Roy Roberts elementary

Snow is piled up in front of Roberts Elementary School on Tuesday, Feb. 16, 2021. Lubbock ISD canceled classes to help preserve energy.

Lubbock ISD, Frenship ISD and Lubbock-Cooper ISD have canceled all face-to-face and virtual instruction Wednesday, citing the need to conserve energy in addition to dangerous road conditions.

Lubbock ISD Superintendent Kathy Rollo said the district is working with the city and its energy providers to help save power.

With the possibility of blackouts, she said they cannot count on virtual learning.

"We know that it's really important to the best of (power companies') ability to be able to provide homes with the energy they need to continue to heat and provide warmth to families," Rollo said.

In addition, Rollo said the district is dealing with frozen and burst pipes in some facilities. 

The situation is unusual and a challenge for everyone involved, but she said saftey is always the top priority.

"Anytime we cancel school, the number one thought that goes through my mind is our students who are living in poverty, making sure their nutritional needs are met," Rollo said. "We know a lot of parents count on us for childcare. We recognize that concern and are just doing the best we can to keep everyone safe."

Frenship ISD spokeswoman Tiffany Taylor said her district is doing its part to conserve energy as well. 

School is more than an educational institution for many of Frenship's students, and it is never an easy decision to cancel, Taylor said.

"A lot of times our students, they rely on us for their social, emotional well-being. We understand sometimes for a student, a school meal might be the only warm meal they get for that day. So, it's definitely not a decision we take lightly," Taylor said.

The district is prepared to help students catch up with any missed instruction, she said.

"Our curriculum and instruction department will work alongside our teachers to ensure that we're incorporating instructional concepts that may have been missed into future lessons once school resumes," Taylor said.

The Texas Education Agency is offering districts a new waiver, allowing them to cancel classes for up to three days without having to make them up. Rollo said her district will apply for it, and Taylor said Frenship is also looking into this as a possibility.