Thursday, December 18, 2014

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The Call Blog: Latest Storm Brings State Of Emergency; Schools Remained Open

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Have something to tell us at The Call? Drop us a line at and we'll post it to our blog.

As you can tell from the e-mails below, we got quite a reaction to the snowstorm today, with several unsolicited e-mails coming several hours before our show. While Mayor de Blasio shouldn't close schools just for the sake of closing schools, he may want to be very careful the next time he's faced with this decision. Several of our viewers said they are losing faith in this administration and as we have seen with the prior administration, once that faith is gone, it's very hard to get it back.

Mayor de Blasio is defending his decision to keep public schools open, despite the nearly ten inches of snow that fell heavily during the morning hours. Governor Cuomo declared a state of emergency, but Mayor de Blasio said with the information he had at the time, "we made the right decision." Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina did cancel after-school programs and field trips.

New York City public schools have closed only 11 times since 1978. The president of the United Federation of Teachers said today should have been the 12th. Michael Mulgrew said, "having students, parents and teachers traveling in these conditions was unwarranted." What do you say?

Should schools have been open or closed today? How did the decision to keep them open affect you? How did the Sanitation Department do handling this latest storm? Are you gaining or losing confidence in Mayor de Blasio based on his responses to the severe winter?

Send your thoughts using the link above.

The decision of Chancellor Carmen Farina not to close the public schools due to the severe snowstorm is beyond common sense.Does she really believe that since Macy's is open for business in this storm,that schools should also be opened?Many parents have to struggle to bring their kids to schools,and the roads and streets are very treacherous,with a lot of residual ice and snow from the previous 2 storms.Also. many teachers and other school staff must also travel on very icy and dangerous roads,and there is always the danger of accidents resulting in injuries because of the terrible road conditions. Even UFT president Michael Mulgrew issued a statement that was against the opening of schools due to the storm.The office of OEM issued a hazardous travel alert for Thursday and Friday because of the storm.How wise is it for school buses to be out on roads which are very icy and dangerous?The Chancellor needs to take off her rose colored glasses and come back to reality.

Fresh Meadows

I think Mayor de Blasio was right. If parents wanted to keep their children home, they could. However there are many parents who can't take a day off from work and cannot afford a babysitter. For those parents, keeping the schools open was a blessing. Mayor de Blasio is taking care of working class families, just as he promised to do.

Upper Westside

I bet a bunch of New Yorkers desperately wished Bloomberg was still mayor, and maybe he would've been wise to have schools closed. But taking my little sister to school this morning sure felt rough with the harsh conditions. I hope de Blasio will somehow learn his lessons for if something like this happens again in the next 4 years. For now, de Blasio has lost my respect...


of all the nonsense out of the mayor and schools chancellor today the most outrageous was the chancellor saying the kids needed school open to get a hot breakfast- in our school breakfast was cold bagel. it was bad enough that the very poor kids in our school had to come to school in the sneakers they wear because their parents can not afford boots.

as always if the taxpayers had any idea where the money that makes up the difference between a true hot and healthy breakfast and a DOE bagel goes you wouldn't have to worry about taxing the rich to pay for things.

as it was only half our kids showed up today- most of the staff managed to show up, we all hope the principal enjoyed her day off.

love the show but the new set does kind of remind me of a game show...


The schools should have been closed today. This only reflects the lack of experience of the new major. He put our NYC kids in danger!!

Fabiana -Manhattan

Fact-The decision to open schools was made.
It was stated that "Macy's is open therefore we should be open". How can any person, the "chancellor", compare NYC teachers to a department store, when it was also stated that people are poor and need food to eat. So how does Macy's fit into this equation??
Have some respect for these dedicated teachers who teach my children and help mold them into the great people that they are!!

Sogi from Bayside

Schools should have been closed. Period. Our new lame brained mayor should have known this. I never had any confidence in DeBlanko.

Port Richmond

I think the Mayor made the right decision. Don't forget thousands of working parents depend on the schools to watch their kids. As far as Al Roker, I liked him better when he was fat and jolly.


Yes, the schools should have been closed. What the Mayor is not taking into consideration is that many kids have to WALK to school, no public transportation/ school bus/ parent without a car. What is the issue,, is that the snow plowed from sidewalks accumulated at the curb from previous storms was covered with a new snow, and visibility was obstructed, this is not safe for walking.
My son has to walk a few blocks to take public bus and then walk another 5 blocks from the bus to school, it is a long walk and totally unsafe.

