Guidelines for School and/or Bus Cancellation Due to Inclement Weather
Student safety is the first priority of the Halifax Regional Centre for Education (HRCE) when making school cancellation decisions. HRCE staff begins to gather information from various sources beginning at 4:30 am. Staff consults with Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM) staff on road conditions, local weather services, and Stock Transportation. By 5:30 am, staff makes a recommendation to the Regional Executive Director of Education based on the information gathered. If it is safe to have students on the roads and sidewalks, then schools will be open. If not, all or some schools may be closed depending on the weather and road conditions in different areas of the Regional Centre.
Parents/ guardians; winter is coming; do you have a childcare plan in place in the event of a school closure? Do you know what Family of Schools your child’s school belongs to? Parents/ guardians always have the right to keep their child home from school if they believe that the travelling conditions are unsuitable.
For full day closures of all or some schools, the decision will be announced as close to 6:00 am as possible. Announcements will be:
- Posted on the HRCE’s website (www.HRCE.ca);
- Posted on the HRCE’s Twitter account (HRCE_Official);
- Recorded on the HRCE’s School Cancellation Information Line 464-INFO (4636);
- Shared with subscribers to the Regional Centre’s email and text notification system; and
- Communicated to local media outlets.
If conditions deteriorate throughout the day, the Regional Executive Director of Education may close schools early when weather or road conditions are considered to be a threat to the safety of students. In the event of an early school closure, the announcement will be made by 11 am. School busses will be dispatched to schools two hours earlier than their normal regularly scheduled pick-up for the afternoon dismissal, walking students will be dismissed at the start of their regular lunch time.
NEW! On school days when weather conditions exist that it is not safe to open schools at the regularly scheduled time, but it is predicted that conditions will improve, a 2 hour delayed opening may be considered. Delayed openings would be considered when a severe weather event has concluded but snow clearing or other operations require additional time. Delayed opening may also be considered when the physical plant is experiencing an issue (power, water) and additional time is required to prepare the facility for opening.
In the event of a delayed opening the following will apply:
- School opening will be delayed 2 hours
- School bus pick up times will be delayed 2 hours
- Excel child care will be cancelled for the morning only
- Pre-Primary opening will be delayed 2 hours
- Each school will alter morning schedules to best address their timetables.
- Lunch times will not change
- Afternoon class schedules will not change
- Dismissal time will not change.