School districts preparing for frigid temperatures - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

School districts preparing for frigid temperatures

By Lauren Payne - bio | email feedback

JONESBORO, ARKANSAS  (KAIT) "That kind of cold, we're going to have over the next couple of days, you could easily have some problems with the cold," said Richard Shelby with the Paragould School District.

Problems the Paragould School District is working in advance to avoid.

"Yeah the cold will be a challenge," said Shelby.

"That's why Richard Shelby at the Paragould School District says bus drivers will fire up the buses in plenty of time to get them warm," said Shelby.

Shelby adds mechanics are on hand to address any problems old man winter presents.

"We've had ours come in on a Sunday afternoon late if it's going to be like that on a Monday to make sure they all started.   If you don't give it a little care, you're going to get out there and 5 of them won't start and that's not a good thing," said Shelby.

Shelby says help keep kids warm before the bus arrives too.

Shelby suggests letting kids wait with their parents in the vehicle while waiting on the bus if they usually  meet the bus somewhere.

"We try to make door to door stops as much as possible," said Keith Davis.

Across town at Greene County Tech, Keith Davis says they're also preparing for very cold temperatures.

"Whether it's cold, rain, tornado, or heat, or whatever, but right now we are concerned with the cold," said Davis.

Davis says if at all possible let kids wait for the bus inside the house and watch for it out the window to reduce the amount of time kids are in the cold," said Davis.

"Tomorrow the wind chill is supposed to be zero degrees and we don't want our little kids to be standing out there freezing waiting ten minutes on a bus," said Davis.

Both Davis and Richard Shelby say the students' well being  is top priority.

Shelby says communication continues even while the buses are on their routes to make sure their students are safe.

"All of them have the radio's, and the cameras, and all the bells and whistles now that go with that," said Shelby.

Both Davis and Shelby remind parents and students while the buses might wait a little longer for children who were waiting inside their homes, be looking out the window for the buses, because they can't wait too long.

Keith Davis at GCT also says if bus drivers or other staff members notice some kids don't have the cold weather clothes they need,  names can be given to counselors in the district to make sure the students get the items they need to help keep them warm.  Davis also adds all of their buses are equipped with heaters.

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