Metro school closings cause child care dilemmas for working parents

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Most students love snow days, but for working parents they can be a challenge.

“You wake up, it’s 6:20, normally you are getting your kids off to school by 7:00, and you get the call that says no school. If grandparents don’t live in town, you and your husband -- or maybe you are a single parent -- you have no choice. You have to go to work. What do you do?” Michelle Mannell said.

That's the issue metro parents have been wrestling with as hundreds of schools have been forced to close this week because of icy roads.

Gunnar Hand and his wife both work. They recently moved from Los Angeles with their kids.

“We went from not having to worry about that at all, not having that be anywhere in our minds, to really having to figure that out on a daily basis here in Kansas City," Hand said.

For the past couple days he’s sent his kindergartner to day care with her little sister at Spectrum Station’s downtown learning center.

Mannell, Spectrum's executive director, said she stresses to teachers who may have winter travel issues of their own that working parents are counting on them.

“They are grateful. They are relieved," Mannell said. "They can bring them here. They can still to go to their jobs because they don’t want to disappoint whoever is in charge."