In most cases with snow, it is the timing, blowing/drifting, and/or rate of snowfall that has a larger bearing on school being closed or open than the amount of snowfall. Additionally, there will be days when it is extremely cold that schools will remain open. There is no magic temperature number that dictates whether schools will be open or closed; rather, numerous factors are considered, including actual air temperature, wind chill, the timing and duration of the low temperatures, and any warnings or watches issued by the National Weather Service.
Keeping schools open with no outdoor activities during inclement weather is preferable for several reasons. Closing school has a significant impact on families and we take the decision-making process seriously. When schools are closed, many parents have to make last-minute childcare arrangements, take time off of work to stay home with their children, or leave children unsupervised at home. We do not want families to have to encounter these situations unless absolutely necessary. In addition to the educational benefits of keeping students in class, many students have their physical, social, and emotional needs met within the school setting and it is important to keep that avenue open and to continue to meet the needs of these students whenever possible.
Since there have been instances in the past where severe inclement weather fails to materialize as predicted, we will not close school based only on a forecast. If no notification is made, schools will be open. If the decision is made to close school, we try to notify parents before 5:00 a.m. School closing information is provided through the Blackboard Notification System, the District’s social media accounts, website and mobile app, radio, and TV announcements.
To ensure receipt of a school closing announcement, parents should make sure their contact information is accurate and updated in ParentVue. Should contact information need to be updated, parents should contact their child’s school office.
We advise families to consider in advance creating a “backup plan” for their child in the case of a school closing. To assist families with this process, the Crystal Lake Park District and Sage YMCA offer snow day services.
Parents and guardians have the ultimate decision as to whether or not to send their child to school due to weather conditions. If the choice is made to keep a child at home, parents should report the absence to the school office.