It’s that time of year…Mother Nature has a mind of her own and winter storms can keep you from conducting your normally scheduled classes with or without notice. Sometimes, weather closures happen mid-day, forcing you to start closing procedures early, contact all your families quickly and get your staff and students home safe and sound. Other times, you are left closing your facility for multiple days at a time. While neither are ideal, both bring unique complications when it comes to communicating plans out to your families and staff.
How can Jackrabbit help you manage weather delays at your facility? There are a few different processes you can follow dependent on your end goal.
Using Closed Dates for Weather Closures
Adding the Closed Date in Tools > Edit Settings can affect your billing and ability to schedule makeups. Closed Dates indicate that attendance in the Staff Portal doesn’t need to be taken for that day. If a student isn’t marked absent, a makeup can’t be scheduled. If you don’t allow makeups for weather closures, this is perfect for you if you do not prorate for Closed Dates. Check out our Help article for more information on Closed Dates.
With Jackrabbit’s ability to discount and prorate, there is a setting that determines if you prorate for Closed Dates. If you want to prorate for Closed Dates but not for weather closures, don’t add the inclement weather day as a Closed Date. Instead, see another option below! Our Help Center goes in to further detail on Prorating Options (Settings) if you aren’t sure.
Closures of any kind are generally out of your control. The Staff Portal allows you to quickly mark an entire class as absent. This is most beneficial when you allow makeups for weather closures or severe weather only affected some of your classes. The best part is, the Staff Portal is mobile friendly and can be setup to allow remote access so you can do this from anywhere, anytime!
Allowing Makeups for Weather Closures
While the Staff Portal records absences and attendance, Jackrabbit allows you to track absences or attendance within your database. Based on what you track in Jackrabbit controls what you can report on. If you track absences, you have the ability to schedule makeups as well.
Each business is different and has different procedures when it comes to closing for bad weather. If your policies allow for makeups for weather closures, you should take attendance in the Staff Portal, marking all students absent and eligible for makeup. To save time, use the All Absent button at the top of each class attendance page.
Check the Can Makeup? checkbox and add an Absence Note. The note will display on reports, for a quick, future reference.
Partial Day Closings
Sometimes, the severe weather doesn’t affect the whole day. Using Closed Dates eliminates the entire day’s classes from the Staff Portal in regards to taking attendance. So how can you reflect this accurately in your database?
With partial day closings, you can take attendance in the Staff Portal as normal for your earlier classes. For the classes that you cannot hold, use the All Absent button at the top of each class attendance page that is affected. Check the Can Makeup? checkbox if applicable and add an Absence Note as suggested above.
For consistency and efficiency, have your office administrator record the absences for each class. This staff member will need access to see all classes in the Staff Portal. If you aren’t sure what your office administrator has access to in the Staff Portal, check out their settings for Staff Portal attendance.