#closeFCPS: Local Students Start National Trending Topic

By Maggie Cornejo
Staff Reporter

Following three to four inches of snowfall during students’ and parents’ usual morning commute, outraged citizens of Fairfax County expressed their frustration over social media that school was not delayed or cancelled on Tuesday, January 6th.

USA Today Trends Today Twitter

USA Today Trends Today Twitter

Kristen Harmony took to Twitter expressing her disappointment in the judgment of FCPS, writing, “We are driving on Braddock Rd and we slipped about 10 times. My car has four wheel drive. COME ON THIS IS RIDICULOUS. #closeFCPS”

The roads and conditions for both walking and driving were dangerous. Prince William County police reported that there were at least 12 crashes involving school buses, according to the Washington Post, and at least 18 other situations in which school buses had difficulty navigating the roads, causing the obstruction of traffic.

“Living far away from school is inconvenient,” said Patrick Casey ‘17, “because when Fairfax [FCPS] makes the decision to close or stay open, they often don’t take into account the private schools that have students from other counties and longer drives.”

The case for Paul VI is unique, as some students come from as far away as Maryland, D.C., and Loudoun and Fauquier Counties, where the conditions may be even more dangerous compared to Fairfax. The Washington Post reported that Aldie’s snowfall, in Loudoun, was four inches, while Bailey’s Crossroads, in Fairfax County, received three inches as of 10:30 a.m. on Jan. 6.

Noah Lerman ‘17, a student living in Loudoun County, disagrees with the school’s decision to follow FCPS. “Coming from someone who lives in Loudoun County, I think that PVI should make its own decisions on whether it is necessary to cancel school, because not everyone lives 5-10 minutes away from a school like students in FCPS.”

“My carpool took a turn, and the car drifted into a ditch,” said Margaret Thompson ‘17. “[The driver] had to wait for hours for a tow truck to come, and by the time it came, we couldn’t go to school, so I was stuck at home all day.”

Courtesy of Maddie Morgan.

Courtesy of Maddie Morgan.

Students took their concerns to Twitter. Maddie Morgan, a student at W.T. Woodson was delayed in her commute to school with accidents along the way. Her tweet (below) was one of the many trending #closeFCPS tweets. The trend became nationally known in a matter of hours, even coming to the attention of USA Today.

“It makes me really angry that they didn’t cancel school,” said Lisa Carome ‘17. ”It took me twice as long [as usual] to get to PVI, and there were accidents everywhere. I don’t know what they [FCPS] were thinking.”

With such a huge uprising over this mistake, it is hopeful that FCPS will be mindful in the future for the benefit and safety of students.

Sources:

Fritz, Angela. “A Snowy Tuesday Morning in Washington, D.C. (Snow Totals and Reports).” Washington Post. The Washington Post, 6 Jan. 2015. Web. 10 Jan. 2015.

Halsey, Ashley, and T. Rees Shapiro. “Snow Causes Messy Road Conditions, School Delays and Closures throughout the D.C. Region.” Washington Post. The Washington Post, 6 Jan. 2015. Web. 10 Jan. 2015.

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