VBCPS school board votes to keep current school schedule


Odelia Handy

Last Tuesday the Virginia Beach School board voted, and it turns out Virginia Beach City Public Schools will not be changing school start times. The vote was 10-1. 

When the school board had just announced that the school start times might be adjusted to later in the day, it was faced with overwhelming opposition. Virginia Beach Citizens banded together, with parents and students alike gathering and signing a petition with over 10,000 signatures to keep the school start times as it is. 

Some reasoning behind this extreme opposition is that parents and students think that the change is unnecessary.

 “Most high school students are going to shift their hours back. It’s not the time that the attention needs to be focused on, it’s the habits of the young adults today and the distractions they’re constantly inundated with,” said Jason Ordonio, an economics teacher at Tallwood High School. 

“Its not changing the amount of sleep you get, it’s changing the times of the classes,” expressed Angelica Anischenkov, a Tallwood High School academy student, when asked if it would be healthier for high school students if hours were shifted back. 

“I think the times that they(students) have, High School, Elementary, Middle School, is sufficient… High school is preparing them for college, and there they start everything early,” said Kenya Hampton, a production planner and scheduler at Newport News Center.  

Many parents and students expressed that changing the time would cause difficult situation amongst families regarding younger children’s well being. 

“As a parent that would vastly impact my ability to get my kids ready in the morning. And starting school later I lose the ability to get my students off of the bus,” said Ordonio.

“If they were to change the times and my son had to be in school earlier it would probably cause a problem,” expressed Hampton. “I actually like the current hours because if high school students are out early, sometimes they have brothers and sisters they have to watch over because their parents are out working. And some high school students are even out working or doing sports after school.”

Now it appears the School Board have changed their mind in response to the resistance. They took their vote last Tuesday, with only one person still voting to veto the status quo. After this event many expressed their relief. 

“I think it was smart for them [to keep the current schedule] because they are elected officials and the data overwhelmingly pointed to not changing the school system. And, in my opinion, it was the right choice to go by what the people want,” responded Ordonio when he was asked what he thinks of the School Board voting the keep the present Schedule. 

“I think right now everyone is accustomed to this schedule and it works out for everyone,” said Hampton.