SD45 Needs a Snow Day

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Four years ago was the last time snow impacted our commute to the schools in West Van. Yet this year, it has been plainly evident that we still cannot handle it. Icy roads, snowy hills, and most importantly, schools on those hills are still leaving many students in dangerous situations. 

West Van is a place with essentially three paths out - the Lions Gate Bridge, the Ironworker's Memorial Bridge, and Marine Drive to North Van. Most of the students, staff, and parents live on the other side of those paths, and don't have the luxury of a short commute in. Because of the reluctance of the school district to announce a snow day, anyone who regularly needs to make a trip to a West Vancouver school now faces slowed commute, unplowed roads, unsafe conditions, and steep slopes. We have seen staff and students alike walking into class hours late, because they faced a huge number of unsafe conditions that they had to navigate through, and for the parents, navigate back out. Last Friday one of West Van Secondary's school buses crashed thanks to the icy slopes. The point is, it's not reasonable to ask the people that work, study, and drop their kids off here to do so in conditions that endanger their safety and their lives. If it's unsafe, we need to recognize and respond to that.

Wednesday afternoon we are expecting yet another snowstorm. Weather reports and Environment Canada are both warning that it will be worse than the last one that hit us, bringing freezing rain and significant reduction of visibility, among other things. As a concerned student who commutes in and out of school from Burnaby, and who has watched many students nearly get hit by cars, I'm asking you, SD45, to give us a snow day when it's unsafe to go to school. And I don't think that preventing accidents is an unreasonable request. If we are to prioritize the safety of our students, staff, and parents, we must know when to draw the line.

Sincerely,

A bunch of concerned students who wouldn't mind staying inside during a snowstorm



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