By Trang Do

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Some students in Philadelphia got the whole day off, while others a half-day to enjoy what was their first real snow day in several years on Monday.

“We came here last time when the snow fell and we had a blast!” said Robin Miller about West Philadelphia’s Clark Park.

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Miller and her two sons joined dozens of other families who flocked to the popular sledding spot as the snow fell.

“It’s nice to see. It’s certainly sad when we get lots of years without snow and this is the biggest snow she’s had so far,” said Camden Segal of daughter Lyra.

Parents and kids alike agreed — a snow like this was as long overdue.

“Our first time in two years, I think,” said Solomon Bellin, who was sledding with his dad, Eric.

It wasn’t all play for children who attend Philadelphia public schools. They had to complete a half-day of virtual learning in the morning before hitting the hills. They also have independent work to do at their own pace.

“We end up doing all of the asynchronous work later in the day, so there’s that, but yeah it’s fine. It’s nice to get out early in the day and do this,” Eric Bellin said.

“I have to do like math and I have to do social studies, and it’s kind of fun,” said 7-year-old Augie Kimball.

But those subjects aren’t nearly as fun as making treasured childhood memories with family and friends.

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“Sled and have fun,” Kimball said of his plans for the rest of the day.

City officials were happy the school district decided to allow students a much-needed break for play but also cautioned families to be safe.

“There’s slightly icy conditions so please be careful when you have your kids out there,” said Cynthia Figueroa, the city’s deputy mayor for Children and Family Services. “Make sure you have your hat and gloves. A little snowball fight never hurt anybody, so we encourage you to enjoy the weather inasmuch as it’s possible.”

The School District of Philadelphia announced it is following the same plan for Tuesday as Monday. There will be a half-day of virtual instruction in the morning and independent assignments in the afternoon, so students can get out for more fun in the snow if they chose.

School district headquarters, buildings and access centers will be closed to families and non-essential staff.


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