School Closure Information
GENERAL INFORMATION ABOUT INCLEMENT WEATHER
- Parents should teach their children safe walking and waiting practices
- Because young children are likely to be affected by delays, longer travel time, or personal apprehensiveness, parents are encouraged to make individual decisions about school attendance during inclement weather.
- Snow route bus stops will be listed on the district’s webpage the second week of November 2023: https://www.sthelens.k12.or.us/snowroutes
- Home pick-ups from special education students may not be possible because of time, home location, weather, or traffic. Parents of these children may phone Durham School Services for information at 503-397-9072.
- Buses are equipped with tire chains. In addition, bus drivers have been trained to use their best judgment when tire chains are required due to varying weather conditions. In severe conditions, tire chains may be required on all buses.
HOW IS THE DECISION MADE?
Weather conditions vary throughout the school district. On days when school is closed or delayed, the district receives many phone calls from parents and community members questioning the decision. It is important to consider the safety of ALL students. Schools may be closed or delayed because of severe weather conditions in one or two areas of the district. Sometimes, school remains open on days when there is still snow on the ground. Parents who have serious concerns about the safety of their students may keep their children home – without academic penalty – until they feel it is safe for them to travel
SCHOOL DELAY OR CLOSURE INFORMATION CAN BE FOUND:
- St. Helens School District website: www.sthelens.k12.or.us
- Local news channels - ParentSquare - Email – phone – text
- Sign up to receive a text message or email from FlashAlert.net
The winter months bring with them the possibility of school closures – or delayed openings due to severe weather conditions.
Decisions to close school or delay start times are always difficult. Before a decision is made, school and bus company officials monitor weather conditions and personally check roads in higher elevations.
If conditions are severe enough to threaten the safety of students traveling to and from school, a decision is made to delay or close. This decision is made by 6:00 a.m.
All schools will be closed for the day. Students and staff are to remain home. Emergency personnel will report to work when it is safe to do so. If school is closed, there will be no evening activities, events, or athletics.
TWO HOUR LATE START
All school and bus times will begin two hours later than the regular starting time. Schools will end at the normal time. If the late start is on a Wednesday, we will cancel early release for that Wednesday and dismiss students at the regular times.
If the district makes the decision to close school early, students will be released per their usual route unless otherwise specified in their registration paperwork (emergency school closure/early release). Please have a snow plan in place with your student(s) in the event of an early closure.
If a bus is put on a snow route this means that the route of pick up and drop off will be changed from the normal route. Snow and bus stop information will be available in the second week of November 2023. https://www.sthelens.k12.or.us/snowroutes
During the second week of November 2023, students riding buses with snow routes will get a physical handout with their snow route information when they step off their school-to-home bus in the afternoon (it’s the perfect size for putting on the fridge where all family members can see it). Extra copies will be available on the buses for the remainder of the potentially snowy season. If your area is on a snow route in the A.M. then it will be on a snow route in the P.M. as well.
Students WILL NOT be allowed to depart the school bus at a snow route meeting spot if a parent or pre-approved adult is not present.