School Start Times: Updated Communication From Randolph Schools

RANDOLPH, NJ- Randolph Township Schools sent an "instant alert" out this afternoon to all families  following the Board of Education meeting on Tuesday night.

TAP into Randolph will follow this up with a more detailed coverage of the board meeting, which included an abundance of public input.

The following was the instant alert sent out this afternoon:

The Board of Education on Tuesday night tabled a proposal to change school start times through the use of a three-tiered busing system and instead opted to investigate whether a two-tiered system would work for the 2015-2016 school year. 

The Board will continue to study the viability of the proposal, and its potential impact on the 2015-2016 school budget, over the next six weeks and is expected to vote on a proposal by May 5, the date the Board is scheduled to vote on a final budget for state approval. 

Superintendent David Browne, in addressing reasons for the proposal to change school start times, outlined three possible plansTuesday night, including one to use a two-tiered busing system. 

Six Board members spoke in favor of further studying that option. The two other proposals, including Dr. Browne's most recent plan announced via letter to parents Monday, were tabled. Dr. Browne concurred. 

"I'd rather get this right than get it done quickly," he said in his report to the Board. 

In order to use a two-tiered busing system, the district would have to spend roughly $650,000, Dr. Browne said Tuesday night. 

The Finance, Facilities and Transportation (FFT) Committee met after Tuesday nights meeting and discussed how to best approach studying the two-tiered busing system in order to change start times for the 2015-2016 school year. 

Should the district move forward with a two-tiered busing system in September, that would mean that Randolph High School and two elementary schools would use a 7:45 a.m. to 2:45 p.m. schedule. The middle school two other elementary schools would run from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. The elementary schools in each tier will be determined after further research, with the intent to create a system with the fewest additional runs possible. 

The FFT Committee opted to take more time to study the systems impact on the 2015-2016 budget. Rather than make changes to the tentative budget in time for next weeks business session, the Committee is recommending that the Board continue to study the issue and make final recommendations and approvals by the May 5 meeting, where the Board will approve a final budget. 

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