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Closures & Delayed Start

Snowy Day Image

We live in an area where snow is typical in the winter and unless the storm is extreme, school will not be canceled or delayed.

Many factors are taken into consideration when deciding to close schools, but the safety of students and staff is number one. Decision makers and district staff work through the night and early morning to determine the best course of action and to clear the roads and our school sites.

Learn more about the decision-making process and what to expect when a delay or closure is called by clicking on the drop-down menus below.

NEW IN 2019: Two-Hour Delayed Start Option
Click the graphic to view the flyer for a quick overview of what happens in a 2-hour delay:

graphic of flyer about two hour delay start

Decision-Making Process

Many factors are taken into consideration when deciding to close schools or implement a delayed start, but the safety of students and staff is number one. Many parties work through the night and early morning to determine the best course of action and to clear the roads and our school sites.

Questions that help determine our decision on these days:

  • Can our school bus and snow removal teams do their jobs?
  • Will we be able to provide meals?
  • What is the forecast for later in the day? 

More than anything, we consider the impact on families who are counting on us to be open because they do not have access to other childcare and cannot afford to take a day off at a moment's notice. We also provide meals for hundreds of families who count on the food we provide for breakfast and lunch every day.

Ultimately we ask, does the current situation justify disrupting 84,000 students' families and their often basic human needs and 14,000 employee schedules, plus the expense to the school district? Most often, the answer is no. Because of all these reasons, we will always do whatever we can to have schools open every day.

Mountain Areas
Many often ask, do you evaluate the mountain school areas differently/separately from the more metro area locations? YES. We are aware of weather conditions throughout our district boundaries every day. The mountain areas are evaluated differently using many agencies and experts, including spotters and people located in these mountain areas. However, again, conditions must be deemed extreme enough to warrant closing, based on the reasons explained above. We work closely with county crews to evaluate and clear these areas, and our own Jeffco staff often focus on more impacted areas during weather events.

Jeffco Public Schools rarely takes snow days; that is the organizational history and culture. Like mentioned above, we live in Colorado and expect to have snowy conditions many times of the year. Unless the storm is extreme, school will not be canceled. We know the definition of “extreme” varies from person to person, but parents can always make the call not to send their children to school that day if they feel it is unsafe.

Two-Hour Delayed Start

What to Expect with a 2-Hour Delay

 


If you have a student in...

Expect...
 High School
  • No morning classes at Warren Tech
  • No morning athletic practices
  • No regular breakfast served
  • Class schedule will be communicated by each school
 Middle School
  • No regular breakfast served
 Elementary School
  • No morning kindergarten
  • No regular breakfast served
  • Before school care also delayed 2 hours
 Charter School
  • Check with your school to see if they are following the district delay schedule
 Preschool
  • No morning preschool

 

For Everyone

  • Two-hour delay will only be used during extreme circumstances of inclement weather
  • Families will be notified by 5:30 a.m.
  • School starts 2 hours later than the regular start time
  • School ends at the normal time
  • Buses run 2 hours later than normal in the morning
  • Tardies/absences will be excused if school is notified by family
  • Limited staff will be available at school for working families who cannot make alternate arrangements
  • Missed school work should be provided and accepted under the same policy as applies to regular absences

 

Questions? Call your school directly.

Closures

Length of a weather-related School Closure

Unless otherwise announced, weather-related closures are for one day onlyIf there is NO further announcement after one day, then schools will operate as usual.


Event Cancellations or Postponements

If a decision is made to cancel after-school care and/or activities district-wide, we will do our best to notify families by 1:00pm that day via email, text message, social media, website alert, and phone.

Check with individual schools or event sponsors regarding the cancellation of events and activities. These kinds of cancellations may vary from school to school. Many schools will utilize social media to share this information; we encourage families to follow their children's school, as well as the district's social media channels for the fastest information.


