Who decides when your kid gets a snow day? - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

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Who decides when your kid gets a snow day?

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SPOKANE, Wash. -

A snow day is a dream come true for a lot of kids, but it is the last thing the local schools want. Canceling school during the winter simply means they have to add a day onto the end of the academic year. But in some cases the schools have no choice.

Each school district in our region has a different policy, see below:

Spokane Schools

Dr. Shelley Redinger, Superintendent

  • If it has snowed overnight or snow is in the forecast, the senior operations manager at Durham, or his/her designee, will contact the district’s Safety & Transportation director between 4:30 a.m. and 5 a.m. to review weather conditions and determine what actions will be taken. These may include possible late routes, school closures, and/or canceled or altered routes.

West Valley

Dr. Gene Sementi, Superintendent

  • “The transportation director and superintendent drive areas that have historically have had issues with snow together around 4:00 a.m.They try to make a decision by 5:30am or 6:00 a.m. 
  • The big factor is when Argonne Rd. gets plowed. If it is an afternoon/evening, snow usually gets cleared. If snow falls overnight or morning, they look closer.
  • The questions we ask: Can the buses travel safely? Do we see places where students who are walking might have issues?”
  • All buses can be chained; sometimes they will delay the start of school to keep safe commute before they cancel altogether.”

Central Valley

Marla Nunberg, Communications Director

  • “The Deputy Superintendent and Superintendent drive the routes and make a decision with the executive team somewhere between 3-5 a.m. We try to keep school open if at all possible.”

East Valley

Kelly Shea, Superintendent

  • “The transportation director drives the roads and if she deems it unfit that is the primary factor. Snowfall itself isn’t what we worry about, it is about driving conditions. Extreme temperatures and the kids exposure to the elements if they are walking to school or bus stop is key. We watch the weather report and make decisions accordingly.
  • If there is a closure we will have a message on our snow line, website will be updated, and an email system will be sent.

Mead

Brian Liberg, Transportation Director

  • “Our transportation director coordinates with Superintendent. We split the district in half and drive the routes to look for safety concerns. Some routes are called snow routes, or rural roads, and if they don’t look safe we will communicate through a message system to the families affected and the bus stop moves or we won’t travel the entire route.
  • Information goes out by 5 a.m. or 5:30 am.
  • It’s not about snow inches; it is about getting out and driving the roads. Our district is too wide to have a blanket statement.”
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