Procedure and Information
The Board of Education, being deeply concerned for the safety of our students, realizes the importance of pre-planning to ensure the protection of students and staff when the potential for violent weather exists. Therefore, the following procedures are in effect:
- If students are in school when a tornado watch is issued, they will remain in school until the regular dismissal time.
- In the event of early morning tornado watches, school may be delayed. Check the radio or television for information.
- If students are in school when a tornado WARNING is issued for our vicinity, they will be escorted to pre-defined areas of safety within each building and remain there until the warning is lifted.
- It is the policy of Lowell Area Schools to not dismiss students to parents during a tornado WARNING, even if it means holding students beyond the normal dismissal time. If students are held 30 minutes or longer beyond their normal dismissal time due to a tornado WARNING, elementary students will be bussed home after the warning is lifted and secondary students will need to be picked up by parents or guardians.
- In the event of early morning tornado warning, school may be delayed. Check the radio or television for information.
- After-school activities underway when a WARNING is issued will cease and participants and spectators will be instructed to take cover.
The decision to dismiss early, delay or close the school is based on several factors, including road conditions, weather forecast, temperature, wind chill and timing of a possible weather event. The Superintendent is responsible for the final decision based on the above factors with input and recommendations from the Director of Transportation and others that help drive the roads early in the morning. The decision is made typically by 6:00 a.m. in order to notify the media and bus drivers.
In the event of a delayed opening, all bus routes are delayed 2 hours. If the roads are not cleared, or the weather event does not proceed as predicted, another decision to close school for the entire day may be made at approximately 8:00 a.m. so it is important for parents to continue to monitor the situation whenever a 2 hour delay is announced.
Every effort is made to keep students in school for the full day once they arrive. If conditions are severe and warrant an early closing, the information will be on our district website, an email notification will be sent through the One Call Now System and posted on TV/Radio stations. Parents should discuss a plan with their child regarding what the child should do in the event s/he should arrive at home first.
Members of the Kent County Superintendents Association use a sustained wind chill of
-20 as one consideration for making the decision to close school.
Buses on “Main Roads” only
When the news media reports that buses will be traveling on "Main Roads" only, it is because the side roads, most often our dirt roads, are in a condition that prevents our buses from traveling down them.
School closings will be broadcast over the radio and TV stations listed below:
Radio Stations: WGRD, WBFX, WBCT, WLAV, WLHT, WOOD AM and WOOD FM
Television Stations: WOOD-TV and WZZM-TV