CHICAGO — Chicago Public Schools opted to cancel classes on Wednesday, when temperatures and windchills are expected to dip below zero and result in possibly "dangerous" commutes for children walking to and from school.
"District officials have been monitoring the expected weather, and it will be dangerously cold for children to be going to and from school," officials said in a robocall to parents Tuesday evening.
CPS CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett said in a news release that “the frigid temperatures and winds make a dangerous combination, and it is in the best interest of our students to cancel classes.”
The forecast for 7 a.m. Wednesday calls for a temperature of 0 degrees and a windchill of minus 30, according to AccuWeather. The mercury could dip below zero starting at 8 p.m., AccuWeather says.
CPS buildings will remain open and accept students who still arrive at schools, according to the release. CPS administrative staff, building engineers and custodians will report to work Wednesday, the release stated. Chicago Park District facilities will also be open.
In the robocall, officials said classes will likely resume Thursday, "but CPS will continue to monitor the situation."
Wednesday is expected to be the coldest day of this recent snap. City officials were monitoring the weather "minute by minute" this week to determine whether to keep schools open Wednesday as bitter cold blankets the region.
Last year, during the Chiberian Polar Vortex, the city closed schools for four days.
CPS is notifying parents of the closure through robocalls. Parents can also call 773-553-1000 or visit the CPS website for more information, according to the release. All after-school and sporting activities are also canceled.
A Facebook message from the Archdiocese of Chicago Catholic Schools said "each school makes their own decision for closure."
According to a release, all YMCA of Metro Chicago centers will be open Wednesday, and some centers will off Y's School Days Out, "a program with activities geared specifically to kids whose schools have been closed due to the weather."
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