A Message from Dr. Lisa Hess Regarding Winter Weather Procedures
Hello Governor Mifflin Families,
As we get into the colder months, I want to take this opportunity to remind our families of our winter weather closing, delay, and dismissal procedures.
In the case of an overnight weather event, I will consult with local police for information on road safety and the bus transportation company will drive the roads through the District to gain a visual perspective of the physical conditions. Our school district spans roughly 42 square miles and varies greatly in road and weather conditions due to the elevation changes. The intent of physically driving the area is to get a real time view of the roads that are typically problematic for student, parent, and bus transportation. At the same time, we are checking with municipalities about plowing, cindering, and salting schedules as necessary. We also speak with key district personnel to ensure the school grounds are safe for opening.
To make a final decision, we couple our knowledge of Governor Mifflin School District geography and demographics in tandem with knowledge of the following:
- The number of buses and miles traveled
- Weather conditions varying greatly across the district
- Many bus stops are affected by snow plowing
- Our student drivers that drive to school
- The time needed to plow parking lots, clear walkways, and clear buses from ice/snow
We will aim to make winter weather calls by approximately 5:15 -5:30 a.m. to allow families, transportation, and staff time to prepare for the morning. While this timeframe may not always occur due to the timing or complexity of the issue, it is our general target timeline.
If we must cancel school due to inclement weather, we will aim to use traditional snow days before using Flexible Instructional Days, otherwise known as virtual learning days. We currently have two snow make-up days built into our district calendar: Friday, February 16, 2024, and Wednesday, March 27, 2024.
Weather is unpredictable and the district must have a plan with options to ensure we meet instructional time requirements and our seniors graduate on time. Therefore, if we have more than two snow days before February, the district will utilize the following options:
If the snow days built into the 2023-2024 district calendar, Friday, February 16, 2024, and Wednesday, March 27, 2024 are already used before February, the district will move to the next option…
- Change February 19, 2024, from a holiday to an Act 80 day. Families will be notified in advance if that occurs.
If the district uses February 19, 2024 for a snow makeup day, the district will move to the next option…
- If the district is in need of additional snow days, the use of Flexible Instructional Days (up to five virtual days) will be considered for any snow days outside of the three potential dates listed above. The district will prepare our students to take devices home and clarify the expectations for online learning with students and families before these days are utilized.
If the district uses our 5 Flexible Instructional Days, any additional snow days will be added to the end of the school year.
Unless otherwise communicated, all Governor Mifflin students in grades Pre-K-12 will follow the 2-hour delay schedule below:
Secondary: Students in grades 7-12 will start at 9:35 a.m.
Elementary: Students in grades K-6 will start at 10:45 a.m.
Pre-K will begin at 11:00 a.m.
During 2-hour delays, a breakfast option will be made available to all students when they arrive at school.
On very rare occasions, when a 3-hour delay is advantageous, the district will follow the times listed below. All Governor Mifflin students grades Pre-K-12 will follow a 3-hour delay schedule.
Secondary: Students in grades 7-12 will start at 10:35 a.m.
Elementary: Students in grades K-6 will start at 11:45 a.m.
Pre-K will begin at 12:00 p.m.
Weather-Related Early Dismissals
In the event that we would need to dismiss early due to winter weather, we will make our best effort to notify parents by 9:00 a.m. In most scenarios, we will dismiss using the following schedule:
Secondary: Students in grades 7-12 will be dismissed at 11:00 a.m.
Elementary: Students in grades K-6 will be dismissed at 11:45 a.m.
Pre-K dismissal will begin at 12:15 p.m.
A grab-and-go lunch will be made available to all students upon early dismissal.
We understand that the winter weather season can be disruptive, so we provide this information now and encourage families to have a plan for the scenarios above. Likewise, please log in to your Skyward account and click the Skylert tab to ensure that your contact information is up-to-date. In the next few weeks, we will conduct a test call from our Skylert system to ensure we have everyone’s appropriate contact information. All closings, delays, and early dismissals are sent to families through Skyward via a phone call, text message and email. Closings and delays are also posted on our district website, social media, WFMZ (Channel 69) and WGAL (Channel 8).
Let’s look forward to a successful and productive winter in Mustang Nation!
Dr. Lisa Hess
Governor Mifflin School District
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