19 snow days: How Ionia kids are keeping busy

Ionia County

IONIA, Mich. (WOOD) — Monday marked the 19th snow day for Ionia Public Schools students, teachers and parents.

“The kids seem to be enjoying it. They need to go back though,” Jennifer Newcombe, a mother of two, told 24 Hour News 8.

Her daughter Bella, a fifth-grader, didn’t even get out of her pajamas Monday.

“I watch TV and then that big pile of snow, I slide down it on a sled, and play with my brother,” she described how she has been spending snow days.

Newcombe and fellow mom Valerie Cummings hung out together as their kids played. They say there has been a lot of sledding, crafts, puzzles and reading during the days at home.

“Keep them busy, keep their minds busy too,” Cummings said.

Busy minds are keeping the public library hopping.

“They’re becoming regulars. We’re about ready to give them the deed to the property pretty soon,” library director Dale Parus joked.

“We have a dedicated group that will come in and do what they need to do homework-wise, and then they’ll play on the computers and do whatever else they can do at the library,” he added.

He said the library is tracking the days out of school because that will ultimately affect its summer reading program. Meanwhile, staff embraced the winter season with their adult winter reading program while wearing snowman hats.

Lawmakers are still trying to figure out how to reconcile so many snow days. They’ve tossed around the idea of forgiving extra days, though the Republican leader in the Senate doesn’t seem to be on board.

While state officials tackle that problem, Ionia moms are just hoping to get their kids back on a regular school schedule.

“Hopefully it will be over soon,” Cummings said.

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