Public schools closed Monday, will not reopen until Wednesday at the earliest

UPDATED SUNDAY 3:15 P.M. — Superintendent of Schools William McKersie announced on Sunday that the Greenwich Public Schools will be closed on Monday due to a lack of clearance for bus routes and safe pedestrian access.

Schools are already scheduled to be closed on Tuesday due to Election Day. In a release issued on Sunday afternoon, the district’s Director of Communications Kim Eves said that will not change and schools will remain closed that day despite other districts opening up despite the election. An announcement on the status of the schools for the rest of the week is expected to be made by Tuesday at 2 p.m. Ms. Eves said that the district was “optimistic” that classes can resume on Wednesday but that first the district had to be sure buses and pedestrians had safe passage to the schools. The Greenwich Police Department’s Traffic Section did an evaluation of all the bus and pedestrian routes Sunday morning and Ms. Eves said because it was “clear” there was not safe passage the decision was made to hold back on reopening the schools until Wednesday at the earliest.

The town’s Parks and Recreation Department had looked at all school buildings and main grounds on Saturday and has deemed they are all safe to be used.

The district has to be in session on a minimum of days during the year under state regulation and with Monday now being added to the list, that will be six days of canceled school due to the impact of Hurricane Sandy. This means with winter not even having begun yet and the possibility of additional weather cancellations very real, the district has already used up its five allotted “snow days” and will have to figure out a solution that could involve removing vacation days off the school calendar’s April recess or extending the school year, which is currently scheduled to end on June 24. The Board of Education is expected to begin that discussion in earnest this week.

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