Student and staff safety while traveling to and from school is the ultimate factor when deciding if school should be cancelled in District 186. The decision to call off school is never easy and several factors are used in making the decision to have school or not. We will make this decision as early as possible, no later than 5:30 a.m., so that we can follow our school closure protocol. The deciding factors include but are not limited to the following:
1. We consider road conditions in snowy and icy weather.
2. We consider the amount and type of predicted precipitation (snow, ice, sleet and freezing rain).
3. We consider the temperature (especially the wind-chill) alone or in combination with the type and amount of precipitation that has already fallen or is predicted throughout the school day.
4. We consider the weather forecast, the local radar and predicted changes in weather throughout the school day.
Weather related decisions regarding school closures begin the night before a weather event by monitoring the forecast, considering information regarding road conditions, and thorough consultation with local authorities, First Student Bus Company, and the Operations and Maintenance Department of District 186. Representatives of District 186 will drive the roads as part of this decision.
School Closure Protocol
As soon as the decision is made to close school, it will appear on the main page of the District 186 website. This is the fastest way to learn about the decision to close schools. It will also be featured through local media outlets including radio and television. A ParentLink message will be sent, which will call and text families directly. In order to receive a text, you must sign up for this option on the District Information System or through the school office.
We will notify the following news outlets:
Midwest Family Broadcasting
WICS NewsChannel 20
WCIA Channel 3
WAND Channel 17
Capital Radio Group
WBUI Clear Channel
Safety Tips for Winter Weather
The safety of our students is the most important thing when dealing with bad weather. Frigid winds, snow and ice trigger important winter weather safety reminders to motorists, students, and parents.
Every effort will be made to notify parents via ParentLink phone calls and text messages if there will be a significant delay of busses during winter weather and extremely cold temperatures.
EMERGENCY PLANS What should I do if the bus does not arrive on time? Please dress warmly for the frigid air and snow, but do not wait outside in
extreme weather conditions for an undue amount of time.
1. Each family should have a plan covering what to do if your child’s school bus does not arrive due to a weather-related situation.
2. Develop the plan and practice it with your child. If you will not be home, instruct your child as to where he or she should go in the event the bus does not come.
3. Consider these questions: Where could your child go if he or she needed help? Who would care for him or her until you arrive? Is there someone your child could call to calm any concerns he or she might have?
4. If the bus does not arrive within a reasonable time of its scheduled pickup and you have not received phone or text notification, please instruct your child to follow your plan and have an adult contact the District’s bus provider, First Student, to find out when the bus should be arriving.
How to dress for winter weather?
Students who walk to school or wait at school bus stops should dress appropriately for cold, icy weather. Proper outerwear includes warm coats, gloves, hats, and waterproof footwear.
Phone numbers for First Student:
Regular education routes: 544-7603 Special education & Early Start routes: 522-1312
2014 - 2015
It is the time of year when colds, flu and stomach viruses seem to quickly spread. Sometimes it is difficult to know when to keep your child home. Here are some general guidelines to follow when deciding if your child should go to school.
• Your child should be fever free for 24 hours before returning to school.
• Your child should have had no vomiting or diarrhea for 24 hours before
returning to school.
• If your child is unusually tired and is too sick to take part in classroom
activities, they should stay home and rest.
• If your child has a sore throat, fever and swollen glands they should stay
home from school.
• A cough that is bad enough to make your child turn blue or red in the face or
a cough that is followed by a whooping sounds suggests a call to your doctor
is needed and the child should not be at school.
• Ear pain or discharge from the ear requires advice from the child’s doctor.
• Persistent green or yellow nasal drainage also suggests the need to consult
your child’s doctor.
• Thick mucus or pus draining from the eye or pink eye is a reason to keep
your child home.
In addition to keeping your child home when they are sick, there are some things you can do to help prevent the spread of infections.
• Hand washing is the single most important thing you can do to prevent the spread of disease. Teach your child to wash their hands frequently using plenty of soap and warm water. Hand washing should take about 20 seconds.
• Teach your child to cover their coughs and sneezes with a tissue or their sleeve. Tissues should be thrown in the trash immediately and hands should be washed as soon as possible. If unable to wash, hand sanitizer may be used.
• Clean surfaces that may be contaminated with germs including doorknobs, phones, remote controls, toys and keyboards.
• It is not too late to get a flu vaccine. Consult your doctor or pharmacist today.