With the new school year rapidly approaching, students are likely already wondering how lucky they'll get with snow days.
Good news for them (maybe not so much for school administrators) is that AccuWeather.com predicts a better chance of more snow days this school year than last.
Last winter, at least nine of the country's snowiest cities had less than 60 percent of their average snowfall (according to USA Today).
How is this intensity of this winter being measured?
"The presence of El Niño or La Niña—and their strength—is used to project how active the winter season is going to be," AccuWeather.com reports.
And AccuWeather.com long-range meteorologists are projecting a weak to moderate El Niño by late in the summer.
For kids praying to hear school's out for a snow day, the weaker the El Niño, the better. Weak El Niños have brought snow-packed winters to most major Northeast cities in the past, said AccuWeather.com expert Senior Meteorologist Jack Boston.
"Historically, both strong La Niñas and weak El Niños have produced higher-than-average snowfall in the northeastern U.S.," Boston said.
In contrast, "weak La Niñas and strong El Niños historically bring lower-than-average snowfall."
A weak El Niño in 2009 led to record December snowfall in Philadelphia, which got slammed with 23.2 inches of snow—a year's worth of snow in one day for the city that usually receives 20.5 inches in an average year, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
What else is in store?
The AccuWeather.com Long-Range Forecasting Team is predicting an average season of about five hurricanes and 12 tropical storms—less active than last year's seven hurricanes and 19 tropical storms. Hurricane season peaks in September and officially runs until Nov. 30.
The Atlantic Hurricane season affects the southern coast from Texas to Florida, as well as a large portion of the eastern coast from Florida all the way up through North Carolina, and can even impact cities as far north as New York or Boston.