HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, Fla. -- Hillsborough County school will not be changing the bell times for the 2017-18 school year, but might the following year.
Superintendent Jeff Eakins said Monday that he will propose waiting a year at a special school board meeting on April 25.
The district said the additional time will allow it and families to make any necessary adjustments and clarify questions or concerns. Superintendent Eakins will also recommend a tentative bell schedule for the 2018-2019 school year.
Buses start running before the sun comes up in Hillsborough County. High schoolers get an early start with the first bell at 7:30 a.m. Then the rush is on to get back out and get the elementary kids to them ready to start learning at 8. At that point, there's a little bit of breathing room to get middle schoolers picked up and delivered to class by 9 ... but it's not all adding up. Tanya Arja is a spokesperson for the district.
"We need to ensure that our students get to school on time because in many cases our bus drivers just don't have the time that they need to get from one school to the other," she says. She adds that the school board is discussing adjusting those start times to be more efficient and save the district money in the process.
"The idea is that if we can have an hour in between the start times, it would give the bus drivers time to get from one school, go pick up the other kids, get them to their school, go back out again and get kids to the middle school."