Cowichan, Sooke, Nanaimo, Victoria, Saanich schools remain closed

Snowfall warning over, Comox, Campbell River, Alberni and Qualicum open

The snowfall warning is finally over, but the snow day continues for five Vancouver Island school districts.

Public schools in the Saanich, Victoria, Nanaimo, Cowichan Valley and Sooke school districts will be closed on Wednesday, as will Queen of Angels School, Duncan Christian School, Cowichan Tribes schools and Sunrise Waldorf School, all in the Cowichan area.

“While city crews have cleared main roads, many side roads are still not in good condition,” states a message on the Saanich School District website. “We will continue to monitor the situation throughout the day. However, for Wednesday Feb 13 all schools are CLOSED. Thank you for your patience and understanding.”

Both Camosun College campuses and Vancouver Island University’s Cowichan and Powell River campuses remain closed. Classes are cancelled at the VIU Nanaimo campus. The University of Victoria is open with a warning there could be transit delays. North Island College is open.

Environment Canada lifted its snowfall warning for the Island just before 5 a.m. this morning after two successive winter storms that dumped at least 15 centimetres of snow on most eastern Vancouver Island communities from Campbell River south, with close to 50 centimetres in many areas.

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The Qualicum district is open, with the exception of False Bay school on Lasqueti Island and all buses are running. The Alberni school district has announced schools are open and buses are running. Campbell River and Comox districts have also announced they will be open today.

“Thank you for your patience over the past few days as our crews have worked hard to stay ahead of the beautiful bounty of snow that we have seen land in our communities,” reads a statement posted Tuesday evening on the Qualicum site.

“We hope you have all been able to stay safe and warm. The snow continues to come down but our schools and access roads are in relatively good shape, or should be by the morning. We are somewhat optimistic about running buses and opening schools on Wednesday, but will be ready for another snow day if necessary.”

Nanaimo district, which announced today’s closure this morning after announcing Tuesday’s closure Monday night, responded on its Facebook page to criticism that it could not make an earlier announcement.

“Thanks for your understanding everyone. As mentioned in some of the comments, we understand that there are accessibility challenges in neighbourhoods across the district. District staff tour the entire district from Lantzville to Ladysmith. As always, parents have the final decision to keep their kids home for safety reasons.”

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