As we continue to face many pandemic-related challenges, it is important for us to listen, respond and adapt as quickly as possible. Staffing shortages have impacted nearly every industry including public education. In fact, you may have seen media reports about schools and districts across the country that have needed to close schools for a day or two recently due to these staffing and substitute shortages. We recognize that these shortages have also put additional strain on teachers and school staff. Many teachers have expressed concerns about lack of planning time because they have been providing additional coverage for classrooms to address the substitute shortage. We need to be as proactive as possible in addressing these challenges, which is why we are implementing late-start Mondays after Winter Break for students in Kindergarten through 12th grade.
By giving our teachers more planning and professional development time, this proactive step is intended to allow us to keep our learning environments intact and minimize disruption to our schools. Late-start Mondays mean that most APS students will report to school one hour later than normal on Mondays. Start times for all other days of the week will remain the same and dismissal times will remain the same. Please review our bell schedules here.
Please note that if your student rides an APS bus to school, APS transportation will pick up students from their bus stops one hour later than normal on Mondays.
Exceptions include Preschool, ACTION Zone Schools and Pickens Technical College
Please note that there will be exceptions to late-start Mondays. This includes all preschool students at our elementary schools and Child Development Centers. Preschool students will continue to follow their regular schedule on Mondays. ACTION Zone schools (Crawford, Paris, Boston P-8, AWCPA and Aurora Central) will also start at their regular times on Mondays. This is because ACTION Zone schools already have early release Fridays built into their schedules for planning and professional development. Lastly, Pickens Technical College will start at its normal time on Mondays.
Preschool students and ACTION Zone students who ride an APS bus to school will be picked up from their bus stops at their normal times on Monday mornings.
We chose Mondays in an effort to minimize the loss of instructional time because there are 15 Mondays during which APS is in session for the second semester.
We recognize that many families will need to make alternative childcare arrangements for Monday mornings, so we wanted to inform you of this change as quickly as possible.
Please know that we did not make this decision lightly and we thank you for your continued support.
- Superintendent Rico Munn