kids playing in snowWinter weather is here, so we want to take this opportunity to provide you with information about how decisions are made and communicated when the weather is severe. The safety of our students is our top priority, and we always follow a set of guidelines to make decisions about whether school will be open or closed.

The district must make a decision that is the best for all students. We realize, at times, our decisions may not fit with your individual circumstances. Therefore, we encourage and strongly support you in making the decision that is best for your child(ren). You are always the best judge of your child’s health and safety.

We try to keep schools open
When schools close, many families have issues with child care. As a result, we try to keep schools open if it’s safe to do so. However, as we stated at the top of this letter, parents can always make the decision to keep their child(ren) at home in bad weather.

How do we decide whether or not to close due to snow, ice and/or extreme cold?
The district monitors weather conditions beginning early in the morning and consults with meteorologists, the City of Madison, Madison Police and transportation providers. MMSD administration makes the decision whether to close schools by 6:00 a.m. or earlier in order to communicate with families in a timely manner.

How can you find out if schools are closed?
On days when the weather is bad, listen to any local radio or television station for information about school closing. If you provided your email address and/or mobile phone number during enrollment, you will be contacted in the morning regarding a school closing via email, phone and text message. Opt in now to receive MMSD text messages. You may also check our website or MMSD-TV Cable Channel 993.

When schools are closed, are other activities canceled as well?
When Madison schools are closed for the day, it also means that all activities scheduled in school buildings for that day are canceled, including all MSCR programs, after school programs and athletics.

Why aren’t schools dismissed early on days when the weather is bad?
Generally, once the school day has started, MMSD schools will not dismiss early to avoid complications with transportation and child care arrangements. However, if your schedule allows and if you feel your child will be safer at home, you can pick your child up before the end of the school day.

We appreciate your understanding of the difficulties in making this decision, and your support in helping your child get to school safely on winter days. Please know that the safety of all of our students is our first priority when making all weather-related decisions.

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