Skip To ContentSkip To Content

    Inclement weather planning for school delays and closures

    When we are expecting snow or inclement weather, a Central Office team continually monitors conditions across the District. That includes having staff drive some of the streets that are typically more treacherous in snow and ice. After consulting with other agencies, we decide whether to delay school by two hours or if a closure is necessary. That decision is typically made by 5:30 a.m.

    You can learn if there is a school delay or closure through:

    • local TV and radio stations
    • the District website at
    • an automated phone call you will receive
    • via Twitter @seapubschools
    Staff and families will receive one of the following four messages:
    1. Seattle Public Schools: Schools open on time – buses operating on snow routes. No door-to-door service. No Preschool or Head Start.
    2. Seattle Public Schools: Two hours late – buses operating on snow routes. No door-to-door service. No Preschool or Head Start.
    3. Seattle Public Schools: Two hours late – buses operating on regular routes. No door-to-door service. No Preschool or Head Start.
    4. Seattle Public Schools: Schools closed.
    Please note: Notification of “School Closures” does not include the John Stanford Center for Educational Excellence Building (JSCEE). If JSCEE is closed due to inclement weather, it will be specifically noted. Unless the notification mentions that John Stanford Center is closed, JSCEE employees are expected to report for work, unless you have made prior arrangements with your supervisor. All JSCEE employees who are classified as “critical” are required to report to work even if the JSCEE is closed. The decision to close the JSCEE will be made by Superintendent Larry Nyland.

    Non–Represented Employees:

    If severe weather conditions make it necessary for the District to declare a building closed (including the JSCEE) for one or more days, regular employees assigned to that building will be granted Paid Emergency Leave, or “snow days,” which are not charged against their accrued personal or annual leave. Employees will be granted two such snow days when and if their building is closed.

    For inclement weather-related closures that exceed two days per year, regular employees must use accrued personal or annual leave, or may be permitted to make up the time lost per arrangements with their supervisor. Working from home is also permitted if approved by your manager.

    Represented Employees:

    Please refer to your Collective Bargaining Agreement, which can be found on the Collective Bargaining Agreements Web page. As for school delays, school staff is expected to be at their building no later than 30 minutes prior to the adjusted start time.

    For more information, please refer to your departmental policies and procedures, which should be listed on For staffing-related questions, please contact Clover Codd, Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources, at


    Office Public Affairs/Communications

    Seattle Public Schools

    (originally posted Tuesday, December 04, 2012, staff contacts updated July 26, 2017)