Some North Georgia schools take precautions with early dismissal - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

Some North Georgia schools take precautions with early dismissal

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CATOOSA COUNTY, GA (WRCB) -

The potential for severe winter weather led to early dismissals at schools all across the Tennessee Valley. 

School leaders in North Georgia say they didn't want to take any chances when it comes to student safety.

Georgia Governor Nathan Deal was quick to issue a state of emergency for several North Georgia counties ahead of this storm.

Many remember the huge winter storm two years ago that paralyzed parts of the south.

Ever since then, government and school leaders say it's always better to be overly cautious and get students home early.

"You're either a hero or a zero and there's no in between,” says superintendent Denia Reese.

Catoosa County Schools superintendent Denia Reese says the decision to let school out early is never easy, but, the 2014 winter storm is still fresh in her memory.

“No one ever wants to be in that situation again,” Reese says. “That was a really stressful period of time when we were trying to get our students home, and the weather came in so quickly. The roads iced over, and it was a very long day.”

“It was about 8:30 before that last student got home," Reese adds.

All 11,000 Catoosa County students were sent home early Friday, elementary at 1pm, middle and high at 2pm.

"It's very important that we take every forecast very seriously, because most of our students do ride the bus and we have many student drivers," says Reese.

"People were stuck at school; they couldn't get home,” says parent Trina Robins. “So, I totally understand, and I’m totally for them doing this."

Trina Robins remembers that 2014 storm too. She was more than happy to leave work early to pick up her 5-year-old daughter.

"That means my baby is home safe and there's not anything blocking me from getting to her because that could happen,” Robins says. “She could be stuck here at the school."

"We never want to be in that position again,” Reese says. “So being proactive is a good thing."

"Go home and get cozy and get warm and hot chocolate and popcorn," says Robins.

Again, most people don't realize those buses would normally be on the road right now during a normal school day. Having them off the road at this hour helps ensure other drivers make it home safely.

School Patrol

David Carroll covers education news and issues at schools across the Tennessee Valley.

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