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Weather related closures and delays

Filed in Archive by on November 16, 2020

Looking ahead to winter weather, the Bethlehem Central School District wants students, staff and families to know how the district will handle weather-related closures and delays in the 2020-21 school year.

Weather-related closures 

As in past years, schools will be closed when snow or poor road conditions make travel difficult or impossible. There will be no classes — in-person or virtual — on these snow days.

However, if there are more snow days used this winter than the academic calendar allows it may become necessary to use these days for virtual instruction. If the district does exceed its allotted number of snow days, families would be notified in advance that subsequent snow days will include virtual instruction. 

Weather-related delays

New this year: When morning weather conditions necessitate extra time for bus preparation and for roads to be cleared, the district will no longer use a districtwide two-hour delay. Instead, in 2020-21, the district will use one of two school delay protocols: a districtwide one-hour delay OR a modified one-hour delay. Details and schedules can found below:

DISTRICTWIDE one-hour delay

All classes begin one hour later than usual. The hybrid A/B schedule for grades 7-12 would continue as scheduled.

OR 

MODIFIED one-hour delay

Students in grades K-5 would attend school in person, and ALL students in grades 6-12 would receive virtual instruction. The hybrid A/B schedule for grades 7-12 would be suspended.

Additional details

  • If your child’s in-person school is delayed, buses will pick up students one hour later than the student’s scheduled pick up time.
  • For both one-hour delays, there would be no morning BOCES CTE program for high school students.
  • If school is canceled or delayed, the Special Education and Student Services (SESS) Department will cancel all CSE meetings and will send a notice of rescheduled meetings to families who are impacted by these changes.
  • The school closure that took place on October 8, 2020, due to widespread power outages, means that Friday, May 28, 2021 will be a regular day of instruction.

How BC communicates weather-related closures

Cancellations, delays or early dismissals are posted on the school district’s website, right on the homepage at www.bethlehemschools.org.

School closings are also announced on the following local TV and radio stations: Channel 6, Channel 9, NEWS10, Channel 13, FOX23, WGNA (107.7 FM), WGY (810 AM), WYJB (B95.5), WRVE (99.5 FM), as well as http://timesunion.com. We will also post closings and delays on the district’s Twitter (twitter.com/BethlehemCSD) page.

For district parents and staff, closing information will be sent directly to you via email using School Messenger. If you have opted in to receive SMS text messaging through School Messenger, you will also receive a text message.

You can check to see if you are signed up to receive text messages by texting “Y” to 67587.

It is best to rely on more than one source of information when it comes to weather-related announcements. This is particularly true in situations that involve power outages, which can affect the district’s ability to send electronic notifications. Emergency preparedness agencies have advised that residents have access to a battery-powered radio so that they can receive information if other communication channels are unavailable.