Weather Guidelines & Bus Cancellation Information
Bus cancellations, school closures due to bad weather
During the winter months, we may need to cancel buses or close schools because of inclement weather. When making the decision to cancel buses, a number of factors come into play—road conditions, weather forecasts for the full day, dialogues with municipalities who are travelling roads and providing feedback to us in terms of drivability, etc. The safe operation of buses, on city and rural roads, is taken into consideration as well.
Where to get updates
During inclement weather days, the decision to close schools or cancel buses will be shared by 6:15 a.m. Information regarding cancellations and closures will be shared through:
To subscribe to receive critical alerts by email/text, fill out the online form found here.
Please note that if no closures or cancellations have been announced by 6:15 a.m., buses are running and schools are open.
Types of updates
One of the following messages will be announced (bolded text only) on our social media accounts and websites:
- Peel District School Board buses are cancelled and in-class instruction is cancelled.
New for 2020-21 School year: On days when buses are cancelled for part or all of Peel region, in-class instruction will also be cancelled for schools in the affected municipalities. Instead, impacted staff and students will engage in learning at home with the goal that it will be synchronous online learning where possible. Students enrolled in online learning will continue with their regular school routines.
- All Peel District School Board schools and board offices are closed.
This means that all schools and Board offices are closed to students and staff. All activities in schools and board offices are also cancelled, including child care.
New for 2020-21 School year: On these inclement weather days, students who would typically attend school in person will engage in learning at home with the goal that it will be synchronous online learning where possible. Students enrolled in online learning will continue with their regular school routines.
The Region of Peel's Medical Officer of Health issues hot and cold warnings, and extended heat and cold warnings upon notification from Environment Canada that thresholds have been met. They provide schools with guidelines to prevent heat- and cold-related illnesses.
Cold Weather Guidelines
Peel Public Health recommends that schools in the Peel District School Board take the following steps to prevent cold-weather injuries:
- Reduce the amount of time children (grade 8 and under) spend outdoors when the temperature is –20 degrees Celsius or colder, with or without the wind chill.
- Keep children indoors when the temperature is -25 degrees Celsius or colder, with or without wind chill. Some medical conditions may increase sensitivity to cold. Parents should consult their physician (Source: Environment Canada).
- Allow indoor breaks if children say they are feeling cold or during extreme temperatures.
- Ensure children are dressed warmly, covering exposed skin: insulated boots, winter weight coats, mittens, hats, neck warmers.
- Change wet clothing or footwear immediately.
- Although these conditions are unlikely to occur during the school day, ensure that all staff are able to recognize and treat symptoms of frostbite and hypothermia. Given plenty of warm fluids to prevent dehydration.
- When children are outside, be watchful for shivering or signs of numbness in faces, ears, hands or feet.
- Educate children in dealing with cold weather: drinking plenty of fluids, dressing warmly, and recognizing signs of cold injury.
Hot Weather Guidelines
School administrators will monitor the temperature and humidity conditions at their sites, and make announcements throughout the day to remind staff and students to stay hydrated during hot weather. If possible, students and staff will be relocated to cooler areas of the building and rotate through air conditioned spaces throughout the day. Staff will also limit activities involving physical exertion and exposure to the sun, and consider keeping students and staff indoors, if appropriate.
In non-air conditioned spaces, open windows and doors allow air to circulate, and board-approved fans help with the movement of air. Staff can also use blinds/curtains to reduce direct sunlight, and lights, computers and other heat-generating equipment is turned off whenever possible.
Peel Public Health recommends that schools in the Peel District School Board take the following steps to prevent hot-weather injuries:
- When outdoors, stay in the shade whenever possible (natural or artificial structures). Especially limit time outdoors when temperatures and UV radiation are most intense, between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.
- Monitor daily heat advisories and adjust outdoor activity schedules if possible.
- When in the sun, wear a wide brimmed hat, UV protective sunglasses, and loose-fitting long shirts and pants.
- As much as possible, ensure indoor temperatures are comfortable.
- Ensure children are well hydrated. Plain water is the liquid of choice, diluted fruit juice is okay.
- Monitor children in wheelchairs and check the temperature of metal and vinyl parts.
- Check the temperature of metal and plastic playground equipment.
- Staff should be aware of signs and symptoms of heat cramps, heat exhaustion, and heat stroke. Follow first aid procedures promptly.
- Staff should role model appropriate heat and sun safety behaviours.
- Apply sunscreen (SPF 15 or higher), 20-30 minutes before going outside to ensure absorption.
- When using DEET insect repellent, apply 20-30 minutes after sunscreen has been applied.
- NEVER leave children in a closed parked vehicle