Holding Classes during Weather Events

January 23, 2020

As we move into the winter months and try to plan around the inevitable bad weather, we write to provide some guidance regarding the conditions under which it would be appropriate to hold or cancel your classes.

In the event of a severe storm, the campus might be considered unsafe for walking, in which case the University will cancel all classes. Under less severe conditions, including those that disrupt normal University operations, you’ll be allowed to hold classes at your discretion. You should do so, however, only if you feel that you can safely make the trip to campus. In the case of graduate courses, please keep in mind that many graduate students do not live on- campus. Please also be in touch with your graduate student preceptors as they decide whether or not to hold their sessions.

If you decide to cancel your class, you should notify your students through Blackboard as early as possible. We strongly encourage you to schedule a make-up class later in the semester.

Remember, too, that many colleagues who assist us in teaching courses and preparing instructional materials (for instance, SCADs, media services staff, and other departmental staff) are generally considered “non-essential” employees. They’re encouraged not to come to campus in weather conditions that disrupt normal University operations. Similarly, graduate students who are assisting with teaching courses should not be expected to be available for these roles when the University is closed because of weather conditions.

Do be sure to check the University homepage for weather updates and further guidance.

Our best wishes to you all for the spring semester.

Jill Dolan, Dean of the College
Sanjeev Kulkarni, Dean of the Faculty
Sarah-Jane Leslie, Dean of the Graduate School