MADISON COUNTY, Ala. - Madison County Schools will change school day end times for elementary and K-9 schools for the upcoming school year. The district said this would add instruction time, and they finally have enough buses to make this schedule happen.
The district tweeted the change on Wednesday:
"Last year they got out at 2:30. This year it's 2:45. We are adding 15 minutes of time so we can meet our responsibilities so they can get all the instruction time they need," said Tim Hall, Director of Public Relations for the district.
He said the high and middle school end times will not be changed, but this does affect K-8 schools like Central School, along with all elementary schools like New Hope and Madison County Elementaries.
The school system will finally be able to support this 15-minute change, Hall said, because it has been able to buy new school buses for the routes.
"Previously we had staggered times, and that was in part that we didn't always have enough buses to get kids," Hall explained. "Some bus drivers would go out, they'd make a run, they'd get kids and pick up a different route."
But the new buses, along with getting some older models off the fleet, will serve that need instead.
"We have been able to buy 20 brand new buses, and we have 22 additional new buses on the way. They'll be here in January/February 2020," Hall said.
Madison County Schools is using money freed up in its general fund budget by an additional $5 million in supplemental advancement funds from the state for education. The district can now use its general fund money for other things it needs, like tennis courts, Chromebooks, cameras, and buses.
"We think this is really great for all the families of the students," Hall said. "We will see some very positive changes coming down the road."