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PO BOX F | 4238 State Highway 8
New Berlin, NY 13411
P: 607.847.7500
F: 607.847.9194
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How the District Makes Emergency Closure, Delay, Early Release Decisions
There are a lot of considerations when Unadilla Valley Central School District decides to delay or close the school.

The safety of our staff and students is the number one priority of the district, and every effort is made to ensure we make the best decision possible in as timely a manner as possible. State law also mandates a set number of days and even hours that school must be in session. If the district exceeds its allotment of emergency days, it is forced to dip into vacation days and other periods when school is not normally scheduled.

The district typically begins planning its response to a weather event at least two days in advance. This is done through consultation with the National Weather Service, which distributes to the district four customized weather updates prior to and throughout each predicted storm at any time during the year. Local weather conditions are also monitored in real time. In addition, local highway departments are consulted to ascertain the condition of area roadways.

During the most recent weather event, a winter storm with persistent cold, the district followed its standard procedures and a decision was made to cancel some afterschool activities on Thursday. On Friday morning, after consulting the NWS and observing conditions that were around 0 degrees with lighter than expected winds, the decision was made to keep the school district open for the day. In addition, the bus garage began running buses at around 4 a.m. to ensure they would be safe and warm for students. The building was checked between 4 a.m. and 5 a.m. prior to making the final decision as well. We also consult with several neighboring school districts in any inclement weather situation.

Also, in anticipation of the cold weather, the district made adjustments to its heating system earlier in the week to ensure the building would be comfortably warm throughout the duration of the cold snap.

Across the region, some school districts chose to remain open Friday; some were on two-hour delays; and others were closed. Closing a school district is an independent decision reached by a district based on local conditions and a range of other factors.

We certainly understand the need for parents to be able to make alternate childcare arrangements. If an emergency day, delay or early release is necessary on any given day, the district will make that decision as soon as it feasibly can in order for parents and caregivers to make arrangements.

Because the district has a limited number of emergency days and it is early in the winter season, we want to be prepared in the event of major storms later in the year.  Often, the heaviest snow of the season comes in February and March.

We thank you for your patience, and we hope you stay warm and safe this weekend. It may not seem like it, but spring is coming!
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