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CPS Cancels Classes Again For Tuesday Due To Intense Cold

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CHICAGO (CBS) – For the second day in a row, Chicago Public Schools will be closed on Tuesday due to the extreme cold.

The closure includes CPS sports and after-school programs.

Tuesday’s forecast calls for a high temperature of around zero degrees, and around 6 a.m., the temperature could be as low as 15 below zero. At 9 a.m., around the time many schools would be starting class, the temperature should be only about 9 below zero.

When combined with high winds, wind chills could be anywhere between 25 and 40 below zero on Tuesday. A wind chill warning has been issued through 9 a.m. Wednesday.

“We will continue to put the safety of our students and families first,” CPS CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett said in a written statement on Monday. “This historic stretch of dangerously cold weather has forced the District to remain closed until we are confident that students can return to school safely.”

Some aldermen said keeping the Chicago Public School system closed because of the frigid temperatures is a hardship for many residents, with no easy solutions.

Ald. Rey Colon (35th) said he’s heard from parents who want to know what they can do with their children while schools are closed, because they have to work.

For parents who can’t stay home, or find alternative care, Ald. Proco Joe Moreno (1st) admitted it’s tough.

“I think in these emergency situations that there should be an emergency plan for parents that absolutely need a place to take their children, because they’re going to work,” he said.

Contracts and other issues, however, make keeping schools partially open very complicated, if even possible.

Ald. Walter Burnett (27th) said closing schools in the extreme cold is the right thing to do.

“Just standing at a street light, or waiting on a bus can be challenging for some folks. You don’t know how long people have to wait on buses, so you’d rather be safe than sorry,” he said.

CPS officials said they will continue to monitor the forecast, and decide by noon Tuesday whether classes will resume on Wednesday, when temperatures should rise back above zero, with a high in the teens.

Parents will be notified by robo-calls and emails. They also can call 773-553-1000 for updates, or visit cps.edu.