Late sleepers rejoice, high school students will be able to grab an extra hour of sleep as of fall 2018.
The School Committee voted unanimously Tuesday, Nov. 14 to start Burlington High School classes one hour later, at 8:35 a.m.
BHS dismissal time will now be 3:05 p.m.
Marshall Simonds Middle School will maintain its current start and dismissal times, 7:35 a.m., to 1:55 p.m., with the four elementary schools also seeing changes to their times.
Fox Hill Elementary, Memorial and Pine Glen with open their doors at 8:10 a.m., with dismissal at 2:15 p.m.
Francis Wyman Elementary will start at 8:35 a.m., and end their day at 2:40 p.m.
Additional buses would have been required to accommodate the new high school start times, and maintain current elementary start times, but school officials decided it was unwise to spend the additional money. Each bus would cost $57,000.
In recommending the changes, Superintendent Eric Conti said Tuesday night the decision won't please everyone, but this would be the best option. He said it would be the best benefit, to the greatest number of students.
Before the vote school committee member Christine Monaco said she struggled with her decision, saying, "So much is driven by money - I wish we could provide the best education regardless of the dollars.”
Monaco added that she was not happy with the 8:35 a.m., start time, which she believed, “is too late." She said the bottom line is it’s better for the kids to start later. "I support (the proposal) but not with a 100 percent buy-in.”
Committee member Martha Simon said the later start time has been, “a long and difficult process,” but the research clearly shows adolescents benefit from later start times. Members Kristin Russo and Steve Nelson agreed that the research was convincing to start high school later.