The emergency was declared, it was said that it is unsafe to go out, but it is safe for kids to walk?
I didn't feel safe to go to work, I could not send my child to school. This is not me being a wuss, this is being responsible and caring parent.

Bay Ridge

The mayor missed the mark today by opening schools and placing students in grave danger with the conditions faced today.
I don't think Mayor Bloomberg would have done what de Blasio did and I am by NO means a fan of the former.

Nia M.

I'm not sure why the Chancellor didn't know what to expect last night. I listened to several forecasts and exactly what was predicted happened.

So what if school has only been closed 11 times since 1978? Today should have been number 12! How could you, in good conscience, send children out under these conditions?

My students came today, but many staff members were out. The DeBlasio Administration didn't seem to take that into account. Schedules have to be juggled, classes have to be covered, dismissal plans have to be reinvented. . . . .do you really expect a regular day of learning?

Staff members nor students should be penalized for missing the day or arriving late.

We'll see what happens in the morning --- perhaps a delayed opening? Nobody seems to remember that tool in the tool box.

By the way, happy 100th day of school (and Valentine's Day) tomorrow!!

Upper West Side

The Mayor and the Chancellor missed the opportunity again to keep children and staff safely at home. It was not safe for children to walk through the mess of the morning. I don't know where the Chancellor was when she said it was a beautiful day outside. What was she seeing as the snow turned to sleet?
Now tomorrow it will be round 2 of danger for both the children and staff. Additionally you can say take mass transit but that's only good if you have bases and trains that take you close to where you are going. Look at what happened to the pregnant woman and the MT worker. It's wonderful not to have to worry when someone else takes care to transport you but the majority of us have to suffer through the snow.


SCHOOL'S SHOULD HAVE BEEN AT LEAST ON A 2 HOUR DELAY! THE ROADS WERE ATROCIOUS THIS MORNING DRIVING TO WORK - I AM A NYC SCHOOL TEACHER! With only 30% of my entire school's enrollment present - some classrooms no more than 1 or 2 there, nothing much was going on. Most of the kids in my class who did come in, arrived late and then were picked up early. When teachers travel 50 or more miles to get to work each day, in weather like this, they should not have had their time cards pulled when they got in. Teachers should be allowed to go to the school closest to where they live in the event of a storm, if schools are going to be open. Most people if they live in one of the 5 boroughs, live in close proximity to a school. It would make more sense to do that than to endanger their lives just to get to work. Teachers are a very dedicated group - they make the effort every day to get there. This way every one could get to work and each school would be "manned" in the event a student shows up.

Sanitation was helped today with the change over to rain. They did a decent job clearing the streets today at least on the main roads of Staten Island. Temps rising above freezing also helped.

Arden Heights

I think the issue has less to do with students than with parents and teachers:

1. First, if any parent doesn't think it's safe for their kids to go to school, they can keep them home. I mean, they're always taking them out for family vacations, no?

2. More parents than ever have cars in the city and drive the little ones to school. I think the parents don't want to have to dig out or find a way to send the kids to school on public trans.

3. More teachers than ever live outside in the suburbs and drive to work so they can take advantage of NYC's high salaries and benefits They either don't want to or are too unfit to dig out and put chains on their cars. If they stay home, they apparently have to take a sick day. Tough! Personally, I think the teachers' union is behind this uproar and hope the Mayor keeps that in mind when negotiating with them.

Maybe it's time to institute a rule requiring all City employees to live in the City and to impose a tax on all people who keep cars in the city.

Ellie - Turtle Bay

I work @NYC Public Schools and I also went to NYC Public School K-grade 12. I only remember school closing during one school year. I also remember having to make those days up by staying late for a few months. Deblassio did the right thing keeping them open, but cancelling after school programs. This is New York-the city that never sleeps (or closes).


I think the Mayor made a foolish decision. Kids safety comes first of all things.
We can't get in the habit of taking chances of their safety based on guesses that everything is going to go the way we think..We have to be sure, He should have closed the Schools on the principal "just in Case", rather than the weather man thinks or Sanitation will maybe clear the streets.


My kid travels from Staten Island to HS near Lincoln Center.
Trip is approx an hour and 45 door to door with trek to starting point of commute, the Staten Island railroad at 5:55am
She has yet to be absent this year - today was the day.
I started watching NY1 at 4:30 knowing schools were open and checked outside.

The treacherous steps down to the railroad were not cleaned, sidewalks not cleared.
I opted for a late trek to school which ended up being problematic as weather deteriorated.
Eventually, due to weather and the school's decision to run a shortened day (about which they thankfully sent numerous, detailed phone and email messages) we have our absence.

