FLETCHER, OK (KSWO) -A few area school districts decided to dismiss class early to try and beat the storm.
The superintendent in Fletcher said he's been monitoring the weather developments since Sunday. When he saw that the timing of its arrival could have meant releasing the students during a hail and windstorm, he decided to cut the school day short at 1:30 p.m.
Fletcher Superintendent Shane Gilbreath said Tuesday was the last day of statewide testing for the students. He says since the storm wasn't expected to start until 2 p.m., 1:30 p.m. seemed to be the best time to dismiss classes.
Superintendent Gilbreath says with the treat of severe weather predicted a week early, he was able to let parents know early about the short school day. That notice is something Winter Neal says was a good idea.
"I'm actually pretty grateful that they are letting them out. Why? Because of the storms that are rolling in so my son can be in safety, we have a cellar to go to," Neal said.
Neal says that storm shelter gives her and her family an added sense of security, something she says would be missing if her son was still at school during the storm. All the more reason she says she's thankful for the superintendent's decision.
"Most schools don't. They will put them in the hallway, and at least I know he'll be with me," Neal said.
That's the reaction Superintendent Gilbreath says he hoped to get from parents. He says keeping parents in the know is not only important, but helps to cut down on mass chaos.
"It's hard with elementary school kids to call school in the middle of the day, because you can't send them home and no parents home, so you can't send them home. So, just want to give parents a heads up," Superintendent Gilbreath said.
He says the memory of a heartbreaking event is always in back of his mind, giving him all the more reason to make safety his main goal for the children in his district.
"I think back to a couple of years ago when the tornado went through Moore and got the elementary school. I don't mind being on the news, but not for something like that. That would be the worst thing in the world to have some of our students hurt," Superintendent Gilbreath said.
Superintendent Gilbreath says students won't have to make up the day because the district had extra days to use for inclement weather. Duncan and Bray-Doyle also released their students early. They are also using inclement weather days, so the time won't need to be made up.