School Closing/Snow Routes

RE: Inclement Weather / School Closure Information for 2014-2015 School Year

Dear Parents, Guardians, and Students:

I would like to take this opportunity to provide our families with information concerning our inclement weather decisions. Our first and most important priority is to insure the safety of all our students. While the decision to open, close, or delay the school start time can be complicated due to changing and unpredictable weather occurrences, it is our goal to inform our families as soon as possible using a variety of communication avenues. Our decision options will be kept to a minimum to assist with communication. With this as a goal, we will exercise one of the following options depending on weather conditions:

1. Schools will OPEN AT REGULAR TIMES. Buses will either operate on regular routes at regular times, or on pre-determined snow routes (included in this memo). If buses operate on snow routes in the morning, we will operate on snow routes in the afternoon regardless of changing weather conditions.

2. Schools will open on a 2-HOUR DELAYED START. Schools open two hours later than regular times. This means for Harrisburg and Weiner Elementary Schools, Harrisburg Middle School, and Harrisburg High School.  Bus pick up times will be 2 hours later than the normal times and may operate on regular routes or on snow routes. Announcements concerning extracurricular activities, practices, meetings, etc. will be made on the day of the delay.

3. Schools will CLOSE. If the decision to close is necessary, all scheduled school events, practices, community events that utilize school facilities, etc. will be cancelled. Regular scheduled School Board meetings will be determined to proceed, or to be rescheduled, by the School Board President. Our buses are the safest means of transportation during inclement weather. Our drivers are highly trained and all precautions are taken to insure the safety of our students. Parents, on Snow Route Days, must be there to pick up their student(s) at the drop off locations by the listed times (for those students not walking to their homes). If a parent or responsible adult of a non-walker, does not meet their child at the drop off location, the student will remain on the bus, and return to the bus garage with the driver. Rarely is school cancelled other than our ability to safely operate our buses. However, a number of factors must be considered when making our inclement weather decision. Those factors are addressed within this letter. I would encourage each family to keep a copy of the enclosed information in an easily accessible location. Thank you in advance for your understanding, and patience, at those times we must make changes to our regular routine.

Sincerely,

Danny B. Sample

Danny B. Sample, Superintendent



Harrisburg School District complies with all federal rules and regulations and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, genetics, or handicap. This holds true for all district employment and opportunities. Inquiries regarding compliance procedures may be directed to: Jeannette Alstadt, Harrisburg School District Title IX Officer and Section 504 Coordinator. Harrisburg School District is EOE.

Inclement Weather / School Closure Information for 2014-2015 School Year

Where can I get information concerning the decision?

If bad weather conditions, unusual building circumstances, or other unforeseen activities occur during the night or day, Harrisburg School District will list modified schedule and bus route information on the district website http://www.hbgsd.org by 6:30 a.m. if possible. Remember to hit the “Refresh” button on your computer frequently for the most up-do-date information. Information will also be posted on the district’s Facebook site. In the event of a school closure or 2-hour delayed start, the district’s automated phone system will begin calling households as soon as the announcement is made. For this purpose, it is important that your student’s school office has up-to-date contact information. If you are unable to access our website or local radio and/or TV stations, please telephone the District Office at (870) 578-2416.

What factors influence the decision?

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, especially the safety of all our students, such as:

* Information on road conditions from transportation staff and from Arkansas State 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 dangerous. Also, we must consider that some high school students drive to school.

* Amount of snow and/or ice accumulated.

* Whether precipitation is continuing.

* Building conditions (whether we have electricity and water).

* Parking lot conditions. Administrators talk to maintenance and custodial staff members who are responsible for clearing and treating school parking lots and sidewalks.

* Temperature and wind chill. Please remember that some of our students walk to school and some must wait outside for the bus.

* Weather predictions. We prefer not making our decision based on weather predictions, which are not always accurate.

* What other school districts are doing. We also share information with other local districts and check whether they are opening or closing.

*Who makes the decision? The superintendent and School Board President, make the decision after consulting (when necessary) with the transportation and maintenance supervisors, Local Police Department, State Police, and neighboring school districts.

*When must the decision be made? We prefer the decision be made prior to 6 a.m. or earlier in order to notify radio and TV stations and post the decision on our website within the Events Calendar. If the decision is delayed, some parents will have already left for work, leaving their children unsupervised. Phones will be manned in the district's central office during these unusual situations beginning at 7:30 a.m.

SNOW ROUTES

ALL PICK-UP TIMES WILL BE  7:10 a.m.

Highway 14 East 

*Midway Church of Christ

*Hwy 14 & Main (Harrisburg city)

*Glissen’s Service Station

*Intersection of Hwy 14 and Bay lane

Hwy 49 North

*Otwell

*City Parking lot (Weiner city)

Hwy 49 South

*Cullum Seed (Fisher)

*Farmer’s Co-op (Waldenburg)

Hwy 1 South

*Lebanon Baptist Church (Whitehall)

*Razor Rock Farm Hill rd. at Hwy 1

Hwy 1 North

*Intersection Hwy 1 and Hwy 158

*Greenfield Baptist Church