The weather is constantly monitored by the Operations Department to ensure that our students are safe while they are on our buses and in our school buildings. We have emergency plans in place and weather emergency drills are a part of the educational process at CMCSS.
Inclement Weather Rules
In the event that the wind chill is below 20°F, the heat index is above 100°F, or if it is raining, the CMCSS school bus fleet is directed to run inclement weather routes. The purpose of the inclement weather route is to reduce the child’s exposure to extreme temperatures and rain. So that students and parents may arrive at their bus stop in a timely manner, they can see if buses are running an inclement weather route by checking the CMCSS website home page where a notification will appear or by calling the CMCSS School Bus Hotline at (931) 358-2006.
The student’s responsibility on inclement weather routes is as follows:
- In the morning, the student remains in the protection of their home. They should be standing in the doorway or near a window wherever they can best see the school bus approaching. As soon as the student sees the school bus approaching, they must immediately leave their home and walk quickly to their assigned bus stop or to their inclement weather bus stop. Our drivers do not know which students will be attending school on a particular day, so it is imperative that the students are at or moving to the bus stop when the school bus is approaching. This is to ensure that the driver sees the student. The bus will not stop, honk the horn, and wait for the student.
- In the afternoon, the bus drivers will alter their routes as they determine appropriate and attempt to drop off the student closer to their home. We do not stop at every home.
It is not possible to provide an inclement weather bus stop for every student in Montgomery County because it is not physically possible (the home sits well off the road, is located in the woods, or is located at a place where the bus cannot turn around). In these instances, parents are required to make other arrangements – such as driving the child to the bus stop and waiting in the car until the bus arrives.
Please note that inclement weather routes only apply to regular education “to and from” school transportation services. Special education routes and after school program transportation use their specified stop location.
How are inclement weather days decided?
The Chief Operations Officer (COO) takes as much time as reasonably possible to make a recommendation to the Director of Schools. We always err on the side of caution to ensure the safety of students. To make a good recommendation, the COO looks at weather data, and has transportation and operations staff checking the road conditions all over Montgomery County. He also is studying radar, as well as attending the national weather service briefings, and calling the forecasters. Sometimes the decision is easy. The more difficult decisions come with the timing or the significance of the event which don’t allow to make a clear decision. When that happens, parents will be kept informed of the status of a closing decision.
To learn more, please view this Focus video: https://cmcssfocus.net/2015/03/16/cmcss-snow-days/
What is the makeup plan when students miss days for inclement weather?
1. The first five days missed by students will not be made up and will come from stockpiled student days.
2. The sixth day missed and subsequent days will be made up as available:
a. January 6, 2020 (staff development day)
b. February 17, 2020 (Presidents Day)
c. March 3, 2020 (staff development day)
d. Early release day on March 13, 2020 will be converted to a full day with thirty minutes added to eight additional school days to equal one day.
e. Thirty minutes added to twelve days not to infringe upon the state testing window to account for one make up day 3.
Make up for days missed beyond this plan will be determined as circumstances require.
Approved by the CMCSS School Board on July 9, 2019.