Possible later start date for Leon County high school students

Courtesy of WCTV

Leon County School board meeting Tuesday night ran a little quicker than usual due to the severe weather coming in Tallahassee and surrounding areas.

Items of heavy consideration were the possibility of a later school start time for high school students. Three different start times are up for a vote by the school board regarding start times. Many parents and students attending Tuesday's meeting voiced their concerns on late start times.

Catta Gross, mother of two high school students, is in support of school start times.

"Leon County has one of the earliest start times in the country. We need to change that,” Gross said. Gross went on to explain different health risks teen get due to lack of sleep, which can lead to injuries with sports. 

Kimberly Danron, mother of a 7th grader, knows that starting school late is controversial.

"Because we as parents care about our children, we will work together with the Leon county school board to make sure all needs are met," Danron said.

Vice chairwoman Georgia Bowen suggested to review all information regarding funding, materials and possibilities.

"One size does not fit all, especially for students," Bowen said. 

Superintendent Jackie Pons is in high favor of moving the start times for high school students due to the overall success students will soon achieve by starting later. Pons wanted to be a voice for not only the school board but for concerned parents and teachers as well.

"Some students already take a virtual online first period due to the fact that they know they can't wake up in the morning," Pons said.

Other items on the agenda included a budget report on electricity, a follow up about the recent fire at Leon High School and the fire that broke yesterday at Bond Elementary.

The lobbying and working of a new high school to be built on the south side may now be moved to the north side due to population and low test scores, leaving the south side community highly upset. 

The next Leon county school board meeting will discuss monthly financial statements for the months of September through December 2015. As well as Leon County schools magnet programs, and the use of district facilities due to more than 400 students coming back to public schools, leaving charter or private schooling.

To find out more information on Leon county school board, or tonight's meeting visit leonschools.org