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School Start Time Information

An administrative team at Hamilton Southeastern Schools has been studying the feasibility of shifting our school start times to be better aligned with the recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, the American Medical Association, among others. All of these organizations supports adjusting our school day timing as what is best for the health and well-being of students and best for their learning.  


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Current Start Times Across the District

Elementary Schools 
School District    Start Time      End Time Total Time
Hamilton Southeastern 8:55 a.m. 3:40 p.m. 6 hrs. 45 min.
Carmel Clay Schools 8:05 a.m. 2:35p.m. 6 hrs. 30 min.
Noblesville 7:50 a.m. 2:35 p.m. 6 hrs. 45 min.
Westfield 7:50 a.m. 2:30 p.m. 6 hrs. 40 min.
Zionsville 8:00 a.m. 2:30 p.m. 6 hrs. 30 min.
Lawrence Twp. 8:00 a.m. 2:35 p.m. 6 hrs. 35 min. 

Intermediate Schools
School District Start Time End Time Total Time
Hamilton Southeastern 7:45 a.m. 2:53 p.m. 7 hours 8 min.
Carmel Clay Schools 7:45 a.m. 3:05 p.m. 7 hours 20 min.
Noblesville 8:40 a.m. 3:40 p.m. 7 hours 0 min.
Westfield 8:45 a.m. 3:35 p.m. 6 hours 50 min.
Zionsville 8:45 a.m. 3:45 p.m. 7 hours 0 min.
Lawrence Twp. 8:50 a.m. 3:45 p.m. 6 hours 55 min.

Jr. High Schools
School District Start Time End Time Total Time
Hamilton Southeastern 7:35 a.m. 2:45 p.m. 7 hours 10 min.
Carmel Clay Schools 7:45 a.m. 3:05 p.m. 7 hours 20 min.
Noblesville 8:40 a.m. 3:40 p.m. 7 hours 0 min.
Westfield 8:45 a.m. 3:35 p.m. 6 hours 50 min.
Zionsville 8:45 a.m. 3:45 p.m. 7 hours 0 min.
Lawrence Twp. 8:50 a.m. 3:45 p.m. 6 hours 55 min.
 
High Schools
School District Start Time End Time Total Time
Hamilton Southeastern 7:35 a.m. 2:55 p.m. 7 hours 20 min.
Carmel Clay Schools 7:50 a.m. 3:05 p.m. 7 hours 15 min.
Noblesville 8:40 a.m. 3:40 p.m. 7 hours 0 min.
Westfield 8:35 a.m. 3:45 p.m. 7 hours 10 min.
Zionsville 8:30 a.m. 3:40 p.m. 7 hours 10 min.
Lawrence Twp. 8:50 a.m. 3:40 p.m. 6 hours 50 min.

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Question and Answers 

Last Revised 1.8.2020
 
  1. Why is HSE Schools considering different school start and end times for students?
It is well established that sleep deprivation is known to compromise adolescents’ health, safety and performance. The American Academy of Pediatrics, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Sleep Foundation, American Psychological Association and other organizations have recommended school districts to push back their school start times for middle and high school students. Research indicates that delaying start times for teens helps them:
  • achieve the adequate amount of sleep that they need;
  • and to sleep during a time that is more in sync with their biology, namely, their delayed circadian rhythm. Research also indicates that teenagers need more sleep due to physical growth and adolescent brain development. Lack of sleep among teenagers can cause a significant impact on their physical health, mental health, academic achievement and safety. 
  1. What are the proposed school start/end times? (These times are not final. HSE administration is reviewing various scenarios to align with transportation.)
  • Elementary                      7:50 a.m. – 2:20 p.m.​
  • Intermediate                    8:10 a.m. – 3:10 p.m.
  • Junior High                      8:55 a.m. – 3:55 p.m.
  • High School                     8:55 a.m. – 3:55 p.m.
Has a decision been made on whether to change school start/end times?
No decision has been made. HSE administration is in the process of gathering research and information from the school community to present to the Board of School Trustees in early 2020.

If changes are approved, when would it take effect?
Any changes would take affect for the 2020-21 school year.
 
  1. Will the changes affect all HSE schools?
Yes, the changes would be implemented district-wide.
 
  1. Will ‘Early Release’ still continue, if changes to school start/end times are approved?
If changes to the start/end times are approved, every effort will be made to eliminate Early Release days.
 
