School safety is our priority
Providing a safe and secure environment for our students to learn is the top priority of Forest Lake Area Schools. We've taken measures to ensure our staff and students are prepared in the event a crisis situation occurs in one of our buildings. A comprehensive Crisis Management Plan has been created to guide our staff through a wide variety of situations. Our staff is also committed to preventing crisis situations by working closely to build relationships with students and creating a climate of respect and acceptance.
What parents need to know during a crisis
In most situations, the school building is the safest place a student can be. Every effort will be made to keep students safely in the building until they can be reunited with parents.
- In case of an emergency, information will be given to you as quickly as possible via Blackboard Connect Ed which is our automated phone calling system.
- Please DO NOT call the school because phone lines will be needed for emergency communication.
- In some instances, law enforcement and school administration may make the decision to not have anyone enter the school. Please DO NOT attempt to enter the school until directed by safety personnel.
- If instructed, please DO go to the parent/student reunification site (information will be posted on-line and through Blackboard Connect Ed) to wait to be reunited with your child(ren).
Closing school due to heavy snowfall or frigid temperatures
In our school district, the decision about whether to close school due to snowfall or low temperatures is ultimately the decision of our school superintendent. The superintendent makes this decision in close consultation with the district’s transportation supervisor, and they must weigh a number of factors before making the decision to close, or not to close, school.
The superintendent will always decide on a potential school closing as early as possible in order to help families make appropriate plans. But, there are many factors that need to be taken into account, including accurate hourly temperatures, snowfall amounts and overall road conditions on highways, city streets, county roads, gravel roads and driveways in our cities, towns and rural areas. Because of these many factors and the fact that conditions that can change even from minute to minute, the final decision, in most cases, cannot be made until 4:30 or 5:00 a.m. that morning.
What happens when school is closed?
Here are a few things to remember for situations where a weather emergency might result in school being canceled:
- Whenever school is cancelled, our School Age Care (SAC), Sonic and Steps Ahead childcare programs will be open from 6 a.m. - 6 p.m. at the Forest View, Lino Lakes and Wyoming Elementary for students already enrolled in these programs. When school starts later or ends early, the Scandia SAC and Sonic program will be open at Scandia.
- In case of very extreme winter weather, parents/guardians have the final decision on whether or not to send their children to school.
- Also, please note that if school is open, students are expected to attend, however, if parents/guardians feel their children would be in danger they can choose to keep them home. The absence will be excused if the parent/guardian calls to report it. If the school is not contacted, the student will not receive an excused absence.
How will I know if school is closed?
All of our district families will be notified of any type of school cancellation through Blackboard Connect Ed. Blackboard Connect Ed will also send an email message to parents whose email addresses have been added to our system. Other means by which a school closing will be communicated to families and to the public are:
- Local TV stations - WCCO, KARE11, KSTP, KMSP
- Radio - WCCO
- Newspaper – Star Tribune online
- The Forest Lake Area Schools website
- Any of our school websites
- Our Weather and Emergency Hotline at 651-982-8143