Bell times could change next school year - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Bell times could change next school year

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Students practiced football and baseball Wednesday outside Sherwood Middle School where a later bell time appeared to leave them with plenty of energy. Students practiced football and baseball Wednesday outside Sherwood Middle School where a later bell time appeared to leave them with plenty of energy.
All Shelby County high schools, and many middle schools, currently start classes at 7 a.m. All Shelby County high schools, and many middle schools, currently start classes at 7 a.m.
SHELBY COUNTY, TN -

(WMC-TV) - The debate over school bell times could lead to changes next year for your child. Shelby County Schools are seeking input from every parent.

The district launched a survey Wednesday, alerted parents, and posted it to Facebook and Twitter to ensure adequate feedback.

Students practiced football and baseball Wednesday outside Sherwood Middle School where a later bell time appeared to leave them with plenty of energy. But when parent Latoya Williams' children get older, they may have to get up earlier. All Shelby County high schools, and many middle schools, currently start classes at 7 a.m.

"They're not focused because they're too tired, because they got up so early and went to bed so late," said Williams.

Many parents raised concerns during recent school board meetings arguing that earlier bell times affect achievement and can even be dangerous for kids who drive to school.

School board member Shante Avant suggested the district gauge all parents to get input on bell times.

"We want to make sure we're getting a good opinion poll from the wide range of parents that represent our district," she said.

The board may consider moving bell or start times from the current 7, 8, and 9 to 7:15, 8:15, and 9:15, or even 30 minutes later to 7:30, 8:30, and 9:30.

This survey was posted Wednesday on the district's website and social media platforms. Click here for survey: http://www.scsk12.org/uf/news/viewrelease.php?id=314.

Budget constraints will keep drastic changes from occurring, but bell times should, at least, be based on what is best for most students.

Parents have until April 16 to fill out the survey.

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