INCLEMENT WEATHER GUIDELINES AND PROCEDURES
The Lake County School District is committed to protecting the health and safety of our students and staff. We provide various opportunities for outdoor physical activities before, during, and after school. These guidelines are meant to provide a decision making structure to promote student and staff safety when local weather may be harmful.
The following are guidelines to be followed during times of extreme heat conditions. These guidelines are designed to help protect students from incurring heat-related illnesses or problems. This is a guide for school personnel to refer to when making decisions or modifying and/or suspending outdoor activities, according to the heat index. What is heat index? How hot it feels to the body when the air temperature (in Fahrenheit) and relative humidity are combined.
heat index is less than 95 degrees – Normal outdoor activities will be held
heat index is 95 to 98 degrees – Outdoor activities will be limited or cancelled
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) issues an Excessive Heat Warning/Advisory – Outdoor activities will be cancelled with district guidance.
NOAA will initiate alert procedures when the Heat Index is expected to exceed 105°-110°F (depending on local climate) for at least 2 consecutive days.
Dismissal Procedures when a Heat Warning/Advisory has been issued will include:
Limit the amount of time students wait outdoors before boarding buses to protect them from the heat.
Offer students water to hydrate them prior to boarding the bus and provide bottled water for buses without A/C for emergency use only during the ride home.
Advise parents to take special precautions on extremely hot days including dressing students in lightweight clothing and drinking plenty of fluids.
The National Weather Service routinely issues watches and warning for thunderstorms that produce tornadoes and other severe weather. It does not however, issue warnings based solely upon lightning. Moreover a storm need not be severe in order to produce copious lightning strikes.
During times when severe weather and/or lightning is in the immediate area, all efforts are made to help ensure the safety of students and adults. During these situations, schools will follow the state and district guidelines for severe weather, including the “30-30 Rule” to determine the threat of lightning.
The 30-30 Rule
The “30–30 Rule” should be used during thunder/lightning events to determine when to seek a safer location. The “30–30 Rule” states that when you see lightning, count the time until you hear thunder. If the time is 30 seconds or less, go immediately to a safer place. Wait 30 minutes or more after hearing the last thunder before leaving the safer location. If you can’t see the lightning, just hearing the thunder means lightning is likely within striking range, go to a safer place.
Dismissal Procedures during Thunderstorms:
When severe weather occurs at dismissal time, parents can expect a delay in the dismissal process.
In the event the normal dismissal schedule is altered due to bad weather, please ensure that students are relocated to inside safe areas.
The principal will contact Transportation Dept at (352)536-8078 and SAFE Schools at (352) 253-6675 to inform them of the delay in dismissal.
Parents of students who are delayed in school dismissal by inclement weather will be notified by the Communications Office via a callout message as well as communication through websites, social media and local news organizations.
Parents wishing to pick up their child may go to the office. Once the student is signed out, they will be released directly to the parent/guardian.
Students will be dismissed in rainy weather if lightning is not detected in the immediate area. Parents may wish to equip students with appropriate gear during the rainy season.
Severe weather is possible throughout much of the year in Florida. For other inclement weather (tornadoes, hurricanes, floods, etc.) protocols, please refer to the Emergency Management Plan notebook - “The Red Book” for guidance and support and/or contact the SAFE Schools department.