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School start times could be changing in Cherry Creek Schools

Elementary school start times could be pushed up
Cherry Creek Schools may change start times
Posted at 5:22 PM, Feb 09, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-09 21:14:21-05

GREENWOOD VILLAGE, Colo. -- Alarm clocks for students in Cherry Creek Schools could be changing as soon as next school year if the administration’s proposal to the board is voted in.

Administrators said they surveyed all of the more than 55,000 households district-wide to get feedback on the changes and said more than half of the respondents approve.

If the proposal is approved by the board, beginning next year, elementary school start times would be pushed back from 9 a.m. to 7:55 a.m.; middle school would be moved later, from 7:50 a.m. to 8:50 a.m. and high school students would start later, with times moved from 7:10 a.m. to 8:15 a.m.

“If we just followed the research, the answer would be easy. It would be elementary first, then middle school, then high school. But we know we don't operate in a vacuum and we are affecting the lives of 55,000 kids and their families," said Scott Siegfried, the Associate Superintendent of Cherry Creek Schools.

Amy Hair and some other concerned parents disagree with the district's research results and believe the move is hard on young families and children.

“With a 7:55 start time, our kids are going to have to go bed around 6:30 at night to get enough sleep, and that's just impractical for most families,” said Hair.

Hair started a Change.org petition to rally support for keeping start times the same. More and more parents are signing on.

“I just hope that the board really, really takes a look and listens to the parents, and actually looks at the studies that show that it is detrimental to elementary school students,” said Hair.  “If the kids don't get enough sleep, then they're going to come to school, they're not going to do as well acting in the classroom and also performing academically."

The board will discuss the proposed changes at their meeting Monday and will vote on the issue in March.

A copy of the petition can be found here.

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