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School Bell Time Changes 2019-2020

Yellow bell with Brown sign above it with Black writing of Bell Times

School Bell Time Changes

STEO, in partnership with the Catholic District School Board of Eastern Ontario (CDSBEO) and the Upper Canada District School Board (UCDSB) will begin implementing a unified bell time to facilitate a standard length of the school day.  This change, which comes into effect on September 4, 2019, will affect bus pickup and drop off schedules for all schools in the North Western region of the boards’ jurisdiction.

    • These changes will come into effect at the beginning of the new school year on September 4th and will apply across the boards’ district over the next three years.
    • The changes will be applied to 34 schools in the North Western region of the boards’ district (24 UCDSB schools and 10 CDSBEO schools), which includes Perth, Carleton Place, Almonte, Smiths Falls, Rideau Lakes, Westport and Lanark family of schools.
    • 10 CDSBEO schools and 24 UCDSB schools will incur changes
    • Of the 34 schools, 8 schools will see a change in their bell time that is 15 minutes or less.  The remaining schools will have changes that are more than 15 minutes.
    • Elementary school bell times will start between 9:15 A.M. and 9:30 A.M.
    • Secondary school bell times will start at 8:00 A.M.

For many schools, the impact of the change will be minimal.

Link to 2019 Affected Schools

Link to Bell Time Zone Map

Link to Frequently Asked Questions

Bell time alignment supports consistent planning for families, the implementation of district wide learning opportunities for both the CDSBEO and UCDSB boards and results in significant transportation related savings, without loss of transportation services to families.

When fully implemented, STEO estimates that by standardizing bell times and bus schedules a cost reduction of more than $3.3M will be achieved.

Expanded learning opportunities within the CDSBEO and UCDSB resulting from common bell times could ensure that high school students have a wider range of access to curriculum options offered by the boards regardless of their location.

Get Connected

STEO has set up a call centre that can be reached at 1-855-441-1589.  It will be active as of May 28, 2019 and can assist parents in accessing online information and providing direction on where additional information resources can be found.

STEO and the boards are offering two parent information sessions to address questions.  For convenience, parents can choose to attend either session.

  • June 10, 2019 at Carleton Place High School in Carleton Place – 6:30 P.M. – 8:00 P.M.
  • June 13, 2019 at St. John Elementary School in Perth – 6:30 P.M. – 8:00 P.M.

Child Care Information

The boards recognize that changes in bell times may require parents and students to make use of before and after school care services that they did not require in the past. To address these concerns, the boards are actively working with parents and childcare operators to assess the need for additional support and we need your input.

The annual survey of parents by individual schools concerning their need for childcare services has been aligned with the notice of bell time changes to allow parents to consider their own needs in light of the anticipated changes.  Please note: The UCDSB is only sending home surveys to families from schools that currently do not have onsite childcare programs. If there is existing childcare services onsite at the school, parents are encouraged to contact the childcare operator directly.

The information parents provide to the annual needs assessment is critically important to helping childcare operators to properly assess demand and plan accordingly for resources in the new school year.

The school boards have notified childcare operators in the affected areas of the bell time changes planned for this fall and advised them to anticipate increased demand for services.

Some families may be eligible for financial assistance for their childcare needs through the municipality. Parents in Lanark County and Smiths Falls can learn if they are eligible for the assistance via the link below.

Link to Lanark County Children’s Services

Link to Lanark County Child Care Programs

Link to Lanark Children’s Services Brochure

Parents in affected schools in Leeds/Grenville County can follow the link below.
Link to Leeds/Grenville Child Care Programs

Link to North Zone CDSBEO Child Care Contacts
Link to North Zone UCDSB Child Care Contacts

To address these concerns, the boards are actively working with parents and daycare operators to assess the need for additional support and we need your input.

We Need Your Input

The annual survey of parents by individual schools concerning their need for daycare services has been aligned with the notice of bell time changes to allow parents to consider their own needs in light of the anticipated changes. The information parents provide in this needs assessment is critically important to helping daycare operators to properly assess demand and plan accordingly for resources in the new school year.  Please complete and return your evaluation form to your school by June 7, 2019. Please note: The UCDSB is only sending home surveys to families from schools that currently do not have onsite childcare programs. If there is existing childcare services onsite at the school, parents are encouraged to contact the childcare operator directly.

If you need to source a form, please follow the appropriate link below.
Link to CDSBEO Before and After School Programs Parent Survey
Link to UCDSB Before and After School Programs Parent Survey

 Stay Connected

We are encouraging all parents to ensure that their contact information is updated at their child (rens) school.

On August 12th, 2019 the STEO website will provide specific bus time and pick up location information – follow link below to available tools.

To ensure parents are fully aware of the changes taking place and how it will affect them, STEO and the boards are working through a wide variety of communications channels to reach out to parents.  This includes in school notices to the home, email, text, social media, call centre outreach and online sources of detailed information.

Link to STEO Online Tools and Apps

STEO has set up a call centre that can be reached at 1-855-441-1589.  It will be active as of May 28, 2019 and can assist parents in accessing online information and providing direction on where additional information resources can be found.

  • CDSBEO families will receive information through School Messenger.
  • UCDSB families are encouraged to register at MyFamilyRoom.ca in order to receive notifications.

 

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