How do school districts decide when to close for weather?


Every year, school districts have to make the decision if and when to close during times of snow, ice or other severe weather events.  

In most school districts, including Metro Nashville Public Schools, officials try to make the decision the night before. But often, they are faced with needing to inspect roads first.  

Metro Davidson County transportation officials are out inspecting the roads by 3:00 am and make their decision by 4:30 am.  

Conditions can vary widely in the county depending whether you are in the urban corridor of Metro Nashville or in rural areas – such as Joelton – where there are lots of hills with more curvy, narrow roads.  

Decisions are made based on factors such as:  

  • Weather forecasts and accumulation 
  • Conditions after the snow or ice has fallen.  
  • Officials’ assessment of road conditions.  
  • Amount of time to prepare bus fleet.  

Although every effort is made to keep students in school through regular dismissal, there are times when it may become necessary to dismiss students several hours early to ensure safe transportation of the students.  

Parents should be prepared and have a set procedure for their child to follow. Most school systems now notify parents and students by phone, as well as through internet sources, including email or social media.    

In Williamson County, they notify parents by phone and email first, then through social media and their website. They and most school systems encourage parents to follow their Facebook and Twitter pages. 

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