Almost had a day off the other day.
When I showed up at 7:15, there was no electricity in the building. Only the emergency lights were on in the hallways. It was a very surreal atmosphere. Dark. Quiet. The few teachers I saw on my way to the main office were smiling, excited about a possible day without students, and crossing their fingers, hoping we'd be sent home, too.
An announcement from the principal ten minutes later: "ComEd has been called. We'll keep the students in the cafeteria and auditorium for a while and see what happens." No power means no classes, that's what happens, I thought. But ten minutes after that, full power was restored.
When students did show up later on, they had no idea. No idea that they almost had a day off. And no idea that their teachers would have been just as excited about it.
Something similar happened at a Northside high school last Friday, the day of the snowstorm. But their kids lucked out.
A friend who teaches there told it like this: "There was no power and we had the kids just waiting, not letting them go to their classes. At about 7:45 it was decided that school would be canceled, and kids started going home. A little after 8, some kids were still hanging out, waiting for rides, when the power came on. The kids that were still there scattered! You should have seen them run."
The teachers, obviously, had to stick around and had an in-service day. For me, that would've been torture. I'll take a day with students over a day of meetings any day. In fact, if they announced a surprise in-service day, I'd be the one running from the building.