The Everett School District published the results of their school start and stop time survey on April 26, 2013. Survey results show many respondents want no change to the current school start and dismissal times although almost as many wanted some middle schools and high schools to start 20 minutes earlier.
The least number of survey respondents wanted some schools to start 10 minutes earlier and some schools 10 minutes later.
Interestingly, it was the respondents with elementary school students that preferred some middle and high schools to start 20 minutes earlier while the respondents with middle and high school students wanted to keep the current schedule.
The following comes from the Everett Public Schools InTouch newsletter.
The survey asked respondents to rank their preferences of four start and stop time options:
- Option 1 proposed some middle and high schools start and dismiss 20 minutes earlier.
- Option 2 proposed some elementary schools start and dismiss 20 minutes later.
- Option 3 proposed some middle and high schools start and dismiss 10 minutes earlier, while some elementary schools start and dismiss 10 minutes later.
- Option 4 proposed no change to the 2012-13 school start and stop time schedule.
The survey gathered more than 5,000 responses that indicate:
- Many respondents want no change to the current school start and dismissal times.
- Many prefer potential changes that have the least personal impact.
The results of the survey concluded that secondary and elementary families prefer different options.
The results from 3,253 respondents with middle and high school students were:
- 45.2 percent preferred Option 4 (keep the current schedule)
- 27.6 percent preferred Option 1 (start some middle and high schools 20 minutes earlier)
- 13.6 percent preferred Option 2 (start some elementary schools 20 minutes later)
- 13.6 percent preferred Option 3 (some schools start 10 minutes earlier, and some start 10 minutes later)
The results from 2,651 respondents with elementary students were:
- 37.9 percent preferred Option 1 (start some middle and high schools 20 minutes earlier)
- 27.2 percent preferred Option 2 (start some elementary schools 20 minutes later)
- 20.6 percent preferred Option 4 (keep the current schedule)
- 14.3 percent preferred Option 3 (some schools start 10 minutes earlier, and some start 10 minutes later)
The survey responses tell the school district that any large-system change creates challenges. This is not a surprising response to a schedule change possibility that could impact more than 18,000 students and their families in different ways.
As part of this annual scheduling process, the district will continue to explore and evaluate ways to increase school bus efficiency - that is to save costs as much as possible and to increase school bus "on time" rates. The district will also continue to advocate for adequate funding for basic education from the legislature - funding which includes student transportation. And, the district will continue to be mindful of family schedule needs, keeping changes as minimal as necessary to balance efficiency.
A decision will be made by the district as quickly as possible. They hope to have the information to make that decision before the school year ends. They are also watching the legislative session closely to learn more about what transportation funding will be available for public schools next year and in the future.
Until the legislative process concludes, schools are unable to complete plans or finalize budgets for next school year.