What to do about Snow Days

Astoria, NY after a recent snow storm and school closing.

After a major snowstorm hit New York City on the night of Wednesday, January 3rd, Mayor Bill de Blasio shut down the New York City School system on Jan. 4. That day, students and teachers alike scrambled with what to do on the aftermath of the storm and the Mayor’s conflicting tweets and actions.

Frank Sinatra School of the Arts (FSSA) stayed alive on the Friday following the storm with teachers and fewer students attending school. But even with a lack of attendance, the day and spirit went on like any other day at FSSA.

“You could still hear the instrumental and vocal kids taking over the sound of the hallways just like any other day,” says Mariana Kosmetatos, a junior dance major.

Classes may have been different and lessons altered, but students still seemed to enjoy coming to school after the snow day. There was still a sense of fun and togetherness.

“I actually enjoyed being here even though some of my friends were missing. It was like a field trip because of the fluctuating of the class schedules. Everybody just takes it down a
notch and talked about their hectic and life threatening commute to get here,” says Kelley McCarthy, a senior art major.

The snow fall ranged from 5-6 inches in the city and places outside the city, faced an inch or more depending on the area. Many were confused and reacted to the Mayor’s tweets, which conflicted with his actions. The one tweet that Mayor De Blasio put out on January 4th read:

“This weekend we will see dangerously low temperatures and wind chills. Stay indoors as much as you can. Check on elderly family members, neighbors, and people with increased
health risks. Keep your pets indoors.”

The Mayor’s tweets continued throughout the day and kept repeating the idea to take precautions, check on loved ones and neighbors and to stay indoors, as much as possible
due to the severe weather conditions we were going to witness.

Confused FSSA students posted the tweets responding as to why there was still school if the Mayor was telling us to take precautions, stay home and stay off the roads.

“I mean it is hypocritical in a way to address these things to the public and then say for us to still go to school. I don’t see a point to it and what one more day would do. It actually would have been safer for us to stay home,” says Jack Ertel, a senior instrumental major.

To some students, the commute to school was not the problem, but the commute home was. FSSA staff and students come from all different neighborhoods and a majority of students commute on public transportation. The snow pushed students’ stress levels with the hassle of getting to and from school.

“I came to school on Friday and I have to say I wish I had stayed home just because of the struggle to get here. The commute was horrible and evidently dangerous. Once I got here I enjoyed the low key day,” said Ruby Tang, a instrumental senior major.

It gets dark extremely early now during this time of year, by 4:30 pm it is already getting dark and by the time the commute is over it is almost pitch black. The darkness was an extreme problem for later commuters who took longer to get home.

“I thought getting to school was the real hassle, but I thought twice on my way home. I am one of the long commuters to get to Sinatra and the way home was not pleasant. I wondered how I was going to even survive those temperatures and if I was ever going to not fall on all the ice patches I missed. By the time I got home and counted the amount of times I fell, I felt like a professional figure skater,” says Ruby Tang.

– by Elizabeth Tsouristakis ’18