Perry Township Schools
Happy new year! Welcome back students and staff. The second semester of the 2014-15 school year is certain to be filled with a tremendous amount of academic success.
January, February and March are often challenging months due to inclement weather. I always receive questions about what our policies are for snowy and cold weather.
The decision to delay or close school is always based on the safety of children, and it’s important to know that that decision lies solely on my shoulders. I maintain close contact with our transportation, maintenance and plow crews. I also drive the roads.
The following are some general guidelines that I use during the crucial time between 4 and 5:15 a.m.
Freezing rain/sleet: This is the most unpredictable weather variable as it is temperature sensitive and fast-occurring. There is not a vehicle that maneuvers well on ice, especially not a school bus. A decision is generally made in the morning.
Snowfall: Meteorologists generally give a 2-inch variable when predicting snowfall accumulation. Any decision regarding school status is delayed until the accumulation indicates a need for action. These decisions are usually made in the morning.
Extreme snowfall: When snowfall has accumulated to a significant level, a decision regarding school status may be made the previous evening.
Extreme cold: If the temperature is predicted to be 10 below zero at 7 a.m., the district will consider a two-hour delay. If the temperature is forecast to remain at minus 10 at 9 a.m., the district will consider closing.
Extreme wind chill: Wind-chill concerns emerge at a predicted wind chill of 19 below zero. If the wind chill is predicted to be minus 19 or lower at 7 a.m., we will consider a two-hour delay. If the wind chill is predicted to be minus 19 or lower at 9 a.m., closing is an option. This decision would likely be made in the morning.
Functional facilities: It is possible for gas, electric and water issues to cause one or more schools to close. Our utility companies keep us informed of any interruption or delay in service.
The electronic age has truly helped us in communicating with families in an efficient manner. In addition to phone messages, parents may elect to receive email alerts. Notices are posted on the district website, Twitter and Facebook accounts and television stations.
Parents should have plans in place for weather-related delays and closures. The district appreciates the commitment of parents to dress their children appropriately for weather conditions when sending students to school.
If school is delayed, the district will respect a parent’s decision to keep their children home for the day. Parents are expected to contact their children’s school and inform the administration of their decision. The students will be counted as absent, per state code.
Families entrust us with their children’s safety, and we take that responsibility to heart.