As schools start late, parents start planning for cold

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Many schools throughout Central Indiana have already decided to delay the start of classes on Tuesday because of frigid temperatures and wind that could produce wind chills of -20 degrees or lower.

Superintendents from Marion County held a special conference call on Monday night, with some districts, such as Washington Township, opting to move back the start of classes. Others, such as IPS, were still waiting to make a call.

Regardless of when classes do begin, the wind chill will still be dangerously low by the time school buses arrive. That’s why some parents are taking matters into their own hands.

Kimberly Lewis made sure she was there to pick her daughter up from swimming at Warren Central High School Monday night, and with temperatures dropping, she’s made special plans for the morning too.

“She has to walk down to the corner, and it’s just too cold so I’ll drive her,” Kimberly Lewis said.

Glenn Lewis said he’ll make sure his own daughter is bundled up a little more than normal, but when it comes to the bus he says his family has some help.

“Some of the neighbors are super friendly and they pile into a house on either side (of the bus stop),” Glenn Lewis said.

“If there’s any way you can limit their exposure outside, that would be preferred,” said Dr. John Finnell, an emergency physician at Wishard Hospital.

Whether buses are on time or two hours late, emergency doctors say parents or neighbors helping at bus stops is a great idea, not just for the warmth.

“If the kids are playing and they get injured and are unable to get back up or get help, so if they’re out alone, those are the ones that we would worry about,” Dr. Finnell said.

If parents can’t accompany their children, Dr. Finnell suggests taking a cue from a certain fictional Indiana family.

“Sort of like from the movie the Christmas Story,” Dr. Finnell said, referring to the movie in which a mother famously bundles up her young son to the point that he can hardly move his arms. “That’s not silly when you get to these sort of extremes, where everything is sort of protected and covered.”

“Definitely gloves, hat, scarf, whatever you can, get them on,” Glenn Lewis said.

Dr. Finnell says parents and other adults who have a cold weather plan, should also make sure they have backup plans, which can simply include bringing a cell phone in case a car breaks down.

Frostbite can begin to set in in 30 minutes or less when the wind chill drops below -20 degrees.


  • michael

    Everyone just need's to stay extra warm and keep the kid's as safe and warm as possible…my youngest will become very I'll behind this cold day's leaving me no choice but to keep her home when she is sick and to the parents that send the kid's to school sick please think of you'r own sick child first.

  • Casey. Fay

    This Is Crazy When It Gets To This Bad Of Cold Weather I Dont Think The Schools Should Make The Children Go To School At All This Is Why Everyone Is Sick These Days. I Mean What If They Have To Go To Work And Have No Way Of Geting Their Child To School Think About The Children Whats There Health Going To Be Like…

    • TT

      That is so true, ips superintendent doesn’t care about the safety of our children. My son walks 4 blocks up then another 2 blocks across to get to school and the last cold day we had he came in crying cause he was so cold. I work so I can’t take him nor pick him up nor do I have anyone else who can get him so my son is staying home safe and warm!

  • Betty Shitmid

    I think that children shouldnt go to school when it's this cold out its very bad for their health. i agree with casey fay this is true they shouldnt let the children go to school at this temperature and then all of the ips children alot of them there schools arent called off for two hour delays but their just like any other school there freeing out side to . They should think about changing their system due to peoples health and safety .

  • shannon

    My daughter walks to school…even a two hour delay is dangerous for her but im one of the lucky ones who can drive her to school. What about other parents here in Hawthorne that cannot do the same? Their kids will be in danger and an abstance will go against them?? What to do???

  • Angry Mom

    I have had nothing but problems with the buses here in Indianapolis. They want my child outside 20 minutes before and 20 minutes after the time the bus should be there. That is INSANE!!! A 6:32 bus pick up time doesn't mean the bus can come at 6:55 and expect my child to be there!!! And again, when the bus wants to show up at 6:18…and then not wait for my son to get out the door, I don't think so!!! The buses and drivers need to get on a schedule and keep it!!! Better believe my son won't be standing outside in the morning until it's time…if he misses the bus…OH WELL!!! It would be nice to know if there is going to be a 2 hr delay before bedtime so we could just change alarm times…but we are talking about IPS…last minute everything. God Bless those who have to be out in this!!! Please stay warm!!!

  • guest

    Once again IPS Schools wont delay due to the same old excuse that the parents have no onee to watch their kids if school delays or closes. Or better yet they have also said that most of these kids only get to eat only at school and they need to be open. Now if this is the situation dont you think these parents need to be investigated?

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