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Parents Say Some Schools Ready, Some Not for Drop Off This Morning

How was your commute to Fairfield schools this morning? Or did your child/children take the bus?

Fairfield students headed back to school this morning after three snow days caused by this weekend's historic blizzard.

Department of Public Works and school district personnel worked for days to clear streets, school parking lots, and sidewalks, but for some the trip to school this morning was messy.

Amy Krasowski said she dropped off one of her children at McKinley School this morning and kids were walking up snow piles to get to the sidewalk. Her own car spun out in the driveway.

Suzanne Graceffa agreed, adding that sidewalks on Knapps Highway aren't cleared and the McKinley parking lot was covered in ice and slush.

Holland Hill's drop off area was reportedly a "sheet of ice" this morning, one resident posted on Facebook.

There was some confusion for students arriving at Tomlinson Middle School this morning -- the front doors were locked, Krasowski said, and kids had to use the back entrance.

But it seemed that, for much of the rest of the district, morning drop-off went smoothly.

"Dwight did a great job!" Amy Cesaratto posted.

The same was reported for Stratfield and Mill Hill schools. Roger Ludlowe Middle School was a bit backed up traffic-wise, one parent said, but had been well plowed.

Leah Cataldo-Adintori said the parking lot and walkways at Fairfield Woods Middle School were "fine" and she didn't hear any complaints about the drop off at Ludlowe High, where her husband took their oldest child this morning.

She's "happy they're back in school -- and believe or not, so are they."

In an update posted Tuesday, Superintendent of Schools Dr. David Title said -- as some parents have attested -- "sidewalks are a huge issue, not just around the schools but on the roads leading up to the schools."

Also hazardous: heavy drifts of snow at intersections and bus stops, he stated.

The limited sidewalk space means less access for walkers, and more vehicle traffic at school drop off.

"Carpooling is strongly encouraged," Title posted.

Had the district waited to reopen school when the sidewalks cleared, "we might not do so for a month," he added. 

So until the DPW has cleared all the sidewalks and the drifts shrink, students, parents, and drivers must be extremely careful when heading to and leaving school.

As Police Chief Gary MacNamara said Tuesday, the snow has changed the driving landscape in Fairfield and thus drivers' habits.

For this afternoon and Thursday morning, drivers should be prepared for slow-moving cars and heavy pedestrian traffic.

Students will be off again Friday through Monday for President's Day weekend, allowing time for snow to melt and sidewalks to be cleared.

Kelly Socol February 13, 2013 at 05:22 PM
The sidewalk directly in front of McKinley was pristine, however you could not get to it! You had to walk through the parking lot, which was a sheet of ice or over a mound of snow. Why suggest that parents drive/carpool their children to school if you have not even cleared a tiny path in the drop off area. Apparently the BOE considers it safe to let children out from the driver's side of a car into traffic or walk in the street to make it to school.
Osborn Hiller February 13, 2013 at 05:59 PM
It is each resident's responsibility to shovel the sidewalk on their property if there is one. Yeah, it's a pain, as it was for me, but it's important to keep the walkers safe. If you can clear your driveway and walkways, clear your sidewalk.

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