No late start time for Claire Lilienthal

No late start time for Claire Lilienthal

294 have signed. Let’s get to 500!

Why this petition matters

We the Claire Lilienthal K-8 school community vigorously object to the change in start time for next year. We find it bad for kids, challenging for teachers and disastrous for working parents. We ask that you reverse this anti-kid and anti-family policy, listen to feedback and consider returning school start times to 8:40 or before. 

You say there’s a new law to follow? Yes, our middle school must not start before 8:00. But asking all of our students, as young as 5 years, to delay school start time to 9:30 is way beyond this requirement. Our current start time of 7:50 would only have to be moved by 10 minutes. Claire Lilienthal has always been an early start school. Families select it because they prefer or require an early start time.

You say this saves money on busing? That may be true for the district, but it triggers other costs which now must be paid by families. It will cost more for families to drive during rush hour and, given that more than half of the students will need before-school care, costs will increase. Who pays for this? The families. Especially the working families, the poor families, the families who cannot afford a stay-at-home parent or do not have flexible jobs that can start at 10am after dropping off their children at school. This also means many kids - especially those without flexible, resourced households - will wake up just as early to sit at school and wait for it to start. No extra sleep for them!

You say there will be before-school care? Well, it’s not well organized or supported by you, the school district. There are very limited funds. It’s hard to staff. It is unlikely to be particularly enriching given the timing, staffing, and resource constraints. How unkind to the families and kids who need it. How ironic to privatize part of the school day and call it a cost savings. How dangerous to leave kids literally on the streets because their families cannot afford private before care and cannot afford to give up their jobs to get kids to school mid-morning.

You say you care about safe streets and public transportation? You are asking families to travel during rush hour. You are making traffic worse and commute times longer. You are potentially leaving kids on the streets before school.

You say you care about teachers? Ask them and listen. Please don’t send out surveys asking our views but state that you already have a plan in place regardless of our input. Many staff have children of their own with now very disparate schedules to manage.

You say you want families to stay in the city, in public school? Ask us what we want. Give us a chance to opine. We understand the start time change is following a new state law which is about adolescent health. But moving all kids ages 5-14 to 9:30 at a school families chose for its early start time is simply causing distress and pain for this community. Please consider making our school start time 8:00 or 8:40, not 9:30. 

Please note this petition has been co-drafted and circulated in paper form by the Claire Lilienthal Student Government, parents and teachers  



294 have signed. Let’s get to 500!