Our district staff understands that our decision to open or close schools in bad weather has a big effect on families. We also understand that our students are better served – academically and socially – by being in school. But as always, our top priority is the safety of our students.
School Closing Information
- How do we make our decision?
- When is the decision made and will we close school if conditions worsen?
Please understand that we make the decision to open or close the schools in bad weather based on a careful analysis of all relevant factors.
The Superintendent of Schools is responsible for the final decision. The decision is based on recommendations from the Director of Transportation and Director of Planning, Operations and Facilities and other factors such as:
►Information on road conditions from transportation staff and
from the police
We must give careful consideration to the most dangerous roads in the district. Even if your street looks clear, travel elsewhere in the district may be quite dangerous.
Administrators talk to maintenance and custodial staff members who are responsible for clearing and treating school parking lots and sidewalks.
Please remember that some of our students walk to school and many must wait outside for the bus.
We prefer not making our decision based on weather predictions, which are not always accurate. But sometimes this is unavoidable.
We must consider that some high school students drive to school.
It is difficult to reverse the decision about opening schools without endangering students, even if weather conditions worsen. Once the decision is made to open the schools, parents rely on it and leave for work. Many students will return to unsupervised bus stops and empty houses if students are sent right back home. An early dismissal could occur if conditions worsen during the school day, but all possible attempts will be made to give adequate notice to parents first.
It is hoped that this explanation helps everyone understand the process that our district staff uses to make the best possible decision for all in our district
- We call you:Spring-Ford's Skylert®parent contact system through Skyward and School Messenger.
Skylert® is an automated telephone message distribution service to which the District subscribes. The service allows central administrators and building principals the ability to distribute a message to the homes of all District students or to various sub-groups within a very brief period of time. In certain more urgent or emergency situations, the message can also be delivered to cell and work phone numbers. Please note that work phone numbers that include an extension can not be contacted.
While the District considers the Skylert® system to be a valuable tool to contact parents, parents should not consider the Skylert® system to be a 100% guarantee of receiving any given message. The system is not based in the District and is subject to a variety of limitations that are beyond the control of the District and operators of the system. In the event of a weather-related problem or other emergency, parents are urged to check the District's Special Message Alert Center on this Website or on the telephone as described below.
Here are a few tips to make your Skylert® system experience more effective:
*Be sure to login to Skyward Family Access to make changes to your home, cell, and work numbers.
*When Spring-Ford distributes a Skylert® system message, look at caller ID for a Spring-Ford school building phone number on the display: 610-705-6000 through 610-705-6012
*Like most automated calling systems, there will be a pause after you pick up the phone before the message is delivered. During that time, the system is assessing whether it has reached a live voice or answering machine and it is assessing the quality of the connection.
*If you are in a noisy location or if you are on a cell phone in a windy location, the message might be restarted several times, not delivered at all, or cut off during delivery.
*Not all messages delivered via the Skylert® system are weather-related or emergency calls. You might also receive notifications about student attendance, student food service account balances, and reminders about school events and activities.
- You call us:Spring-Ford's Special Message Alert Center -- 610-705-6100
The Special Message Alert Center will alert you to both District wide and building information. When you call the Special Message Alert Center the first message you will hear will detail any District wide alerts or other special messages from the Superintendent. The main message (or a statement that no District wide messages exist) will be followed by a menu that provides you direct access to messages maintained by each building.
(Note: The Special Message Alert Center is also accessible from the voice menu when calling any District building by pressing '5'. However, you will access the same information faster by dialing 610-705-6100 directly.)