Dayton says Tuesday school decision is up to local superintendents; Crookston two hours late on Tuesday

    The Minnesota Department of Education released a statement Monday indicating that it will be up to individual school district superintendnets to decide whether or not to hold classes on Tuesday.   

    Late Monday morning, Crookston Public Schools announced that classes on Tuesday would start two hours late.   

    Last Friday, Gov. Mark Dayton issued an order cancelling classes in schools across the state on Monday, Jan. 6 because of extreme cold and wind chills. A wind chill warning remains in effect until 6 a.m. Tuesday.   

    Monday, MDE Commissioner Brenda Casselius sent the following message to Crookston School District Superintentend Chris Bates and other school superintendents:   

    “Dear Superintendents and Charter School Directors,   

    Tomorrow morning’s temperatures are forecasted to be in the double digits below zero again, with continued windchill advisories for the entire state until afternoon.   

    “Governor Dayton is leaving the decision about school cancellations for Tuesday to individual school districts. We believe school superintendents are monitoring the temperatures closely and are prepared to communicate with families so they can plan accordingly.    

    “We encourage you, as always, to be mindful about the dangers of even brief exposure to these dangerously low temperatures as you make your decisions.   

    “I am grateful for your efforts on behalf of Minnesota children, not only during this challenging week, but every day.”   

    Sunday night, the University of Minnesota, Crookston added itself to the long list of cancelled or postponed activities on Monday by announcing that the campus would be closed, except for essential facilities personnel, on Jan. 6. Spring semester starts next week.   

    Given how this winter has unfolded so far, Tuesday’s conditions seem quite a bit more routine, with only a wind chill advisory and not a warning expected to remain in place. Highs are expected to be in the 5 to 10 below zero range, with morning wind chill readings approaching 40 below because of northwest winds up to 10 miles per hour. Similar conditions have occurred on multiple mornings so far this winter and classes have been held, so, kids, enjoy your extra sleep time Tuesday morning, but don’t get your hopes up for another entire day of freedom.   

    But, speaking of hopes, it’s OK to be a little hopeful as the week progresses and nears the weekend. Thursday’s expected high is finally expected to climb above zero and even flirt with 15 degrees and, maybe most encouraging of all, temperatures that night are supposed to remain basically steading, with lows of around 10 degrees, above zero.   

    Things are only supposed to get better on Friday, with highs in the mid-20s and lows remaining above zero, and the fun continues on Saturday. Sunday, highs could approach 30 degrees.   

    Maybe best of all, unlike what has most often been the case so far this winter, the warm-up isn’t expected to bring with it more snow. Friday, Saturday and Sunday are all expected to be partly sunny to partly cloudy.