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Fairfax County Public Schools responds to tweets showing kids sitting outside in freezing temperatures

The school district says the children were taken outside for a routine snack and mask break.

FAIRFAX COUNTY, Va. — A Virginia school district is responding after tweets showed groups of students sitting outside the school in freezing temperatures. 

Multiple tweets from the Fairfax County Parents Association claim the students were sitting outside Waynewood elementary school in Alexandria. Temperatures in Fairfax County were below freezing Tuesday. 

"This is the result of poor leadership and confusing guidance to teachers," said one tweet from Fairfax County Parents Association. "Get these little ones inside!" 

The tweet took off on Twitter, with more than 160,000 views as of 5:30 p.m. 

Others responded to the photos and videos, voicing their displeasure. 

"Shameful," said one Twitter user. "Why would a parent leave their kids at such a school?"

However, the school district says the children were taken outside for a routine snack and mask break -- something the students do often but for a limited amount of time. 

“This morning on Twitter, an anonymous parent group posted a video that was taken outside of Waynewood Elementary School in Alexandria," said the school district in a statement sent to WUSA9. "In the video, a group of third-grade students are taking a snack and mask break in front of the school."

The district says weather conditions were monitored and the third-graders were outside for less than seven minutes. A teacher was outside with the students during the break, reading a story to keep the kids entertained. 

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