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God Smites Remote Learning After Eric Adams Denies NYC Kids a Snow Day

"Some hero snipped the wires."

(@NYCMayor / X)

The mayor's edict to force New York City's schoolchildren to stay home and use remote learning platforms rather than give them a snow day isn't quite going as planned. In an apparent snow day miracle, parents are reporting widespread issues with remote learning platforms like Google Classroom, and the IBM software used by the public school system.

"We feel really good about this," Department of Education chief David Banks had said on Monday. "We’ve taken some time as a school system to do simulations and prepare for this. And it’s one of the good things that, in fact, emerged from the pandemic, was our preparedness to be ready for moments like this."

So much for that: One teacher in Brooklyn, who asked to be anonymous, told Hell Gate that her students were unable to log into the remote learning platform. "Some hero snipped the wires," she joked, evoking the plot to 2000's Nickelodeon movie "Snow Day," (it would be a shame if kids cozily watched that instead of doing their school work). "I pray they never do this again," she added. One Brooklyn parent told Hell Gate that only one of their two kids was able to log into Google Classrooms, but that only one had received a Chromebook from school to take home. 

The Department of Education posted on X (formerly Twitter), saying, "we are currently experiencing issues with services that require IBM authentication to login. We are actively working with IBM to resolve. We will provide an update as soon as possible." The New York City public school system uses IBM's platform for logins, the Department clarified in a further post, adding that IBM has "has added capacity and improvements are rolling out across the system."

Even parents for whom remote learning platforms are working are not thrilled.

Hell Gate reached out to the Mayor's Office and the Department of Education for comment, and will update this story if they respond.

Oh damn, will this mean children will simply have no choice but to frolic through the snow-strewn city as children before them have for centuries and possibly will never be able to again? Anything but that!

Meanwhile, Mayor Adams visited his old stomping grounds at P.S. 140 in Queens. "The roads are not bad," Adams said. The mayor did not mention the unplowed sidewalk he was walking on next to the school.

Update (12:31 p.m.): Just to be clear, the Adams administration said during a press conference this afternoon, it's not their fault that the City's technology wasn't ready for remote learning this morning.

Deflecting blame, the City's Schools Chancellor David Banks cast responsibility on IBM, which apparently didn't take part in any of the "test" runs that the schools system apparently undertook leading up to today's remote school day.

Members of the administration also suggested that they had no choice but to call for remote learning today, without outright saying so:

Regardless of who's at fault, school principals are taking matters into their own hands:

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