Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

EVSC Proposes Start Time Changes ; Elementary Pupils May Go 34 Minutes Longer

Newspaper article Evansville Courier & Press (2007-Current)

EVSC Proposes Start Time Changes ; Elementary Pupils May Go 34 Minutes Longer

Article excerpt

Changes could be in the making for Evansville Vanderburgh School Corp. students starting next academic year. Members of the EVSC School Board will hear information on proposed longer days at a regularly scheduled meeting on Monday evening, according to district chief communications officer Marsha Jackson. But Jackson said she believed it would not be voted on for approval at the 5:30 p.m. meeting.

Currently, school day lengths - which vary slightly by site - are 7:45 a.m. to 2:45 p.m. for high schools, middle schools and K-8 facilities. The new proposed hours for those sites would be 7:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Elementary schools are currently in session 7:55 a.m. to 2:16 p.m., and the future school day hours could be 8:15 a.m. to 3:10 p.m. If approved, next fall elementary schools will be in class 34 minutes longer.

Individual schools will have the flexibility to adjust schedules based on the needs of their students.

As of Friday afternoon, many details were still being ironed out, according to Jackson, but she did note that the district's elementary school day is one of the shortest in the state.

"The reason we're looking at it is because additional time during the day is necessary, especially at the elementary level," she said. "We have one of the shortest school days in the state and that's probably the bulk of what we're looking at."

She declined further comment.

A document sent to EVSC employees notes that the day for elementary and middle school students will be lengthened, and every school building will have a new start and end time.

"The new school day will give most students additional instructional time and allow teachers expanded opportunities for collaboration," the document reads.

Evansville Teachers Association President Mark Lichtenberg, in an email to union members on Thursday, stated that the association is "seeking clarification on how these changes impact a teacher's daily schedule and responsibilities."

Lichtenberg wrote that early this year the organization was asked to provide feedback on potential changes to next year's school day, but at the conclusion of that conversation it was said that the issue was "going back to the drawing board. …

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