Chicago Public Schools’ goal is to always have schools open. We don’t want students to miss valuable learning time and meals they may depend on as part of the school day.
Therefore, CPS will do everything possible to keep classes in session as long as it is safe for students and staff.
CPS works closely with the experts at the City’s Office of Emergency Management and Communication (OEMC) to help guide decision-making when it comes to school closures.
Here are the factors that go into making the decision to close schools:
- Air temperature and wind chill
- The amount of snow and ice on the ground
- The accessibility of buildings and roads
- Potential issues with heating/cooling systems or power outages
- The ability to transport students safely on buses
- Air quality during periods of extreme heat
Throughout the winter season, our maintenance crews test equipment regularly to ensure heating systems are working well, and every school has a snow removal plan so that sidewalks, walkways, and parking lots are clear for students and staff. In the warmer months, our facilities team focuses on ensuring that cooling systems are working well and that classrooms remain cool to protect students and staff from extreme heat.
CPS also closely monitors weather forecasts and makes all decisions related to school closings based on the health and safety of our students. CPS will get the word out quickly if school is canceled due to weather.
Communication About School Closings
CPS contacts parents about school closings through emails, texts, and robocalls, which is why it’s so important that schools have up-to-date contact information for all families. If your phone number has recently changed, please let your school know.
The same communication tools are used to inform parents when schools are set to reopen.
Notifications will be sent as soon as the decision is made.