Late Starts, Cancellations or Early Dismissals
All of us are concerned with the safety of your children and following these procedures will enable us to take better care of them in case of an emergency. Although this bulletin is primarily concerned with the inclement weather, these same procedures would be applicable to other emergency situations.
Our process in making a school closing decision focuses on the safety of the children. We carefully monitor the weather and the decision to close school is made by the Director of Transportation and the Superintendent. We communicate with other school districts, law enforcement, people who are responsible for clearing and maintaining roads, and other individuals that are on the roads. We try to make the decision by 6:00 AM, or at least one hour prior to dismissing early, to allow time for bus drivers to be prepared and for families to have time to make alternative plans.
If you feel the weather is too dangerous to send your children to school, you have the right to keep your children home. If you feel you don’t want your child to drive due to their inexperience with winter driving conditions, then they should ride the bus. Contact the Transportation Department at 320-968-8618 by 6:30 a.m. to make arrangements.
If we dismiss school early and you don’t want your student driving home, you may call the school and have them ride the bus or stay at school until you pick them up.
- Send children to school dressed properly for the winter conditions. If a bus has mechanical problems, slips off the road, or is involved in an accident, there is a possibility that heat may be lost on the bus. Having proper clothing could make a big difference. Please talk with your student about dressing properly, especially Junior and Senior high students who may feel flip flops and shorts are "cool" in the winter or may be riding late buses coming home from activities.
- Please make a plan with your child about what to do if the bus is delayed or doesn't show up at the bus stop. This situation could arise due to a bus that gets stuck in a driveway, has mechanical problems, or because your student is a few minutes late getting to the bus stop. In some cases, we may need to send another bus. We need your cooperation and communication as well, so if a bus doesn't show up and is more than 15 minites late; please contact the transportation director, Kevin Seifermann at 320-968-8618, or a building office. Please remember that a bus may be 5-10 minutes early or late simply due to the changes in who happens to ride on that particular day or road conditions.
Procedure followed if there is no school or a late start:
We try to make the decision by 6:00 AM to allow time for bus drivers to be prepared and for families to have time to make alternative plans.
- A message is sent out to those with email contact information. To update your information, call a building office.
- A message is sent through mass media including radio stations: WCCO (830AM), WJON (1240 AM, 94.9 FM), and KCLD (104.7 FM). TV stations KSTP (Ch. 5), WCCO (Ch. 4), KARE (Ch. 11), and KMSP (Ch. 9) will also broadcast school closings. Announcements will also be made through our website homepage, Facebook, and Twitter.
- All preschool, ECFE, community education activities, and school activities/athletics are cancelled when school is cancelled.
- During a late start, AM preschool and ECFE is cancelled, but PM preschool and ECFE will run.
Procedure followed if school is dismissed early:
If weather, road conditions, or other conditions create the necessity for dismissing school early, we try to make the decision at least one hour prior to dismissing early, to allow time for bus drivers to be prepared and for families to have time to make alternative plans. The official announcement will be sent out in the same manner as a school closing or late start.
- All afternoon preschool, ECFE, community education activities and school activities/athletics are cancelled when school is dismissed early.
- If you don't want your student driving home, you may call the school and have them ride the bus or stay at school until you pick them up.
- Please keep the bus lane clear when you pick up your children.
What you need to do as a parent/guardian:
- Have a plan for "no school" days due to emergency closing.
- Have a plan for late starts and early dismissals.
- Be sure your current emergency information is on the file with the school office. A password must first be set up for this site. Contact your child's building secretary to do so.
- Send your student to school dressed properly for winter weather.
- Have a plan with your child if they miss the bus or the bus is late.