I voted for the mayor and am a fan of and am rooting for the Chancellor but not today.
Lessons learned? Here's one: will help with forecasting. That site had called the morning onslaught for at least 36 hours.

Staten Island

The schools should have been closed today due to the freezing snow and rain.
It was traitorous out there today.
Cuomo called a state of emergency and the road from DC to NY was at a
stand still.
This woman is an educator = It seems as though because of the opposition
to the decision to keep the schools opened she gets credit for cancelling
after school programs and field trips.
All of a sudden there is a response from the president of the UFT
Michael Mulgrew saying that the schools should have been closed today.
The responses from DeBlasio, Farina and Mulgrew do not fit the titles
they hold in office.
[Their responses are not a match to the situations at all]

These people are not together at all = They are so ill prepared.

I have a headache from all of this nonsense.

Thank you John,


I was so happy to have Carmen Ferina as a Chancellor. However, in a few weeks I have lost complete faith in her abilities to lead the city system as a whole. She stated this morning that afterschool programs are open and only field trips are cancelled. Then decides at 9AM after parents have already dropped off their children, that it will close. Then at 12 Noon says in a press conference that it is 12 and that it is a beautiful day now and everything had stopped and melting. THEN WHY DID YOU CANCEL AFTERSCHOOL? This caused parents to have to change plans last minute in the middle of day. She needs to stop cancelling afterschool programs if school is open and the children are safe inside. I never thought I would say this, but at least Chancellor Walcott was a leader.

Michael in Park Slope

Anyone who starts a new job will make mistakes . They have to get their feet wet so to speak. The Mayor probably should have closed the schools but he and Chancellor Farina decided not to. Oh well!!!!! Next!!!!!


As reporters I hope you would look up how many times the Schools were closed when we got less than a foot of snow. As a life-long New Yorker I know that this really wasn't that bad of a storm. We've gotten much, much worse storms than this. Please look up the records and see how many times the Schools were closed when we got this much snow.

What this really seems to be about is political opponents of the Mayor trying to concoct a phony story so they can attack him. Mayor DeBlasio has made it clear that he won't be the Corporate puppet that Bloomberg was, so the Corporate Media comes out to attack DeBlasio over a rather average snow storm. It's ridiculous.

Coney Island

Just what we need. A mayor who is using one of the largest cities in the world as "on the Job training". Does he really expect anyone to believe him that he used the best available information to make a call before storm hit. .... When every forecast called for this to be a very bad storm. What kind of common sense is dies this man have sending the children out in the early morning rush.


Public school students were not the only ones suffering from the idiocy of bureaucracy today. College students, professors and workers specifically from the College of Staten Island had to traipse through what can best be described as, "ice planet Hoth", from the Empire Strikes Back to empty classrooms and buildings, only to later find out they had to go home. Attendance policies have put such fear into students they're forced to risk life and limb for an education will get you no where when you are a student-cicle on the side of the road.

P.S. - Hope all NY1 employees got to work truly are the best!

Luke, Grant City

I believe that mayor DiBlasio should have closed schools today. Not only was it a struggle to get to school, because of the tardy MTA system, but about half of the students were absent and one third of the teachers could not make it. This only caused the school to merge classes, leading to nothing being taught (since the students were on different academic levels) and a waste of time while sitting in on average 7 classes for 45 mins each playing games on our smartphones, computers and other electronics.
Im a senior in highschool and since I'll be able to vote in a couple months, in four years DiBlasio is definitely not getting my vote or the votes of my peers.


One of the reasons school was open today was that they are closed all next week for winter vacation.

When Wagner was mayor, this retired teacher was a junior high school student. The winter of 1961 was severe and schools closed after a storm. That day President Kennedy was inaugurated. For the rest of the week, school began at 10:00A.M and the world didn't end.

On these type of days, students who do show up are herded into cafeterias, auditoriums and gyms where they are divided up and assigned to teachers who don't know many of them. Just imagine what discipline is like. Very little learning occurs and the hot nutritious lunches that Ms. Farina talks about are on the floor, in garbage cans or thrown against the wall. (This occurs almost daily in schools where discipline is but a passing memory.)

Add 5 days to the school calendar. If those days are not used, the school year ends earlier. You don't need a Ph.D to figure that one out.

