What you need to know about potential weather cancellations

Emergency School Closing Notifications

Dear Winona Area Public Schools families,

It’s only a matter of time before winter will be here in all of its frigid glory. Before it does, we want to make sure you know where to go for school closing information and how we make those decisions. 

The best way to be informed of school closings is to make sure your contact information is updated on the Parent Portal within Infinite Campus. Please note that the link has recently changed to https://winonamn.infinitecampus.org/campus/portal/winona.jsp. This link is also available on our page for Families & Students at winonaschools.org/families.

We will send school closing alerts out via automated phone calls, text messages, emails and your parent portal message center inbox. 

We will be sending out a test alert at 4 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 5. If you do not receive any sort of alert at 4 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 5, please update your information. 

We will also communicate school closings through our website (winonaschools.org) and the district Facebook page (facebook.com/waps861). 

The most accurate and updated information will be shared directly from us, however, we will also alert local media outlets about school closings or modified schedules. The list will include: 

  • Winona Radio (KG Country 1380 AM, KG 95.3 FM, CD Country 99.3 FM, KHME 101.1 FM and KWNO 1230 AM)
  • WKBT-TV Channel 8 (CBS affiliate in La Crosse)
  • WXOW-TV Channel 19 (ABC affiliate in La Crosse)
  • KTTC-TV Channel 10 (NBC affiliate in Rochester) 

Please remember that these media outlets update the information on their schedule, not on ours, and they may not have the latest information.

In deciding whether or not to cancel school, we have to consider a number of factors. Safety of our students is our top priority. Our district covers 266 square miles with multiple road surfaces and different weather patterns. Sometimes the weather up on the bluffs is worse than it is in the valley. Sometimes blowing snow is more of a hazard than snow that is still falling. Sometimes the plows haven’t finished their routes. Sometimes freezing rain makes travel impossible.

According to school board policy, the Superintendent is empowered to make the final determination to close district schools or implement other options in response to inclement weather.

Please make sure your students are dressed appropriately for the winter weather, which in Minnesota often includes extreme cold. A bus evacuation on a rural road can create dangerous circumstances if everyone is not prepared for the weather.

Thank you for your cooperation as we strive to provide safe and efficient transportation to all of our students.

Thank you,
Winona Area Public Schools