That groan you hear? It’s the start of a new school year

Posted by Jai Halford on Aug 26, 2011 0 comments

Motorists: Today is not the day to coast to work on autopilot.

Most Guilford County children return to school after a 10-week summer break and the majority will ride the bus on slightly different schedules this year. So watch out for children huddling on neighborhood streets and heavier traffic near schools.

And parents: It’s not too late to schedule a Tdap vaccination for your sixth-graders. Every year, some of you forget this state requirement and your children get sent home.

The Guilford County Board of Education voted earlier this year to reduce the district’s bus fleet, a cost-saving measure that will affect the largest number of students on the first day of school. Most traditional schools will start and end class slightly earlier or later in the day, with some schedules shifting as much as 30 minutes.

Under the new bus system:

• Elementary schools will operate from 7:45 a.m. to 2:25 p.m., with schedules shifting up to 10 minutes.

• Allen, Guilford, Jackson, Kiser and Mendenhall middle schools will shift schedules five minutes to 30 minutes and operate from 8:10 a.m. to 3:05 p.m.

• The remaining traditional middle and high schools will operate from 8:55 a.m. to 3:50 p.m., a change of five minutes to 15 minutes.

Students at Montlieu Academy of Technology, Wiley Elementary and Andrews High School will get to use laptop computers, iPads and other digital technology funded through business donations or federal grants.

The district also will work behind the scenes this year to add wireless Internet equipment at other schools so that students and teachers there can someday use these types of devices in the classroom.

Lastly, parents who need help addressing their child’s behavior, finding college scholarships or cooking more nutritious meals can attend free workshops through the Guilford Parent Academy. The Academy, which launched in January, will kick off after Labor Day and provide roughly 100 different classes during the fall, according to coordinator Haley Miller.

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