How does CMS leadership make the decision to close or delay schools and what factors are considered?
"Closing our schools isn't a decision that we make lightly," said Superintendent Dr. Clayton Wilcox. "We follow the weather forecast closely and assess the roads with the help of law enforcement agencies. Our leadership team meets often to discuss the latest updates. When we are making a decision, the safety of our students and staff is our number-one priority."
Wilcox and his executive team also make plans for all possible scenarios - no school, late start, early dismissal. Since the state requires a minimum of 185 days or 1,025 hours of school for students, district leadership must keep an eye on the calendar and designate make-up days.
When severe weather happens, the CMS Transportation Department sends out employees in the early hours of the morning to evaluate road conditions throughout the district and report back to leadership. CMS leaders also consult with the city, other municipalities and Mecklenburg County to learn the status of roads and the timetable for clearing them. CMS also works with Emergency Management Services to get a comprehensive understanding of road conditions and safety.
The leadership team in CMS includes representatives from Human Resources, Transportation, Finance, Accountability, Learning Communities, Office of School Performance, Academics, Technology and Communications. The team meets in person or via conference call as often as needed. As soon as a decision is reached, the Communications team gets information out to employees, parents and the media.
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