Dangerous cold in forecast prompts some schools to cancel class for Wednesday

MADISON, Wis. — Dozens of school districts in southern Wisconsin have called off class for Wednesday with dangerously cold temperatures in the forecast.

Air temperatures could be as low as -15 to -20 Wednesday morning, with wind chills in the -20 to -35 range.

That’s in the range of possible Wind Chill Warnings being issued in southern Wisconsin, in which case many schools have policies in place to cancel classes. Even with virtual learning now a possibility, several school districts contacted by News 3 Now say if they decide to cancel school Wednesday, they would not convert it into a virtual learning day.

The Madison Metropolitan School District did not respond to an inquiry about its plans for Wednesday but did send an e-mail to parents earlier in the week warning them of the possibility of in-person classes being canceled because of the cold. Officials with the Middleton-Cross Plains Area School District said they do not plan to shift to virtual learning if they have a cold weather day on Wednesday.

Elsewhere in Dane County, officials in Oregon say they will only cancel class or issue a late start for cold if a Wind Chill Warning is issued. Waunakee says it would use a “traditional snow day” for any possible closures, while Verona said it doesn’t have any immediate plans to go virtual for any weather-related closures unless there were extended weather cancellations.

Officials in the School District of Janesville told News 3 Now that they have extra hours built into the school year calendar to accommodate weather-related delays or cancellations. In Columbia County, Portage school officials said they would deploy virtual learning days if they can anticipate inclement weather and plan ahead. In those cases, the district would let families know by noon the day before.

You can get an updated list of school closings on channel3000.com and on the First Warn Weather app, available for free in all app stores. Be sure to also watch News 3 Now for a running list of school closings in the area.