School start times and working parents
Since my kids' school doesn't have a bus, I haven't had to deal with Pinellas County's odd school start times, which range from the ungodly early 7:05 a.m. for high school to the weirdly late 10 a.m. for middle school. Well, our friends at the Gradebook blog say the new bell times are out for next year and it's sure to stir up a new set of parents: Many elementary schools are going from a start time of 8:20 a.m. to 9:20 a.m. High schools are staying the same and most middle schools are starting 15 minutes earlier. Here are all the bell times if you want to look up your school.
I remember seeing a line of kids in my neighborhood walking or riding their bikes to the elementary school down the street and their parents would either walk with them or kiss them goodbye before heading off to work. I'm wondering what a 9:20 start time does to that scenario.
School Board member Janet Clark had that concern. “I think this will make it very difficult for families to make arrangements,” she said, also expressing concern over the late start and finish times for elementary students. How does a change like this in start times affect your work schedule?
-- Sharon Kennedy Wynne
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