Ed, Sheepshead Bay

I thought the NYC DOE's motto is "Children First. Always." Which children does it mean? The ones risking their safety to go to school in a Nor'easter? The mayor urged New Yorkers to stay inside... and opened the schools. I had hoped that he and Chancellor Farina would have more sense than their predecessors, but they pulled a "Bloomberg and Cathie Black." Opening the schools to feed a subset of NYC's students at the risk of the majority is foolish, and potentially tragic. The school calendar does have snow days built into it. USE THEM.

Dawn V., Oakwood,

They need to make a protocol for closing school so that teachers and parents understand what factors contribute to school closing or remaining open. Getting to school in white out conditions is not acceptable. The chancellor continues to talk about hot meals., but what happens during the winter break next week? Will they get a hot meal?

Brooklyn teacher

I think the Mayor's handling of the storm was more about showing the Governor who is in charge in NYC!

Jackson Heights

If Governor Cuomo and Governor Christie of New York and New Jersey, respectively, in both states, declared a snow emergency, why didn't Mayor De Blasio close the public schools in New York City? Hello, where is your common sense, Mayor De Blasio?


Schools should have been cancelled today or delayed opening at the very least A state of emergency was declared but teachers & students are forced to go to school There are snow days in the contract for this Educators are paid to teach not to baby sit or serve lunches.

Awilda from Brooklyn

I see absolutely nothing wrong with the mayor keeping schools open today. Unfortunately for him there are so many deliriously unhappy individuals that they cant wait to jump all over him no matter which way he moves. If you as a parent didn’t want to have your kid go to school – then keep them home!! And Al Roker should go eat a sandwich and keep his mouth shut.

Bklyn Hgts

I kept my son out of school today. As a teacher I went to school. I had 6 children in my class. It was horrible to open schools! The state declared a state of emergency and said to stay off the roads. How is that safe for anyone? And the new chancellor was extremely offensive comparing schools to Macy's! We r not a profit agency.

Jennifer Astoria

The mayor should be ashamed of himself for making our children go out in this weather. Not just that but how can you say "please avoid driving" when most of the teachers and staff live in the suburbs. School buses where driving in blizzard like conditions. It took Mayor De Blasio 2 months to get on my "bloomberg sh%t list". And Farina saying it's a beautiful day out? Where the hell did she go to have that interview, Florida?? Stupidity from both of them!


We all knew how bad this storm was last night - I even emailed you and you read it on the air. The south and DC paved the way for us, we knew the enormity of the storm based on what they went through. The mayor should NOT blame the weather service, Al Roker is right. This has never been an issue in past administrations when it's bad like this - you close, period. No one worked today, trains were virtually empty! And he shouldn't be wearing jeans during a press conference, no matter what the weather is, does he need to be reminded that he is the mayor of New York!?

Den in Bushwick

Poor decision making by DeBlasio today. Everyone knew that the worst of the storm would occur during the morning rush and he still thought it made sense to keep schools open. At the very least there should have been a 2 hour delay. While I believe most people voted for him based on his ideas, there was also concern about his ability to lead especially during crisis situations. Looking at today's failure proves that those concerns were not unfounded.

MJ from Hudson Heights

This is what we get when you have a Mayor, who likes to delegate everything to others. This is Ms. Farina's blunder but the Mayor is taking the blame for it. And could someone please inform out chancellor that she should be telling our children that they are going to school to learn not just to pick up lunch!

George from Brooklyn

In my view the Mayor did the right thing. What are we supposed to do as a city - shut down the schools at the drop of a hat? And if you didn't agree with him - then keep your own kids at home. Nobody needs a buffoon of a weatherman chiming in and giving his 2 cents either.

Upper Westside

One reason I voted for Bill Diblasio was because he seemed like a reasonable family man. Today proved differently. After slipping on old ice hidden by fresh snow, I was late to my school because the F train was covered in snow when it got to my station. I waited on the platform for 20 minutes and was stuck between stations for another 15. Then I arrived at work to hear that after school had been cancelled so I had to leave almost 2 hours early to pick my own child up from her school. Normally I would feel very guilty, but today I did not. The 8 kids that showed up went across the hall to continue doing nothing! There is no way meaningful lessons can take place with 2/3 of the class is missing.

BD needs to realize that businesses follow his lead. The domino effect of his decision was absurd.

Lisa, Brooklyn

Although I think keeping schools open was a bad decision...I must say this.....New York has become very soft over the years.....I come from a generation where winters contained FEET and not inches of snow...and we still had to go to school.....stop crying so much New Yorkers....if we made thru all the BULLYING of MAYOR BLOOMBERG...we can surely survive De Blasio..give him a chance!


