EMERGENCY CLOSING OF SCHOOLS
DUE TO WEATHER AND ROAD CONDITIONS
To provide for the orderly closure of schools and/or the discontinuation of school bus service in severe weather conditions.
Parents, students and employees of Garden Valley School Division.
The Board of Trustees of Garden Valley School Division is committed to the provision of school facilities and a school bus transportation system that are conducive to learning and to the health and safety of students and employees. Accordingly, it is the desire of the Board to keep schools open during regular school days when it is safe to do so and to close schools and/or discontinue school bus service only when weather and road conditions are such that it is not advisable to transport students via school buses.
4. Procedures for School Closure due to Weather and Road Conditions
4.1 In the event of adverse weather and road conditions, the Superintendent and Supervisor of Operations shall have the authority to close schools and/or cancel the school bus transportation system.
4.2 The Board Chair shall immediately be informed of all school closures and/or cancellation of transportation services.
4.3 During severe weather conditions, the Supervisor of Operations and Superintendent shall ascertain weather and road conditions in various parts of the division to make a reasoned decision relative to cancellation of bus transportation service and closure of schools.
4.4 Local School authorities and parents shall be promptly notified of cancellations of school bus transportation service and/or closure of schools.
4.5 If it is decided that the school bus transportation system should not or cannot operate, school closure announcements shall be broadcast on all local radio and television networks by approximately 6:45 a.m.
4.6 On days when schools are closed due to weather
4.6.1 Senior Administration and School Principals are required to be at work if it is possible to do so.
4.6.2 Head Custodians are required, if possible, to be at the School at their normal starting time and will remain at the School for their regular shift.
4.6.3 Division Office support staff, computer technicians, maintenance staff and Centre-Line Pupil Transportation staff shall report for work when they are able to do so. They shall be paid for the shifts for which they come to work. Those employees unable to come to work may access a leave of absence in accordance with Board policy or make up for lost time.
4.6.4 Teachers and Clinicians are expected to work at school if weather and road conditions permit travelling or at home if weather and road conditions are too dangerous and life-threatening. In either case they will be paid their regular pay for this school closure day.
4.6.5 School support staff (Administrative Assistants, Library Technicians, Home School Liaison workers, and Custodians) are expected to come to work if it is reasonable to do so. If weather and road conditions are too dangerous and life-threatening, they are not required to work. On this type of school closure day they will be paid, provided those employees unable to come to work access a leave of absence in accordance with Board policy or make up for lost time.
4.6.6 Any staff in 4.6.1 to 4.6.5 above unable to attend work due to severe weather conditions are expected to report to their immediate supervisor.
4.6.7 Educational Assistants will not report to work and will not be paid,
4.6.8 Bus Drivers will not report to work and will not be paid. The only exception to this will be for a major prearranged school event that requires transportation and road and weather conditions have improved The Principal, in consultation with the Supervisor of Operations, will determine whether transportation will be provided.
4.7 Schools will be closed to all students on these days.
4.8 All rentals of our school facilities will be cancelled on these days. Subject to the Principal's approval, the only exception to this will be for a major event, which has been planned and advertised extensively for a long period of time before this date, and which cannot be cancelled on short notice or rescheduled without major inconvenience and cost. Such events will be allowed to use the intended facility and custodial staff and other supports necessary for the event to take place will be provided.
4.9 In the event of adverse conditions arising during the course of the school day, schools shall remain open. Students shall not be transported prior to regular closing time. If adverse conditions persist beyond regular school closing time, transportation shall not be provided. Storm contact procedure shall be implemented at the school level.
4.10 Parents have the right to keep children at home if the weather and/or road conditions are severe, regardless of the decision of Garden Valley School Division.
5. Procedures for School Closure Due to Extreme Cold
5.1 Schools will be closed for cold weather when it is too cold to operate school buses and it is too cold for students to be exposed to the elements for even a short period of time. The division may close for cold weather reasons when the wind chill factor in most locations in the division is forecasted to be minus 45 degrees Celsius or colder as recorded by Environment Canada - Morden location. The wind chill factor information shall be monitored between 6:30 a.m. and 6:45 a.m. to make the decision on whether or not to close schools.
5.2 Schools will not be open for students on these days.
5.3 All Senior Administration, teaching, and support staff (except Bus Drivers and Educational Assistants) are expected to work their regular shift at their designated place of work.
5.4 Educational Assistants will not report to work and will not be paid.
5.5 Bus Drivers will not report to work and will not be paid. The only exception to this will be for a major prearranged school event that requires transportation and road and weather conditions have improved. The Principal, in consultation with the Supervisor of Operations, will determine whether transportation will be provided.
Download Policy Document: Emergency_Closing_of_Schools_Policy.pdf