Deciding school snow days

Facilities, public safety, president’s office work to recommend days off

HANNAH WELZBACKER, Evergreen reporter

With the onslaught of snow recently in all of Washington, many students are begging their school officials to give them another snow day.

Two groups made up of WSU officials decide if the Pullman campus will operate as normal during inclement weather.

The first group of WSU officials meet at 4:45 a.m. to discuss closing campus said Sarah Blatner, WSU emergen­cy management coordinator.

She said representatives from departments at WSU, including facilities services, public safety, emergency management, transportation and the president’s office access the weather condi­tions on campus, surround­ing areas and any potential impacts of the inclement weather.

This group then makes a recommendation to the president and his policy group, who are in charge of the final decision to either change campus operations or proceed as normal at 5 a.m., Blatner said.

The decision is made early in the morning to try to accommodate staff members who need to be on campus before classes start, she said.

“We try to remain open as often as possible,” Blatner said. “There is a finite num­ber of classes and expecta­tions for instructional deliv­ery, and so we have a com­mitment to use the state resources properly.”

She said when the groups meet they take into consider­ation what Pullman schools are doing, if transportation is running on time and how road conditions are in the city and surrounding areas.

The decision is reviewed throughout the day to include changing weather conditions, Blatner said.

Although there is not one designated phone num­ber for students to contact regarding the decision to stay open, Blatner said she has been receiving emails at WSU emergency manage­ment regarding the decision made to continue classes for Wednesday.