OES Panther Press Weather Edition

Special Edition

Thank you for your patience...

Historically, OES has not had an official lightning policy. However, since Florida ranks highest for lightning deaths, it is essential that we implement a sound policy that factors in safety as well as efficiency. We know our families have work commitments in the morning, and your time is valuable. There are several barriers to creating a speedy process when lighting is in the vicinity. One, is inclement weather slows down OMS arrival/dismissal, which impacts our start time. Another factor is limited access to the classroom building and no overhang in the back.


When there is no lightning in the area, we are happy to assist your children in the rain, following the regular car line procedures.


The movement of approximately 900 students is a challenge in normal weather. When an extra factor, like lightning, comes into play, it becomes not only more challenging, but also a safety issue. As we move forward throughout the year, please continue giving your constructive feedback. Our arrival and pick up procedures are dynamic and can be improved as we run through them and develop better strategies.


Thank you so much for your patience, understanding and feedback. Our first priority is the safety and security of our students.

Morning Drop Off in Lightning

Going forward, lightning proximity will be monitored and when it is in the vicinity we will follow the process below:


  • One of the back gates will be closed to create a single line
  • Depending on the proximity of the lightning, we will let a limited amount of students out of the vehicles, (near the classroom building door).


In the morning, in the event that the lightning remains an issue, administration will start directing a different traffic flow to increase the amount of students safely exiting their vehicles.


  • In some circumstances, he will direct one lane of traffic to the front of the building. We have a longer overhang, so more students can safely exit their vehicles. This decision is up to the SRO and school administration ONLY.


Please do not pull to the front of the building and park. We are trying to limit student time between the vehicle and the building. Your students will not be counted tardy on days that we have inclement weather, if you follow the car line procedures.


When the weather is so detrimental that it is unsafe for any movement, administration has the final decision on releasing the students.

Afternoon Pick Up in Lightning

In the afternoon, when lightning is in the vicinity, the back car line will follow this procedure:


Back car line students will be moved to the gym

  • As parents approach the arinasium, if they elect to get out of their vehicles, they must bring in their car tag to have their child released to them.
  • Please do not park in the front and walk to the back



Front car line students will remain safely in the breezeway


  • If possible, we will create a single line, (this will depend on where we are in the dismissal process)
  • As vehicles pull up to the breezeway, we will load them as quickly as possible.


When the weather is so detrimental that it is unsafe for any movement, administration has the final decision on releasing the students.

How Can You Help Keep the Line Moving?

Believe it or not, these time saving suggestions, really help the line move.



  • Follow the traffic patterns
  • Watch for staff giving instructions
  • Have your student ready to leave your vehicle: Shoes on, backpacks, and lunch box in hand
  • Hugs and kisses taken care of
  • Whenever possible, students should disembark on the curbside
  • Teach young students how to quickly unbuckle out of their seats and car seats

Track the Lightning

We utilize the My Lightning Tracker app or Weather Bug app if you would like to track the weather along with us.