Severe Weather

Kutztown University Procedures and Information for Severe Weather

Kutztown University reminds students, faculty and staff to be aware of the institution’s procedures and information for severe weather.

Severe weather includes, but is not limited to, hurricanes, significant snow and/or ice storms. 

Operational Decisions

The decision to open, delay or close Kutztown University due to poor weather is always a difficult one.  In the event that severe weather conditions threaten to disrupt class and/or administrative office schedules, the primary concern will be the safety and welfare of the students, faculty and staff. In such situations, the following plan will be initiated.

Decision Times

University announcements about cancellations or closings are typically made by 6 a.m. for morning classes, 10 a.m. for afternoon classes, and 2 p.m. for evening classes.  Changing weather conditions sometimes alter these time frames.

Although it is the administration’s goal to have the campus access ways as clear as possible when the university is open in these situations, the ability to be ready for business is judged upon the main ADA-compliant pathways and entrance doors being ready for use. 

Commuters should be sure to check-in with the “Media to Monitor” listed below for any changes in the business status of the university (always be safe when checking-in during your commute).

Typical Severe Weather Alerts:

CLASSES BEGIN AT ____/OFFICES OPEN AT ____. If the class and/or administrative office day has yet to begin, a delayed class schedule may be put into effect. Essential employees must report at regular time, unless otherwise directed.  Staff employees will be notified when offices open. In this instance, classes normally in progress at the time classes begin, will begin at the adjusted time (i.e. A class is normally 9 a.m. until noon.  Classes at KU begin at 10 a.m., the 9 a.m. until noon class will be held from 10 a.m. until noon). Instructional experience time from all missed classes must be made up as stipulated by the Pennsylvania Code of Higher Education and communicated by the Office of the Provost. 

CLASSES CANCELED/OFFICES OPEN or OFFICES CLOSE AT ____. This decision will be made prior to or during the class and/or administrative office schedule. If the class schedule has begun, classes may be curtailed for the remainder of the day at a designated hour including evening classes. Essential employees must remain and/or report, unless otherwise directed and all offices may remain open, or close at a designated time.  All staff employees must report on time, remain at work or may be offered the ability to utilize liberal leave. Other programs and events, whether sponsored by the university or not, may or may not be canceled.  If classes are canceled after a certain point in the day, any classes that are in progress at the designated closure time may meet up until that time.  Instructional experience time from all missed classes must be made up as stipulated by the Pennsylvania Code of Higher Education and communicated by the Office of the Provost. 

CLOSED. In dangerous or extreme weather conditions the university will be closed. All classes and services will be canceled, and most offices will be closed. University events may be conducted only with approval from the respective vice president. South Dining Hall, the Student Recreation Center, the Health and Wellness Center and the McFarland Student Union will remain open (adjusted hours may apply).  Rohrbach Library will be closed.  Essential employees must remain and/or report, unless otherwise directed. Except in the rare case of multiple consecutive full day closings (RE: Management Directive 530.17), other employees are not required to take leave. Instructional experience time from all missed classes must be made up as stipulated by the Pennsylvania Code of Higher Education and communicated by the Office of the Provost.  

Weekend Notifications

Weekend facility hours, classes, operations and events on campus may be affected by pending or ongoing weather issues.  Please check the university KU Weather Events Cancellation Page (address below), the appropriate department webpage and/or university email for information on operational status.  Personnel with weekend operations should have weekend weather plans approved by the appropriate VP and communicated with key constituents in advance of the winter weather season.

Essential Personnel

Staff members designated to be critical to the continuation of key university operations and services.  Essential personnel status is communicated to designated employees as part of the position description or via a separate communication.

Liberal Leave for Non-Instructional Employees

Non-faculty employees must utilize annual, personal or documented compensatory time for work missed if they choose to leave campus or not report to work. Under conditions of Liberal Leave, all supervisors/department chairpersons will grant submitted leave requests. (In the absence of available paid leave, Leave Without Pay - AO will be approved).  Each individual non-essential employee will have factors unique to his/her situation and must decide if travel in inclement weather is appropriate. However, non-essential employees must inform their supervisor/department chairperson of their decision to remain at home and must take appropriate leave.

Faculty Responsibilities

When classes are canceled and the university is open, the expectation is that faculty will meet their other scheduled responsibilities and serve their students.  If faculty determine that they are unable to meet their scheduled responsibilities, they need to reschedule or to provide an alternative means to meet those responsibilities so as to meet the needs of the students, colleagues and the university.   Faculty will communicate these plans to their chair and, when appropriate, to their students.

Deciding to attend class/work in pending/current inclement weather situations 

In severe weather conditions, safety is foremost.  Each individual non-essential employee and student will have factors unique to their situation and must decide if travel in inclement weather is appropriate.   However, non-essential employees must inform their supervisor/ department chairperson of their decision to remain at home and must take appropriate leave.   

Students should keep open communication with their professors in such instances.  Students assigned to off-campus locations for internships or student teaching must contact their employer/supervisor about whether or not to report for work. 

Caution When Traversing Campus 

When returning to/traversing campus please be aware that, despite the university’s best efforts, slippery conditions may exist in some areas.  Please wear proper footwear, be alert, and use caution.  Please keep a safe distance from snow removal equipment and make sure the operator is aware of your presence before proceeding.

Media to Monitor

University information can be obtained in several ways: 

  • The weather hotline at 610-683-4649. 
  • The KU homepage.
  • KU Alert.  We will once again be using the KU Alert system to relay weather-related information via text message and email. Faculty/staff must register for the system if they have not already done so.  Students are automatically registered and must opt-out through MyKU if they don’t want to receive these important alerts.    
  • Email at your email address from
  • KU’s official Facebook ( and Twitter ( pages.   
  • WFMZ Channel 69.

Emergency Snow Lots on Campus 

Emergency snow lots have been designated as follows:  lot A-2 (near Beekey), lot B-1 (front of Grim), and lot F-1 (behind Stratton Administration).  These lots have all been appropriately signed as snow lots

From Nov. 15-March 15 each year, parking is not permitted during the following time periods: midnight until 6 a.m. in lots A-2 and B-1, and 3-6 a.m. in lot F-1. Violators are subject to fines and/or having their vehicles towed.   Disabled vehicles will be excluded if notification is received by the Department of Public Safety & Police Services from the owner, prior to the date in question.   

KU Events Weather Cancellation Page

KU’s Snow and Ice Removal Plan

For further information on the university’s on-campus snow and ice removal plan, please visit:

Winter Outdoor Safety Link 

Borough of Kutztown Information

KU Information