Regardless of what the Mayor and Chancellor decide, I keep my kids home on days like today. I am outraged that the city urges New Yorkers to stay off the roads, but then expects parents like myself to put our kids on a school bus in today's weather. Absolutely not!


Parents can choose to keep their Children home but what about teachers and other staff? The decision to open was wrong and the national weather service predicted nothing less than 6 inches not 3-4.
Chancellor is clueless about weather forecasting.

Sal from SI

To send a message to the new Mayor, I suggest ALL parents of public school children keep Them home if the weather conditons are as unfavorable as they were today.

There is an issue of safety here.

Rego Park

I am a NYC school teacher and I strongly believe this was the wrong decision. I almost hydroplaned on the way to work...twice! Why? because the roads were not cleared. If this is a foreshadowing of the what's to come for education in these next four years GOD help us!

Park Slope

My school had 30% attendance for children and 50% of staff. The chancellor and mayor were so concerned about feeding children. Here is the food:

Anonymous teacher from queens

Mayor de basis needs to wake up and stop making STUPID decisions all kids should have been at home today!!

Kenny Middle Village

I think the mayor should just be honest and admit that teachers and other staff are going to be used as overpaid baby sitters and meal servers. No teacher who shows up is going to teach new lessons to the three or four kids who come in. Instead, classes are combined and often movies are shown or games are played. Why not be truthful about how school staff is being used?


Doesn't the comment "schools are a safe haven and a warm meal for children" mean that teachers become babysitters on days like today. I teach and every teacher at my school made it to school. I haven't heard the mayor or chancellor say Thank You to all staff members that did make it in to work and a thank you to the families as well.

Jackie- NYC Teacher

I don't have kids, but i was shocked to see kids on the train this morning. Also, closing schools would help with crowded trains that occur when the weather is this bad.

Alfred, woodhaven

I believe that schools should have been closed but the mayor decided to open the school.
I am not losing faith in this snow incident but as a teacher I am losing faith in his ability to
give teachers a raise and give them back pay. Based on the numbers he provided for his new budget.

Nasr From University Heights

When I was a kid (in the suburbs) I walked to school during snowstorms.
Get over it people--it's SNOW!!!
Not a hurricane, not a tornado.
Give me a break.


Mayor deBlasio proudly stated that since 1978, only 11 snow days have been used--11 days in 36 years! There was a 17 year stretch when NO DAY was used at all!!! Build 5 snow days into the calendar and USE them!!!

Shelley, park slope

Why should teacher get a day off if the rest of us tax payers have to go to work.
We can't shut school every time if rains or snows.
Our Kids are falling behind and if they want to compete in today's economy they need every school day to learn

Mayor made the right call

Zackary of woodside

I work in an elementary school. I'm the secretary so I'm scheduled to be to work @ 7am to take the calls of the staff members who will not be in. We had a total of 23 staff members absent, and 300 children out of 516 absent. I also had parents call and express that they were keeping their children home but did not want him or her marked absent for the day due to the weather. Classes had to be merged into one because of the shortage of teachers. So the mayor says that he kept the schools open for all of the parents who have to go to work and depend on the school system for their children but where were those children today because they sure wasn't in school.

Tanya (Park Slope BK)

The problem is not only the students but the teachers commuting to work. Treacherous conditions on the grand central parkway, spinning car wheels, limited visibility, cars not breaking, flat tires. Let's not mention that there were only a limited number of students in classes. My classes have 35 students in general. There were approximately 4/35 in each class.

DOE Teacher Anit

This mayor that has a mentality of a flee should resign. He put all kids in danger. Thank God that nobody got hurt.
He and the school chancellor looks like dumb and dumber.


I wonder how we could rethink what a snow day means? There are cities all over the US that use online learning as a way for students "to attend" school from home. What if we approached snow days like "hurricane days" and set up warming centers with free food and computer access for students in need. Perhaps it could be staffed by teachers that could get in and they could receive per session pay. It could be right in school buildings. And, of course, there is always establishing protocols around delayed openings. We always speak about these issues in black and white.. I just wonder about rethinking and re imagining other solutions to the problem.

Shana; Brooklyn

The mayor's problem solving process is slippery at best. I hope he approaches future challenges with better judgment.

Forest Hills

DeBlasio said that he relies on the national weather service. At 3:22 am last night there was an update that heavy snow banding of 2-3 inches of snow per hour was possible between 6-10am. If they made the call at 5am they could have used that information. The time of the call should be dictated by the timing of the storm.

