School Closings and Emergency Preparedness

School Closings

The safety of our faculty, staff and students is the primary factor when making decisions about cancelling school due to weather-related conditions. Knowing that Academy of Holy Angels functions as a commuter school (as opposed to a neighborhood school), we have to be realistic about cancelling school due to cold or snow. We also know that there might be times when school is closed for reasons other than weather, such as widespread illness or health concerns.  Our first preference is to keep school open; however, when conditions are dangerous, we will cancel regular school and post daily lessons online. AHA has one day built into the calendar for snow days. Should cancelling additional school days during the year be required, AHA will implement this procedure for online school. Generally one or two days of online school will be used before more time is added to the school calendar.

Whenever Holy Angels has to close because of an emergency, such as severe weather conditions, radio station WCCO (830-AM), and WCCO television, (channel 4) will broadcast the closing 10 minutes after each hour. A list of school closures can also be found online at WCCO’s website. The school's name should be announced as "Academy of Holy Angels." Holy Angels is not part of school district #280 Richfield. A school closed announcement will also be made on the school's voicemail system at 612-798-2600.

If the school is closed due to an emergency, all school co-curricular activities are canceled.

On the second and following days the school is closed due to an emergency, the school will pivot to its online program. The schedule for the day will be a Stars Day (asynchronous learning). Students need to log on to their classes and follow the teacher's instructions for how they plan to use the asynchronous learning time. It could be a live lecture, time to talk with peers to work on a group project, a live Q & A session with the teacher, etc. Attendance will be taken for each class and parents are still required to call the attendance line or email the attendance clerk when a student is unable to attend.

If students need tech help, email Please be as specific as possible about your needs. The RTI and Learning Variations coordinators will be monitoring grades daily and communicating with students and teachers as needed. We encourage students and parents to email them with concerns or questions. The counseling staff will be available by email to counsel students academically and personally every school day. If your student has questions about online school, scheduling, or anything else, please encourage them to contact their counselor by email.

Student Guidelines for Videoconferencing

  1. Join the session from a common area of your home.
  2. Use headphones with a microphone if you have them.
  3. Familiarize yourself with how to mute your microphone and video.
  4. Remember, this is an extension of the classroom.
  5. Follow the AHA Way.
  6. Stay on topic.
  7. Don't use your phone during the session (no calls, texts, social media, taking or sending pictures, etc.)

About SchoolMessenger

AHA uses a telephone broadcast system, called SchoolMessenger, to communicate with parents—especially in times of emergency. The system allows the school to notify all parents, by phone, within minutes of an event that necessitates a school cancellation, early dismissal, late start or other procedure.

In order to ensure that they are contacted by SchoolMessenger, parents need to confirm that the school has correct contact information for them. They can do so by updating their profile on myAHA.

Personal Crises

In a time of crisis, the Academy of Holy Angels community is committed to minister to those in need of comfort or support. To meet those needs, the staff and administration have developed crisis plans. If any AHA community member becomes aware of a crisis affecting students, staff or his/her family, contact the President or Principal immediately, so the President or Principal can coordinate an appropriate response. Crises include serious injury, illness, harm or loss of life.

Fire Drills

Fire drills are required by law and will be held periodically during the school year. It is essential when the first signal is given that everyone prepares to evacuate but does not evacuate until directed to do so. When directed to evacuate, do so by the prescribed route as quickly as possible. Teachers in each classroom will give students instructions.

Individuals tampering with or tripping a fire alarm for a non-legitimate reason are subject to suspension, a meeting with the Richfield Fire Department, and must pay all costs associated with tampering or tripping the alarm.

Fire Drill Procedures for Individuals with Limited Mobility

When the fire alarm is activated, students with limited mobility should proceed to the nearest exit or stairwell. Do not use the elevator. They should wait to the side until the exit or stairwell is free of congestion and then proceed to exit the building as quickly as possible. The student's teacher at the time of the drill or emergency should accompany the student and assist him or her with exiting the building. No one is to remain in the building when the alarm is sounded. If a problem arises for an individual with limited mobility in exiting the building, staff should immediately contact the Assistant Principal or the Principal.

Tornado Drills

Tornado drills required by law will be held during the school year. It is essential, when the first signal is given, that everyone obeys orders and move to the designated safe area in the building. Use the prescribed route as quickly as possible. Teachers in each classroom will give students instructions.

Emergency Response Procedures for an Intruder/Active Shooter

Special emergency situations arise where students and staff need to initially stay where they are and remain calm until more information is known and communicated.  This procedure is different from emergencies where the building needs to be immediately evacuated (fire) or students and staff need to be moved to a safer place in the building( severe weather).

This procedure will be activated by an announcement will be made over the PA system and the ALICE procedure will be initiated.  Classes outside will be notified .

All individuals need to decide for themselves how to respond to an intruder.  You can decide to listen to a staff member and follow their directives. If you decide to lockdown the room you are in, lock and barricade the door and cover all windows. Be quiet, spread out and stay out of sight. No one should open the door once it is locked even if the passing bell or fire alarm is sounded.  Be prepared to evacuate the room and building upon directions of the staff member or to counter the intruder if they attempt to enter the room. If you decide to evacuate the building, leave your belongings and leave quickly and quietly and head to the rallying point. If you encounter police, follow their directions and make no sudden moves.

Contagious Disease Response Policy

AHA takes the health and safety of its students and staff very seriously. For that reason, AHA will keep parents and students reasonably informed of certain contagious diseases appearing within the school that may be easily spread by regular, day-to-day contact among members of the school community and that–in AHA's discretion–pose a significant risk to the health of other students. To fulfill this goal, any student or staff member who has been diagnosed with (or reasonably suspects that he or she has) a contagious disease that can be spread through airborne particles or by touching a contaminated surface shall immediately report the illness to the Principal, Assistant Principal, or school nurse. Such contagious diseases include but are not limited to measles, meningitis, and similar illnesses, whether common or rare, except for the common cold. 

After receiving such a report, AHA–in its reasonable discretion–will decide whether to inform other students and parents of the presence of the contagious disease among the school population. If it decides to do so, AHA will reveal the nature of the contagious disease, but will do so without releasing the name of the student who has reported. The decision to inform parents and students will depend upon a number of factors, including but not limited to the seriousness of the illness itself, possible long term consequences of contracting the illness, the number of students or staff affected, and the contagiousness of the disease, among other considerations.

Such reports of contagious illnesses are required to protect the health and well-being of all of our community. AHA will not discriminate or retaliate against any person who makes such a report.

Law Enforcement Contact

Occasionally law enforcement officials need to speak with students at the Academy regarding situations occurring inside and outside of school. When appropriate and necessary, a parent/guardian is contacted for permission to speak with a law enforcement official. Information gathering from potential witnesses is conducted without parental notice. A parent or guardian is contacted for permission to speak with a law-enforcement official if the student is a suspect in the investigation.

Richfield Police liaison officers serve AHA. They are the link between local authorities and AHA. The liaison assists administration and staff in providing a safe environment at school.

(5/07/10 mn; 6/13/11 mn; 6/13/13 mn, 7/14/15 ga; 6-27-18 cd; 3-17-20 cd; 6/19/20 cd)