January 26, 2014
CHICAGO — Chicago Public Schools (CPS) will be closed Monday, January 27, due to the extreme cold temperatures and high winds that have been forecasted. District officials have been closely monitoring weather conditions over the weekend and believe Monday's expected subzero temperatures and high winds will make it dangerous for children and families traveling to and from school.
"The safety and well-being of our students is paramount," said CPS CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett. "The decision to close schools is never easy. However, based on the severity of the weather we are expecting Monday, I am confident that this decision is in the best interest of CPS students."
Monday's forecast anticipates sustained air temperatures below zero and -25 degree wind-chill readings throughout much of the day. Tuesday's forecast is even colder, with air temperatures reaching -15 degrees and wind chills as low as -40 degrees at the time students would be arriving at school.
CPS will continue to monitor weather conditions and make a determination by noon Monday about whether to resume classes as scheduled on Tuesday. The District's management team will work in collaboration with other city departments to ensure that schools are prepared for students and staff once it's safe for them to return. Being outside in arctic temperatures with an extremely low wind-chill factor can be dangerous for even a short time.
The District has begun the process to notify parents of Monday's closure through all of its regular communication channels via robo-calls, emails, and through media outlets. Parents can also call (773) 553-1000 or visit the CPS website for more information. All after-school and sporting activities will be cancelled Monday.
For families seeking alternative youth programs and services, all Chicago Park District facilities will be open during their normal operating hours. These times vary, please check hours for specific parks on the Park District website or by calling the specific park.
This January already ranks among the coldest and snowiest on record. Through Sunday morning, Chicago had recorded 32.5 inches of snow for the month, marking the third snowiest January on record. December and January have recorded 13 days below zero. This is on pace to break the mark of 17 set during the 1993-94 winter, one of the coldest in the city's history.
The Chicago Public Schools serves approximately 400,000 students in 658 schools. It is the nation's third-largest school system.