The following outlines guidelines and procedures used by Olmsted Falls City School District when determining if schools should be closed due to inclement weather. The closure determination process involves our ability to clear our own entrances and grounds coupled with the ability of Township and City plows to keep up with snow accumulation on streets.
The decision to close school is always made with student safety as our first priority.
Factors that are taken into account during the process of making the decision include:
- Amount of accumulated snow / ice.
- Weather forecasts from satellite systems, local radar and National Weather Service.
- Temperature and wind chill.
- Road conditions.
- Impact on our bus fleet.
- Timing of the storm. Whether precipitation is expected to continue throughout the day according to the National Weather Service (www.weather.gov).
- Building conditions (heat, electricity) and ability to keep parking lots / walkways clear of snow and ice.
In regard to cold weather or wind chill, please keep in mind that one variable that at times can differentiate Olmsted Falls School District from neighboring districts (such as Berea, Fairview Park, North Olmsted and Strongsville) is that our District provides transportation services for all of its students and does not have a walking zone for students, like many of the surrounding communities. Because of this level of transportation service, there may be times when Olmsted Falls School District is able to remain open while other surrounding districts are forced to close. However, extremely cold temperatures coupled with wind chill may force closure for our district at times to ensure the health and safety of students and staff.
The process for making the determination of whether to close school typically begins about 4:00 a.m. with key district personnel on-site to assess the condition of local roads, school facilities and bus fleet. When road conditions are less than ideal, OFCS personnel are also in communication with local safety forces and local road crews to determine whether buses can travel safely on our local roads. In most instances, if roads are deemed safe for travel by our fleet of buses, school will be in session for Olmsted Falls School District.
Olmsted Falls School District makes every effort to make the final determination about whether or not to close the schools sometime between 5:45 – 6:15 a.m., and to communicate that information to parents and staff as soon as possible. Under some circumstances, the decision can be made further in advance (i.e. the night before), but most often a final decision comes in the early morning hours on the day of the closure. If you hear nothing by 6:30, know that schools will be open.
Please note that parents and caregivers know their students best and may ultimately decide to keep their student(s) home due to inclement weather when school remains open. Families making the personal decision to keep a student home when school is open must plan to notify your child’s school building as you normally would when he/she will not be in attendance and the absence will be recorded.
School closure information for OFCS will be communicated in a variety of ways including:
OFCS SwiftK12 Automated Voice/Email/Text Communication System
Twitter (follow @OFCSDistrict and @OFCSSuper)
OFCS website (www.ofcs.net) and social media accounts (Facebook/Instagram/X)
Local tv/radio news stations