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Winter Weather
Merryl Brownlow
Wednesday, October 30, 2019

It's Coming...Snow, Cold and School Closings, Oh My!

Winter weather is headed our way sooner than we may want to admit. As a working mother, I recognize that Emergency School Closings create angst for most families. Any decisions to close school are always made with the best interests of students in mind, particularly with respect to safety. There are many factors that weigh in to a decision to close schools; ability to clear the snow in lots and on sidewalks, the bus company's ability to transport students; the exposure to extreme cold in waiting for buses or for our walkers; the mechanical systems operating as expected; ability for staff to travel to work; to name a few. These decisions are never made lightly. We are encouraging all families to begin thinking about their child care plans should we have to cancel school for a weather-related or any other emergency during the year. Please review your family emergency plans with your children, so they are prepared should they end up in an unanticipated situation. 

In making decisions, we will always collaborate with our bus company and surrounding school districts (typically Shepard High School and its feeder schools, as well as Palos CCSD 118). It is important to note that there are times that districts may make individual decisions based on their unique circumstances. For example, District 118 owns their buses and their transportation situation may not reflect ours. The high school has an E-Learning program in place and may make the call sooner because there will be no need to add an instructional day at the end of the year. 

I fully recognize that an Emergency Weather Day is never a decision that will please everyone. When we do close, it will be communicated in the following ways:

  • Website posting
  • Phone call to the number designated in our student information system
  • Email message to the contacts in our registration database (please be sure this is updated if you have made a change)
  • Push notification via our website app (Note: You must have the app downloaded to your phone with push notifications set up)
  • Emergency Closing Center posting (www.emergencyclosingcenter.com)

If we are proactive and develop contingency plans for our children ahead of time, it can greatly reduce the stress in the moment!