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Longer Vacation? Will School Districts Cancel Classes over Extreme Cold?

Schools in Lemont are keeping an eye on the forecast as dangerously cold temperatures could lead to emergency closings in some areas.

Lemont schools are scheduled to be back in session next week.

But a forecast that's calling for temperatures reaching 5 below to 17 below zero—and feeling like 20 below to 25 below with the wind chill index—leaves the possibility that local schools will extend the break at least an extra day for safety reasons.

As of Friday afternoon, Lemont D113A have said classes will resume as scheduled. For information about school closing guidelines, check out the Lemont-Bromberek District 113A website. Lemont High School will resume as planned on Tuesday, Jan. 7. 

Bookmark this page for any school closings information. Also, check EmergencyClosings.com.

What's Too Cold?

Temperatures are expected to hover between 5 below and 17 below zero over the next days, with a wind chill index around 20 below to 25 below, according to the National Weather Service. The agency also is forecasting that wind speeds will reach 20 to 25 mph, with gusts up to 35 mph. 

That combination can lead to hypothermia—when the body loses more heat than it can produce—and frostbite, which can set in within 15 minutes once it reaches dangerously cold temperatures. Check out the wind chill index chart in this article to see what levels those are. And go to the agency's wind chill page for more information.

YOUR TURN: Do you think schools should cancel classes because of the extreme cold? Share your thoughts in the comments section.

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Lemont Police Department January 03, 2014 at 07:18 PM
The Lemont Police Department advises residents to take precautions with the expected subzero temperatures. Warming Centers will be set up in the Village including the Lemont Park District Core during normal business hours. If residents find themselves without heat please call the Lemont Police Department for assistance. Also residents are asked to check on neighbors especially the elderly and disabled. Kevin W. Shaughnessy Chief of Police Lemont Police Department
Karen Kerwin January 05, 2014 at 01:46 PM
I think the Lemont schools can stay open if they wish but allow parents to keep their children home and the school gives the students an excused absence for the day.
Carol January 05, 2014 at 03:17 PM
An important issue to consider is that the staff needs to get to their jobs. Not only is the cold a problem, but also the ability to travel with the mounting snow. Safety is most important for staff and students.

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