Anne Arundel County Schools will not hold before-school programs for the 2022-2023 school year, as part of the county’s greater strategy to sink school start times with the natural sleeping cycle of adolescents.
The upcoming 2022-2023 school year will not only see a shift in start and end times for students in Anne Arundel County Public Schools (AACPS), but also for the programs and extracurricular activities offered to them.
In October 2021, Anne Arundel County 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.
As a result, the county is cancelling before-school meetings of clubs and student organizations for the upcoming school year. The shift applies to all three levels of public education — elementary, middle, and high schools. On Friday AACPS spokesperson Bob Mosier said it would be “counterintuitive to shift start times and then offer activities that have students waking up early.”
Notably, canceling morning programs has left some concerned about accessibility to all students and the potential of after-school programs competing for participation with previously before-school programs. According to a Baltimore Sun report, principals in the district are currently working to schedule previously before-school programs during and after-school hours.