Education

Hey, Fort Worth students, do you know what time classes start next school year?

Just because it is still summer, doesn’t mean it’s too early to start getting ready for school.

I’m talking to you, Fort Worth school district parents. Do you know what time classes start or end for your children next year?

This fall, a new daily schedule begins for most schools in the Fort Worth school district. The change aims to add between 10 to 15 minutes in class for students. It also allows the district to start a common schedule with eight class periods for middle and high schools.

The district is not alone in launching a new schedule. At Hurst-Euless-Bedford schools, parents are being reminded that there is a school day shift for junior high students to accommodate bus scheduling.

Under the new schedule, Fort Worth’s traditional high schools will begin at 8:25 a.m. and end at 3:40 p.m. Middle school students will start at 9:15 a.m. and end at 4:30 p.m. Traditional elementary schools begin at 7:50 a.m. and end at 3 p.m.

The Fort Worth school district’s Schools of Choice, early college high schools and other specialty schools will also extend their instructional day but with different beginning and ending times.

Kent Scribner 004
Kent Scribner, superintendent of the Fort Worth school district, outlined a proposed bond program for business leaders. Voters will decide the fate of the bond program on Nov. 7. Rodger Mallison rmallison@star-telegram.com

Parents need to check with their schools.

Barbara Griffith, spokeswoman for the Fort Worth school district, said the district is working on a back-to-school information campaign aimed at clearing up any confusion. Parents can also check the district website, which is already alluding to the beginning of school with the message: “New Year, New Times August 20.”

Additionally, the district is working on a video in which Superintendent Kent Scribner will announce the new start and end times.

This campaign is among a series of information materials the district is pushing on social media throughout the summer. The district has also rolled out information about a new online registration program.

The message will also be included in Spanish and English television and radio ads, Griffith said.

When Fort Worth schools moved to eight periods, it joined the ranks of other Texas districts that have adopted eight-period days, including Arlington, Austin, Crowley, Dallas, Hurst-Euless-Bedford, Keller and Lake Worth.

Sarah Martinez, the mother of an incoming freshman student at Arlington Heights, said the changes mean they will have to revisit with a counselor about her daughter’s class schedule for next year so she can add a class to the eighth-period slot.

Martinez said the changes may also impact the lunch break, explaining: “I sincerely hope that a 35-minute lunch break is adequate. I don’t see how staff can move people into the cafeteria and through a lunch line quickly enough to give them time to eat. I’m advising my high schooler to take a lunch rather than waste her limited break time in line.”

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