District view: Most Wonderful Time of Year

I love this time of year in school. I love the excitement in the eyes of our younger children each and every day during this time. I love hearing the laughter, the singing, and the wonderful stories. Like the song says, “it’s the most wonderful time of year.” However, with this wonderful time of year comes the inclement weather we are about to be dealing with. I have lived in North Dakota most ofmy life and I still am not use to this weather!

By Kelly Koppinger
Thank you for remembering to send your students with coats, gloves, hats, snow boots, etc. and for that matter, whatever it takes to keep them warm each day as we go outside. We will be outside most days because research shows students need fresh air and exercise to perform at their best.
With the winter months and more severe weather conditions of winter I wanted to review our inclement weather policy to both reassure and help parents and patrons prepare and plan.We recommend that students arrive at school no earlier than 8:00 AM for supervision purposes. If arriving earlier, the building will be open for students to wait in the front commons area until outside supervision arrives.
Children should arrive at school dressed for the weather of the day, so they can safely and comfortably enjoy recesses. In winter months, children should remember to bring shoes to change into from their snow boots. All healthy children will be expected to go out for recess except in extreme weather conditions (wind chill, rain, snow, etc.).Students will remain inside in extreme weather conditions such as: very cold temperatures (below a negative 20 degrees with the wind chill, heavy rain and snowfall, unhealthy air/inversions (we check air quality when there are advisories).
Please be considerate and safety conscious as you drop off and pick up students at school. The winter months see an increase in the number of cars. Remember to: not block the flow of traffic, not block cross walk area, use designated parking areas if you need to enter the building.
In the event of a major weather event (severe storm, power outage…) The District’s Alert Solutions system will be used to notify parents. This can be in the form of an automated phone call, text, or email. For this information to reach you, it is important that you keep your contact information current within the online SIS system. Information will also be posted and updated on the district web page at www.new-england.k12.nd.us.
With several of our students driving to school, ensure that your child’s tires have adequate tread and keep your gas tank at least half-full. Keep a windshield scraper and small broom for ice and snow removal. Check your windshield wiper fluid and keep your gas tank at least half-full. Plan your trips to school carefully, listening to the radio or television for the latest weather forecasts, road conditions, and school closures.
Each car should have an emergency preparation kit. Everyone should have some non-perishable food, bottled water, flashlights, and extra batteries. Additional items that should be included on your supply list are a freshly-stocked first-aid kit, essential prescription medicines, non-perishable foods (those that require no refrigeration such as canned goods, dried fruits, and nuts), a non-electric can opener, water, and extra blankets.
Every household should develop a family emergency communication plan in case family members are separated from one another during a storm. That is a real possibility during the day if parents are at work and children are at school. Each household should have made arrangements with the school to provide them with information regarding storm homes in case of an emergency. There may be times when school will be called off during the school day and busses will not run their regular routes. Storm homes will be utilized for the safety of the students and bus drivers. Please contact your school and make sure we have updated information regarding storm homes.
Storm homes are an essential component of our winter emergency preparedness plan. Every student should have a storm home identified in case of an emergency. Storm homes should be provided with extra clothes, essential medications, personal hygiene supplies, and various other items to minimize the distraction the storm may cause. It is imperative we have this information on file in each school building.
Merry Christmas from all of us here at New England Public School!

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