TO CALL OR NOT TO CALL?? THAT IS THE QUESTON…
Did you ever wonder how snow days were decided? Contrary to popular belief, I do not flip a coin! Rather, the decision to close school or have a late start because of bad weather is determined by the Superintendent, with help from the Transportation Director. Transportation of our students is generally the deciding factor on whether or not I call off school.
On a day of inclement weather, the Transportation Director (Calvin Wiechman) and I will be up early driving the roads to determine safety for our buses and students driving to school. Please keep in mind that our district encompasses 389 square miles, so while the highways in town might be free from ice and snow, the country roads can be more treacherous. In addition to actually driving the roads, we consult with surrounding districts as to what the weather conditions are expected to be within the next 4-6 hours.
We transport about 100 students on our rural routes, not to mention the students who drive their own vehicles to school. I always ask myself, “Would I want my child driving to school today?” If the answer is NO, then it is a pretty easy decision to make the call to cancel. And maneuvering a bus on narrow country roads or driveways that might be ice covered or snow packed with a bus load of precious cargo is a daunting task. It is always better to err on the side of caution.
As a parent myself, I realize that calling school off due to bad weather can be a scheduling nightmare and I do not take the situation lightly. It is always the right and privilege of the parent to keep your child at home or pick him/her up from school during severe weather.
If it becomes necessary to call off school, the district sends out a School Messenger call (or email). It is imperative we have each parent’s current information on file, so these calls can reach the person intended. We will also share this information on our district website and the area news channels.
While I try hard to make the decision to call off school by 10:00 pm the night before or 6:00 a.m. the day of, sometimes the weather does not cooperate in the manner in which I hope. The decision to close school due to inclement weather is not one I take lightly. I always keep student safety in front of any decision that is made.