APS, Fulton, Gwinnett, DeKalb among metro Atlanta school districts to close Wednesday

Classes to resume in Marietta, Cobb, Cherokee

Schools districts answered the burning question many metro Atlanta parents want to know: Will classes resume Wednesday?

And in many places, the answer is a resounding nope.

Atlanta Public Schools and Fulton County Schools, where up to 20 percent of school buildings still lack power, joined a growing list of districts cancelling Wednesday classes.

Area school districts closed Monday and Tuesday because of Tropical Storm Irma’s gusty winds and rains. School employees used the time off to check the condition of buildings, and several reported power outages and problems they are working to fix. 

APS will remain closed Wednesday because of power outages, staffing levels, and dangerous roads and sidewalks, according to Superintendent Meria Carstarphen.

APS lost power in 31 schools, and Carstarphen also expressed concern about perishable food and milk.

At least a dozen schools still lacked power Tuesday morning and some schools also lost Internet service, Carstarphen wrote in a blog post detailing the district’s response.

Gwinnett County Public Schools, Clayton County Public Schools, and DeKalb County School District also will stay shut Wednesday.

Clayton cited road safety concerns, neighborhood conditions, and power outages as the reason.

DeKalb reported that nearly half of its schools remained without power Tuesday afternoon and it could be days before the lights return in some neighborhoods. 

Also, 23 schools have “major” roof problems, including fallen trees, the district announced in a statement. More than 30 schools have “significant barriers to transportation access such as trees in the road,” among other issues, according to the statement.

City Schools of Decatur will be closed Wednesday because of power outages in school buildings and road closures.

By Tuesday afternoon, several school districts announced they were ready to welcome back students Wednesday.

Marietta City Schools will reopen Wednesday after performing a full review of buildings, buses, and technology, said spokeswoman Tammy Garnes.

She said all of the district buildings have power and there are no reports of structural damage from the storm.

Cobb County School District also will reopen Wednesday on a normal school schedule. The district reviewed each of its 112 schools and they are ready for students to return, spokesman John Stafford said.

Cherokee County School District spokeswoman Barbara Jacoby reported classes will restart Wednesday after 10 of its schools lost power.

Employees cleared storm debris from four driveways but found no other significant problems, she said.

Charter schools Latin Grammar School and Latin College Preparatory School also will remain closed Wednesday, executive director Davion Lewis said.

Georgia universities and colleges also announced decisions regarding plans for the rest of the week. A list of college closures and openings can be found here.

That Atlanta Journal-Constitution will update this list as school districts announce plans for Wednesday.

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