Seymour Community School Corp. Superintendent Brandon Harpe knew he needed to get information about weather delays and cancellations out to the community soon.
But he wasn’t expecting the first snow of the season to fall so early.
The district called a two-hour delay Tuesday morning after more than an inch of snow covered the area Monday night.
During Tuesday night’s school board meeting, Harpe went over several ways parents can stay updated on weather-related closings and delays.
Harpe said the school system utilizes online sources, social media, text alerts and automated calls along with radio and television stations to communicate important information to the public.
"I think our people do a really good job of using a lot of different media to get the information out to our families," he said.
If checking online, parents should visit the school corporation’s website at scsc.k12.in.us.
Technology director Brian Rodman updates the homepage daily with a traffic light. If the light is on red, school is canceled, and if it’s on yellow, there is a delay. Green means school is open.
The Tribune also will have local school closings and delays posted on its website at tribtown.com.
People also can look for the information on the Seymour Community Schools Facebook page, where it will be available in English and Spanish, on Twitter @SchoolSeymour and @SeymourOwls1 and through the Seymour Athletics App.
The district also uses text alerts and an automated call system to notify parents.
Families can sign up to receive text messages through the school’s Dynacal alert system on the district’s website.
Local radio and television stations also will be notified in order to share the information with their audiences.
"It’s important we recognize all those media outlets," Harpe said. "Only trust when you hear information from those sources. We’ve had instances in the past where people put it on other social media, and it causes all kinds of confusion."
It’s best to use those sources instead of calling the district’s central office or the schools, he said.
"All that does is tie up employees and phone lines," he said. "We urge our families to please start with those sites."
Harpe said although they get a lot of calls asking about early release due to weather, he advised Seymour schools will rarely send kids home during the school day.
"It has just been our philosophy that there will be too many kids going home to an empty household and maybe can’t get in," he said.
Ultimately, parents have the authority to keep their children home if they think weather conditions are too poor to send them to school.
"Parents have the right to make decisions for the safety of their children," Harpe said. "If it’s not safe in their area, they can choose to keep the child home and communicate that with their school."
Harpe said the district may implement eLearning days during inclement weather beginning next school year.
"This year, we are not up and ready to have eLearning days for inclement weather yet," he said. "That’s a possibility and likely scenario next year, but we are not ready for this year."
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Places to find Seymour Community Schools 2019-20 school closing/delay information
Online: Seymour Community School Corp. website at scsc.k12.in.us or The Tribune at tribtown.com
Social media: Seymour Community Schools Facebook, Seymour Schools Information Twitter @SchoolSeymour, Seymour Athletics Twitter @SeymourOwls1, Seymour Athletics App
Text alerts/automated call system: School Messenger for all registered students. Others may sign up for Dynacal text alerts on the SCSC website.
Radio stations: FM 92.7, 96.3, 100.3, 101.5 and 107.3 and AM 1390
Television stations: Indianapolis WRTV 6, WB4 Fox 59, WTHR 13, WISH TV 8 and WTIU/WFIU. Louisville WAVE 3, WLKY 32, WDRB 41 and WHAS 11.