Make-Up Days

District policy mandates a specific number of days each year teachers must work directly with students. When a school falls below this level, make-up days, which will be announced, may need to be scheduled. Check the district's school year calendar for more details.

How to Find Out

SchoolMessenger (district messaging system)

SchoolMessenger distributes messages via email, text message, and phone. Be sure to keep your information in JeffcoConnect up-to-date at all times to ensure you receive these notifications. We encourage families to allow for email, text message, and phone, which can be selected in Notification Preferences in JeffcoConnect.

 

District And school Social Media Channels

Follow the district's Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook pages in order to receive the fastest information. Turn on notifications for our channels once you have "followed" them.

 

Local News Media

Listen and watch the news media, particularly local TV stations, for these messages:

"All Jeffco Public Schools are closed"
or
"All Jeffco Mountain Schools are closed"

Mountain schools are:

  • Bergen Meadow Elementary
  • Bergen Valley Elementary
  • Coal Creek Canyon K-8
  • Conifer High School
  • Elk Creek Elementary
  • Evergreen Middle School
  • Evergreen High School
  • Marshdale Elementary
  • Ralston Elementary
  • Rocky Mountain Academy of Evergreen
  • Parmalee Elementary
  • West Jefferson Elementary
  • West Jefferson Middle School
  • Wilmot Elementary

FAQs

When are decisions made about school closures, and how will I know?

The district makes every effort to decide and announce decisions to close schools before 5:30am. The planning and review process begins the night before. Once a decision is made, a message will be posted on our social media channels, district and school websites, local news media stations, and sent to Jeffco families via email, text, and phone.


What factors are used to make a decision?

Weather and road conditions are checked throughout Jefferson County beginning the night before.

Using a variety of resources, the school district gathers as much information as possible and monitors ongoing weather reports from weather forecasting services, the Colorado Department of Transportation, and local and state law enforcement agencies.

Specific personnel who are at district and school sites early and who are located throughout our district are consulted.

After a thorough review of all available data collected, district officials will provide a recommendation before 5am to the district administrator responsible for making the final decision.


Is there a set temperature that would cause the district to close schools?

No, but temperature is one of many factors taken into consideration when making a decision to close or delay school. Extreme temperatures may cause schools to limit recess, off-campus lunch hours for high schools, and/or extracurricular activities.


If a school day is cancelled, will there be a make-up day?

State law requires a specific number of hours of classroom instruction each school year. If a school does not meet this requirement the school year must be extended. Potential closure make-up days are built into the school calendar.


How can I make sure my student is safe?

Families have the option to keep children home when weather conditions are extreme.

Students should always be dressed appropriately for whatever weather conditions exist. No one can predict when a fire alarm might go off or when buildings might have to be evacuated due to an emergency.

Parents are encouraged to make arrangements at the beginning of each school year for their children in case of school closures and plan for the rare situation when it is necessary to close an individual school because of a power failure or another circumstance.

Parents should always maintain current contact information and emergency contact information in JeffcoConnect


What about school bus transportation when the weather is bad?

All bus stops will be serviced in inclement weather unless an emergency announcement is made. In inclement weather, buses may run late for a variety of reasons, but usually less than 15 minutes. Prepare your child in suitable clothing to wait additional time at the bus stop. 

Parents should have a contingency plan in the event that a bus is running extremely late or breaks down before reaching the bus stop. Discuss with your child what to do and who to call if the bus does not arrive.

You can also follow the transportation terminals on Facebook and Twitter for more information.

Terminal    Facebook  Twitter
Central  JPSCoCentralTrans  @JPScentraltrans
North  JPSCoNorthTrans  @JPSnorthtrans
South  JPSCoSouthTrans  @JPSsouthtrans
West  JPSCoWestTrans  @JPSwesttrans


Does the district ever close only some schools, while others remain open?

Yes. The district may close select schools due to unsafe conditions, but leave other schools open that are not affected by the issue. The Jeffco Public Schools district covers more than 770 square miles and conditions can vary drastically throughout the county.

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