  1. Are you considering shortening the school day?
Administrators are looking into shortening the school day for students.    
  • Currently, the length of day for elementary students is 75 minutes over what the state requires. We are looking at a model that would reduce the day by 15 minutes.
  • At the secondary level, students spend 50 minutes over what the state requires. We are considering a model that would reduce the day by 20 minutes.
Why can’t schools all start at the same time?
Hamilton Southeastern Schools transports on average 19,000 students each day. We do not currently have the capacity to pick up and drop off all K-12 students at the same time.
 
  1. What has HSE Schools learned from other districts that have already made this change?
Districts across the country who have adjusted their school schedules have reported the following:
  • Increased class attentiveness
  • Improved attendance
  • Improved cognitive function and decision-making
  • Decreased rates of adolescent depression, anxiety, obesity, drug and alcohol use
  • Fewer automobile accidents and risk-taking behavior
  • Fewer disciplinary referrals
     
  1. Would changing the school start/end times cost the district additional money?
No. Since the working hours and bus times would only be shifted but not increased, no additional costs are expected.
 
  1. How would an earlier school day affect elementary students? It will be dark when students go to their bus stops in the morning.
Research shows younger students generally get up earlier in the morning and are more alert at that time. Additionally, teachers report young children get very tired in the afternoons. The change in start time will help address these issues for elementary students. Regarding darkness, it is dark for some portions of the year regardless of school start time. As always, parents with concerns can stay with students at the bus stop or drop them off at school.
 
  1. Will before/after school care programs adjust their hours to accommodate new school start/end times?
Yes. The YMCA currently offers Before and After Care for elementary students and After Care for intermediate students. They would adjust the program as needed.
 
  1. Are the effect to families with older siblings who care for younger ones being considered during this process?
Yes. The YMCA currently offers Before and After Care for elementary students and After Care for intermediate students. They would adjust the program as needed. Financial assistance is available to families who meet annual income requirements.
 
  1. How would high school students manage after-school jobs with a later school day?
We anticipate that area employers would adjust students’ work hours to accommodate their new schedule.
 
  1. If school starts later for high school students, wouldn't they just stay up later doing their homework?
Research shows that high school students stay up late now for various reasons, not just to do their homework. A later start to their school day would give additional time to sleep regardless of why and how late they stay up.
 
  1. Have we received input from our students? How are we getting feedback from our students?
Yes. Superintendent Dr. Allen Bourff met with 80 students representing both high schools to get their feedback on having a later start time. Thank you to students who have submitted their feedback on the survey link.  The survey is now closed. 
 
  1. How would a change in start/end times affect athletics, including practice times and competitions? Other extracurricular activities?
Athletics and extracurricular activities that are currently meeting or practicing in the mornings may continue to do so. For high school students, it is our expectation that practices and meetings would begin later in the afternoon to reflect the change in the start of the school day. Many competitions will begin at the same time they currently do, and the time between the end of school and the start time of the event will simply be reduced.
 
  1. What is the process for considering the impact on staff?
The impact on staff may be positive or an inconvenience, but we will be working closely with our Teacher’s Association to make any changes as easy as possible. Our teachers are dedicated professionals who are committed to doing what is best for students.
 
  1. How would traffic be affected in school zones?
It is difficult to predict how the change in school hours would affect traffic patterns. HSE Schools will work with Fishers Police Department to address any possible related issues.
 
  1. How can I submit my feedback on this potential change to start/end times?

Feedback survey is now closed.  Thank you for your feedback!

Start Time Research

The American Academy of Pediatrics and other organizations support later middle and high school start times. Click here for more information.
Experts from Harvard, Stanford and Yale who support later middle and high school start times. Click here for more information.
The American Academy of Sleep Medicine supports later start times for adolescents. Click here for more information. 
The American Medical Association supports delayed school start times to improve adolescent wellness. Click here for more information. 

To read additional research links, click HERE
 

Hamilton Southeastern Schools

  • Central Office
  • 13485 Cumberland Road, Fishers, IN 46038
  • Office Hours: M - F 7:30am - 4:30pm 
  • (317) 594-4100  (800) 905-6665
  •  

  • HSE Schools wants to hear from you! To send a general inquiry to the Hamilton Southeastern administration office, click here. 

Our Mission

Hamilton Southeastern Schools, as a forward-thinking school district, provides educational opportunities to ensure the success of each and every student, to become a responsible citizen and to positively influence an ever-changing world community.