The Father of Forecast

“Due to inclement weather conditions, all Montgomery Country Public Schools have been closed today…”

Waking up to a serene blanket of snow, we all wish to hear or read a similar phrase; whether you plan to play in the snow, curl up with a book or get around to that homework you purposefully put off, nothing is music to the ears like learning about a snow day. What, though, makes or breaks the decision to close school?

I’ve always pictured a middle-aged school official as the crucial decider. He hears about the snow the previous night and sets his alarm for early in the morning; unsure about what to do at the time, he opts to wait until the morning. After a few hours, waking up in a daze, he staggers to the window and sees the snow drifting lazily by the window. Perhaps it blankets everything, or it just begins to stick.

Some say that the decision is logical, that the county carefully considers the current weather, forecast, and conditions of roads. Information is gathered via “The National Weather Service, Accu-Weather, the news media and by actual inspection of roads, school driveways, and sidewalks throughout the county,” according to the MCPS Web site. The risks involved in putting bus drivers, students, teachers and faculty on the road must be very minimal in order for school to remain open.

That’s their story, at least, and they’re sticking to it.

I say the school official’s mood is crucial when he decides. Maybe he or she had a good dream, or a bad dream. If he or she dreamed of The Magic School Bus or something similar, they’re in a good mood; if he or she dreamed about an evil scientist version of “Bill Nye the Science Guy” or something akin to that, their mood is considerably worse (but it’s always a children’s educational program, his or her favorite genre). Standing in the window, the official contemplates whether it’s worth closing school, if a two-hour delay would help or if school should simply stay open. Since he works for MCPS, he probably makes a pro-and-con chart or something in his head. He weighs the consequences of each decision, realizing the amount of children who would rejoice if he were to close school, but also the time lost due to a missed school day; it’s practically his opportunity to be the “Santa Claus” of MCPS.

He walks back to bed, and reaches for his phone. Sleepy, hungry and possibly grumpy, he sends a text and goes back to sleep.

Students awaking all across MCPS pray for school closure as the phone rings or their Web page loads…

“Due to inclement weather conditions, all Montgomery Country Public Schools have been closed today…”

0
0
View Comments (1)
Donate to The Pitch
$775
$1000
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will support the student journalists of Walter Johnson High School. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to The Pitch
$775
$1000
Contributed
Our Goal

Comments (1)

All The Pitch Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • S

    Shelley BFeb 11, 2011 at 7:24 pm

    hi there everyone, First time poster and excited to be a part of the threaded.

    Reply