It’s that time of year again!

Because Lafayette is a residential college, the College will close only under the most adverse weather conditions. Severe weather, however, could require the delay of the start of the workday, closing for the day, or the early release of staff members.

When regularly scheduled work hours are reduced because of emergency conditions, employees who are allowed to arrive late or leave early will be paid for their normal workday.

The nature of some particular responsibilities may require certain support staff members to be at their workplace to perform essential tasks despite the existence of emergency conditions. Some examples of essential tasks include important work subject to a deadline, circumstances where a department or office workload is such that a supervisor cannot release certain staff members, or where a necessary service must be sustained.

Office and library staff and technical and service staff employees who are required to provide essential services will receive compensatory time off equal to the time they worked while others were released. Administrative staff and exempt support staff supervisors, administrative assistants, nurses, etc., are expected to fulfill their responsibilities, at the discretion of their supervisor, without extra compensation.

Positions designated as “essential”

The nature of some Facilities Operations and Public Safety positions, however, may require certain staff members to be at their workplace to perform some necessary tasks despite the existence of emergency conditions. These employees are considered “essential” employees. Some examples of services that cannot be curtailed are security protection, snow removal, and steam generation. If there is any question about your specific responsibility, your supervisor will clarify it.

In the event of anticipated inclement weather that might necessitate closing the College, or delayed opening, essential employees may not request a waiver of the usual five-day advance notice of their intentions to use vacation time, unless vacation has been pre-arranged and approved.

The basic pay of employees who perform essential tasks incorporates considerations of the need for their services during emergencies. Thus, no Facilities Operations or Public Safety employees, who perform tasks designated as essential, will receive extra pay or time off for work performed during normal work hours when an emergency has been declared for others. However, any hours worked in excess of normal hours will, of course, be paid under the usual overtime rules.

Closing or delayed opening

Announcements of any closing or delayed opening time can be obtained on the College’s website, at WFMZ’s Stormcenter, or by tuning to WFMZ 69 News (Channel 69). Delay and closing information will appear along a continuous crawl at the bottom of the screen, under “school closings.” If you prefer to hear a recorded announcement, you may call the Office of Human Resources at 610-330-5060. 

Employees must inform their supervisor when they will be late or unable to report for work. Office and library staff and technical and service staff employees who are prevented from reporting to work may charge the absence against accumulated banked time when appropriate, or have their pay reduced accordingly.

In the event of a delayed opening, non-essential employees may prefer to use a full vacation day rather than come to campus for the remainder of the day. In that case, department heads may allow the request by waiving the usual five-day advance notice of an employee’s intention to use earned vacation.

Early release

If an emergency develops during the workday which creates adverse weather conditions, notification of an early release will be given to all offices and departments by the Office of Human Resources via email. Office and department heads and supervisors should not release their staff from work for winter weather conditions without authorization from the Office of Human Resources.

Employees not required by their supervisors to perform essential services who voluntarily stay beyond the early release time will not be able to receive extra compensation or additional compensatory time off.

If you have any questions, please call the Office of Human Resources at extension 5060.