Weather-Related Closures

  • Snowstorms, sleet, fog, ice, and wind chill warnings can lead to cancellations, delays, or early release from school. The safety of our children is our main priority. Decisions regarding school delays and cancellations are always made in alignment with that priority. Check out Inside the OSD Podcast (Episode 9)where Dr. Bergstrom discusses the process for deteremining weather-related closures.

    If school will be delayed or closed for the day, the District will make every effort to make the decision by 5:30-6:00 AM (the normal timeframe for closures). We understand that many families prefer to make plans for school closures as far in advance as possible; however, weather patterns are not always predictable and weather-related impacts for schools are not often clear until early morning hours on the day of the potential closure. We thank you for your understanding on these days of potential weather-related closures.  

    At all times and in all casesfamilies make the final decision on attendance at school on inclement weather days. If no school delay or cancellation is issued and you believe the conditions (e.g., road conditions, temperature) are not appropriate for your student, you are free to keep your student home and the absence will be excused. If you choose to keep your student home, please call the OSD Attendance Line at 608-835-4000, Option #1 to report the absence.

Wind Chill Factor

  • Wind chill factor is the main criteria for closing school due to cold temperatures. Below is a summary of what wind chill alerts mean for school closures:

    • Wind Chill Warning: the District will either cancel or delay school, depending on the timeframe of the warning.
    • Wind Chill Advisory: school will be in session unless it comes along with a storm producing snow that would cause roads to be impassable.

    This is an established standard for the majority of Dane County school districts. However, note that different districts may have unique circumstances that can lead to different school closure decisions. For example, districts in urban settings that have large populations of students who walk to school may close at warmer temperatures than school districts that have larger populations of students who ride a bus to school. Alternatively, more suburban districts that have a large population of students who ride the bus to school may be more likely to close during snowfall than urban districts. Ultimately, closure decisions are made on a case-by-case basis for each individual school district.  

Communicating Weather-Related Closures

Practices for Making Up Inclement Weather Days

  • There are three inclement weather days built into our K-12 grade school calendar, which will be treated as “traditional” snow days (no class on these days), if needed. If inclement weather can be predicted in advance, there will be a possibility of at-home learning options, which include Google classroom assignments for students in grades 7-12 and paper packets with activities for students in grades K-6. As always, the last day of school will be announced once the likelihood of inclement weather has passed in spring.    

    A message was sent to all OSD families on March 2 with the weather day makeup plan for this school year: 2022-2023 Weather Day Make-Up Plan

    Please note that details in the plan are specific to students in kindergarten - grade 12.  To this point, the 4K calendar does not need to change as a result of the inclement weather days; we will communicate directly with 4K families should there be additional inclement weather days that impact the 4K calendar.