Work and Teaching Responsibility During Inclement Weather

The Wheaton experience for students centers on the academic mission of our college but also includes the many other services and programs provided as part of residential community life.  Since Wheaton is primarily a residential college it is important to maintain these scheduled services. Therefore, in general the college’s operations will normally continue unless the college determines that the weather conditions are so serious that the college should close.

In instances of delayed openings, early releases, or campus closures, essential and emergency personnel (those responsible for maintaining the essential operations of the campus) will be required to report for work or remain at work.  Below you will find the policies that govern situations when the college remains open, delays opening, or is closed due to serious weather conditions.

When the College remains open and an individual chooses not to come to campus:

We recognize that some employees may be absent, arrive late, or leave early due to weather conditions when the college is open.

Members of the staff must discuss the circumstances with their supervisors.  If the supervisor approves, staff members may elect to use earned personal or vacation time, or, if time used is half a day or less, may (with the further approval of the supervisor), make up the time within a month.  If a staff member does not use vacation or personal time and chooses to not make up the time, the hours scheduled but not worked will not be paid.  Supervisors are responsible for coordinating schedules so that services will continue in those departments that provide essential services.

Members of the faculty should refer to the Teaching Responsibility section noted below if they are unable to teach and the college is open.

When the College delays opening or closes:

A decision may be made to delay opening or temporarily suspend or close the operations of certain offices; however, other functions essential to student life and campus safety will continue.  Those departments required to remain open and the level of staffing needed will depend upon the type and severity of the situation, and whether students or others are present on campus.  Generally, Public Safety, Physical Plant, SAIL and Dining Services provide essential services and will be required to work.  In addition, when the college is in session, efforts will also be made to keep the Madeleine Clark Wallace Library open.  Other services may be essential dependent upon the nature, scope and timing of the situation.  Questions about specific operations should be referred to your supervisor.

Members of the faculty should refer to the Teaching Responsibility section noted below if they are unable to get to campus to teach.

How to Learn of the College’s Status During Inclement Weather – (open, delayed opening, closed)

 Members of the faculty and staff are responsible for learning whether the college is open, closed or has a delayed opening.  This information can be obtained in the following ways:

  1. Check your college e-mail for a campus community message.
  2. Visit the college website for an announcement.
  3. If you have registered to receive emergency notifications, check your cell phone and/or personal email address for notifications and alerts.  (Instructions for how to register for these notifications can be found on the Human Resources tab on InsideWheaton.)
  4. Check local Boston and Providence television stations for updated information.

If there is no announcement or message on the college website, the college is open as usual.

Of Special Interest to Members of the Faculty

Teaching Responsibility During Inclement Weather and Other Emergencies

We expect that members of the faculty will teach when the college is in session.  If inclement weather makes it impossible for you to hold class, you must notify your students through email or onCourse.  Please notify your students that this is the procedure that will be used to contact them if a weather emergency occurs.

Of Special Interest to Members of the Staff

For pay purposes, the decision to delay opening or suspend certain operations will be treated as shown below.  These procedures apply to both monthly and biweekly-paid members of the staff unless otherwise noted.  Questions about specific situations should be referred to Human Resources.

Payment Guidelines
Situation Pay Status
Employee reports to work and is sent home, or college delays opening. Portion of the day the college is closed will be treated as Special Closing, which means that hours scheduled but not worked will be paid.
Employee is notified via emergency notification text, phone or email message or the website that the college has suspended operations, and employee does not report to work (not an “essential” employee). Treated as Special Closing, which means that hours scheduled but not worked will be paid.
Employee is out ill, on vacation or had arranged to take a personal day. Employee will be paid for available sick, vacation or personal time, as appropriate, but not for Special Closing pay.
Employee is either required to report for work or reports to work and is required by the supervisor to stay during closing. Hourly employees receive double time for hours worked during the remainder of the shift. Any hours worked beyond the normal shift will be paid at time and one half through the end of the Special Closing.

If you have general questions about the Inclement Weather policy, please contact Human Resources.  Questions about teaching responsibility during inclement weather and other emergencies should be addressed to the Provost’s Office.