High School Start Time Working Group

  • Since Fall 2015, the district has been engaged in a thorough exploration of later start times for Newton high schools. This work was predicated on the significant research demonstrating the importance of adequate sleep for adolescents at appropriate times. Surveys of students, faculty, and families, as well as input from other stakeholders, led to the formulation of six potential scenarios. Feedback on those scenarios was gathered and analyzed this fall and shared in the winter of 2017. A recommendation was made to School Committee in March 2017 and was accepted. The next steps are described below.

Update - October 2018

  • In October 2018, the district provided an update on progress toward the adoption of later high school start times. For the message from the superintendent and the School Committee, click here.

    Work continues on the revision to the high school schedule, which will facilitate later start times at the high schools. For the update on the schedule revision progress, click here.

Update - November 2017

  • In November 2017, the assistant superintendent provided the School Committee with an update on the process to revise the high school schedules to allow for later start times. 

    High School Schedule Redesign Update.pdf

District Recommendation - March 2017

  • The feedback was clear. There is support for a later start time, but that support is tempered by the impact to end times. End times after 3:00 p.m. create significant challenges as they encroach upon important student activities, as well as the schedules of families and faculty.

     Given that we feel it is important to continue to pursue later start times, we need to take the following next steps:

    • Create a shorter high school day
    • Consider funding mechanism for later start times
    Revising a high school schedule is no small task. It is an incredibly complex process that must be done thoughtfully and carefully in order to meet the needs of students and staff. This is especially complicated given the trade-offs that will need to be considered to shorten the day. To that end, we expect the process of revising our high school schedules to take two years. To read the full recommendation and message to the community please follow this link. 

Surveys and Data

School Committee Presentations

Presentations and Scenarios

  • Superintendent's Update - Fall 2016

    Superintendent's Introductory (Fall 2015) Community Letter
    Year-end Report - June 20, 2016
    Presentation/Report Overview June 20, 2016
    Next Steps - Timeline

    Community Forum/Update: May 23, 2016 



School Committee Representatives

  • School Committee Representatives are actively soliciting input on this issue. Please feel free to contact:

    Ellen Gibson, School Committee, Ward 1

    Ruth Goldman, School Committee, Ward 6

    Or, email the full School Committee.

    Public comment also may be sent to the working group email

Activity in the MA Legislature

  • Bill S.254 - An Act authorizing a study of starting times and schedules

Experiences in Other Communities

Health and Wellness Information

  • Current school start timesHigh School Start Time
          NNHS         NSHS
         7:50 am       7:40 am