Oxford School District considering a later start time

Published 6:19 pm Monday, December 3, 2018

The Oxford School District approved a first draft of a proposed policy change for a second reading during a meeting last week, which would push back the starting time for schools in the district.

The revised policy, which will be revisited in January, will push starting times in the OSD back only 10 minutes – from 8:20 to 8:30 – in order to benefit both bus drivers and secondary students.

This delayed starting time will apply to Oxford Middle School, Oxford High School and to the Oxford Learning Center. All elementary school start times will remain the same.

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According to Assistant Super Intendant Bradley Roberson, the change will only impact high schools, which will dismiss at 3:50 instead of 3:45.

“The research says secondary students shouldn’t start before 8:30 to begin with,” Roberson said. “It’s just something we need to do.”

Roberson pointed out it will also take stress off bus drivers, saying more time would allow bus drivers more time to complete their routes, as the district is already short on bus drivers.

Roberson said pushing back the time would make sure students would be able to get in on time and eat breakfast.

“We just believe this is not only in line with best practices,” Roberson said, “But also a cost efficient way to do it.”

Approved without second readings

The school board also approved policies for a Procurement Card for the board, as well as strategic planning process that will implement a calendar, which will update the board on goals established by the board.

Both of these policies were scheduled for a second reading, however the board approved both policies with out a second reading.

The board concluded these policies didn’t need a second read.

The board approved the use of a Procurement Card, a VISA credit card, which would accelerate the process for purchasing small dollar items and reduce the amount of paperwork.

The strategic planning calendar was approved after only one read as well. Board member Betsy Smith said she particularly liked how the calendar included different ways to track how the district is doing on its specific goals.