Manitoba

Snowstorm forces all metro Winnipeg school divisions to close doors for 1st time in 25 years

It's been 25 years since all metro Winnipeg schools were forced closed due to weather, but on Tuesday night the heads of the divisions said schools and administration offices across the city will be closed Wednesday and Thursday.

Most southern Manitoba schools closed Wednesday

Many schools in Manitoba are closed as a storm sweeps in Wednesday morning. (Chris Young/The Canadian Press)

It's been 25 years since all metro Winnipeg schools were forced closed due to weather, but on Tuesday night the heads of the divisions said schools and administration offices across the city will be closed Wednesday and Thursday, and that staff are encouraged to stay home. 

Pembina Trails School Division has moved classes to online learning. 

The news comes after several school divisions outside the Perimeter issued notices Tuesday warning parents, students and teachers to expect in-person classes to be cancelled Wednesday due to a serious snowstorm in the forecast.

Divisions across southern Manitoba closed and could be out more than one day.

"As in-class learning may be disrupted for a few days, our teachers will have conversations with their students about learning activities/assignments that they can continue to work on while at home," a notice from Lord Selkirk School Division said earlier on Tuesday.

Brandon School Division also closed all schools.

"It is our hope that the timing of this announcement provides parents the necessary time to prepare," Brandon School Division superintendent Mathew Gustafson said in a statement Tuesday. 

"We have not had a closure of all schools in Brandon for a very long time and this decision is not made lightly."

Wednesday closures:

  • All metro Winnipeg school divisions (remote learning in Pembina Trails School Division).
  • University of Winnipeg Collegiate.
  • Brandon School Division.
  • Beautiful Plains School Division.
  • Border Land School Division.
  • Franco-Manitoban School Division (DSFM), except La Voie du Nord Community School in Thompson.
  • Evergreen School Division.
  • Fort La Bosse School Division.
  • Garden Valley School Division.
  • Hanover School Division.
  • Interlake School Division.
  • Lord Selkirk School Division.
  • Mountain View School Division.
  • Park West School Division.
  • Pine Creek School Division.
  • Portage la Prairie School Division.
  • Prairie Rose School Division.
  • Prairie Spirit School Division.
  • Red River Valley School Division.
  • Rolling River School Division. 
  • Seine River School Division.
  • Southwest Horizon School Division.
  • Sunrise School Division.
  • Western School Division.

Confirmed post-secondary closures: 

  • Assiniboine Community College (Wednesday). 
  • Brandon University (Wednesday and Thursday).
  • Canadian Mennonite University (Wednesday and Thursday).
  • Manitoba Institute of Trades and Technology (Wednesday).
  • Red River College Polytechnic, remote operations only (Wednesday and Thursday). 
  • St. Boniface University, remote operations only (Wednesday and Thursday).
  • University of Manitoba, remote operations only (Wednesday and Thursday). 
  • University of Winnipeg (Wednesday and Thursday).

Rural Manitoba schools have had to close multiple times this winter due to hazardous weather conditions and highway commutes for many staff and students, but it is extremely rare for city schools to close due to weather in Manitoba.

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