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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Pasco plans to change school start times

Clocks To save about a half-million dollars in busing, Pasco school officials have proposed shifting start times for 43 schools for next year -- most by just 5-10 minutes, but by nearly an hour for four of them.

Where will the biggest changes come?

Springing ahead:

Oakstead Elementary would begin classes at 9:40 a.m. instead of 8:40 a.m.

Falling back:

Gulf Middle School would begin at 7:40 a.m. instead of 8:40 a.m., to share bus routes with Gulf High
Irvin Education Center would open at 7:35 a.m. instead of 8:15 a.m.

"We made a concerted effort to consolidate routes and have as few buses on the roads as possible," assistant superintendent Ray Gadd told the Gradebook.

Board member Kathryn Starkey called the proposal a creative solution to ongoing budget woes. The district expects to cut $45 million in spending for 2009-10.

"Students will get used to it," Starkey said of the new start times. "I'd rather change the bus schedules than lay off professionals or cut middle school sports."

The School Board is slated to consider the proposal on Tuesday. (See also the current start times.)

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 10:23am]


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