Some students in New Jersey were forced to spend the night in their classrooms on Thursday, thanks to a major early winter storm that dumped up to six inches of snow on the Midwest and northeastern U.S.
School buses and parents were unable to get to several schools in West Orange, N.J., forcing students to sleep on gym mats and staff to stay up overnight to supervise.
Liberty Middle School in West Orange posted rolling updates through the night on its Twitter feed, showing students watching the film Frozen in an auditorium and eating ice cream, as well as playing games as the storm raged outside.
Some parents braved the weather and travel chaos to reach schools in the early hours. “If I could sum it all up in one word I will say ‘treacherous,’ it was very treacherous,” one parent picking up a child from West Orange High School at 5.30 a.m. told NBC.
Across the country, at least eight people were killed by the storm, hundreds of flights were cancelled, and travel chaos caused hours of delays on the roads. While winter weather was in the forecast leading up to Thursday night, there was more snow than expected across the New York tri-state area.
More snowfall is forecast for Friday across the northeast.