Hurricane Irma — Back to school Thursday!

UPDATE WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 13, 2:10 p.m. —

The Jackson County School System will return to its regular schedule for all its buildings tomorrow, Thursday, Sept. 14.

Please be patient with our bus drivers as they make their first runs after the impact of Hurricane Irma across our county. They cannot travel on roads that are blocked or those with downed power lines, and their regular times may be delayed as they navigate their routes with these restrictions.

If your regular bus stop is in a location that cannot be reached safely , we will not be able to pick up your child, and we ask that you contact the county road department at 706-367-5288 to report your concerns. Again, that number is 706-367-5288.

We WILL excuse the absence of students for whom the impact of the storm – including impassable roads and lack of power – makes it impossible to get to school; and we ask that, if you are driving them to school, you use extra caution as well.

Students who cannot get to school because of the storm’s impact are asked to bring a note from their parents when they return to school.

We don’t know yet how – or even if – the three days of school our students have missed will have to be made up. That’s a decision with several moving parts, including input from the governor’s office, the state department of education and our board members. We’ll let you know when a decision has been made.

We know we have some folks anxious for their children to come back to school and return to routine, and some who can only WISH that were possible.

As noted yesterday, the decision to cancel Wednesday’s classes was based on the fact that more than 7,000 Jackson County households were still without power, making it extremely difficult for families to get children ready to return to school. In addition, many of our staff members – like many of you – were unable to get to work.

We know the return to school tomorrow will offer some challenges, and that the last few days have been stressful for everyone. Thanks for bearing with us and understanding that safety is our first priority, followed closely by doing the best we can for all our students and staff members and their families.

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UPDATE TUESDAY, SEPT. 12, 6:27 p.m. —

With the effects of Hurricane Irma still impacting so many of our students and staff and their families, Jackson County Schools will be closed again Wednesday, Sept. 13. Full-time staff (240-day employees) are asked to report if they can do so safely.

We hope to open all schools Thursday, Sept. 14, but that assessment will be made tomorrow with more input from utility and road crews who are working so hard to serve our county. More than 7,000 Jackson County residents are still without power, and we are not yet able to restore phones or Internet service for our schools. In addition, more than 25% of our transportation and teaching staff are unable to report safely at this time.

Please watch for posts on our social media pages and our websites and for a call through our Infinite Campus student information management system tomorrow.

Thank you again for your patience and understanding — a tropical storm in our area is extremely unusual and it has left us with many challenges. Be careful out there!

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UPDATE MONDAY, SEPT. 11, 2017, at 3:30 p.m. — 

Jackson County schools will be closed Tuesday, Sept. 12, as we continue to experience the effects of Hurricane Irma.

In light of the extreme weather conditions, we also will postpone the BOE meeting set for tonight.

We plan to resume classes Wednesday, Sept. 13, on regular schedules, but we will make any announcements about changes to that plan through our social media and online platforms as well as through our Infinite Campus calling system.

Please exercise caution as trees and power lines are affected by the high winds in our area.

Thank you for your patience as we make the safety of our students and staff and their families our first priority.

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UPDATE SUNDAY, SEPT. 10, 2017 at 2:43 p.m. — Jackson County Schools will close Monday, Sept. 11, because of the predicted effects of Hurricane Irma on our area. All buildings will be closed. The Jackson County Board of Education WILL hold its advertised millage rate hearing at 6:30 PM at West Jackson Middle School and take action on items discussed at the work session on Thursday, Sept. 7.  However, there will not be any recognitions or additional business at this meeting.  We will continue to monitor the storm and its impact on our area, and make announcements about any subsequent delays as soon as possible. Students, staff, and families are encouraged to monitor any additional announcements through Jackson County School System’s Facebook page and Twitter feed. 

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POSTED FRIDAY, SEPT. 8, 2017, at 9:53 a.m. — We are carefully monitoring the potential weather impacts on our area from Hurricane Irma. We are in constant communication with our state and local emergency management agencies, and we will stay in touch with them throughout the weekend and into next week. As more information becomes available, we will make decisions to ensure the safety of our students and staff and their families. We will send calls out through our Infinite Campus notification system, in addition to posts here and on our district Facebook and Twitter accounts. 

Expect a call Sunday evening between 6 and 8 p.m. to let you know about any potential school schedule changes for Monday. This might be a good time to log into Infinite Campus through your parent portal and check the numbers you have listed for general and emergency notifications! Click here to learn more. Stay tuned — and please “share” our Facebook posts, “like” or “follow” our social media accounts, and bookmark our school district website — www.JacksonSchoolsGA.org — for the latest information.