VASD Weather Protocol Unveiled as Winter Nears...

VASD Weather Protocol Unveiled as Winter Nears...
Posted on 09/19/2017
This is the image for the news article titled VASD Weather Protocol Unveiled as Winter Nears...It’s that time of year again to send you this letter detailing our decision-making protocols for determining if there will be a weather-related school delay or cancellation.

We watch the weather very closely during the winter months. When weather is forecasted to cause any issues that might impact the safety of our students arriving at school, we are actively assessing the situation by 4:00 a.m. and strive to make a decision on any delay or cancellation before 6:00 a.m. Once a decision is made about a closure or delayed start time, this information is posted on our website, broadcast on local TV and radio stations and sent to parents using our district-wide messaging system. This system will send each parent in our database a text message and an email (No phone calls will be made). If your contact information has changed since you last reviewed it during the online summer registration process, please call your school office to inform them of the changes.

For snow events, a representative from our bus company and I independently drive the roads in different parts of our school district to assess driving conditions. I am also in contact with a local meteorologist who provides a thorough summary of current and predicted weather conditions. Additionally, I am in conversation with other superintendents in neighboring school districts to compare reports. Particularly I speak with my colleagues in Middleton, Oregon and Mount Horeb and often get calls from other superintendents around the area. Please know that the bus route terrain for each school district varies widely so a neighboring school district such as Mount Horeb may decide to delay or cancel school given their specific road conditions.

For cold weather, it is the wind chill factor that we watch closely. If the cold temperatures and wind generates a Wind Chill Warning (defined by the National Weather Service as -35 degrees Fahrenheit sustained wind chill) we will close for the day, or we will consider a delayed start if the warning will be lifted in the mid-morning hours. We will hold school during a wind-chill advisory. Please note that some surrounding districts, most notably Madison Metropolitan School District, DO NOT use this Wind Chill Warning designation to determine delay starts/cancellations for cold.

Finally, if there is ever a time that we hold school / school event and you do not feel it is in the best interest of your child to attend based on your assessment of the weather, please know that it is always your choice to keep your child at home. Please communicate with the school office if you make this decision.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions about weather related delays / cancellations.

Kind regards,

Dean Gorrell, Superintendent, 608-845-4310

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