The decision to determine whether schools will be open or closed on days of inclement weather is the responsibility of the Superintendent of Schools. The following is a brief description of the factors that must be considered prior to making the decision.
1. As soon as there is indication of possible inclement weather, the Superintendent monitors the weather forecast and road conditions. This monitoring may begin the day prior to the storm and continues throughout the night.The Superintendent also consults with
- the director of buildings and grounds to determine the accessibility to our schools,
- the transportation company to determine if buses will be available to provide transportation,
- the police department to determine road conditions and other factors, and
- superintendents of other area schools, especially THSD 113.
2. The Superintendent determines whether the students can safely be transported to and from school and whether staff can arrive at school safely.
3. The decision to open or close the schools is made by 5:30 a.m. in order to notify staff and the transportation company with sufficient time to prepare for the school day.
4. The Superintendent may also determine that school may safely be opened with a slight delay, allowing time for roads to clear and staff and families to arrive at school. The Superintendent will schedule a late start, and all arrival times will be two hours late. Families can assume that the bus pick-up times will remain consistent with a two hour delay.
5. If the Superintendent decides to close the schools or schedule a late start, she will send a Honeywell Alert message to staff and families and also place the announcement on the School Emergency Calling Hotline, which informs local media of the announcement.
Late morning or early afternoon storms present a different set of problems. It is difficult to send students home safely at a time other than regular dismissal. It is only in very rare cases when such a decision may be made, and parents would be notified through the Honeywell Alert System and be given specific information on the procedure and time of dismissal.
It should be noted when schools are declared open on days of inclement weather, the final decision to keep a child home is the responsibility of each child’s parents. Parents' decision should be based on the child's age, health, need for supervision, distance from the school, weather conditions around their house, and their comfort level with sending their child to school. If a parent chooses to have a child stay home, he should report the absence as due to weather, and the absence will be excused.