How do I sign up for Penn’s Snow Day Child Care?

Dear Benny,
I’m not sure I’m a believer in Punxsutawney Phil’s early-spring forecast. Neither is my son. He has a feeling we’ll get another blizzard before winter’s end—this time on a weekday. I know the University sometimes stays open during inclement weather, even when Philadelphia public schools close. What are faculty and staff members’ childcare options in this sort of situation?
—Winter is (still) Coming

Dear Winter Lover,
I’ve always been a little wary of taking weather advice from a groundhog, too. If we do indeed see more snow this winter—enough to close school for your son but not enough to close the University—no need to worry. We’ve got you covered.

Penn Children’s Center, located right on campus, offers all-day Snow Day Child Care for children 12 weeks to 12 years old through March 31 this year. The daily price ranges according to faculty and staff members’ salary—$15 to $35. Natalie Subeh Nuhn, the Center’s executive director, says 18 families have participated in the program so far this year—10 on Jan. 25 and eight on Jan. 26.

All paperwork, including a pre-registration application, health assessment form, and emergency contact form, among others, must be completely filled out and filed at the Center ahead of time. Download them at

Space for childcare is limited and met on a first-come, first-served basis. Snow Day Child Care is open to all members of the University and surrounding communities with preference given to faculty, staff, and students of Penn. Children from all school districts are welcome.

The program is provided with the support of the Division of Human Resources (HR). For other situations in which you may need backup childcare, HR also provides options for benefits-eligible faculty and staff. Learn more at

Find out if the University is closed due to snow by calling 215-898-MELT or visiting

Got a question for Benny? Send it via email to or via regular mail to the Current, 3901 Walnut St., Suite 200, Philadelphia, PA 19104.