Emergency School Closings

The Perkiomen Valley School District recognizes that as we work to assure the safety of all of our students and staff, winter weather emergencies caused by snow and ice may cause such disruptions in school operations including school closings, delayed openings and early dismissals. 

Our administration realizes that the decision to open or close schools in bad weather or emergency situations has a big effect on families. While it is always our intent to serve students in school, our top priority is the safety of our students and staff in school and on the way to and from school.

How is the decision made to close schools?  The decision to open or close schools in the Perkiomen Valley School District in bad weather is based on a careful analysis of all relevant information. The Superintendent is responsible for the final decision, but her assessment is based on recommendations from the Director of Operations & Transportation and other information such as: Information on road conditions from operations staff and from local police. We must give careful consideration to the most dangerous roads in the district. The Perkiomen Valley School District encompasses a total of 26 square miles in six different municipalities. The streets in your neighborhood might be cleared of snow and ice, but the roads somewhere else in the district may be quite dangerous.

  • Amount of snow and ice accumulated. 
  • Whether precipitation is continuing. 
  • Building conditions.
  • Parking lot conditions. 
  • Administrators talk to maintenance and custodial staff members who are responsible for clearing and treating school parking lots and sidewalks. Temperature and wind chill. Please remember that some of our students walk to school and many must wait outside for the bus. 
  • Weather predictions. We prefer not making our decision based on weather predictions, which are not always accurate. But sometimes this is unavoidable.
  • Young drivers. We must consider that some high school students drive to school.

When is the decision made to close schools?  The decision must be made by 5:30 a.m. (or earlier if possible) so the district can notify radio and television stations and post the decision on the web site. If a later decision would be made to announce a school closing, some parents will have already left for work, leaving their children unsupervised.

Will we close school if conditions worsen? It is difficult to reverse the decision about opening schools without endangering students, even if weather conditions worsen. Once the decision is made to open the schools, parents rely on it and leave for work. Many students will return to unsupervised bus stops and empty houses if students are sent right back home. An early dismissal could occur if conditions worsen during the school day, but all possible attempts will be made to give adequate notice to parents first.

Although the district staff does our absolute best through this process, no perfect decision exists. If you do not feel as though it is safe for your child to attend school, we advise you to use your best judgment on whether he or she should attend. Also, we also would advise parents to discourage teenagers from driving in bad conditions and offer them alternatives if weather conditions worsen.

What happens with transportation that the district provides to non-public, private and charter schools when there are early dismissals/delays/cancellations?  Click here for information about transportation to non-public schools.

How is the public notified Information on school closings, delayed openings, or early dismissals due to inclement weather and other emergencies will be announced via the following sources:

    • We call you: Perkiomen Valley School District utilizes an automated emergency telephone system that allows school district administrators the ability to distribute a message to the homes of all students within a very short time. However, the system is not based in the district and is subject to a variety of limitations that are beyond the control of district personnel. Please be sure to notify your child’s school about changes to your home, cell, and work numbers.
      • What do I do if I’m a parent and I’m not receiving emails or phone calls about closings/delays/early dismissals?  First, contact your child’s school building to speak with a secretary and verify that the information the district has on file for your family is correct. If your contact information is correct, the next step is to contact us at webmaster@pvds.org to determine if there is another issue preventing the delivery of messages.
      • What do I do if I am receiving calls from Perkiomen Valley School District and I don’t have a child in the school district?  Contact us at webmaster@pvds.org for assistance.
    • You call us: Parents may call the district’s main number at (610) 489-8506 and press #2 at the prompt. Any messages about weather-related closures, late openings, or early dismissals will be heard at this number.
    • School district website: In the event of a weather-related problem or other emergency, parents can also check the Perkiomen Valley School District website (www.pvsd.org) for a special message on the home page. If there is a school closure, late opening, or early dismissal, a message will appear at the top of the screen.
    • Email: In addition to a phone call from the Blackboard/Connect 5 telephone system, the Perkiomen Valley School District will also send out an email to all registered email addresses. The email message will provide details about any school closures, late openings, or early dismissals. If you are not sure if we have an email address on file for you, please contact your child’s building for assistance.
    • PV app: Download our free app from the App Store (Apple) or Google Play (Android). Weather notifications will be sent to all who install the app on their mobile device. 
    • PV Social Media accounts:
    • Television/Radio Stations:

When there is an early dismissal, how does this affect bus drop-off times? Children who normally ride the bus will take the bus home on early dismissal days. In general, you can expect your child’s bus to arrive home by estimating the amount of time it usually takes for the bus to arrive home after dismissal, and applying it to the new dismissal time. For example, if your elementary school child typically arrives at his bus stop at 3:45 p.m. on a regular school day, that is one half-hour past dismissal time. If elementary schools dismiss at 12:15 p.m., your child would arrive home at 12:45 p.m. Please keep in mind that this would be an estimate – road conditions and other issues may delay buses. Parents should be prepared with a back-up child care plan (if appropriate) that can be put in place in the event of an early dismissal.

Community Education: Community Education Classes are cancelled when there is an early dismissal or if our schools are closed due to inclement weather.

Traditional or Virtual “Snow” Day?

Our instructional calendar for the 2021-22 school year includes 3 built-in inclement weather days. In the event we have conditions that warrant additional closing schools, i.e., snow storm, flood, major power outage, etc. we will utilize the all 3 built-in inclement weather days (also known as “traditional” snow days).

Once we have used all 3 built-in days, we will call virtual learning days. Virtual learning days count towards the required number of days our students must attend and will therefore allow us to avoid keeping our students in school any later than June 15. 

Transportation to non-public schools

Provided below are some FAQs and their answers to help you understand how we work with our bus contractor, STA, to get students home or to school safely on inclement weather days.

Is there transportation provided for non-Perkiomen Valley School District students when school is closed due to inclement weather? When the Perkiomen Valley School District (PVSD) is closed due to inclement weather, no transportation will be provided to any public, non-public, special education or other non-PVSD school students in or out of the district.

My child attends a non-PVSD school. What happens with his/her transportation on a day when a two-hour delay is announced but the non-PVSD school is operating on a regular schedule?  If the Perkiomen Valley School District has a delayed opening or early dismissal due to bad road conditions and/or inclement weather within the district, transportation to any public, non-public or special education school, both in or out of this district, will be adjusted by the same amount of time.

What happens if the non-PVSD school my child attends closes early and PV does not?  Transportation for students attending non-PVSD schools shall be coordinated with the early dismissal times of the school district in which the non-PVSD school is located.

What happens if a neighboring district is closed and PV is not, and my child attends school in that district?  No transportation will be provided to any public, non-public or special education school where the local public school district is closed due to bad road conditions and/or inclement weather in the district, even though PVSD may be open.

What happens if the non-PVSD school my child attends closes early and has an earlier dismissal time than PV’s early dismissal time?  We will honor the dismissal times at the non-PVSD school and provide transportation.

What happens for my non-PVSD student if the school he/she attends has a delayed opening and PVSD is open as usual?  PVSD will not transport students to any non-PVSD school until it has confirmation that the school is open and prepared to receive students.

What happens for my non-PVSD student when PVSD is closed for a holiday but my child’s non-PVSD school is open as usual?  PVSD transportation will follow their regular schedule and transport your child to his/her non-PVSD school.

How is transportation affected for my child if he/she attends a non-PVSD school and it remains open on a day when PVSD closes?  The district does not provide transportation for students to non-PVSD schools when the district is closed due to poor road conditions or inclement weather.

FYI: The Board authorizes the use of video and audio recording on school buses and school vehicles in accordance with Perkiomen Valley School District Policy 810.2.