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North Star Take: Whiners with No Chill

By fhntoday editorial board

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Social Media Posts Target Superintendent

Screen Shot 2015-01-21 at 8.43.36 AMFHSD has been blessed with a miracle. We have a superintendent endowed with the ability to make sure that every child in FHSD is properly dressed for frigid winter weather. Each morning, according to some members of the community, Dr. Pam Sloan is responsible for buttoning coats, slapping on hats and slipping on mittens for nearly 20,000 students in the 150 square mile school district. By visiting all of these children within one morning, Dr. Sloan easily gives Santa Claus a run for his cookies.

However, the behavior of some parents and students in the FHSD community over social media during prospective snow or wind chill days, particularly on Jan. 7, would surely land them on the naughty list. These behaviors include things such as threatening tweets, extensive complaints on Facebook and overall ignorance to the actual process of calling a snow day.

Some people in the FHSD community seem to believe that Dr. Sloan is the only person responsible for calling a snow day, and therefore direct hostile complaints at her when they don’t get to skip out on a day of school or have to take the time to properly bundle their child for the weather.

The main complaint from parents on Jan. 7 was having to send their children to wait for the bus in the cold weather. These parents were rightfully concerned about the well-being of their children; however, it is not the job of FHSD to make sure that all 20,000 children in the district are dressed properly for the weather. It’s a school district, not Burlington Coat Factory.

In freezing temperatures, it is the duty of parents to make sure that their students are adequately dressed for the weather in order to inhibit frostbite and illness. In

temperatures under five degrees, it is possible for frostbite to occur within the course of 30 minutes, making it all the more imperative for parents make sure that their children are bundled as much as Ralphie’s kid brother, Randy, in “A Christmas Story.”

No matter the weather, there are also students who simply refuse to wear coats. Yes, boys who wear shorts year round, we’re talking to you. Some students also believe that wearing a coat is simply not cool and disrupts their distinct style. Sure, it’s of the utmost importance for students to maintain their cool factor, but despite the bad pun, frostbite is not cool. These students know that it’s smarter to wear a coat, but FHSD can’t monitor each student to make sure they actually wear a coat. It’s not feasible and a waste of time.

Another news flash: Missouri winters are cold. Many northern states face freezing temperatures daily and school is still in session. If these states closed school for every day the temperatures dipped below freezing, the northern U.S. would become overrun with a bunch of snow-shoveling, sled-riding hooligans. For people who have called this state home for a while, the number of winter whiners that increase each year is astounding. This epidemic easily beats out frostbite cases yearly.

The manner by which many students and parents responded to the snow day not being called was also startling. When did it become acceptable for students to casually throw around the first names of their teachers, much less their superintendent? Students, you are not best friends with Dr. Sloan and calling her by her first name on social media shows a disrespect for authority.

The content of these complaints also demonstrates a level of cowardice because the chances of students and parents actually saying these things face to face is slim. When hiding behind a computer screen, it’s easy for students to aggressively tweet as they imagine the day they could have spent sleeping with sugar plums dancing around their heads, but that kind of disrespect doesn’t have a place in real life.

The 61 long comment bash on FHSD’s Facebook account by parents also shows a level of whining reminiscent to that of a starving chihuahua. Once the decision not to call a snow day has been made, the opinion of few parents out of a whole school district is not going to have any affect on the decision. The main thing that people need to realize is that in commenting on these posts, they are only making themselves look bad and not actually impacting the situation in any way.

We’re really just asking for some respect for Dr. Sloan and the hard working members of FHSD who wake up during the wee hours of the morning to determine if it is safe to get busses out to 20,000 students. These members genuinely care about the learning of FHSD students and are not intentionally trying to give them frostbite.

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North Star Take: Whiners with No Chill