The following is an excerpt from the announcement in the Newton Patch on August 1, 2019. 

Newton To Cut 50 Minutes From School Day For High Schools


The decision to revamp the high school schedule has also been a longtime coming … “We are committed to making it happen because it’s in the best welfare of students,” [Ruth] Goldman said. “But we want to take the time to make sure everyone is on board because we understand there are important issues associated with it, and it will be disruptive to some in the community.”


“One thing we have learned through this process is that there are trade-offs with any proposal,” [Toby] Romer said. “That’s why it’s important to have an extensive communication process with the community so we can avoid having an overly negative impact on any one group.”


Newton School officials expect a final recommendtion for later high school start times, redesigned schedule for Newton North, Newton South this fall. Goldman said the implementation could come in either the 2020-21 school year or 2021-22 school year based on when it is finalized and the anticipated impact on transportation and daycare schedules.


“For some families it’s going to be a big change,” Goldman said. “If we decide on a new plan in late fall or winter, it may only be fair to give everyone a full year’s warning.


Under the proposals, start times would be moved from 7:40 a.m. at Newton South, and 7:50 a.m. at Newton North, to as late as 9 a.m. The school day would also be cut from the current average of 7 hours, 35 minutes, to 6 hours, 45 minutes, on most days, with shorter class blocks and the addition of a “flex-time” block in the middle of the school day for additional academic and peer support.


The new school day would eliminate the current “J” and “X” blocks at the end of the school day and replace them with the “flex-time” block.


Toby Romer, Newton Assistant Superintendent of Secondary Schools, said. “With the current J and X blocks, [at the end of the day] many students leave …” “It allows more time during the school day to promote social and emotional learning and allows for time in the middle of the day [for students] to have access to things they do not necessarily have access to during the current school day.”

Bolding and paragraph order mine.

So, What do you think? 


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