January 21, 2019 11:22 am
Updated: January 21, 2019 5:35 pm

School buses cancelled across Peterborough and the Kawarthas

For the first time in recent memory, school buses were cancelled due to frigid cold temperatures in Peterborough and the Kawarthas.

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Many students in Peterborough and the Kawarthas are getting a long weekend.

A blanket bus cancellation was called Sunday night for all schools in the region due to the cold weather.

“When we make these decisions, it’s on the side of student safety,” said  Stephen Jackson, operations manager of Student Transportation Services of Central Ontario (STSCO).

“Today’s projections of cold of minus 30 or higher.”

The call was made by the school boards to cancel buses.

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READ MORE: Latest school bus cancellations in the Greater Toronto Area for Jan. 21, 2019

“This is a bit of precedent setting situation, again airing on the side of safety and risk of frostbite, we wanted to make sure we were making the right decision for the safety of the children,” added Jackson.

Diane Lloyd, chair of the Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board said “safety is always the main concern.”

“We cancelled them because we were concerned that some buses might have difficulty starting this morning,” said Lloyd,.  “We didn’t want students waiting at a mailbox for a bus that was late or didn’t come.”

Schools remain open, but parents will have to figure out how to get their kids to school if they usually take a school bus.

There’s a good chance that many schools will keep students in at recess.

“We have a protocol that’s set by local health units and Environment Canada.  It states students shouldn’t be outside at -26 or colder,” added Lloyd.  “We do understand our schools have varying exposures to the elements.  Principals have the discretion to send them out or not.”

READ MORE: Extreme cold warning in effect for Kingston, Brockville and Belleville regions

One of the first boards to cancel buses was the Trillium Lakelands District School Board, which has an area stretching from Kawartha Lakes to Haliburton to Muskoka.

“We wanted to give parents as much as notice as possible,” said Catherine Shedden, TLDSB spokesperson.  “It is not our typical, nor will it be, our practice to communicate this early.  We just wanted to make sure our children weren’t exposed to frostbite.”

 

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