District has snow day with hopes of full in-person day in June

Snow+banks+nearly+covered+the+school%27s+sign+on+Bartlett+Street+on+Tuesday%2C+Feb.+2%2C+the+recent+official+snow+day+during+which+there+was+no+remote+learning.+

Annabella Ferraiuolo

Snow banks nearly covered the school’s sign on Bartlett Street on Tuesday, Feb. 2, the recent official snow day during which there was no remote learning.

Ben Schanzer, Assistant News Editor

Superintendent Greg Martineau made the decision to have a typical snow day instead of a remote day on Tuesday, Feb. 2.

The decision, announced Monday evening, was based on weather data and Martineau’s hope for the Northborough-Southborough schools to return to four-day in-person weeks by the end of the year.

“My rationale for making Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2021 a snow day, versus a remote learning day, is that I’m hopeful that a day in June will be in-person for our students,” Martineau said in an email interview.

According to Martineau, there is a large group of district and town staff that determines whether or not school will take place on days with difficult weather. This group includes Northborough’s Department of Public Works, Southborough’s Department of Public Works and Northborough and Southborough police officials.

As ARHS students enjoyed their snow day, many workers spent the day prepping the exterior of the school for students and faculty members to return the next day. (Annabella Ferraiuolo)

Social studies teacher Kristin Turner believes that Martineau’s decision was the right one, yet appreciates the difficulty in making those decisions.

“I can understand why we need remote days this year, but in general, I love a snow day,” Turner said in a Zoom interview. “I know there is a lot of pressure, particularly for some of the classes that have to get through a certain amount of content for the AP tests. It is hard to make those decisions [about snow days].”

English teacher Seth Czarnecki noted that when the district had a weather-driven remote learning day earlier this year, students were less engaged and enthusiastic about learning.

Sophomore Erin Navaroli’s opinions on the matter aligned with those of both Turner and Czarnecki.

“I felt upset that I could be outside playing with my dogs or doing other things besides school when it would have been a snow day,” Navaroli said.

“One of the most difficult challenges for the Superintendent of Schools is deciding whether or not to cancel or delay school due to inclement weather,” Martineau said. “While our goal is to remain in session, the safety of our students and staff is our highest priority.”