The Woodward News

March 1, 2013

Cleanup continues as students return

Chris Cooper
Woodward News

Woodward, Okla. — After recent snowstorms left Woodward schools closed for 5 days, the first day back in session went well on Thursday, according to Superintendent Tim Merchant.

"We've still got a lot of cleaning up to do," Merchant said, "but considering what we've been through, it's going well. To get cleaned up what we've been able to is nothing short of phenomenal."

Merchant extended his gratitude to everyone involved in the cleanup efforts that made getting school back in session on Thursday a possibility.

Despite what Merchant would describe as a "success considering the circumstances," the day was not without a few hiccups.

Most of the problems surrounded traffic issues.

"At the middle school on the north end of the gymnasium there's a little makeshift parking area in the northwest corner which parents have used in the past," Merchant said. "We didn't clear it up because its not asphalt so if we had it'd be a muddy mess and people would be stuck, so some parents were not used to using that south entry, so that was a little hectic."

The weather also resulted in a small fender bender at one of Woodward's schools, as well as a bus on a rural road getting temporarily stuck in the mud, he said.

Aside from these instances, Merchant said there were just the usual concerns of avoiding large snow piles and watching out for slick spots.

These are concerns that the superintended expects to remain over then next few days. As such, he requested parents be especially conscious of the buses.

"With these large piles of snow to watch out for, buses sometimes need to take wider turns. Parents just need to stay back a little farther than normal to make sure they're are able to make their turns," he said.

Merchant also cautioned parents who drop off children in the morning to be wary of slick areas.

"Any point for the next week or so we'll have snow melting in the day and refreezing at night, so people will just have to be aware of those icy spots. You can't sand and salt every square inch of town, it'd be nice but its just not possible," he said.

With school back in session, attention can now be paid to how the district intends on making up the missed school days.

"We missed 5 days total, but not every one will need to be made up because we have extra hours built in for snow days, so we're taking a look at that," Merchant said.

The superintendent said ideally the district would prefer to get the time made up prior to the testing period, but there are no solid plans as of yet.