09/11/18 — School closings, plans announced

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School closings, plans announced

By Sierra Henry
Published in News on September 11, 2018 5:50 AM

As Hurricane Florence approaches North Carolina's coast, Wayne County Public Schools, Wayne Community College and the University of Mount Olive will continue to monitor the storm's progress throughout the week to provide updates on scheduling and classes.

Ken Derksen, communications and public relations officer for Wayne County Public Schools, said that WCPS is assessing the forecasts for Hurricane Florence and the potential impact of the storm. He said the district administration is staying in close communication with Wayne County Emergency Management officials for the most current updates specific to Wayne County.

In a statement released Monday after 5 p.m., WCPS officials announced the cancellations of all after-school programs and sponsored events today and Wednesday. The cancellations include any scheduled athletic practices and competitions, 4-H programs, driver's education programs, PTA meetings, staff meetings and facility rentals.

All middle- and high-school athletic competitions scheduled this week are also canceled and will be rescheduled for a later date. No school field trips will take place on Wednesday.

All Wayne County public schools will be closed Thursday and Friday and will remain closed throughout the weekend.

Further decisions regarding school operations will be made on Wednesday as WCPS continues to monitor the storm, said Ken Derksen, public relations officer for the school system.

Once the storm passes, WCPS staff will evaluate the conditions of each of its schools.

Families and staff can visit waynecountyschools.org, or follow @WayneCountyPS on Facebook or Twitter for current announcements.

Tara Humphries, public information officer for Wayne Community College, said the college is also watching the storm's progress.

"Right now, we're monitoring (the situation)," Humphries said. "We will be consulting with Wayne County Emergency Management and Wayne County Public Schools. There's a significant number of Wayne Community College employees and students that commute, so we're keeping them in mind.

"We're encouraging students and employees to get ready (for the hurricane)."

University of Mount Olive President David L. Poole announced that the university will cancel all seated classes starting at 8 a.m. today in an email to faculty, staff and students. Students who are able to leave are urged to leave the campus by 5 p.m. today.

Students who are unable to travel home or leave campus must complete and submit a registration form to their resident advisor by noon today. All classes are canceled Wednesday through Friday.

The university will be closed to all non-essential personnel Wednesday through Friday.