Mike from cobble hill

Schools being open was so and out of school buildings..not to mention the commuting. Manhattan was horrible..I traveled from Brooklyn...truly a inconsiderate decision was made.

Obviously neither mayor or chancellor have young students.

Lulu Brooklyn

There was absolutely no excuse for keeping schools opened on a day like this! I don't have kids, but have two school aged nephews. One is 17 and the younger is 13. They have a 19 year old older sister. It's not like she and her 17 year old brother couldn't looked after their younger brother.
Don't believe the spin that both the mayor and the schools chancellor, Carmen Farina spewed to the reporters that the decision to open the schools was because kids could get a warm meal! That's a lot of BS! They did that to (1), meet an attendance quota and (2), to accommodate working parents with small kids and expect the schools to serve as baby sitting agencies. The mayor and the schools chancellor said that schools are places to learn. If so, then why so far since all of these snow storms so far, do they want the schools to act a babysitting agencies for parents who don't have people to look after their kids!? It was so shameful of him! In my 52 years that I've a U.S. resident and New Yorker, I have never seen a winter such as this and this now inept mayor and his just as equally inept chancellor say that they made the right decision? Are you kidding! I remember back in the winter of 1967, when schools were closed because of extreme cold weather. It was zero degrees, with no snow!

Cecilia Rivera
East Williamsburg

Bottom line, schools open because school funding is tied to student attendance.
Teachers have sick days; if they can't make it, stay home.
Parents have the final decision as to whether or not to send children to school.
The job of city government is to provide services. The Mayor made the right decision.
However, there should be some set temperature and or number of inches of snow that determines whether or not school is closed - not this ridiculous guessing game that the city plays with parents every time it snows.
And even if schools do not close, there should be a shortened schedule or delayed opening.

Jackson Heights

Did Farina slip on ice and hit her head before making that embarrassing statement?


The mayor and the chancellor keep talking about "the system" for making decisions to close schools.

We HAVE a system. It's called a Weather Forecast and it's managed by professional meteorologists. The mayor and the chancellor are out of their league to second guess them.

Linda in Manhattan

The mayor and chancellor's decision to keep schools open today was absurd. The safety of children and the staff is absolutely more important than anything else. Maybe the mayor should be more concerned with the safety of the children rather than the record of only closing schools 11 times within the past 36 years.

Jordan from East Elmhurst

New Yorkers shouldn't blame Mayor Diblassio . They should blame themselves for voting for him or not voting and allowing this inexperience man become Mayor .

South Shore

Many of the same parents complaining about De Blasio would still complain if he had closed the schools because they would have had to stay home from work. When I was a kid in the 60s the snow was much worse and more frequent than what we've seen recently. It was a rare event indeed when the schools ever closed. Al Roker's comment was ridiculous. If DeBlasio becomes a one term mayor it certainly won't have anything to do with him failing to grant New York City's children a snow day.

Upper West Side

I believe the Mayor and Ms Chancellor made a mistake today by not closing the schools. It was a very dangerous commute even for us living in Manhattan taking Public Transportation.
We definitely need a better plan in place maybe a later start time to give business/home/building owners a chance to clean the sidewalks. Clear roads so sanitation can plow streets.
I myself a teacher went to work and I really wanted to leave my 9th grader home but even though it is our choice as a parent to make the best decision students are marked absent that also should be changed to "weather related absence" for the students records.
Right now I am not giving up on our new Mayor.

Mini, Manhattan

Is Farinia's area of expertise meteorology or traffic management? The decision to close the schools should be up to OEM and DOT.

Park Slope

The schools should have been closed. I live 25 blocks from my school and it took me an hour and 30 min to get there. My car went into a 360 degree spin. And did Carmen farina actually say "If Macy's is open then the DOE will be open? Seriosly, this is all about money which is way more important than student/teacher safety. Absolutly ridiculous.

Vinny From Brooklyn

First thing he's gotten right. Start a little earlier, dress for the weather, suck it up and stop complaining.

Ola, upper east side.

See, the Common Core is working: Kids are using critical thinking skills.

Evidence (Snow) plus Analysis (Very Heavy) = Conclusion (Stay Home).

Fred, Brooklyn

I don't understand why everyone is complaining about schools being open today despite the weather. If the mayor closes the schools, they complain, if he opens the schools, they complain. What parents should do is to make sure that their children attend school regularly throughout the school year instead of keeping them home to run errands for them and to baby-sit younger siblings.

