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Winter weather will be here soon. Here’s what you need to know!

posted Dec 5, 2017, 4:53 AM by Scott Gates

It looks like the cold and winter weather is just around the corner. Decision making around instruction and budgets are critical to all, but when weather conditions impact our classrooms, decision on whether to cancel school receives as much attention.  

Ross Local Schools does not make these decisions lightly. Instructional time for our students is precious and crucial to their academic success, and we will do everything in our power to protect and maximize that time.  Further, we recognize that when school is cancelled we disrupt the learning schedules and home routines of thousands of students and families.

In the end, however, any decision to close school must be based on one factor and one factor only: the safety of our students and staff.  We cannot and will not compromise the well-being of our children.  

As superintendent of our school district, I will not call a snow/calamity day based on a weather forecast.  I will call a snow day/calamity day based on existing weather conditions such as significant snowfall or dangerous wind chills.  I will make the call based on the area’s ability to make streets passable and our maintenance staff's ability to make our schools accessible and our parking lots clear. When hazardous weather arrives in our community, we will consider the safety of students and the ability of the school buses to get to the schools. We will get out and drive the streets/roads.  We will be in contact with the local townships, county officials, ODOT (Ohio Department of Transportation) and our police departments.  We will also be in contact with other school district superintendents and transportation directors.

My goal will be to make a decision by 5:00 a.m.  If we are getting hit the evening before and are confident we cannot have school the next day, we will make the call by 9:00 p.m. When the temperature gets below -10 degrees, area superintendents will convene through conference call to discuss options for staying open or closing. When the decision is made we will send automatic phone messages that reach all of our families and staff members and we will contact all local radio and TV as well as posting information on our website and other social media. Please make sure you have updated your contact information with the school your child(ren) attend so it can be uploaded to our One Call Now messaging system.

We will make decisions about snow/calamity days with thoughtful, well-researched and conscientious practices and procedures. That is our promise to our community.  

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