Niles Community Schools
Building a Foundation for Our Future


Inclement Weather and School Closure

When it comes to severe weather and the potential for a school closure, I know that the sooner the decision is made the better for staff, students, and parents. 


Typically, we make a decision to close for inclement weather collectively with Brandywine and Buchanan. Our goal is to make this decision before 6:00am.


Once the decision is made, we alert the television stations, post the information on social media, and send out a Power Announcement to phone numbers and email addresses you have designated in the Power School system. As you may be aware, Power Announcement has served Berrien County poorly and nearly every district, including Niles, is moving away from this system of notification to a new system by July 1st, 2016.


We will continue to use Power Announcement as best we can.  However, the best way to be informed about school closures will be to monitor the school closings on the television stations. Building and district websites and social media are an additional source of information.


I’m sorry for any inconvenience a snow day may create. I will continue to make the decision based on the safety of our children and staff.

Dr. Dan Applegate, Superintendent

Regular School Attendance will be a Focus of Niles Community Schools for the 2015-2016 School Year


Regular attendance is defined as missing less than five percent of the school days in session. For example, for the Niles Community School calendar year, five percent would be about 9-10 days for the year.   Absences beyond that total begin to have an academic impact. We realize some absences are unavoidable because of health problems or other circumstances. However, we know that when students miss too much school, regardless of the reason, academic achievement falters.  Your child is less likely to succeed if he or she is not in regular attendance. Research shows:   


      Children who are chronically absent in kindergarten and first grade are much less likely to read at grade level by the end of third grade. 


      By sixth grade, chronic absences are a proven early warning sign for students at risk for dropping out of school. 
      By ninth grade, regular attendance is a better predictor of graduation rates than are eighth grade test scores.


Please check back to this site, or your child’s building site, for more valuable information about school attendance.


You will also find valuable information on the following links:

We are located in the southwest corner of Michigan, eight miles from the University of Notre Dame and less than a two-hour travel to downtown Chicago. The shores of Lake Michigan are about twenty-five minutes away. Within the ninety square miles of the district, we have a nice mix of urban, suburban, and rural settings. Diversity is one of our district's strengths with a student population of 15% African-American, 80% Caucasian, and around 5% Hispanic. Approximately 40% of our students are eligible for free and reduced lunch.

The district has almost 4,000 students. We are the largest district in our area and we offer more sports, more extracurricular activities, and more academic opportunities than any other district. The district is small enough to make personal attention to students a priority.

The 9th through 12th grade high school has 1100 students and offers many Advanced Placement and online courses. Our high school has been recognized as a statewide leader in career pathways and models a program preparing students for the next level.


Headlines and Announcements