Shirley, Bronx

It was the wrong decision but at the very least they could have offered a delayed opening.
Btw schools are not babysitting centers for parents who work, what an insult to education.


It is time to upgrade our education system with more winter days when schools are closed, and develop an education system of healthy activities that students can do at home: catch up on overdue homework, read a book, write an essay for extra grade points.


The morning commute was dangerous and put NYers in danger trying to get kids to school - and making it more difficult for the snow plows to do their job.

I wish the Mayor just would say "hey we made a mistake and that they will revaluate the way we make this decision"

Stan in Harlem

A bad call that not only put many in danger, but goes on their record as an absence! Chose not to send my who daughter attends our mandated zoned JHS, which isn't even in our neighborhood! With our block not yet plowed, she's asthmatic & would have to walk to the bus, take 2 buses, then walk 1/4 mi to the school! I'm a teacher in the private sector and feel the decision and how it was handled was totally irresponsible.

Lorraine in the Ft. Hamilton

For the working parent schools and afterschool need to be open for those who don't have back up sitters. Parents should have a choice. I'm an RN in the Home Health Care Industry and several patients depend on our Staff to provide their needs in this Weather. We can't afford to stay home, due to loss of income or for fear of losing our job!! My daughter 11yr said she has to go to school bc she's off next week and there's only a few more weeks of study until the ELA test.

Ms Scott of the Upper West Side

The Mayor blew this one. They knew just as we all knew that 6-8 inches of snow would fall and it would be a dangerous morning commute. The schools are for learning not babysitting and their (students) safety and the safety of teachers, staff and the people that escort the students to school, must come first.

Al in Flushing

Kim from Bronx. Schools should Not have been open. I keep my daughter home from school. This is dangerous for all involved (school staff, students and parents). With after schools closing parents are left in the same situation anyway!!.. If parents know early they can make childcare arrangements in advance.

Plain and simple ... the buck stops at the Mayor's doorstep. He could have decided to close the schools early this morning, around 6 a.m. People would be up and listening, they were waiting for his decision. He also failed to take into account the trifecta of high wind gusts, sleet and possible power outages thrown into the mix along with the heavy snow. Of course all of this occurred ON TOP OF mini mountains of piled up snow which will be turned into ice by morning. Does he think the five boroughs are the new Himalayas? You failed the children, parents and staff of the NYC schools and placed children in jeopardy. You need to consider a new Schools Chancellor.

We won't be giving you a passing grade on this one, Mayor.


Deblasio still has a lot to learn, slippery streets and unplowed streets should have led to school closings. Add extra days to the end of the year, instead of end of school year for example being on the June 26th, add a few days and make it the 29th or 30th. What's the big deal.


Schools breakfast and lunch is hardly the reason that kids go to school in horrible weather. Kids go to school on these days because their parents think that if the school is open that it will be a regular day. Many teachers don't live in the city and are unable to make it in to school on a day like today- so schools being open during severe weather is far from a regular day for kids.

Michael from Brooklyn

I find it a bit offensive that teachers don't think they should have to go work when those of us in private industry have no choice unless we want to lose a day! From what I have seen on the news many not so privileged parents are grateful to have somewhere for their kids to go so they can go to work. You want to stay home - no one is forcing you to do anything!


I am sick of everyone whining about schools being open on snowy days! when i was a kid we regularly trudged thru the snow to school because most of us went to our local neighborhood school. I live 1/2 block from my elementary school, St. Saviours. I dare you to try to drive down 8th Ave weekdays bet 745-815am & 230-315pm. It is a complete nightmare!!! And why??? Because more than half of the student don't even live in Park Slope!!! THAT is a major reason why these parent are so irate. And if they closed schools every time it snowed they would complain because they had to either pay for a babysitter or stay home from work with their child/children.

Mark-Park Slope

School should be close today and tomorrow for the safety for our children and parents-

Alex Staten Island

Make the teachers live in the city or the 6 surrounding counties like most city workers . Then you wont have kids doing nothing on snow days.

Nick Lorenzo
Slate Hill

Today I drove on the BQE -TERRIFIED, as the visibility was very poor! Most of my students were not in attendance! This afternoon it took me 45 minutes to dig my car out from this morning!

