Eclipse safety concerns prompt local school to close Monday

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Eclipse safety concerns prompt local school to close Monday

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Dayton Christian School announced a $6 million capital campaign in February to expand the campus in Miami Twp. A 31,000 square foot gymnasium with seating for 600 is to be located on the west side of the campus, shown here. TY GREENLEES / STAFF

Dayton Christian officials announced Wednesday that they will close the school Monday because of safety concerns surrounding the solar eclipse.

School officials said they had purchased protective eyewear for all students but later learned the viewers were among many that have been recalled as unsafe.

“The solar eclipse is a spectacular phenomenon, but one that can be extremely dangerous to those who watch it without protective eyewear,” said Head of School John Gredy. “After much deliberation and discussion of our options, our leadership team decided the use of a calamity day was the wisest decision for the safety of our student body.”

The peak time for the eclipse will occur at 2:28 p.m. — just two minutes before the school’s youngest students begin lining up for dismissal.

School officials said an early dismissal day was considered, but would have required logistical challenges for students taking the bus home.

The school will reopen at 4 p.m. (after the end of the eclipse) for evening activities including sports events and the elementary and junior high schools’ Meet the Teacher Night.

Monday’s eclipse marks the first time since 1918 that a solar eclipse will be visible across the entire continental United States, and southwest Ohio will experience a roughly 90 percent obscuration of the sun at peak time — making the daylight appear dim and the air cooler. The eclipse process will begin around 1 p.m. and end around 3:50 p.m.

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