School Closures

Driving in the winter

We wanted to provide you with information that will be helpful in the event of school delays or closures caused by wintery, unhealthy or unsafe conditions. If you would like to read more about school emergency operations, Board Regulation 805 can be found on the District’s webpage at carsoncityschools.com within the “School Board” tab or by clicking here.

Should it be necessary to delay the start of a school day or cancel school due to severe or unsafe weather conditions, you will most likely hear about the decision from local news sources. Beginning as early as 5:15 AM, watch or listen to your favorite local TV or Radio stations to get updates about changes to school schedules. Our District webpage is also a good place to learn if there are school delays or closures. A banner on our home page will display the essential information as early as 6:00 AM on a day when the weather is questionable. The third method, which you may hear about a school delay or closure, will come in the form of an automated text and/or telephone call as early as 6 AM. This text or call from the District Office will provide you with the general details for the day.

Phone NumbersExtreme weather swings are possible in Carson City. Here are some terms that you will want to understand about school delays or closures. 

  • Delayed Start – Schools will start two-hours later than usual. All Pre-K classes are canceled. Principals will adjust the school schedule for the shortened day. Educators and staff should arrive safely and as early as they are able, well before school is to begin on the shortened schedule. They should take caution and plan 2-times their normal travel time depending on driving conditions. The school day will typically end at the normal time. Breakfast will not be served
  • Closure – Schools will be closed for the entire day. All employees, students and teachers (with the exception of Emergency Response Team members) should remain home. No student activities, school-work or programs will occur, including remote instruction. This includes school-course assignments, homework, afterschool programs and practices. No school services such as transportation, nutrition or student health will be provided. Please note that the Nevada Department of Education has given guidance that if a school is closed because of  natural disaster, inclement weather, accident or any other extraordinary circumstance, the day/time cannot be shifted to a 100% distance or remote learning day and will need to be made up at the end of the school year.
  • Early Release – In the unlikely occurrence that conditions warrant early release from school, after-school programs, practices, performances and contests, including interscholastic athletic events will likely be cancelled.
  • Parent Discretion – If at any time you feel that conditions are unsafe to take or send your student to school, you may keep your child home for the day regardless of the District’s decision to hold school. The schools will support your decision and work with you to make-up any school work or assignments.
Additional Guidance Regarding Smoke School Closures 
Smoke and maskThe Carson City School District will use the U.S. EPA "Air Now" website to determine whether school will be cancelled. At the binning of each school day, the superintendent will review the AirNow.gov Air Quality Index (AQI) and the day’s weather forecast. If the AQI is reported at or above 400 by AirNow.gov for the 89701 zip code by 5:30 a.m. and the weather forecast predicts that conditions are not expected to improve, all employees, students and families will be notified that school will be cancelled. Additionally, if the school day begins and the AQI reaches or exceeds 400, school will remain in session for the day and students and staff will remain indoors. 

On days where the Air Quality Index (AQI) is “Unhealthy” or above 150 AQI, all outdoor activities including athletics, physical education and recess will be canceled or moved indoors. 

We remind families that our building management system adheres to fresh air standards and has taken steps prior to the start of school to contract with a HVAC specialist to perform a HVAC Readiness and Pre-Occupancy Assessment so that staff, students and families can return to the schools with confidence. This activity has been performed on HVAC, filtration, ventilation and domestic water systems. A final engineering report was produced and summarizes the general recommendations of OSHA, CDC and ASHRAE. Additionally, we upgraded air filtrations systems to at least a MERV-13 filter for all air-handling equipment. System filters are changed 3 times per year.

We feel the safest and best place for students to learn during a scheduled school day is in their desk at school. However, we encourage parents to use discretion. Students with respiratory or other preexisting health conditions may necessitate individual adaptation. Additionally, if parents have not already done so, please coordinate any medical related needs with the school nurse or health aide. 

If at any time parents feel that conditions are unsafe to take or send their student to school, they may keep their child home for the day regardless of the district’s decision to hold school. The schools will support the parent’s decision and work with them to make up any school work or assignments. However, students who do not attend school will be counted as absent. 

On days where air quality is unhealthy, school buses will operate with all windows closed. For those concerned about their student(s) waiting outside at a bus stop or walking to school, we would invite families to make arrangements to transport their child(ren) to and from school and avoid the unhealthy conditions as best as possible.

We would also remind parents and families that if you do not receive a text, email or phone call or see a banner announcement on the district’s homepage indicating a delayed start or school closure, schools will remain open and in session.

If schools are closed because of a natural disaster, inclement weather, accident or any other extraordinary circumstance, per instruction from the Nevada Department of Education, Smoke Days are not considered "days in school" regardless of the digital ability to provide remote instruction. Consequently, neither teachers nor students are expected to participate in remote learning activities during a canceled school day. 

On days where school has been canceled, teachers should not assign homework using virtual means and assignments will not be due until the next regular day of in-person school. Additionally, no student activities, school-work or programs will occur, including remote instruction via Pioneer Academy. This includes school-course assignments, homework, afterschool programs and practices. No school services such as transportation, nutrition or student health will be provided.

With any school closure, students and employees should expect an extension of the school year, further extending school days in June. As such, families and employees should not schedule vacations or expect to exit the school year before calendar obligations are met.

Other Recommendations:

As you and your family prepare for the winter months ahead, here are some useful tips. 

snow branchesBe prepared: Keep your automobile with enough fuel and in good working order for winter travel. Snow tires and/or tire chains may help while driving on snowy or icy roads. New wipers and clean windows will be important. A fully charged mobile phone may come in handy.

Plan ahead: Allow plenty of time for your student to eat breakfast at home. Breakfast will not be served at school if a delayed start has been called. If you rely on child care, speak to your provider about alternate plans if school schedules change. Leave your home early enough to compensate for hazardous driving conditions.

Stay informed: Use the local media to learn about changes to school schedules, road conditions, and relevant weather forecasts. District sources such as the website (carsoncityschools.com), automated phone calls, text messages or emails can help keep you informed.

Stay safe: Dress accordingly; have your children wear protective outer clothes articles such as boots, a hat, gloves and a coat. Automobile speeds should be appropriate for the road conditions. Use your headlights as needed. Drive defensively.