first casualty hit when that night's scheduled basketball game between Baldwin High School and Gardner was postponed.
Then the announcement came that there would be no school Wednesday. That's was followed with the same on Thursday and Friday as the area still was trying to dig out from four inches of ice and sleet.
Monday's bonus day for Marion Springs resulted from KCPL not being able to restore power there. The electrical feed for the school and many homes in that area comes from Ottawa. Vinland Elementary School, also in the country, receives its KCPL feed from Eudora, White said.
"We're still without power at Marion Springs," White said Tuesday morning. "We're playing it on a day-to-day basis because that's what KCPL is telling us."
The break ended Tuesday, however, when Marion Springs students were bussed into Baldwin Elementary School for class. That will continue until power is finally restored at Marion Springs. There were no glitches in that plan Tuesday morning, he said.
"It's worked out well so far," said White.
Wednesday and Thursday's school cancellations were directly weather related as the ice and sleet were still falling. Friday's day off was more the result of the aftermath.
"It was lack of power and the country roads were terrible," said White. "We didn't want to run the busses on those roads. The ice was still as bad as it had been."
The good news was there was no damage inflicted to school buildings as a result of the storm. But there were some losses.
"As of right now, we don't think there is any damage to the schools," he said. "We did have to throw out some food."
Another bit of good news is the three-day "vacation" was provided for in the calendar with snow days.
"Each year we plan for about three snow days," said White. "I think we have enough hours to cover it."
But, that's it. Another snow day would force a make-up day.
"We can't have another one," he said. "If we do, we'll have to make it up and the end of the year."