LAWTON, Okla. (TNN) - The Lawton Public School Board approved a schedule change for students starting this fall where some students will now go to school starting earlier and others will start classes later.
When school picks back up in the fall, one LPS parent said the time change for students will make it difficult to manage drop off, pick up, and getting to work on time.
“Being able to drop your kid off and then come to work on time at nine is tough, and it’s hard to adjust that. Yeah they have aftercare, but that puts expenses, they go to school 180 days a year, so that’s $1800 for one family just to pay for aftercare," said LPS parent Melissa Gold.
High schools will go from 7:35 to 2:25, Middle school is 8:25- 3:10, and Elementary students go from 9:10 to 3:55. Gold said a better solution would be to switch the high school and elementary hours.
“Now they are going to be staying until 3:55 which is a long time for a little kids. They have a short attention span so for them to be in school all day until almost four is going to be hard for the teachers," said Gold.
According to the Oklahoma Schools report Card, LPS scored extremely low in chronic absenteeism and tardiness, which was one of the biggest reasons this change is occurring.
“The last thing we want to do is take any instruction time away from children, and when they are late to school unfortunately that’s part of it, but these are things we are putting place so we can get to school on time,” said LPS Transportation Director Trae Koch.
Koch said this change could be temporary, and it all stems from their ability to hire more bus drivers.
“We have had numerous late buses, and it’s based on a real problem which is a lack of bus drivers. When you lose bus drivers, it adds time to our routes," said Koch.
Gold said her child is too young to take the bus, so now she’s worried about what her job will say when she has to be late every morning, especially if these changes continue the following year.
“If they keep moving it back, it’s going to make me more late for work. Most jobs aren’t flexible with that situation, they just say to figure out something else, or find another job that accommodates with nine," said Gold.
Koch says this change wont affect teachers working extra hours, it will just be a shift in their schedule.
LPS said they will release the updated bus routes later this Summer.