New Start and Stop Times

On Monday, April 18, the Ames School Board approved adjusted start and stop times for the 2022-2023 school year that will go into effect at the beginning of the next academic school year. The new start and stop times are as follows:

  • Ames High School – 8:30 AM – 3:35 PM (early release 1:35 PM)
  • Ames Middle School – 8:40 AM – 3:45 PM (early release 1:45 PM)
  • Elementary Schools – 7:40 AM – 2:45 PM (early release 12:45 PM)
  • Northwood Preschool Center – 8:15 AM – 11:15 AM and 12:15 PM – 3:15 PM (No school on Wednesday for both preschool and early kindergarten)

The new times essentially flip the start and stop time order of our elementary and secondary schools. Currently, our secondary buildings start the day with Ames High beginning at 7:50 AM and Ames Middle School starting at 8:00 AM. Elementary schools follow that with an 8:30 AM start time.

When identifying prospective start and stop times, District leaders and the school board identified two fixed points from which to begin. First, the District wanted to maintain 6 hours and 35 minutes of instructional time per day of instruction. This impacts the length of the day and any changes in instructional time could impact the 2022-2023 approved academic calendar for next year. The second fixed point was to establish a 50-minute gap between elementary and secondary school start times. This gap allows Ames CSD to gain efficiencies and cost savings in transportation costs. 

Other considerations included an examination of research related to start times. There are a number of research articles that note benefits of delaying secondary school start times based on student sleep patterns. More detailed information on these points were shared publicly in our proposal in late March

In that initial proposal, the District asked stakeholders if they could support the proposal and provided an opportunity for feedback. A summary of that survey response was included as part of the school board agenda packet and is available on our website. If you’re interested in hearing the conversation at the board table, you can view the meeting on our YouTube channel with the start and stop time conversation beginning at approximately the 47:45 mark. 

The new start and stop times will go into effect in August 2022 at the beginning of the 2022-2023 school year.