Eldersburg, Mechanicsville Elementary See Greatest Change in New School Schedule
The new Carroll County Public School bell schedule will bring children to school almost an hour and a half earlier at Eldersburg Elementary School.
Students at local elementary schools will have to be early to bed and early to rise next year according to the official bell schedule for the Carroll County Public School System released Thursday.
The changes come after cutting 40 buses starting in the fall of 2012, saving the county school system $1.2 million with the new schedule.
The school with the biggest change was Eldersburg Elementary School with the alarm ringing at 7:45 a.m. and dismissing students at 2:15 p.m., 80 minutes earlier than the current school year.
Mechanicsville Elementary School in Sykesville also saw a notable change with school starting 55 minutes later than the current school year, with school starting at 9:30 a.m. and finishing at 4 p.m., one of seven schools in the county with the latest dismissal.
Freedom and Piney Ridge elementary schools, both in Sykesville, will start earlier next year at 40 minutes and 15 minutes respectively while Carrolltowne Elementary School’s starting time will remain the same.
Liberty, South Carroll and Century high schools will start and finish 15 minutes earlier next year with the bell ringing at 7:30 a.m. and dismissing at 2:20 p.m. The new changes have all eight Carroll County public high schools starting and finishing at the same time.
The schedule is now set in stone but has few changes from the proposed schedule released in March. The only changes between the proposed schedule and the final schedule were seen at Hampstead and Manchester elementary schools.
“I support the idea wholeheartedly because finding any efficiency in these tough times is extremely important," said Board of Education President Jennifer Seidel when the schedule was introduced earlier this year.
“I’ll be up front in saying my family will be affected by this so people who don’t think we understand, we do. We are saving money as a system but placing the financial burden on parents who have to now find childcare where before they didn’t need it.”
For some parents the new schedule is frustrating while others see it as a logical way to save money.
“Elementary school starting at 7:45 a.m.? That’s crazy,” said Michele Jamison. “Elementary school kids need most amount of sleep. They should be able to find a way that they are last to go.”
“I'm in favor of the change,” said Julie Davies. “While it might take a little time to get used to-those of us who work full time away from home could get our kids on the bus. It also allows some of us to stop paying for before school daycare. Seems like a win-win.”
“If I had to pick losing busses or teachers, I'm going with busses,” said Tracy Beck. “Our teachers are doing a great job and I would hate to have to lose any of them. Yes, some people will have to change their schedule. Remember, we all had a big change of schedule when the kids started school in the first place and when they change to middle school and high school.”
To find the complete new schedule, visit the Carroll County Public School website here.