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Delays, Early Release or Closures

School delays, closures and bus releases may be called district-wide or by north (Bend) or south Deschutes County (La Pine/Sunriver) to reflect differing conditions across the district, as necessary.

What Does the Information Mean?

  • School Closure: Schools are closed for the day due to weather or emergency. In this scenario, the school building will not be used. Unless otherwise noted, all evening meetings and activities are cancelled.
  • Delayed Start: School will have a delayed start. Most often, this is a two-hour delay. In this scenario, buses will run two hours later than normal schedule and will drive slowly, adjusting to conditions and may be delayed. A delayed start decision can turn into a school closure decision.
  • Early Release: Students who ride the bus can be released early in order to give the buses extra time to complete routes.
  • Early Closure: Schools may be closed early due to weather or emergency. In this scenario, the school building will not be used. Unless otherwise noted, all evening meetings and activities are cancelled, including KidsInc.

No news means no change.

How to find out if there is a delay to the start of the school day, an early release or school closure

Notification about delays/closures are typically shared early on the morning of the change; the goal is to make the decision and begin notifications by 5:30 a.m., (in some limited circumstances notification may begin later). Early release or early closure decisions will be made after the school day has started.

Once a decision to delay, close or release early has been made, families can learn of the news through one of the following methods:

  1. Visit our website: (an alert banner will be posted to every page in the case of a delay, closure or early release.)
  2. Subscribe to Mystop to receive push notifications on your mobile device about changes to the school bus. Sign up today:
    1. To install the app, simply visit the Google Play Store (for Android) or the Apple Store (for iOS), and search for "Versatrans My Stop" or log-in via the web at My Stop. Make sure you select Bend-La Pine Schools when prompted.
  3. Visit our social media pages:
  4. Sign up for BLConnect, an emergency alert text messaging system. Register at This Link.
  5. Tune it to local media.

We no longer provide weather and closure updates on a phone hotline.

Emergency Alerts

We will use our text messaging system — BL Connect — to alert families in the case of an evacuation, lockdown, emergency or weather-related event that calls for cancellation of a school day or changes to school day start or end times.

This notification will be sent AFTER students and staff have been secured and emergency responders have been notified.

The text alert system will not be used in the case of drills, medical incidents involving specific students or secure (in a secure, school staff members lock the outside doors, but instruction continues as normal.) General press releases and community releases will not be sent using text messaging.

Signing up for the text message alerts through BLConnect allows families to hear news and updates directly from Bend-La Pine Schools, rather than from an alternate source.

How Delay, Early Release or Closure Decisions are Made During Inclement Weather Events

Central Oregon is home to a variety of micro-climates… sometimes bringing snow, lightning, and wind storms to targeted areas of our school district, while other areas are spared. During a weather event, teams are dispatched to assess conditions and determine whether changes to school operations may be necessary. Depending on weather and circumstances, these assessments may include:

  • Driving affected areas in Bend, La Pine and Sunriver in passenger vehicles to assess road conditions, weather hazards, and snow depth,
  • Assessing school facility conditions to ensure parking lots and primary sidewalks are accessible to students and staff,
  • Monitoring weather forecasts in partnership with NOAA,
  • Communicating with local and state road departments,
  • Monitoring regional roadway cameras,

  • Communicating with local and regional law enforcement agencies.

Parent Choice

For many of our students, school is the safest place to be during inclement weather. In many cases, both parents and/or guardians work outside the home. Schools provide a warm, supervised environment for children. However, parents are always encouraged to consider the conditions of their neighborhood and the well-being of their students in deciding whether to keep their student home. Students are excused from school when parents so request.