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Weather or Emergency Closings

Section 601

Smith College is a residential college and as such requires continuation of services for students regardless of weather conditions. Those departments and offices which provide essential services must continue operations during adverse weather conditions; other departments will continue to provide services whenever possible. College departments are responsible for defining "essential services" and for developing plans and procedures to provide essential services during adverse weather conditions and other emergencies.

The Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration and the Associate Vice President for Facilities & Operations are responsible for determining when adverse weather conditions warrant an early closing or delayed opening of the college. Individual department heads and supervisors are not authorized to make unilateral delayed opening or early closing decisions in the absence of a college-wide notice.

Delayed Opening

When heavy snow or freezing rain falls overnight, the college may decide to open administrative and academic offices later than usual. However, to minimize the disruption in departmental services, employees are encouraged to report prior to the delayed opening whenever it is possible to do so without significant risk.

Early Closing

When a decision to close early is made, the Office of Human Resources will notify each department of the time of the official closing and a Campus News e-mail announcement will be sent out. The INFO Line (413-585-INFO) will also carry a recorded message.

Attendance and Pay Procedures

When College Operations Are Not Curtailed

On occasion, adverse weather conditions may cause you to be concerned about travel safety. In such cases, you need to make your own judgment about whether to stay home, arrive late, or, after consultation with your supervisor, leave early. If you expect to be late or are unable to report to work at all, you must notify your supervisor as soon as possible.

Staff members who stay home, arrive late, or leave early due to adverse weather conditions must use personal time, vacation time, or excused time without pay to cover their absence. Where schedules permit, the missed hours may be made up during the same work week.

When College Operations Are Curtailed

Occasionally the college may decide to open administrative and academic offices late, close early, or cancel nonessential services entirely due to adverse weather conditions. Under these circumstances, excused time with pay will be granted.

Any excused time with pay granted as a result of a delayed opening or early closing is available only to those staff members who report for work or who are still at work at the time the early closing is announced.

Staff who are not at work because of vacation, personal days, illness, or other scheduled absences when these situations occur must use the full day of vacation, personal time, etc., as planned.

Announcements of Curtailed Operations

The Smith College information line will carry a recorded message if there are changes in office opening or closing times. NOTE: The information line is the only official source of weather emergency information.

Smith College Information Line: (413) 585-INFO (4636) (after 6 a.m.)

In addition, the following media stations will be notified of official delayed openings or cancellations.

Television Stations
  • WWLP-TV Channel 22
  • WGGB-TV Channel 40

Each employee is responsible for obtaining the necessary information regarding delayed openings or cancellations.