Polk County Public Schools is issuing the following update from Superintendent Frederick Heid:
PCPS continues to work closely with its partners at Polk County Emergency Management and all county agencies to prepare for any impact to our area. Our top priority is always the safety of our students and employees.
The district is carefully monitoring the latest weather forecast. Tropical Depression Nine was upgraded on Saturday (Sept. 24) to Tropical Storm Ian.
The forecast as of this afternoon shows this system will likely continue to develop over the next 48 hours, gaining strength and size into a hurricane.
The latest forecasts are showing the storm will likely impact our area starting late Tuesday evening or Wednesday morning.
At this time, I do not anticipate any impact on schools for Monday and Tuesday. However, it is possible that all after-school activities will be canceled for Tuesday evening due to the approaching storm.
It is important to note that many of our schools are utilized as emergency shelters. These include pet-friendly and special needs shelters. The process to deliver essential equipment, setting up a shelter, and transporting residents takes a great deal of time and coordination. While the local weather may seem mild, school closures may be required to ensure that we can prepare these shelters for our residents.
At this time, it is still too early to announce school closures.
If current forecasts hold, we will likely announce school closures for Wednesday and Thursday. Again, no decision to close schools has been made at this time. However, I feel it is important to give you as much information as possible so you can plan accordingly.
Any official announcements regarding school operations will be communicated via PCPS SchoolMessenger calls and emails, as well as our website and social media accounts.
Please stay safe and make sure your family is adequately prepared.
– PCPS website: polkschoolsfl.com
– Facebook: facebook.com/polkcountypublicschools
– Twitter: twitter.com/polkschoolsnews
– Instagram: Instagram.com/polkcountypublicschools