UPDATE, Monday, Sept. 11, 5:45 p.m.: Greenville County Schools release details on closings for Tuesday, Sept. 12.
“Due to the ongoing threat of severe weather, widespread power outages, and storm damage, and after consultation with law enforcement and other emergency responders, all Greenville County Schools and offices will remain closed on Tuesday, September 12, and all after-school activities are cancelled. With high winds forecast to continue through 4 a.m., repair crews will be unable to restore power, clear secondary roadways, and ensure working traffic signals across the county before the start of school, even under a two-hour delay. We also know that additional traffic generated by student and employee commutes strains law enforcement and hampers response and repair efforts.
As of 5 p.m. we have eight confirmed GCS sites without power, but security alarms indicate power outages at numerous other facilities. Those will be confirmed by district security, facilities, or maintenance personnel, but we will not be able to thoroughly inspect and restore all locations between the end of the predicted threat and the beginning of morning bus routes. Additionally, we have been advised that gusts approaching 30 miles per hour may be expected even after the conclusion of the wind advisory.
We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause families and businesses, but the safety and security of students and employees is our first priority.”
UPDATE, Monday, Sept. 11, 5:29 p.m.: Greenville County Schools closed on Tuesday, Sept. 12.
— Greenville Schools (@gcschools) September 11, 2017
Greenville County School District officials are expected to make a decision before Monday evening whether schools will be closed on Tuesday because of Hurricane Irma.
School district officials are meeting this afternoon. “We need the most up-to-date forecast that still allows parents time to plan,” said Beth Brotherton, Greenville Schools public information officer..
Brotherton said the district will consider wind speed, whether road debris creates a travel hazard for students and staff, and the extent of power outages.
An update from the school district issued Monday morning said sustained winds in excess of 30 miles per hour exceeds the limit for the safe operation of school buses and other high profile vehicles. The strongest winds are expected Monday afternoon and into the overnight hours on Tuesday.
The statement said, as part of the district’s emergency response plan, every school has an individual from either their maintenance or facilities departments assigned to do a safety check in these circumstances, just as it does for snow and ice. This review provides information on the state of school buildings, school grounds, and road conditions countywide.
All Greenville County schools were closed on Monday.
UPDATE, Monday, Sept. 11, 4:11 p.m.: GCS will make a decision at approximately 6 p.m. Parents are urged to start making plans for all possibilities: closure, delay, or schooling running on a regular schedule.