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ECPPS closes, E-Chowan, Currituck, Camden dismiss early

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From staff reports

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Citing heating concerns and today’s forecast of a winter storm, the Elizabeth City-Pasquotank Public Schools has cancelled school for both students and staff today.

The ECPPS is the second district to cancel classes today.

The Perquimans County Schools announced Wednesday afternoon that it would be closed Thursday for teachers and students. The Perquimans schools also were closed Tuesay.

In addition, the Edenton-Chowan Public Schools will dismiss students at noon today due to impending winter weather.

The Currituck County Schools will release two hours early because of the forecasted weather conditions.

Currituck Schools officials said a decision regarding Thursday school schedules will be released this evening.

The Camden Camden Schools announced they are releasing at 1 p.m. today. No decision has been made for tomorrow at this time.

A Camden Schools spokeswoman said there were no problems today with either building heating systems or school buses. Some area school districts experienced such problems from the severe cold on Tuesday.

ECPPS had to relocate students on Tuesday within some schools — especially Northside Elementary School — because of spotty heating outages in parts of the buildings.

Superintendent Larry Cartner noted in an email message that the schools’ maintenance staff did everything possible to prepare for the severe cold.

“It is important to remember that construction in our area is not designed to withstand cold temperatures of this magnitude,” Cartner said. “It is not the fault of anyone, just a fact of life in our area.

“Maintenance worked late last night and started again very early this morning, attempting to unthaw pipes so that heating coils could operate,” Cartner added. “The temperature always drops before dawn, and in the pre-dawn hours, we were struggling to maintain the working heat we had. In addition, there were places where heat was off and on intermittently. This meant students and staff would enter cold buildings, and perhaps experience an area with no heat, where there had been heat yesterday.”

As much as 10 inches of snow is expected to fall in the Elizabeth City area starting today and continuing tonight into Thursday morning.

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