'A bad call altogether': Some say messy roads should have kept P.E.I. schools shut
Some parents in western P.E.I. say they aren't too happy with the decision to let schools open Thursday, saying classes should have been cancelled due to poor road conditions.
Wind warnings were in effect for all of the Island starting Wednesday afternoon, with Thursday morning featuring periods of snow changing to rain as well as gusts reaching 90 km/h.
In the West Prince area, many parents said school should have been cancelled for the safety of students and staff alike.
"I just felt that there was way too much snow on the roads for the school bus to get through it. It just didn't seem safe for me," said Sam Johnson, a Tignish resident who decided to take her three children to school and daycare herself.
"The road that I have to travel on, there was a good 8 to 10 inches of snow in some areas on the way into town. And then once I come home, the plow had still not been on the road. There were some places where there was almost a foot of snow."
'It was a bad call'
Tishie Shea of Pleasant View says she had a "white-knuckle" drive to work. She called her husband and told him to keep her daughter home.
I don't know who's making the decisions, but I'm thinking it's someone that doesn't live up here. — Tishie Shea
"I don't know who's making the decisions, but I'm thinking it's someone that doesn't live up here," she said.
CBC News reached out to both the Public Schools Branch and the provincial Department of Transportation, and didn't get a response about the decision to let schools stay open.
But Liberal MLA Hal Perry did forward an email which he received from the PSB after he made inquiries.
Decision made by 5-person team
In it, education officials said a five-person team with representation from each of the Island's three counties will determine if schools should be closed on days with inclement weather, and that decision is made with the help of information from people like forecasters, road shift supervisors and dispatchers.
The email said two main factors are considered: weather and road conditions.
Cheryl Currie from Kildare said her daughter stayed home Thursday. But her son in Grade 12 had to write an exam, so she drove him to school.
"I just think it was a bad call altogether," Currie said. "There's always another day when they could have made this school day up."