October has brought warm days and very chilly mornings to Southwest Public Schools. When children arrive in the morning in shorts and t-shirts, outdoor activities can become very unpleasant for them. Soon it will reach the freezing mark and we’ll have cold afternoons and evenings, so please dress your child in layers or at least have them bring a jacket. Before we know it, the snow will be flying again and we will need to deal with that as it happens.
Speaking of snow, with have a very well-used system of determining when we need to call a late start or day of no school due to weather. We stay in touch with other local school districts, follow the weather forecasters and predictions, and keep in contact throughout the evening and early morning to determine if it is safe to run buses or have students driving to school. Kids need to understand that when the weather is not the best and roads have been cleared or salted, they still may be in for poor driving conditions. Slow down! One of the problems we must consider is that even if it is determined that school will be delayed or called off completely, many businesses are still open. Parents still need to go to work, and therefore, must find child care at the last minute. It’s a two-sided issue, and we understand that. We will try to make the call the evening before, but of course weather patterns change in a matter of hours and we find out in the early morning that roads have become icy or a blizzard has developed. We use the Weatherthreat system, which in turn feeds many of our local radio and television stations with closing information (that you see scroll across the bottom of the screen). You will also receive an automated phone call and text telling you that school has been delayed or cancelled. If at any time a parent feels that it is not safe to send their child to school because of inclement weather, we will respect that decision. We understand that in a very large district, the weather may be fine on one side and not great on the other side. It’s never an exact science, but we want to be safe, keeping in mind that we want kids in school when possible so we can properly educate children.
We are approaching the halfway point of fall activities, which seems very hard to believe. We appreciate the support for all of our activities. Please keep in mind that being a good role model in the stands or on the sidelines in a very important lesson that can be taught by everyone. Things sometimes don’t go exactly the way we would like, just like in our adult lives. Children need to learn to overcome adversity, and do it with dignified hard work. It’s a great lesson that all of us should abide by.
Finally, we appreciate those parents that have been cautious while dealing with the current health situation we have. When your child is ill, please keep them home. Listen to your health care provider, and follow their advice about keeping them home. We will do everything we can to keep your child up to date with assignments, homework, etc. Keeping ALL of our students and staff is very important, so keep up the good work! One last item for parents, please keep up to date with checking the link for registered sex offenders in your area. Let’s keep our lids safe!
Thank you for your continued support of our students.
R. Todd Porter