The Little Elm ISD Board of School Trustees approved the school start and end times for the 2014-2015 School Year at the April meeting.
The times for next fall will be as follows: all Elementary Schools (grades PK-5) 7:40 a.m. to 2:40 p.m.; Prestwick STEM Academy (K-8) 8:20 a.m. to 3:20 p.m.; Lakeside MS Academies (6-8) 8:10 a.m. to 3:55 p.m.; and Little Elm High School (9-12) 9 a.m. to 4:35 p.m.
The change to the elementary school start time represents a ten minute earlier adjustment, while students who attend the Lakeside Middle School Academies will arrive five minutes earlier and dismiss one minute earlier. Students at Little Elm High School will have the most significant change with a 25-minute later start.
Prestwick STEM Academy (PSA) will have a different time and classes will be scheduled in a flexible manner. Extra curricular activities for seventh and eighth grade students will be scheduled at the beginning and end of the school day. At this time, a total of 90 students have elected to take athletics and 90 students have enrolled in band classes.
Lakeside Middle School Academy student’s day will remain predominantly unchanged and will continue with eight, 48-minute periods.. The eight period day allows students who are in need of intervention and/or enrichment to enroll in those offerings during the school day without forfeiting all of their elective choices. The eight period day also allows for core teachers to have common planning periods in addition to their conference period each day.
Little Elm High School students will begin later, which will allow for the majority of the elementary and middle school routes to be completed. Because of the later start time, administrators are exploring the option to add an additional “zero-hour” period to the school day, which would add an opportunity for students who can provide their own transportation to arrive one class period early. Many districts in the area use this practice for high school students.
The recommendation for the change is based on the school system moving from a straight, two-tiered bussing system to a multi-tiered system and the addition of a campus.
The district requested and received community feedback regarding the start times during the past several weeks and more than 1,200 parents and community members responded.