School Closure Procedures

School Closure Procedures

With winter and the stormy conditions that often come with it, Whitehall City Schools will remain open if at all possible on all scheduled school days, even when weather conditions may be challenging.
 
During adverse conditions, we encourage parents to make attendance decisions for their children based on their specific ability to get to school safely. Not all streets are plowed at the same time, and if you do not think it is safe to send or take your kids to school during a weather incident, you have the option to keep them home. Schools understand and respect this decision and will work with families. Parents are also welcome to pick up students at school any time if you feel that transportation safety is a concern.

Why do we try to keep Whitehall City Schools open during inclement weather?
 
Like any public service, people count on our schools to remain open. Our role in the community goes beyond providing educational services:
  • We believe many Whitehall City School District students rely on their neighborhood schools for breakfast and lunch. These meals are not simply convenient; they provide nutritional needs for children who may otherwise go without.
  • A concern we have is that we believe many students in the district would remain home alone without supervision if their school had an unscheduled closure. Many families don’t have the luxury of adjusting work schedules on short notice.
  • A functioning school building provides warmth and safety in addition to classroom instruction.
 
What happens if Whitehall City Schools close?
 
District administrators will be monitoring the weather conditions throughout the night and in the early morning hours. They will be in contact with the National Weather Service and WCS Transportation Services prior to making any decisions. All school administrators will be advised as early as possible regarding delays or cancellations; in addition, the media will be contacted and the district automatic calling system will be activated to place calls to student homes.

If severe weather conditions or other events force a school closure, delayed start, or early release, the following procedures will be implemented.
 
Two-hour delayed start:
  1. Field trips will be cancelled.
  2. Breakfast programs at all buildings will be cancelled.
Full-day closure procedure:
  1.  If, after the decision for a two-hour delay, it is determined necessary to close school for the entire day, local radio and television stations will be notified as early as possible.
  2. Whitehall City Schools website and social media accounts will relay information.
Early release due to weather or other emergency situations:
  1.  Automated phone calls will go to each home having provided correct information.
  2. Whitehall City Schools website and social media accounts will relay information.
  3. Local radio and television stations will be notified as early as possible.

Will there be after school activities in Whitehall City Schools?
 
When there is an emergency school closure within the Whitehall City School District, please check the Whitehall City Schools Facebook or Twitter page to find out the status of after school scheduled activities.

Emergency Plan:
 
Parents are encouraged to create an emergency plan for their students to determine where to go or what to do if a parent is not home and schools are closed, delayed, or dismissed early. In the event of an early release, elementary and middle school students will be held at school until parents or guardians are notified and arrangements are made to keep the students safe.
 
Remember, no announcement means normal school operation. School closure information will be posted on the Whitehall City Schools website, through social media and local news media outlets.
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