Ah, winter in Canada. It can be a beautiful and fun thing, but it can also wreak havoc on the school system. Depending on what region you live in and how intense the winter is, buses could be cancelled fairly often. This disrupts learning and progress for students, but it is largely unavoidable.
The schools never really close. There will always be teachers present to receive your children, should you venture out to take them to school. Many parents opt to keep their children home when it's a snow day, but for some, it is not an option.
School quite often functions as a guaranteed daycare for children. You take them in the morning and you get them back in the early afternoon. Many people's work shifts line up with this timeframe and having a child stay home can disrupt things when it comes to scheduling.
Arranging last minute childcare is not something anyone wants to do, and many people don't have the option to stay home from work and hang out with their kids just because it's a snow day. So, they go to school.
As a child, I spent many snow days at school. I lived close enough to the school that there was no reason not to go in. As long as we weren't snowed in completely, I got driven into school.
Now, snow days have likely gotten more fun than when I was a kid. Sure, some teachers would let you watch a movie, but I also remember spending over an hour practising cursive writing during one snow day. It really all depended on who was supervising you.
Given the option, I don't think many children would choose to go to school on a snow day. Most of their friends won't be there. They'll still have to do schoolwork while their friends get to stay home. And they have to go to school, in general, which is a terrible notion for some children.
On the other hand, keeping kids in school even during snow days maintains the structure of the school week for them. It continues with their normal routine and lets parents continue with theirs. It also teaches kids a valuable lesson in relation to scheduling and work ethic.
Snow days don't always happen in the real world. Outside of school, no matter how treacherous the roads, many people still have to go to their jobs. It may take longer to get there, but some employers still expect you, regardless of the weather. And as Canadians, we must learn at an early age that snow and freezing rain will happen every year. If you hide inside every time it shows up and cancel all of your plans, then you will never accomplish anything. You will basically hibernate for the winter.
And hibernating for the winter doesn't sound like a bad idea, but it is not practical. Canadian winters can be anywhere from four to six months, depending where you live. So, we just need to accept that snow and freezing rain are part of our lives.
There is no right or wrong way to handle snow days. If you have the option to stay home with your kids, go for it. If you have work, then take them to the school. Everyone will pick an option that works best for them.
Winter has barely started, so snow days are something we all have to get used to. Drive safe if you are out in the weather and make a practical decision about whether you leave the house. Nothing is important enough for you to risk your life on the roads if they are bad.
So, happy snow day to those who have it. Be safe.