Ida’s ‘catastrophic’ wrath has shut schools in several more states

"Throughout our entire area there is significant devastation," says district just north of New York City
By: | September 2, 2021
(Clifton Public Schools)(Clifton Public Schools)

Flooding and tornadoes spawned by Ida closed dozens of schools across the Northeastern U.S. after the powerful hurricane shuttered several New Orleans-area districts indefinitely.

The storm was no longer a hurricane by the time it began its rampage in Maryland and the wider Washington, D.C. area Wednesday afternoon. But Ida’s torrential and historic rains blocked roads and swamped buildings while tornadoes devastated a few communities throughout Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York and Connecticut.

Closures in the Northeast were not likely to last as long as those in Louisiana. But here are some of the communities where schools couldn’t open their doors Thursday:

“Throughout our entire area there is significant devastation,” the Mamaroneck Union Free School District said on its website Thursday.

The district, just north of New York City, was closed Thursday due to heavy flooding and as of Thursday afternoon, administrators had not yet decided when schools would reopen after the “catastrophic storm.”

Just to the south, flooding in several buildings forced Port Chester Public Schools to postpone the first day of school until Sept. 9, Superintendent Aurelia L. Henriquez posted on the district’s website.

“I regret to inform you that multiple buildings in the school district have taken on water during the recent severe storms and heavy rain in Port Chester,” Henriquez said.

Yonkers Public Schools, on New York City’s northern border, also delayed the first day of school. New York City Schools are not scheduled to open until Sept. 13.

Damage in New Jersey, Pennsylvania and Connectictut

The Englewood Public School District in New Jersey closed after flooding damaged its buildings and administrators haven’t announced when it would reopen. The districts in Paterson and Edison Township also announced they were closed until further notice due to flooding.

The Somerville Public School District will remain closed on Friday due to flooding and damage in the community.

Districts across Pennsylvania were also shut Thursday.

Schools in Philadephia opened on a delay Thursday but administrators decided to shift to virtual learning on Friday with road conditions in the city not expected to improve.

The nearby Downington Area School District was closed Thursday due to “damage and extensive power outages.”

In Central Pennsylvania, Avon Grove, Big Spring, the Chambersburg Area School District, Daniel Boone Area School District and Penn Manor were among the many districts closed on Thursday.

The Neshaminy School District planned to reopen Friday.

And in Connecticut, the schools in Danbury, Greenwich and Ridgefield were closed due to flooding and roads blocked by downed trees and powerlines.