HRSB reminds parents what to do in severe weather

What you should know about school and bus cancellations due to severe or inclement weather

What do I need to know?

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.

This brochure outlines the steps we take and the factors we consider when making the call.

Please keep it handy for future reference.

Who is watching the weather?

We have a team of people situated throughout the Halifax Regional Municipality who provide information on weather conditions.

The team is made up of:

-HRSB Operation Staff
-Stock Transportation Managers
-Bus Drivers
-Department of Transportation Dispatchers

Team members begin to gather information at 4:30 a.m. They test road conditions, check web cams and identify when roads will be cleared, sanded or salted.

They also consult with meteorologists at both Environment Canada and AMEC Weather Information.

By 5:30 a.m. the team makes recommendations to the Superintendent, or a designate, based on the assessments of each area.

How will I find out?

-Check our website at
-Follow us on Twitter at
-Call our information line at 902-464-INFO (4636)
-Listen to your radio-all local radio stations will be informed

Make sure you listen for either the Family of Schools name or the individual name of your child’s school in cancellation announcements.

You can find your Family of Schools here:

What if buses are cancelled, but schools are open?

There are times when we may decide to keep schools open, but cancel bussing 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?

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.

Who makes the decisions to close schools during severe or inclement weather?

The Superintendent, or a designate, makes the final decision once the team in the field reports on conditions in that area.

Based on that information, if it’s safe to have students and staff on 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 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’ve 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 he or she is to go if school is cancelled midday?
-Is your child always dressed properly for the weather conditions, regardless of whether he or she travels 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.

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