Typhoon & Rainstorm Warning

Typhoon Warning System

In general the following arrangements will apply.

Situation Action to be taken
Hoisting of No 1 Signal All Kindergartens and schools will opearate as usual
Hoisting of No 3 Signal All Kindergartens will close. Other schools will operate as usual unless advised otherwise.
For children who live on the outlying islands, parents will decide on a case-by-case basis if it is safe for their children to go to school.
Hoisting of Pre-No 8 / No 8 Signal or above All Schools will close
Lowering to No 3 Signal All Schools to resume as from the following session. Kindergartens to remain closed.
Lowering to No 1 Signal or lowering of all signals All Kindergartens and schools will resume as from the following session

Special Arrangements for Students Living on Outlying Islands
There may be special regulations for students taking official examinations (Reifepruefung/GCSE/A-Level). In this case it may be necessary to telephone the school for information. Alternatively the school may try to contact the families in question.

Rainstorm Warning System
The rainstorm warning system introduced in June 1992 and revised in April 2003 operates independently of other weather warnings, including tropical cyclone warning signals.

The first stage, amber, is mainly meant to alert Government departments. In the event of heavy persistent rain affecting Hong Kong, the red or black alert will be issued and broadcast to the public over the radio and television. The following arrangements will apply, and appropriate public announcements will be made:

BLACK rainstorm warning in force All schools will close*.
RED rainstorm warning in force All schools will close*.
AMBER rainstorm signal in force Listen to radio or television announcements on weather, road and traffic conditions (Schools operate as usual)

* please make sure to read the general notes, summary and action to be taken below.

General Notes and Summary
If schools are not in session when a tropical cyclone or periods of heavy rain are likely to affect Hong Kong, the Secretary for Education and Manpower will, if the circumstances warrant it, make an announcement over the radio and television channels, advising parents whether or not to send their child to school. The announcement will be made, whenever possible, before children set out from home. The first announcement in the morning will be not later than 6:15 am. The announcement will be repeated at regular and frequent intervals.

In any case, our school premises will be open and there will be enough teachers at GSIS to look after those pupils who have turned up despite the closure of schools/kindergartens as announced by the Education and Manpower Bureau. Adequate arrangements will be made for them to return home at an appropriate time.

If schools are in session and the Secretary for Education and Manpower is advised that the situation is likely to deteriorate rapidly he will make a public announcement over radio and television stations, advising the immediate suspension of classes, in which case we shall do our utmost to make sure that adequate arrangements are made for pupils to return home.

However, the announcement of closure while schools are in session does not automatically mean that all pupils will be sent home immediately; pupils will be kept at GSIS until they can be released to return home safely Preferably the school buses will operate normally, otherwise parents will be informed by the school when to expect their children home.

When the lowering of tropical cyclone or rainstorm warning signals enables school to resume with the following session, an announcement will be made by the Secretary for Education and Manpower. Nevertheless, please use your discretion in deciding whether or not to send your children back to school, having regard in particular to local weather, road and transport conditions at that time.

Please note that children will, of course, not be penalised for not coming to school or for being late under these exceptional circumstances.

Closure of Schools in Individual Districts
In exceptional circumstances, the Secretary for Education and Manpower may announce the closure of schools or the suspension of classes in one or more districts. GSIS pupils living in such districts need not attend classes in such cases. (Special arrangements apply for pupils living on Cheung Chau, Lamma or Lantau Island; see later section).

Closure of Individual Schools
If local weather, road, slope or transport conditions warrant the closure of GSIS and an announcement has not been made by the Secretary for Education and Manpower to close schools generally, GSIS will request the Education and Manpower Bureau to arrange for an announcement to be made. The announcement will be made, whenever possible, before pupils set out for school. Again, the school will take all necessary measures to ensure the safety of pupils who may have missed the announcement and come to school.

Bad Weather during Public Examinations
All students taking public examinations will receive individual notification of the procedure to be followed in bad weather.

Please remember the following key points:

  • The hoisting of the No 3 Signal means that the Kindergartens of GSIS will close. They will remain closed if the signal is lowered to No 3 after the hoisting of No 8.
  • As to the rest of the school, GSIS will, in principle, follow Government announcements whether or not to operate which means that GSIS will not be specifically mentioned during those announcements. If the Government announces the closure of all schools this will in all cases apply for GSIS as well.
  • Students taking public examinations may be asked to come to school though GSIS is officially closed. In such a case they will be notified individually.
  • If the RED or BLACK rainstorm warning is in force, the school will close.
  • if according to the Government announcements schools operate normally or, after closure, resume classes but GSIS has to take, for whatever reason, a different course of action, this will be announced specifically on radio and television channels.
  • Please do not call GSIS unless there is a genuine emergency since it is vitally important that our communication lines remain open.
  • These events being unpredictable, common sense and understanding/cooperation may be the most important ingredients in overcoming the situation.

Thank you very much for your attention.

Hong Kong weather and maps
For a detailed weather report, maps and more, click on the links below:

Hong Kong Observatory

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