Do you have a plan for school cancellations?
The Halifax Regional School Board takes great care when making the decision to alter the normal operations of schools and board offices in the event of severe or inclement weather. It's never an easy decision to make, but it's always made with the safety of students and staff in mind. What is your family's plan when school is cancelled?
Click on the picture above to watch a short video.
How is the decision made to cancel school and/or buses?
HRSB staff gather information from a variety of sources beginning at 4:30 am, including:
Weather forecasts from AMEC weather consulting service which provides radar and satellite imagery, real time road conditions and any weather warnings
HRM staff for a status update on road conditions
Stock Transportation which consults with provincial transportation garages throughout HRM and with company bus drivers to determine local road conditions throughout the municipality
Other local weather services (Environment Canada, Weather Network, etc)
- A meteorologist to discuss more detail on weather forecast, the level and type of precipitation, and the impact on road conditions
Who makes the decision to cancel school?
By 5:30 am, staff make recommendations to the Superintendent (or a designate), based on the information gathered and assessments of each area. The Superintendent makes the final decision based on this information. If it is safe to have students and staff on the roads and sidewalks, then schools will be open. If not, classes will be cancelled.
When is the decision made?
It is our goal to make the decision as close to 6:00 a.m. as possible.
How will I find out?
- Check our website at www.hrsb.ca
- Follow us on Twitter at Twitter.com/HRSB_Official
- Call our information line at 902-464-INFO (4636)
- Listen to your radio (All local radio stations are informed)
- Sign up to receive e-mail or text message notification of cancellations (link)
Make sure you listen for either the Family of Schools name or the individual name of your child's school in cancellation announcements. Click here to find your Family of Schools.
What if buses are cancelled, but schools are open?
There are times when we may decide to keep schools open, but cancel busing due to poor road conditions. As parents and guardians, you must use your own discretion with regard to sending your child to school. Before dropping students off, please ensure that someone on staff has arrived at the school and can provide supervision.
If schools are open, meaningful learning activities will take place. Students who are unable to attend school due to inclement weather and/or bus cancellations will not be penalized if assignments are given or assigned on that day.
What if the weather deteriorates throughout the day?
If the weather deteriorates, the HRSB can decide to dismiss students early. In the event of a midday cancellation due, the decision will be communicated to all schools as close to 11:00 a.m. as possible.
In the event of an early dismissal, students in grades primary to 6 will not be released from school unless parents, guardians or designates have been notified by the school.
If you have a child in junior high or high school, you should prepare and discuss a plan for what to do if schools close midday.
How can I be prepared for cancellations or delays?
Weather in Nova Scotia is unpredictable and can change without notice. To minimize confusion, make sure you have developed a plan, and discussed it with your child.
Things to consider:
- Do you have a back up plan for childcare?
- Does your child know where they are to go if school is cancelled midday?
- Is your child always dressed properly for the weather conditions, regardless of whether they travel by bus or walks to school?
Please remember: As a parent or guardian you always have the choice of whether or not to send your child to school.