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School board passes motion to change school day schedule

At its meeting Monday night, the District 206 School Board approved proposed changes to the beginning and end times of the school day. This will alter the start and end times of every school in the district.

Two committees started looking into the possibility of changing school times in the spring of 2013. With the main concern being on high school students’ absences and falling asleep in class, the committees proposed switching the two bus tiers in the district to delay the start to the secondary school schedule.

Studies focused on students ages 14 to 18 showed support for later school times, explaining the melatonin process in a teenager doesn’t begin until around 11 p.m. and continues to secrete until 8 the following morning. A large amount of this research was found in a University of Minnesota study.

Knowing of the concerns for Miltona families, which is the one elementary school that will have a later start time, the committees went to the board to propose a Compass program that would allow parents to still drop of students at 7:30 a.m. The board committed to the district paying for this program.

Board member Dave Anderson pointed out that in the study done regarding Edina and Minneapolis Public Schools, 50 percent of families affected by the Edina change opposed the new schedule when it was first implemented. After the first school year was completed on the new schedule, 92 percent indicated that they preferred the new times.

See Friday’s Echo Press for more details of Monday’s decision.

Annie Harman
Annie Harman is a reporter for Echo Press and The Osakis Review. She grew up in Detroit Lakes and graduated from the University of Wisconsin - Eau Claire with a degree in print journalism and history in May 2012. Follow her on Twitter at annieharman
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