Severe Weather - Information

Dear Viking Families,
It looks like this 2019 winter is going to be a long and brutal one and conditions may make it necessary to close schools. School district policy, in general, is not to close schools unless weather and road conditions are such that the possible hazards to the children’s safety are at risk. To close school based on the temperature alone, the actual temperature combined with wind chill would need to be greater (colder) than ‐20 to ‐25 degrees below zero.

My team and I continually monitor the National Weather Service forecast and information on road conditions from our Transportation Director.  In addition, I am in communication with Superintendents across our county to ensure the best decision are made for all students, staff and families.  Timing of cancellations depends on timing of weather and deterioration of conditions. Please be prepared for evening or early morning cancellations for the rest of this week, as predicted temperatures with wind chills will be within severe
temperature guidelines.

If a decision is made to close schools, that information will be communicated on JPS Social Media Facebook Pages, Twitter, Robo Call, Text, Email, and the JPS App.  If you are not receiving Robo Calls, Texts or Emails please check in with your child’s school secretary to make sure your emergency contact info is up to date. In addition, information can be found on TV stations WILX, WLNS and radio stations K105.3 & 970 WKHM by 6:30 am. If communication from JPS has not come out regarding school closing by 6:30am, please assume that school is in session.

It is our policy NOT to send children home after school has started. However, on rare occasions when mechanical failures occur in the school building or when inclement weather develops after school is in session, it could become necessary to dismiss school early. It is important that all parents discuss thoroughly with their children the possibility of an early dismissal and make certain each child knows where to go when parents are not at home. Please have your students dressed appropriately for the weather.

I also want to make sure that all of our families and staff have a safe and warm place to be when severe winter weather hits.  If you are in need of resources from warming stations to food for your family please refer to our website (Severe Weather Resources) or call 211 (a 24-hour service provided by United Way of Jackson) to speak to a representative who can help provide resource information.  If your utilities or electricity are shut off please call MDHHS at 517-780-7400.

Closing schools is always a difficult decision; please know that I will err on the side of safety for our students and staff. Stay warm and safe.

Sincerely,Jeff Beal
JPS Superintendent