WESTOVER — Following the overwhelming response to an online community survey Somerset County Public Schools is moving ahead with a “staggered-start” for the coming school year.
The plan is that students entering a school building for the first time as well as all comprehensive classroom students will return on Monday, Aug. 29 with all other students starting back to school on Tuesday, Aug. 30.
Specifically, Crisfield and Washington Academy eighth graders, Somerset Intermediate School sixth graders, and children in Pre-K3 and Pre-K4 at the elementary schools will report on Aug. 29. Also this includes second graders attending Greenwood Elementary School.
This will allow these students to familiarize themselves with the new environment and routine without distractions from other students.
There were nearly 800 responses received for the survey, which was ended early due to the fact that 80% of the families, staff and community members that responded were in favor of the change, and leaving the questionnaire open a few more days wasn’t expected to make a difference in the results. It also gives schools more time to prepare for the staggered start, said SCPS spokesperson Victoria Miele, by email.
This staggered start will have no effect on a student’s attendance record and will not require the addition of a day on the school calendar.
Elementary school hours are 8:55 a.m. to 3:45 p.m.; for SIS 7:40 to 2:20; and Academy/High School students 7:30 to 2:30.
As in past years bus drivers will call families of students the weekend before schools open to establish pickup and drop off times. For additional questions parents can contact their child’s school.