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Columbia and JC schools prepare for severe weather

Spring storms will roll through mid-Missouri Thursday and are expected to hit just as schools dismiss for the day.

Columbia Public Schools spokesperson Michelle Baumstark said CPS has been preparing for these types of scenarios all year long.

“Every school year- we do a number of severe weather drills, everything from tornadoes to earthquakes to active intruder, really trying to make sure that our students and faculty feel comfortable with the plans that are in place,” Baumstark said.

Jefferson City Public School officials said they also practice drills multiple times throughout the year. Each school building has designated shelter areas for students and staff.

If the potentially dangerous weather comes as school is supposed to let out, CPS already has a plan in place.

“It is not uncommon for us to hold buses, should we need to do that to keep students safe,” Baumstark said. “We certainly don’t want to send a bus out with students on it if we need to be in a situation where we need to be sheltering in place.”

If the storms were to hit after students have already boarded the buses and are en route, the schools have a plan for that, too.

“Safety is always going to be the first priority, and if we need to hold kids or if we have buses out on the roads and need to send them to another school building or some safe place in the middle of the route, that’s what we’ll do,” Baumstark said.

She said they will monitor the approaching storms closely and will make decisions based on the threat.

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