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Tips for staying safe during extreme cold

With temperatures falling to dangerously low temperatures, the Schuylerville Central School District is outlining some precautions to take to ensure students stay safe and warm throughout the cold snap.

How families can prepare

When temperatures do not warrant a school closing, families should help their children to be prepared for the weather by making sure that they stay safe and as warm as possible as they make their way to and from school:

  • Dress children in layers with a hat, scarf, gloves and appropriate water-resistant footwear.
  • If your child generally walks to school, consider giving them a ride, or having children from your neighborhood carpool together.
  • If your child rides the bus, dress them warmly, but also consider waiting in the car with them at the bus stop, or having one person in your neighborhood maintain a warm car by the stop.
How the District prepares

The District also makes some adjustments in response to the weather to ensure our students are safe:

  • Our Transportation Department begins preparing district buses early to ensure the engines start and heaters work so that students have as warm a ride to school as possible.
  • Bus drivers are careful to arrive at bus stops as close to “on time” as possible.
  • Custodial and maintenance staff ensure temperatures inside our classrooms are comfortable and are on standby to respond to any facilities issue that can arise due to frigid temperatures outside.
  • Recess and all physical education class activities are held indoors.
Avoiding frostbite and hypothermia

CDC graphic about hypothermia and frostbiteStaying out in the cold too long can cause serious health problems. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, hypothermia and frostbite are the most common cold related health problems.

Hypothermia is caused by prolonged exposures to very cold temperatures. When exposed to cold temperatures, your body begins to lose heat faster than it’s produced. Lengthy exposures will eventually use up your body’s stored energy, which leads to lower body temperature. Body temperature that is too low affects the brain, making the victim unable to think clearly or move well. This makes hypothermia especially dangerous, because a person may not know it’s happening and won’t be able to do anything about it.

Frostbite is a bodily injury caused by freezing that causes a loss of feeling and color in affected areas. It most often affects the nose, ears, cheeks, chin, fingers, or toes. Frostbite can permanently damage the body, and severe cases can lead to amputation.

For more tips on how to stay safe during extremely cold temperatures, click here.