School Closure or Delay Procedures

School Closure and delays

For current information, call any MF school (or district office at 541.938.3551) and press 5 or see updates on the home page on this website.

Radio and Television Announcements

School Closure Information is announced on the following radio and television stations.

  • Call District Office at 938-3551 and press 5 for closure information.

If the decision is made to either delay or cancel school...

...the information is immediately publicized to staff, parents and students.

  • Calls are made to area radio and television stations to tell them about the schedule change for the Milton-Freewater School District so they can begin broadcasting the information.
  • Schedule change information is recorded on the district information phone voice message. You may reach the message by calling any school phone number and then pressing 5 or 541-938-3551 and pressing 5 once you receive the initial voice message.
  • Schedule change information is posted on the front page of the district web site as soon as possible..
  • Many school activities outside the regular school day are also affected by delaying or canceling the opening of school. The list below may help you determine the schedule of other activities if there is a schedule change in the regular school day.

If schools are closed all day...

...the following activities are also canceled:

  • After-school Community Education (CCLC) activities.
  • Elementary after-school and evening activities, and
  • Middle school after-school and evening activities.
  • Decisions about evening high school activities are made by 2:30 p.m., if possible, and communicated as soon as possible on the high school web site:

If the opening of school is delayed for the day...

  • School buses operate on a delayed schedule.

If severe weather develops or is predicted during the school day...

...schedules may change in one or more of the following ways:

  • School may be dismissed early, or
  • Middle school and high school activity bus routes may be cancelled.
  • After school activities may be cancelled.

To prepare for a possible early dismissal...

Parents are encouraged to have a plan with their child in case of early dismissal due to weather conditions or an emergency situation. Your plan may be to have your child go home and call you at work, or go to a friend’s house and call. In developing your plan, keep in mind that in certain emergency situations students may be immediately evacuated and may not be able to go back into the school to get a key or other belongings from their lockers. Having a spare key hidden at home and available to your child may be a part of your plan.

For more information about school closings

  • Contact Facilities Manager, Roger Weiler.

Rationale and Considerations

The following is the rationale and the considerations behind the decision on whether or not to close school due, to inclement weather. We know these decisions impact families throughout the district who may need to find alternative care for their children. The Over-riding consideration in making these decisions is the safety of our students, staff and others in the community. Beyond that, the process becomes more complicated.

The fundamental decision is whether students and staff will be safer with school in session or with school closed for the day. Several factors are considered:

  • Road conditions are extremely important and must be considered throughout the district, including rural areas;
  • School buses can drive through very deep snow, but they can’t make it through to school if streets and country roads are clogged with stuck vehicles;
  • Wind chill is also important, if students walk to school or if there is the possibility of buses running late and students having to wait a longer time at their bus stop;
  • The weather prediction for the remainder of the day is also considered, as well as the reports from our city and county as to when key roads will be plowed, and
  • Finally, the actions of other districts in the area and their observations of conditions are considered.

When severe winter weather occurs, the following steps are taken to examine weather conditions and to decide whether to delay or cancel the opening of school.

  • By 4:45 a.m., district Transportation Coordinator is driving on key roads throughout the district.
  • By 5:15 a.m., the Transportation Department contacts the district-level director or Business Manager, who oversees transportation with information on weather and road conditions; the director then shares that information with the superintendent and they discuss whether there may be a need to change the school schedule.
  • As early as possible, the superintendent makes a decision to take one of the following actions:
    • open schools on schedule,
    • delay the opening of schools
    • or cancel school for the day.