The No Snow Day Blues: West Reacts to Snowstorm


The Niles West faculty parking lot being plowed before school.

By Wyatt Zwik, Academics Editor

Most students got out of bed in the morning, looked out the window, and thought to themselves, “Yes! We’re definitely having a snow day!” But, alas, a snow day was not called, and students showed up to class. Most, that is.

According to the attendance office, many parents called students in “sick” or “weather,” and many others just showed up late.

“When I got here at 6:30 a.m., I missed 109 phone calls, and then I probably had about 300 hundred after that, so maybe a little over 400 so far. That’s late and just not combined,” attendance office secretary Missy Becker said.

In an email to district employees, superintendent Steven Isoye explained the district’s decision not to cancel or run a late start schedule.

“I work directly with our 10 districts that have students in Niles Township (9 sender districts and 1 special education district). In the event of bad weather we schedule a call in the evening before to determine our course of action, or decide to wait to see how the weather event develops. In this case, we decided to wait until the morning to see what would happen since the predicted time was not to start until sometime after midnight. Based on what we saw, the conditions around 4:30 – 5:00 a.m., and the expected tail-off of snow we made a decision to remain open,” Isoye wrote.

However, many students were still disgruntled they had to come in to school. Senior Maha Syed was condemned to the cold, and since the buses were running behind schedule, she was late for her early bird class.

“The buses came really late which was really annoying,” Syed said. “I stood out for like a good 15 minutes, and I was late which was not good cause I have early bird, too.”

The snow may have settled, but students’ hopes for a cold day have not. Senior Anna Darville has high hopes for no school this upcoming Wednesday.

“We better not have school Wednesday, that’s all I’m saying because the weather is just horrible. We’re not able to handle it,” Darville said.

AP United States History teacher Joe Meyer, who usually rides his bike to school, opted to drive instead due to the heavy snow.

‘It would be dangerous. If there’s sticking snow and it’s really slippery, over an inch, I don’t bike it. Cars could slip, I avoid it. I’ll go pretty cold, but not like it’s going to be the next few days. It’d be really hard to stay on a bike right now. I’m sensible enough about that.”

English teacher Blake Magnuson, however, is not averse to the snow. Per his daily ritual, he rode his bike here to Niles West from six miles away in Evanston.

“I didn’t have any other way to get to and from school, other than the bus but that seemed more like a pain,” Magnuson said. “It was fine, I just rode slowly. I slipped a little bit, but no big deal. And it wasn’t cold.”

English teacher Blake Magnuson’s bike parked in the English office

Not everyone shares Mr. Magnuson’s positivity about the snow and the cold. There’s a chance of a cold day in the near future, with Wednesday’s forecast dropping to at least -13 degrees. And that’s without the windchill. So for now, wear an extra sweatshirt or two, drink some hot chocolate, and cross your still unfrozen fingers for a cold day.