School Closing Procedures
Procedures for School Closings, Delays, or Early Dismissals
When we experience bad weather, the Racine Unified School District follows guidelines to determine whether schools should be closed. We realize that any change from the normal school schedule may cause disruption, but there are times when conditions make it unavoidable. The options below will be utilized sparingly and only when conditions make such procedures absolutely necessary. It is very important, however, that you be prepared for such an emergency. We suggest that, if necessary, you make arrangements for alternate supervision for your child/children with a friend, relative or neighbor. Our goal is to provide optimum welfare and safety for all students.
There are three possibilities for closing school, which may be considered based upon weather conditions:
Option #1 - Schools will be closed for the day - The decision will be made early in the morning, and radio and TV stations will be notified that schools will be closed. There will be no after-school activities.
Option #2 - Delayed Start - Two Hours - Radio and TV stations will be notified that schools will start two hours later than their usual starting time. Students who use school bus transportation should be at their assigned bus stop two hours later than normal. Students who walk should plan to arrive at their schools two hours later than the normal arrival time. Students will be dismissed at their regular dismissal time at the end of the day.
5-Year-Old Kindergarten - When the two-hour delay option is used, 5-year-old kindergarten students will begin their school day two hours later than their usual starting time. They will attend school the same hours as students in grades 1-5.
4-Year-Old Half-Day Kindergarten - When the two-hour delay option is used, there will be no regular morning 4-year-old kindergarten classes. Afternoon 4-year-old kindergarten classes will be held at the normal starting and dismissal times.
Early Childhood Programs - Students in the morning early childhood programs will not attend school on the emergency “delayed start” days. Early childhood students who are in the all day programs will attend school on emergency “delayed start” days beginning two hours later than normal. Afternoon early childhood students will attend school at their regular time on an emergency “delayed start” day.
Option #3 - Early Dismissal - There may be times when weather conditions or other emergency situations require schools to close early. Again, should such a situation arise, local radio and TV stations will be notified and asked to announce the early dismissal.
The notice that schools are closed or that they will have a delayed start or early dismissal will be broadcast over the following media:
WTMJ-TV Channel 4
WRJN 1400 AM
WITI-TV Channel 6
WGTD 91.1 FM
WISN-TV Channel 12
WDJT-TV Channel 58
The quickest way to see if school is canceled or delayed would be to visit the District’s website. If school is cancelled or delayed, the Web site will have a predominantly displayed emergency notification.
You may also register your e-mail address at our district’s website (www.racine.k12.wi.us) to receive emergency closing notification via e-mail.
Wind Chill and School Closings
When the National Weather Service has a wind chill Warning for Racine County in effect for the time just before the school day begins, we will make a decision if our schools should close. It is quite likely we will make this type of decision on the morning of the day in question. If there is a wind chill advisory (and not a warning) for the county, schools will likely be open. See National Weather Service Thresholds.
Recess and School Door Opening Times
The 10 degree rule for recess and door opening includes a temperature or wind chill of 10 degrees above or colder. Following are the guidelines for recess, door opening, etc. as well as some weather-related attendance issues.
- School doors should open early if 1) the air temperature or wind chill is 10 above or colder, 2) rain is falling, 3) heavy snow is falling, or 4) other extreme weather conditions prevail. However, students should not report to their classrooms until either the teacher is present or eleven minutes before classes are regularly scheduled to convene. Recess at elementary schools should also not be held during the above conditions.
- If a parent deems that the weather is too dangerous for their child to be out, they have the right to request an excused absence for their child.
- If students are tardy due to cars not staring, etc., those excuses will be honored.