Inclement Weather - Frequently Asked Questions

Winter is in full swing and with winter comes snow, ice, and other hazardous weather.  Colorado weather is unpredictable so we always need to be prepared for winter driving conditions and possible impact to school days.  In case of weather, we have established procedures to determine continuation, delays, closures, etc.  Numerous factors go into each decision and are made with the utmost consideration to every factor. 

Q: What types of inclement weather decisions are there?

A: Depending on weather severity and how many snow days have been used during the school year one of three decisions will be made:

· Full closure—all Cotopaxi schools and offices will be closed and there is no expectation of remote working/learning

· Remote Learning Day (see “What are the expectations of remote learning days?”)

· Two-hour delay—School will start in-person exactly two hours later than normally scheduled. Buses will pick up exactly two hours later than normal. Breakfast will not be served.

Q: What are the expectations of remote learning days?

A: During remote learning days, secondary students and staff are expected to login on their device and work/learn remotely according to the remote day schedule.. Students will have access to a live teacher for "office hours" during  times specified in the remote learning day schedule for one on one student assistance. 

When possible, elementary students will be sent home the day prior to anticipated inclement weather with paper packets to complete for remote learning days.

Q: How are the inclement weather decisions made?

A: Inclement weather is a fact of life in Colorado. But to ensure the safety of students and staff, we have appointed staff, stationed in different parts of the District, to drive the roads in their sections so they can report on weather and road conditions, especially noting poor visibility, poor traction and other hazardous road conditions, wind chill factors, and snow accumulation. The Cotopaxi School District is large with varied terrain and microclimates, and the weather in one part of the district can be completely different than in another part of the district during a storm.

These on-the-road supervisors report their findings, and the Superintendent is briefed on the conditions.  Employee reports are used in addition to the reports from various local, state and federal weather stations and CDOT  and the Fremont County transportation supervisor to determine road conditions or status on clearing our roads and highways

After all the data is examined, a decision is made for either a delayed start, a remote learning day, a full school closure, or school as usual. All of this is usually  accomplished by 5:30 a.m. to 6:00 AM so families may be notified in a timely manner and adjustments can be made.

Q: May I choose to keep my child home if the decision is made to hold in-person learning?

A: For any weather related decisions, you as a parent/guardian make the final decision concerning the safety of your child. If you think weather conditions are unsafe when the District keeps schools open, you may keep your child at home. Remember to follow the proper absence reporting procedures by calling the front office to report the absence, and your child's absence will be excused.

Q: How will inclement weather announcements be made?

A: The District uses the All Call system to sends emails, texts, and phone calls to the primary contact information on file regarding inclement weather days. If you have not received any messages please verify with the office that your contact information is correct. Inclement weather decisions will also be posted on the Cotopaxi School Website in the ‘News’ and ‘Live Feed’ sections, and to the District Facebook page.