Hampton to hold special school board meeting on school start times

Friday, January 10, 2020 | 12:01 AM

A special school board meeting to discuss the possibility of modifying school day start times in Hampton Township will be held on Jan. 27 at 7 p.m. at the middle school library.

The School Start Time Committee has been researching delaying the start of the school day for high school students over the past year, as research shows secondary students who get more sleep perform better academically.

The committee is recommending the “Secondary Switch” proposal with school days as follows: middle school, 7:50 a.m. to 2:40 p.m.; high school at 8:20 to 3:01 p.m.; and elementary at 8:45 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., according to Dr. Michael Loughead, superintendent of schools for Hampton Township, who presented an update at last week’s school board meeting with fellow committee members.

Currently, the high school day runs from 7:30 a.m. to 2:19 p.m.; middle school, 7:55 a.m. to 2:45 p.m.; and elementary from 8:30 a.m. to 3:15 p.m.

The school start time committee has reviewed other scenarios and the secondary switch has been “status quo for some time now,” said Loughead. Several reasons it fits best is it has minimal impact on middle school, and on athletic and extracurricular activities, and maintains an “efficient three-tier transportation system,” according to the committee.

Loughead said more details of the proposal, including a timeline of what has been done to date, is available on the school district website.

Several superintendent coffee events for families have been recently held on the topic as well as surveys, said Loughead.

He also said that the district is going to do simulated bus morning and afternoon runs on Jan. 20, since there’s no school. This could include simulated runs from A.W. Beattie Career Center on Babcock Boulevard, where some Hampton high school students attend during their school day. These and other findings will be presented at the special board meeting.