In October, Anne Arundel County Board of Education approved later school day start times for some students, in an attempt to support “healthier school start and dismissal times.” Now, the Board is setting that plan into motion.
The county has officially approved later start and dismissal times for the 2022-2023 school year after working with a consultant to examine the impacts of shifting schedules. The Anne Arundel Board of Education ordered that schools move to a schedule where elementary schools will begin between 8 and 9 a.m., middle schools between 8:30 and 9:15 a.m., and high schools at 8:30 a.m.
“A shift in school hours will create healthier environments for all of our students, but it is also a sea change to which families, employees, and the community will have to adapt,” said County Superintendent George Arlotto.
The county has released a draft schedule for all public schools in the county. Notably, exact bus stop times will not be finalized for several months, and those may slightly shift some of the school hours reflected on the published draft schedule.
According to the Anne Arundel County Public Schools’ (AACPS) website, school bus schedules aren’t the only aspect of the school day that may shift under the proposed changes: “Additionally, the new hours will mean shifts in school meal and athletics schedules, and changes to child-care operations and co-curricular activities throughout the county.”
County Superintendent Arlotto has started gathering an implementation team to oversee the county-wide changes and to work through the various internal and external logistical aspects of the schedule update.
Board of Education members will participate in a series of informational sessions to provide more details about school hours in their districts. Sessions will last 45 minutes and will be livestreamed on AACPS’ YouTube channel. Families can submit questions to discuss on AACPS’ website once the portal to do so has opened.