Most Portland schools to have new bell times

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PORTLAND — Most of the city’s elementary schools and two middle schools will have new start and end times for the 2016-2017 school year.

The School Department said the changes are necessary to allow school buses to get students to and from school “in a more timely manner.”

A press release said some students this year had to wait a long time before buses took them home, and some students had to be dropped off at their schools far in advance of the day’s start time. The new schedule means students won’t be dropped off more than 15 minutes before the day begins, according to the department.

Lincoln and Lyman Moore middle schools will be in session from 7:45 a.m.-2:15 p.m., which is 10 minutes earlier. Presumpscot and Ocean Avenue elementary schools will both run 8:30 a.m.-3 p.m., which is also 10 minutes earlier for both schools.

Hall, Reiche and Lyseth elementary schools will run 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m., which is 20 minutes later than this year. Longfellow Elementary School will run 8:20 a.m.-2:50 p.m., which is 20 minutes earlier.

The East End Community School will start 30 minutes earlier, and run 8:10 a.m.-2:50 p.m. And the Bayside Learning Center will start 50 minutes earlier, running 7:30 a.m.-1:50 p.m.

High school times will not change from the existing 8 a.m.–2:30 p.m. schedule. King Middle School will stay at 7:55 a.m.-2:25 p.m., and Riverton Elementary School will keep its 8:20 a.m.-2:50 p.m. schedule.

The School Board had several discussions about start and end times in 2015 before settling on the new schedule.

Colin Ellis can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 123 or cellis@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @colinoellis.

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Reporter covering the Portland Public School District as well as the town of Falmouth for The Forecaster. Can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 123 or cellis@theforecaster.net.