Here’s how schools are preparing for closures ahead of Michigan winter snowstorm

Snowstorm to arrive Wednesday afternoon

We’re almost into February, and we’re looking at the first big snowfall of the year, and of course, there are schoolchildren across Michigan watching closely to see if they’ll get that first snow day of the school year.

But Wednesday’s (Jan. 24) storm may prove challenging for school superintendents with authority to make that call.

There’s no doubt going to be a lengthy school cancellation list overnight because it’s likely a lot of districts, especially along the Michigan, Ohio border, that won’t send the busses out Wednesday, no matter how much of a storm we get.

“We’re right on the fringe of getting hit the hardest,” said Bedford Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Carl Shultz.

Shultz sat in his temperance office Tuesday morning and watched the weather like a trained meteorologist.

“Monroe County is going to have a tough go tomorrow,” Schultz said.

Usually, Schultz rises at 4:40 a.m. and personally drives Bedford’s side roads to gauge what his transportation and facilities staff are up against, but this time it’s different.

The storm isn’t supposed to arrive until after his usual 6 a.m. deadline for calling a snow day.

“We may very well have to call a snow day and only have a dusting on the ground because we know that if there’s six inches of snow on the ground by 3 p.m. when our busses are rolling, it’s very difficult, I have 1,000 kids who drive at the high school,” Schultz said.

Yes, the drivers behind the wheel of Schultz’s massive bus fleet are experienced, but he’s still concerned.

“I know that busses are heavy and large, and people think they move great on snow,” Schultz said. “They don’t! The tires become harder when they’re in neighborhoods that are snow-covered, and people are putting their cars on the street because they are doing the driveways. Our busses routinely get stuck.”

For fun, Shultz sent out a Twitter poll question to students and staff. More than 91% wanted a snow day called Tuesday night. He says the poll is just for fun.

“If we’re going to call it, we’re probably going to call it based on information we have this evening and give our families time to collect themselves, get sitters, or maybe take a day off themselves, but we want to give the most time we can,” Shultz said.

Now, if it sounds already like you can expect a cancellation, It’s because he’s undoubtedly leaning that way. Still, the Bedford Public School District will have to watch the district’s Twitter feed.

Read: Snow emergencies issued in Metro Detroit: Check the list here


About the Authors:

Rod Meloni is an Emmy Award-winning Business Editor on Local 4 News and a Certified Financial Planner™ Professional.

Brandon Carr is a digital content producer for ClickOnDetroit and has been with WDIV Local 4 since November 2021. Brandon is the 2015 Solomon Kinloch Humanitarian award recipient for Community Service.