SAYING NO: Iowa Won’t Close Schools like Minn. Did


Temperatures plummeting below zero and wind chills that could reach 30-50 degrees below zero in some places could threaten students at bus stops across Iowa Monday, if school leaders don’t decide to cancel classes. Many did, however.

One Channel 13 viewer asked why Governor Branstad can’t step in and take away parents’ worry. “Why the governor cannot cancel schools like Minnesota?” emailed June Lentzkhow.

Minnesota is expected to deal with temperatues even colder than Iowa Monday, so Governor Mark Dayton closed public schools statewide. But Governor Branstad’s Communications Director Jimmy Centers said it’s not that simple in Iowa.

Centers said in a statement: “Unlike some of Iowa’s neighboring states, there is no mechanism in Iowa law that allows the state to close schools due to severe weather. In situations in which weather impacts school classes, local districts make the decision in the best interest of the students, teachers and school employees.”

On Friday, Iowa school districts already started canceling classes for Monday because of the expected frigid weather.


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