Skip To Main Content

Snow Days

How Are They Decided in LPS?

Recognizing that our decision to close schools in inclement weather has a large impact on LPS families, we thought it would be helpful to share the factors that go into a weather-related school closing. Our goal is to always have school, whenever possible, knowing that students are best served by being in class. However, when Mother Nature throws a curve ball, we must keep staff and student safety as our top priority when making this decision.

How Do We Make Our Decision?

Several factors go into making a “snow day” call, including:

  • Information on current road conditions from our transportation and maintenance crews; conditions are monitored throughout the night, and again at approximately 3:30 – 4 a.m. by LPS operations personnel
  • Amount of snow and ice accumulated
  • Duration and timing of the snow and/or ice event
  • Temperature and wind chill (for safety of walkers and students at bus stops) We use a -20 wind chill for a sustained amount of time as a “cold weather closure” guide
  • School building conditions (electricity, heat, water)
  • School parking lot and sidewalk conditions
  • Current weather conditions, along with predicted weather, but closures cannot be determined solely on predictions
  • Will buses be operational and running on schedule?
  • Consultation with weather consultants and other nearby school districts

Who Makes The Decision?

The superintendent makes the final decision, based on the above factors, recommendations from our Operations Department and consultation with neighboring districts.

Parent Decision

As a reminder, although the district does its best in this process, we know that often, no perfect decision exists. If you feel as though it is not safe for your child to attend school, please know that you always have the option of keeping your child at home.

When Is The Decision Made?

Sometimes, closures are determined the evening prior, while most times they’re determined during the early morning hours. The calls and emails go out as soon as possible, to give families proper planning time. We do not place phone calls earlier than 5 a.m. We do not stagger calls per grade level and we realize that a 5 a.m. call is appropriate for high school students and staff, but early for elementary, which has a later start time. Thanks for your understanding.

How Are Parents Notified?

We spread the word in several ways, as soon as the determination is made by the superintendent:

  • Automated phone call (the first phone number on ParentConnect's Student Emergency Information is used)
  • Email via student emergency card information system (the first email address listed is used)
  • District website posting
  • Social media: District Facebook page, Twitter
  • All local radio and TV news stations

Will Snow Days Be Virtual Learning Days?

Due to the last-minute nature of these calls, it would be difficult for our staff to transition to virtual instruction from a remote location. Therefore, snow days will remain the same as in years past and will not be remote learning days. This applies to virtual and in-person. If there are a significant number of inclement weather days this year, that could be revisited at a later date.

Are There Snow Days Built Into The Calendar?

The district does not build snow days into the calendar, but the State of Michigan allows up to six days for emergency closings.

snow days explainer