SCHOOL CANCELLATION GUIDELINES
School closings, delays, and/or early releases related to snow, ice, and other unexpected emergencies will be reported through Rhode Island Broadcasters Association (RIBA), *School Messenger Notification System (information about School Messenger is available on our website under the ‘Parents’ tab), on television channels 6, 10, and 12, as well as radio stations WNRI and WOON. Normally, an announcement is made between 5:30 AM and 6:15 AM on the day of the cancellation or delayed opening.
*The successful delivery of information is dependent upon accurate contact information for each student. Please ensure that North Smithfield School Department has your child’s current phone number(s). Should this information change at any time during the school year, please notify us immediately.
All school opening schedules may be delayed up to but no more than two (2) hours for staff and students per Rhode Island Department of Education regulations. For example, this means all bus pick-ups may occur two (2) hours later than usual. School property must be plowed and shoveled, thus staff will also be arriving late. Parents who drop off children at school should do so one (1) hour later than usual on days of delayed openings. If any delay occurs, morning pre-school programs are cancelled.
Current weather conditions will always be taken into consideration. Dismissal time of elementary students must be initially determined by the length of time needed by our bus drivers to get our secondary students home safely and therefore may vary. Early dismissal time will be determined collaboratively through my office and our bus company, DATTCO.
If necessary, the announcement to release early should an emergency weather or other condition present itself may be made as early as 10:00 a.m. but no later than 12:00 noon. If an early release day occurs, afternoon pre-school programs are cancelled.
As weather emergencies sometimes occur when students are already in school, both secondary and elementary students may have to be dismissed early.
Please be sure to make arrangements to have someone meet your child at the bus stop or at your home if you are unable to be there.
Should weather conditions develop during the time your child(ren) are in school, I strongly urge you to have access to local television stations, radio stations, and/or our school website. You may also register on the websites of participating radio and television stations of Rhode Island Broadcasters Association to be personally notified of cancellations, delays, or early releases.
ONE FINAL NOTE…
The weather and road conditions are often quite different in several parts of town. The decision to hold school is based upon general conditions. Some isolated areas may experience much worse weather and parents must use their own judgment before putting a child on a dangerous road to walk or wait for a school bus.
Students on school buses during inclement weather early release days
Please know that administratively it has always been our practice not to leave the district until we hear from our bus company that all students are safely off the bus and the buses are on their way back to the terminal.
A Message from the RIDE/Statewide Student Transportation Office
The statewide student transportation office would like to remind you about our inclement weather/emergency closing/delay policy. For your convenience, the inclement weather/emergency closing/delay policy in English and Spanish is posted on our website. We will remind parents of where to access the policy via an automated phone system message directing them to our website http://www.ride.ri.gov/StudentsFamilies/AdditionalResources/StudentTransportation.aspx .
For the most up to date listings of closings and delays, the statewide transportation office suggests checking the following sites: