Making a Tough Choice
The easy thing to do today would be to slam school administrators who closed their schools Tuesday.
in some cases before a flurry even fell from the sky. In retrospect most if not all school districts could have opened and spent a full day in school instead of wasting a day before winter has even begun. The other option would have been to start the school day and if need be call for an early dismissal which would still give you credit for a full day.
However just like in sports it’s easy to criticize decisions after they are made, especially if they don’t work out like expected.
School superintendents have told me that making the decision to close or remain open during inclement weather is often a difficult one. They will use the best information they have regarding the weather forecast, often talk with local police and even confer with other superintendents.
The early dismissal option is one many really try and avoid because of the scheduling problems it causes for parents, especially of elementary school students. Many don’t have the flexibility to run home to meet a child getting off the bus and early dismissals often result in parental complaints.
Of course nobody likes the idea of school buses being on the road in snowy or icy conditions and in the lawsuit-happy world we live in you hate to be the school open where this becomes a risk not worth taking. Simply put at times it’s better to err on the side of caution and that pretty much sums up yesterday.
I was saddened to learn of the passing of Walt Zuber, who ironically worked a school administrator in the Freehold Regional High School District. However to many he was known as one of the shore’s best and most respected basketball referees, working hundreds of games in the Shore Conference and later serving as a supervisor for the NJSIAA.
Walt was the short and stocky guy with the crew-cut who never left doubt about a call after the whistle was blown. He would look at the scorer’s table and with plenty of volume let everyone know what the call was and who committed a foul. He knew how to run a game and treat coaches and players and had the respect of all.
Walt and Bob Scott were the officials I requested to work the championship game of the WOBM Christmas Classic when we started in 1984 and they did that for many years until Mr. Zuber retired. Many of his fellow officials will gather to say goodbye today at the Higgins Memorial Home in Freehold. Meantime the guy above better get ready because Walter is bring his whistle with him.