Gov. Dayton: All Minn. public schools to be closed on Monday due to extreme cold

By KBJR News 1

January 3, 2014 Updated Jan 3, 2014 at 11:11 PM CDT

St. Paul, MN (NNCNOW.com) --- Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton announced that all K-12 public schools will be closed Monday due to the extreme cold forecasted next week.

The National Weather Service predicts that most of the state will experience the coldest temperatures in a decade next Monday, with lows reaching -30 degrees and wind chills predicted to reach as low as -50 degrees. High temperatures from International Falls to Rochester are forecasted to be only -15 degrees.

“The safety of Minnesota’s schoolchildren must be our first priority,” said Governor Dayton. “I have made this decision to protect all our children from the dangerously cold temperatures now forecasted for next Monday. I encourage Minnesotans of all ages to exercise caution in these extreme weather conditions.”

According to state officials, the decision to close schools across the state was announced today in order to give school administrators, teachers, and parents sufficient time to plan for these closures. The Minnesota Department of Education will be coordinating with school districts throughout the day to notify the public about Monday’s school closings.

“Children's safety is always our top priority, and as a former superintendent, I know these are never easy calls,” said Education Commissioner Brenda Cassellius. “I want to thank Governor Dayton for putting our kids’ safety first, and am relieved parents won't have to worry about sending their children out in the dangerous cold on Monday, but can instead keep them home, safe and warm."

Education Commissioner Cassellius will hold a news conference this afternoon to discuss today's announcement.

Posted to the web by Krista Burns