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Thursday, January 31, 2019
Timeline for Snow Day Decisions
School closing decisions will be made and communicated no later than 5:30 am the day of the cancellation. When feasible, we will make the decision by 9 pm the night prior. Absent communication by 9 pm the night prior, the decision will be made the next morning. Of course, there are exceptions as demonstrated this week.
What Factors are Considered to Close School?
We take multiple sources of weather reports into consideration prior to any school cancellation including actually looking at road conditions. If snow accumulation and road conditions were safe, and temperature alone were the deciding factor, a -20 “Real Feel” is what is needed to close school. However, temperatures may be above -20 Real Feel at times but icy roads are dangerous requiring closing. At other times, visibility from fog or windy snowy conditions may contribute to unsafe road conditions. And finally, sometimes it’s a combination of all factors making it unsafe. We understand school closings impact family schedules, but, the safety of students, families, and employees are the top priority in these circumstances.
How Many Snow Days Allowed?
State law allows six days of ‘forgiven’ time when schools must close as a result of conditions not within the control of school authorities. Tomorrow (Thursday) is snow day number seven. After the six allowable days have been exhausted – up to three additional days may be granted with the approval of the State Superintendent through a waiver commonly known as an “additional forgiven time waiver.” Obviously, providing our students the quality instructional time they deserve is very important and must be considered. If we exceed the 6 ‘forgiven’ days and request 3 additional ‘forgiven’ days (and they are granted), any additional snow days would required to be “make up days” that would occur in June. Let’s hope we don’t find ourselves in this situation. Again, the decision on closing school is always based on student and staff safety…not on how many snow days are forgiven. This information is provided because I know the questions will be coming. : )