North Fork schools announce early dismissals; Town Hall to close early

Update (March 21, 11 a.m.): The Southold Town Board of Trustees work session and public hearings scheduled for Wednesday have been canceled due to the weather. 

Update (March 21, 10:15 a.m.): In addition to North Fork schoolchildren and teachers being sent home early Wednesday due to the impending snowstorm, Southold Town facilities will close early.

“Due to a winter storm warning and the potential for hazardous travel conditions this afternoon into the evening, all Southold Town facilities will be closing at 11:30 today,” Supervisor Scott Russell said in a statement.

Southold Town Justice Court appearances that were scheduled to begin at 1:00 p.m. will be rescheduled.

Update (March 21, 10:05 a.m.): The Mattituck-Cutchogue School District will dismiss students early. Elementary students will be let out at 11 a.m. and elementary students will be let out at noon.

Update (March 21, 9:15 a.m.): Schools are beginning to make the decision to send students home early due to the storm.

The Greenport School District will dismiss students at 11 a.m.

The Southold School District will let the high school students out at 10:30 a.m. and elementary students will be dismissed at 11:15 a.m.

All after-school and evening activities are canceled.

Originally (March 21,  a.m.): With a spring snow storm expected on Wednesday, some school districts on the East End have decided to close. On the North Fork school officials have opted to hold classes, but they told parents early Wednesday morning there would likely be an early dismissal, as the snow will get worse as the day goes on.

The Greenport School District and the Oyster Ponds School District called parents early Wednesday morning to let them know school would start on time, but an early dismissal may be necessary.

On its website, the Mattituck-Cutchogue School District and Southold School District said it would start at the regular time, but anticipated the need for students to be released early and that it would continue to monitor the storm.

Meanwhile, further west 300 school districts canceled classes Wednesday. The Riverhead Central School District, the Riverhead Charter School and Bishop McGann-Mercy Diocesan High School in Riverhead were among them. The Shoreham-Wading River School District was monitoring the storm and also said an early dismissal was possible.

A winter storm warning remains in effect from 6 a.m. Wednesday to 6 a.m. Thursday.

The latest forecast called for 6 to 12 inches of snow, with some sleet accumulation Wednesday morning. A map from the National Weather Service shows the North Fork’s forecasted snow accumulations at around 10 inches.

Early Wednesday morning, Peter Wichrowski, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service’s office in Upton, said it all depends on how long the area sees the mix of rain and sleet, which would keep the amounts down. “The heavy snow looks to be, especially out east, early to mid-afternoon in and through tonight before tapering off Thursday morning,” he said.

The day is beginning with a wintry mix that will gradually changeover to all snow later in the day through tonight. The snow will be heavy at times late in the day and Wednesday evening. The evening commute may be difficult with significant visibility at times.

With a combination of heavy snow and wind gusts — up to 45 mph at times — downed tree limbs and power lines are possible.

A coastal flood advisory is in effect on Wednesday from noon to 6 p.m. and Thursday from 12 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Correction: The Southold School District  did send a message to families this morning saying that school was in session, but that early dismissal was possible. The article has been updated. 

Photo credit: The National Weather Service says the North Fork will see 6 to 12 inches of snow fall on Wednesday. (Credit: NWS)

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