Our students come from over 20 school districts spread all over the Capital Region. Weather and road conditions will often vary widely across the region, meaning that while conditions in one area may be entirely acceptable, many of our students and staff coming from other areas are exposed to hazardous road conditions during their commute.
These varying conditions often result in some of our districts operating at the normal time; some delaying one hour; some delaying two hours, and some canceling entirely. If we decide to delay opening instead of canceling altogether, then we have students arriving at all times over a three-hour period, making it very difficult to run regular classes. We have also experienced beginning the day with a delay only to have districts change their decision later in the morning and begin canceling or calling for early dismissal. Either way, this produces a very difficult situation from a communications standpoint, resulting in much confusion for students, parents, and school.
Regardless of whether or not Mekeel has school or not, it is ultimately the parent who must decide for his/her own children if traveling conditions are acceptable or not. While it is true that an absence for this reason is designated an “illegal” absence for state attendance purposes, this will not pose a problem for a student unless the policy is abused. We want your children to be safe!
Due to the complications of dealing with the bus services of the 20+ districts which transport the vast majority of our students, MCA normally does not dismiss early. If conditions are severe enough to warrant our own closing early, then conditions will be severe enough for many of our districts to be closing at the same time, straining their ability to bus both their students and ours at the same time. On these kinds of days, the districts usually (but not always) call the school and tell us they will be picking up early, and we dismiss those districts’ students when their buses arrive. You should receive a call from your district (or from us, provided they have given us notice) when this happens. Please make sure your children know what to do in the event of an early pick-up by their district. Even if we do not officially dismiss early due to weather, parents are always welcome to pick up their own children at any time.