The following is an open Manchester resident Kristen Gordon sent to town and Board of Education officials on Wednesday, Feb. 13 2013 and posted on the Manchester Patch Facebook page:
Dear Mr. Kisiel et al.,
I am writing to you as a concerned parent. I have two children that attend Manchester public schools. I am absolutely confounded by the decision of your office to open schools today considering the current condition of most sidewalks and streets in the town.
The pictures I have attached were taken this morning at the bus stop. There are several students who use this bus stop [address removed]. As you can see, [address removed] has not cleared any part of the sidewalk, posing a very serious threat to the safety of these children. Please keep in mind that due to the amount of snow on the side of the roads, parents can not safely park on the street to wait for the bus.
I contacted your office yesterday afternoon with concern about the bus stop not being cleared and I was told that the town was working on making sure all bus stops were cleared and safe. I contacted the Manchester Police Department last night with my concern and I was told that they are allowing for leniency due to the amount of snow that must be removed. An officer was sent to speak with the homeowner, however, I was surprised when the supervisor I spoke with suggested that I keep my children home, or drop them off at school.
I am very understanding of the situation the town is in due to Winter Storm Nemo, but I must say that opening the schools when a great part of the student population is unable to safely get to and from school is reckless. Is the Town of Manchester/Board of Education willing to step up and accept responsibility if a student is injured, or God forbid, killed because of this hasty decision to have school back in session?
At the very least, I expect that if Manchester schools are to remain open for the remainder of the week, the town will ensure that all students have either a safe way to walk or get on the bus. I appreciate your prompt attention to this issue.