School start times could change, could affect bus routes

Published: Mar. 29, 2023 at 4:03 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WWSB) -The Florida Senate education committee passed its version of SB 1112 that would require middle and high schools to begin at 8 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. respectively.

In the Suncoast, most school start times are currently between 7:30 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. and the shuffling of schedules could cause significant changes to bus routes as buses are frequently shared between schools. Citing evidence from the American Association of Pediatrics, sleep depravation in adolescents is considered an important public health issue that is linked to health, safety and academic success.

The legislation aims to have a later start time by July 1, 2026. The legislation notes changes to transportation, athletic programs and extracurricular activities.

There has been talk about parents and transportations concerns as the bill has been pitched by sponsors. With the 2026 start date for legislation, all school boards will have ample time to shift to new schedules accordingly.