Linda DOE employee

I am surprised that more people aren't OUTRAGED at the fact that rather than comparing NYC schools to OTHER schools in the area (charter and independent), who closed to keep students, parents, and children safe, Chancellor Fariña would compare NYC schools to FOR-PROFIT businesses like Macy's! The DOE needs to take down the "Children first" from their website and put "PROFIT FIRST" because we all know that is what keeping schools open today was all about. I thought having a chancellor with a background in education would actually make a difference in NYC schools...

NYCDOE Teacher and Parent, Manhattan

Whereas I agree that maybe he should have closed the schools, I noticed that no one has mentioned that the Mayor did say this morning, that although City offices and schools are open... "don't go out unless you have to". How come they are giving him a hard time? Did your viewers not listen?
And as for the plows, they are not sufficient, and the snow and ice is not being removed after the storm, which is making each new storm much worse than the had to be.

Nora from Parkside Heights

This was a bad decision to keep schools open. Our elementary school had no crossing guard and no school safety officer yet school was open. Many teachers were out and learning did Not take place.

Maria Staten Island

I drove my wife, a 7th and 8th grade special education ELA teacher, to school this morning, from the 90s in Bay Ridge to the 40s in Borough Park. I dropped her off at 8 am and did not get home until 10:30 am - the conditions were extremely dangerous. In one breath the mayor tells us to stay off the roads and in the next tells us all that schools are open, contradictory statements!


I believe that keeping schools open today was ridiculous!
I couldn't figure out if they were kept open to please teachers so that they can get paid or to emphasize the "new" get touch for education baloney! There was talk about parents and teachers get to g angry or upset if days had to be taken off their Presidents or Easter vacations;or if Sat. Classes or classes in July were mandated!
The parents children and teachers were put in danger today. Period.
The new school chancellor has already proven her ridiculousness by saying how beautiful it was this morning! I hear that conditions can be beautiful right before a tornado...
I also wondered why the decision to leave schools open or close schools can't be made in the morning if the storm. It is very effective to have a 2hour delay to assess the situation .
Finally schools are not day care or soup kitchens! The government can come up with a plan to help working parents whether it be skeleton school system or some form if day care. And to make this even more ridiculous after school programs which working parents depend on were closed! Go figure!
I know a teacher who died in a car accident driving from school during a storm. This should never happen!
Mayor you are batting zero in my book!

Sue, Upper West Side

I think the mayor made a very poor decision in keeping the schools open today with these weather conditions you're jeopardizing the safety of teachers and staff who many live out of the areas they teach at to drive in dangerous conditions the same goes for parents and kids who drive and walk to school. He didn't think it would be that bad? Do they not watch the weather report it was obvious it was going to be rough conditions lame excuse not a good impression for the people who voted you in. Kept my son home and will always do it when I see fit his safety comes first not bureaucracy if our officials only thought the same way


I think the Mayor is being overly-criticized with regards to keeping the schools open. I went to work today as did all my colleagues - no one forced us. Just as no one holds a gun to your kid's heads to force them to go to school. If it's not safe for your kids, then have them stay home.

Glen Oaks

Dr. Farina made the right decision. Any parent who felt it was unsafe had the right to keep his or her child at home. Education is very important, something many people seem to forget in the constant blame-game. Missing many days, breaking up weeks, and having a whole week of vacation next week, are very disruptive to learning. Yes, it was correct to keep school open today.


I can't believe that parents don't have a Plan B in place in case schools are closed or they are sick. I understand some parents have to go to work, but can't understand if they dont' have a Plan B.

Parents should make their own decision, if I had a school age child now, I would have made the decision to keep my child home if schools were open or not.

Opening or closings of schools should be made in the morning, not at 11 p.m. at night. The public should be told to have a Plan B in place in case.

Cathy/Bay Ridge

To Everyone who's complaining about the schools remaining open, the Mayor and the Chancellor did not break down your doors to drag your kids to school. All these armchair quarterbacks should have kept their kids home and left it at that. They opened the schools so parents who need to go to work can.

Bay Ridge

Whether Mayor Deblasio and the schools
chancellor want to admit it or not, they made
a BAD DECISION today not closing
the public schools.


Andy from Brooklyn

Schools should have been closed. If a state of emergency was declared and we were told not to drive. why subject our children to travel in unsafe conditions?


This is normal winter weather. Zip up and go to school.

Hanne, Brooklyn

If the mayor had closed schools there would be unhappy parents too. We were asked to used our discretion. My child travel 1 1/2 hrs daily to get to school and she was on time today. The mayor son goes to the same school and it take 20 min he was there. Kids from Staten Island was there. The worse areas was the cross walk and curb side of the school. I pray they all made it home safely.





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