Seattle expects unprecedented heat this week (August 14-18). The health and safety of our students and staff are paramount to the success of our high-quality programs, so we want to ensure that families have up-to-date information regarding our plans to keep cool. Launch programs operate under Washington Administrative Codes, preventing program operations with temperatures exceeding 82 degrees in classrooms.
If we cannot maintain appropriate temperatures for the program at 82 degrees or lower, we will email you and follow up with a phone call.
According to our tuition policy, fees will not be prorated, and account credit will not be issued due to this closure being caused by inclement weather (similar to a snow day).
All of our Launch locations are equipped with air conditioning through Seattle Public Schools, Seattle Parks and Rec, or Cascade Vista EXCEPT for Beacon Hill. We have requested that the a/c be turned on by 7am on Monday to ensure adequate cooling time before student arrival. We have also arranged with Seattle Public Schools to look for alternate locations within buildings if we are concerned about excessive heat.
Launch will monitor the situation at each site throughout the day and make site-based decisions to ensure health and safety.
The Washington State Administrative Code (WAC) that regulates licensed childcare mandates the following:
110-300-0147: An early learning provider must observe weather conditions and other possible hazards to take appropriate action for child health and safety. Conditions that pose a health or safety risk may include but are not limited to: (a) Heat in excess of 100 degrees Fahrenheit or pursuant to the advice of the local authority.
Per this regulation, Launch will plan on:
- Keeping students inside, out of the sun
- Using cooling mechanisms (cool cloths, spray bottles)
- Limiting physical exertion
- Hydration reminders and additional water breaks
- Keeping blinds closed
- Extra snacks
Additionally, WAC 110-300-0165 Safety requirements mandate that: “The temperature of indoor early learning licensed space must be between 68- and 82 degrees Fahrenheit. If an indoor licensed space is colder than 68 or hotter than 82 degrees Fahrenheit, an early learning provider must use climate control devices inaccessible to children to bring the temperature within the required range.”
Seattle HVAC/air conditioning systems are not typically under as much stress as anticipated this week. If we cannot maintain indoor temperatures below 82°F OR find adequate alternative spaces in our buildings OR if we experience power outages, Launch may need to CLOSE OUR PROGRAMS. Please ensure that Site Managers have up-to-date contact information for emergency contacts.
The City of Seattle has put together a great resource list for excessive heat, including lists of cooling spaces in King County, air conditioned libraries, and beaches and wading pools.
King County also put together a set of resources for hot weather preparedness.