Parents question Gilmer County Schools for not closing for snow - CBS46 News

Parents question Gilmer County Schools for not closing because of snow

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ELLIJAY, GA (CBS46) -

When Gilmer County Schools Superintendent Bryan Dorsey has to decide whether or not schools will close because of snow, he does all of the legwork himself.

"We're a small school system and while we have great support from our local law enforcement, it also requires us to get out and cover part of the counties because we have such rural roads that we have to check lots of different places to make sure we can run our buses safely," Dorsey said. " We thought it was going to be a safe day to get into school today, and so far it has been."

CBS Atlanta News rode with Dorsey as he drove through Fort Mountain to make sure roads were clear for students to make it back home.

"Right now I'm just going up to some of our higher elevations to make sure they're clear," Dorsey said. "I've done a lot of these runs already so you kind of know where to look and what spots you're looking for."

Dorsey said if roads weren't clear for dismissal, he'd call parents to get their children early, or turn schools into shelters if kids couldn't be picked up.

But parent Christy Shull said she wished Dorsey had closed schools for the day or at least given them a later start. Her husband was involved in a wreck while trying to get to work on Wednesday morning.

"There was a three-car wreck and he was one of them, so I was a little concerned," Shull said. "As you went down the hill, it was very slick and that's what happened - there was ice on the road and cars were sliding into each other."

East Ellijay police Chief Larry Callahan said there were a few wrecks and roads closed because of the snow.

"Once we got them into schools themselves, in-town roads weren't bad, but I know some of the other roads farther back in the mountains were a little rough," Callahan said.

Drivers shared their pictures of snow-filled roads from Wednesday morning. Gilmer County Schools parent Collette Perrone said that the drive into school really depends on where you live. 

"Everybody has steep driveways here, nobody has flat land," Perrone said. "Depending on where you live, where the sun hits, where it doesn't hit, it could make it hard for anybody to come to school."

Georgia Department of Transportation officials said their crews helped clean up some of the mess and that machines were put away by Wednesday afternoon, hopefully until next winter.

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