Snow Day Policies & Procedures
Blackboard Connect Notification – On snow days the Blackboard Connect system will be used to contact district-wide contacts that school will be closed. The superintendent, business manager, or administrative assistant will create and/or record the message to parents, staff, and other contacts. Calls will be scheduled for the following times (beginning Fall, 2020):
Early Staff (Food Svc, Custodial, Bus Drivers, others) – 5:30 or as soon as possible after that
Regular Hour Staff – 6:15 am or as soon as possible after that
Parents & Students – 6:30 or at least 15 minutes before the first bus pickup
If you are considered “Regular Hour Staff” but would like to receive a call at 5:30 or as soon as a cancellation or delay is determined, contact Vicki Hechtner at firstname.lastname@example.org to have your phone number added to the 5:30 call list.
Individual school early closure
Blackboard Connect Notification– On snow days the Blackboard Connect system will be used to contact city-wide (Glendo, Wheatland, or Chugwater) contacts that school will be closed. The principal, after consultation with the Superintendent, will contact the Administrative Assistant to create and/or record messages to parents, students, and staff. Calls to Glendo and Chugwater will be sent at one time and determined by the principal.
Custodial staff and other 12-month central office staff will be required to report, if possible. Hourly employees should consult with the immediate supervisor if they are unable to report to work. Hourly employees will not be compensated for the time missed during snow days. Contracted employees able to report, but doing so will be required to use personal, vacation time or accept as unpaid. Employees unable to report due to weather or road conditions will not have to use personal or vacation days and will be paid their contracted rate of pay. Custodians will be working on these days.
Certified staff making a personal determination to leave early will be required to use personal or vacation time. Staff affected by impending road closures will not be required to use personal or vacation time. All staff requesting to leave early should consult with their immediate supervisors to attain a substitute.
General considerations of determining paid vs. unpaid: The basic determination of whether an employee will be paid vs. unpaid is whether the situation or decision is in the hands of the employee. Example: (1) Employees who need to leave early while school is still in session will have the time deducted from their personal days or vacation days. (2) If an employee cannot report to work due to I-25 or other road closure, it is out of the employee's hands and will not be docked personal or vacation time. (3) If an employee is on a road that is open (plowed or drivable), but chooses not to clear their driveway and therefore cannot report to work will be required to use personal or vacation time.
The current Wyoming State Statute on school calendars states:
Wyoming State Statute
21‑4‑301. Schools to be free and accessible to all children; minimum school year.
Each school district shall operate its schools and its classes for a minimum of one hundred seventy‑five (175) days each school year unless an alternative schedule has been approved by the state board. Prior to submission of a proposed alternative schedule to the state board, the board of trustees shall hold at least two (2) advertised public meetings within the district, at which the board shall present the proposed alternative schedule and respond to public questions and comments. Any school district operating under an alternative schedule shall annually evaluate the effectiveness of that schedule in meeting the educational goals and purposes for which the schedule was adopted.
Chapter 22 of WDE ‘WY Rules and Regulations’
Section 4. Definitions.
(a) “Alternative Schedule”. Any schedule approved by the State Board of Education under the procedures outlines in Chapter XXI of these Rules and Regulations.
Section 5. School Day.
In no case, however, may applicable pupil/teacher contact time be less than the minimums for hours set out in subsections (i) through (iv) below. (Deviation from the following minimums require that an alternative schedule be filed with the WDE for prior approval by the SBE; see Chapter XXI, Alternative Schedules for related information.) School/hour/day schedules must be reflected and described in the district calendar submitted to WDE, as well as in any accreditation reports. The minimum annual student-teacher contact time for Wyoming public schools (kindergarten through grade 12) shall be:
(i) Kindergarten. A minimum of 450 hours.
(ii) Elementary. A minimum of 900 hours.
(iii) Middle School/Junior High. A minimum of 1050 hours.
(iv) Secondary. A minimum of 1100 hours.
Section 6. Saturday/Sunday Classes.
(a) Saturdays or Sundays may not be used as days taught unless written permission has been granted by the State Superintendent of Public Instruction. Such permission may be granted to make up days when school is dismissed because of emergency situations beyond the control of the school authorities, provided no religious minority is disadvantaged thereby.
Our current calendar does allow for built-in snow days and we are required by WDE to submit an alternative schedule changing student contact days if necessary. The one identified snow days is April 2 which are currently considered staff in-service days and will be utilized if a snow day falls at least ten days prior to these dates. If there are any snow days and in-services that are changed to student days, the in-service days will be added to the end of the calendar. For the 2020-21 school year, days will be added beginning on June 1 for each snow day.
*Amendment: We had to shuffle some school days at the start of the school year, which caused us to lose some professional development days. A new option that #onePlatte1 can take advantage of is the utilization of a Distance Education (DE) day during a snow day. If we have enough time to plan, students can attend school from home with their device and that would count as a school day. Each school will design a plan to utilize during these instances. Attendance will be taken throughout the day in order to meet the requirements set forth by the Wyoming Department of Education. We would have to meet an established attendance rate in order for the day to ‘count’ as a day of instruction. Additional details will be provided once they become available.
Click below to access the 2020-2021 School Improvement Plans for this school year. Plans are due to WDE on 11/1/20 and were submitted and approved by the School Board at the November Board Meeting. Please feel free to contact any of the building principals if you have any thoughts, suggestions, or questions.
I wanted to put my thoughts out to you in a verbal manner so you can hear it rather than reading it. I know this is a delicate discussion, but please, believe me, we all have the same end goal. The conversations that we have already had have been productive. We hope to never have to utilize this policy and we recognize the work that has gone into these revisions so far.
Please feel free to reach out with any questions that you might have.
Cory J. Dziowgo ~ Superintendent of #onePlatte1