Teachers, parents express frustration as Philly school officials propose new school start times

Another twist for Philadelphia parents and students. While many suburbs have recently started school later, Philly is proposing starting even earlier.

Teachers, students and families in the School District of Philadelphia thrown another curveball after a chaotic pandemic year, as they learn the district wants to change school start times in the fall. In some cases, by as much as two hours, according to the Philadelphia teachers union. Special education teacher David Malone says this change does not work for his school community.

"It’s going to be hard enough to come back after a year of not being in school," special education teacher David Malone stated. "Now trying to get 100 percent back in school and reacclimate to the day is going to be difficult, on top of that, adding the stress trying to figure out what time to drop off or pick up."

Malone, a building representative at FS Edmonds Elementary in Mount Airy, says the news broke Monday, one day before the deadline for changes of that sort. In an emergency meeting, his school voted to dispute the district’s plan.

"We were given literally 24 hours to make that decision," Malone added.

"There’s just a lot of frustration and, in some cases, anger," said PFT President Jerry Jordan.

Teachers union President Jordan says schools opposed have five days to submit their arguments.

"We will work with school district to try to resolve the differences," Jordan commented.

The district says the scheduling change would ease transportation issues, including staffing challenges due to the pandemic. A district spokesperson tells FOX 29 they want the input of teachers and families and plan to continue the conversation throughout the coming weeks.

"It’s certainly not in the interest of families and educators that are going to be impacted by this," Malone remarked.



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