GCS Inclement Weather Plan
How does Guilford County Schools (GCS) determine whether to close or delay school when inclement weather is predicted?
The superintendent has assigned responsibility to the director of transportation for determining whether to close or delay school or release students early when inclement weather is predicted. The director and a staff of 15 transportation supervisors are assigned to areas of Guilford County to check the roads and weather conditions throughout the county.
When predicted inclement weather threatens to make road conditions unsafe for school bus travel, the transportation supervisors review assigned roads and advise the director of transportation of the road conditions by 5 a.m. The director takes into consideration all reports received from supervisors regarding road conditions, reviews radar images, consults with the local branch of the National Weather Service and makes one of the following recommendations to the chief auxiliary services officer:
The decision to close or delay school, including how long to delay, will be announced to the media, posted on the GCS Web page ( http://www.gcsnc.com/ ) and on "GCSTV 2" not later than 5:30 a.m. If school opens at the normal time, an announcement will not be made. Therefore, no announcement in the media indicates that school will operate on a normal schedule. If inclement weather occurs after the school day has begun, a decision regarding early release will be made as quickly as possible.
If schools close for the day, road conditions will be reviewed again that afternoon and observations reported in time for the evening news. If road conditions are not likely to improve before the next morning, school will be canceled. Notification will be announced to the media in time for the 6:00 p.m. evening news reports, posted on the GCS Web page ( http://www.gcsnc.com/ ) and on "GCSTV 2."
If the afternoon review finds that school is a possibility for the next day, the decision will be deferred until the next morning and the announcement made by 5:30 a.m.
Extended School Cancellation Due to Inclement Weather:
By the end of the fifth school day, if some roads remain unsafe for school bus travel and are not likely to be safe for school bus travel within the next three days, bus drivers or bus supervisors will call parents/guardians of students who have provided their telephone number (see below) and who live on impassable roads. Drivers will provide them with a recommended nearby bus stop/stop time on a cleared road. The parent/guardian needs to advise the bus driver/supervisor if he/she will or will not bring the student to the suggested alternate bus stop location to ride the bus. For planning purposes, and to avoid confusion, the alternate stop will be the drop-off point for that child that afternoon. The bus driver will provide the student with a note at the afternoon drop-off explaining to parents/guardians as to where the bus stop will be the next morning.
If a student is picked up from or dropped off at a child care center, it is the responsibility of the parent/guardian to advise the child care center to accommodate this plan and meet the bus at the alternate location.
Bus drivers have been instructed to solicit all students' home telephone numbers via a standard Guilford County Schools form signed by the director of transportation. Parents/guardians are asked to complete the form and return it directly to the bus driver. Bus drivers for special needs students already have home telephone numbers but parents of special needs students will be asked to validate that number with the driver during a student pick-up or drop-off.
High Schools - On the first day that schools are closed due to inclement weather conditions, all school activities will be canceled, unless permission to proceed has been given by the chief information and student support officer. Under no circumstance should students be penalized for failure to attend activities when school is closed, even when special permission to proceed has been granted.
Elementary and Middle Schools - No school activities, including the ACES program, games, practices, rehearsals, performances, etc., shall take place when school is closed or dismissed early due to inclement weather, unless permission to proceed has been given by the chief information and student support officer.
Inclement weather conditions may also cause after-school activities to be cancelled on days schools close at the regular time. These closings will be announced by your school and on "GCSTV 2," and online at http://www.gcsnc.com/ .