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Preparing for Inclement Weather

With winter approaching, we must prepare for the possibility of inclement weather. The decision-making process for closing schools for inclement weather is complex with the safety of our students and staff as our top priority.

Here are the answers to some frequently asked questions about weather-related closings/delays:

How does FCPS make the decision for weather-related closings?

  • Monitor weather conditions and forecasts.
  • Review road condition information working in collaboration with local law enforcement.
  • Check certain areas of the county known to be more prone to icing or slow melting.
  • Division Superintendent and the Assistant Superintendent of Administration review the information gathered and make a delay/closing decision.

How will FCPS notify you when school is closed or delayed?

FCPS will announce the decision in a variety of ways:

What are the possible closing/delay options?

  • School Closure
    • Calls/emails/text messages will be made to families and staff and will include reporting time for 12-month employees and essential personnel.
  • 2-hour Delay
    • Allows time for staff to clear snow or ice at schools, and gives bus drivers the advantage of daylight to see hazardous conditions.
  • Early Dismissal
    • Unexpected closing can leave students home alone when parents are at work. Therefore, we seek to make a decision on any mid-morning or afternoon arriving weather systems based on the best available forecasts.
  • Evening Activities Canceled/Weekend Activities Canceled
    • Weather conditions are monitored daily to determine if school activities may be impacted.

When are decisions made?

  • When possible, decisions are made the night before.
  • When conditions require a delay in the decision, our goal is to notify you by 5:30 a.m.

We hope that these answers help you better understand our procedures for weather-related closings and delays. Please stay safe and warm this winter.