Everything to know about extra school hour

Published On: Aug 06 2014 11:45:34 AM EDT
Updated On: Jul 29 2014 10:10:00 PM EDT

Duval County School Superintendent Nikolai Vitti's ears may still be ringing. Tuesday night hundreds of elementary school parents offered their opinions about a plan to add an HOUR to their children's school day. Parents at Holiday Hill Elementary even started a petition, asking that the school not be placed on a list.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -

Fifty-two elementary schools in Duval County will now extend their school day to include one more hour. Dismissal at these schools will change from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. every day.

Why?

The State Department of Education is mandating students who attend 41 of those 52 schools receive more instruction to improve their reading proficiency. Last year, it mandated the state's top 100 low-performing schools receive the extra hour to focus on reading. Eleven Duval County elementary schools extended their day by an hour during the 2013-14 school year.

This year, that number jumped significantly. The Department of Education raised the standard to include the top 300 low-performing schools in the state. That included 39 elementary schools plus two charter schools in Duval County.

DOCUMENT: Florida Department of Education list of low-performing elementary schools

Duval County Superintendent Nikolai Vitti said the decision is not related to the school's grade level, but to the percentage of students who are not reading at grade level as measured by their performance on the FCAT reading comprehension test.

Vitti and his staff made the decision to add 11 other elementary schools to the list of 42.

The 11 elementary schools added by Vitti are:

  • Westview K-8
  • Hyde Park Elementary
  • Ruth Upson Elementary
  • Venetia Elementary
  • Carter Woodson Elementary
  • Garden City Elementary
  • Reynolds Lane Elementary
  • Thomas Jefferson Elementary
  • Holiday Hill Elementary
  • Love Grove Elementary
  • Pine Estates Elementary


"Those 11 schools would have been F schools without the hold harmless or D schools that have been fragile schools for the last 2-3 years," Vitti said. "If the state is requiring us to implement, why not provide the additional support to other schools that have the same type of school grade or performance to make sure they don't drop any farther."

What does this mean for your student?

Right now, all students who attend one of these 52 schools will be required to stay until 4 p.m. The only exception is students who scored a 5 on the FCAT reading comprehension.

State statute, according to Vitti, allows them to opt out of the extra hour. However, Vitti said he will ask parents to consider allowing those students to stay for the extra hour.

"I think some parents have looked at this as maybe punishment," Vitti said. "We always think, 'Oh, you have to stay after school,' and there's a negative stigma linked to that. But this is really about providing additional support to students who are not only below grade level, but also above grade level. What our plan is, is to differentiate based on the individual student."

Success rate:

"Over the past two years, 67 percent have improved in reading proficiency," Vitti said.

During the 2013-14 school year, Vitti said, the following schools that participated in the extended day indicated reading proficiency gains:

  • John Love (+8)
  • Ramona Blvd (+2)
  • Windy Hill (+8)
  • Long Branch (+3)
  • Sadie Tillis (+2)
  • St. Clair Evans (+5)
  • R.L. Brown (+1)
  • Hyde Grove (+5)


During the same school year, the following schools that participated in the extended day did not indicate reading proficiency gains:

  • West Jacksonville (-1)
  • Livingston (-4)
  • Justina Road (-6)
  • Andrew Robinson (-6)


How will students be grouped: 

"If you are very much below grade level, we're going to focus on skill sets to improve your reading ability," Vitti said. "If you are at grade level, we will reinforce the standards to give you extra practice. If you are really above reading level, we'll group those students to give you enrichment activities.  Ultimately, it's an hour of certified teachers providing tutoring services in a very differentiating way."

Transportation:

Vitti said buses will pick up at these schools at 4 p.m. instead of 3 p.m.

Teachers:

Because this is not the first year teachers at some schools have been asked to stay an extra hour, the teachers union has negotiated additional pay for these educators. Vitti said the school district and the teachers union are currently working this out now to include the additional teachers.

"We will probably provide for an opt-out option for some teachers," Vitti said.

Extended day:

Many parents who are unable to pick up their child at the end of the school year pay for extended day. Vitti said this cost will be less for parents of students who attend those 52 schools.

Parents with children who attend the schools with an extended day should have received a call from their district last week. Letters were also mailed to the students' homes last week.

Over the next two weeks there will be a series of community meetings involving the schools on the list. There will be one held at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at Holiday Hill Elementary school and additional meetings at every school affected:

School Name

Date for Parent Meeting

Time

WESTVIEW K-8

Tuesday, July 29th

6:00 p.m.

SAN JOSE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Wednesday, July 30th

6:00 p.m.

WINDY HILL ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Tuesday, July 29th

6:00 p.m.

CEDAR HILLS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Tuesday, July 29th

6:00 p.m.

HYDE GROVE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Wednesday, July 30th

6:00 p.m.

HYDE PARK ELEMENTARY

Thursday, July 31st

6:00 p.m.

JACKSONVILLE HEIGHTS ELEMENTARY

Thursday, July 31st

6:00 p.m.

NORMANDY VILLAGE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Wednesday, July 30th

6:00 p.m.

OAK HILL ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Wednesday, July 30th

6:00 p.m.

RAMONA BOULEVARD ELEMENTARY

Tuesday, July 29th

6:00 p.m.

RUTH N UPSON ELEMENTARY

Thursday, July 31st

6:00 p.m.

SADIE T. TILLIS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Wednesday, July 30th

6:00 p.m.

STONEWALL JACKSON ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Thursday, July 31st

6:00 p.m.

TIMUCUAN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Tuesday, July 29th

6:00 p.m.

VENETIA ELEMENTARY

Thursday, July 31st

6:00 p.m.

WEST RIVERSIDE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Tuesday, July 29th

6:00 p.m.

ANDREW A. ROBINSON ELEMENTARY

Thursday, July 31st

6:00 p.m.

ANNIE R. MORGAN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Tuesday, July 29th

6:00 p.m.

BILTMORE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Tuesday, July 29th

6:00 p.m.

BRENTWOOD ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Tuesday, July 29th

6:00 p.m.

CARTER G WOODSON ELEMENTARY

Thursday, July 31st

6:00 p.m.

DINSMORE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Tuesday, July 29th

6:00 p.m.

GARDEN CITY ELEMENTARY

Tuesday July 29th

6:00 p.m.

GEORGE WASHINGTON CARVER

Wednesday, July 30th

6:00 p.m.

HENRY F. KITE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Tuesday, July 29th

6:00 p.m.

JOHN LOVE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Tuesday, July 29th

6:00 p.m.

LAKE FOREST ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Tuesday, July 29th

6:00 p.m.

LONG BRANCH ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Wednesday, July 30th

5:00 p.m.

MARTIN LUTHER KING, JR ELEMENTARY

Tuesday July 29th

6:00 p.m.

NORTH SHORE ELEMENTARY

Tuesday, July 29th

6:00 p.m.

REYNOLDS LANE ELEMENTARY

Tuesday July 29th

6:00 p.m.

RICHARD L. BROWN ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Wednesday, July 30th

6:00 p.m.

RUFUS E. PAYNE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Tuesday July 29th

6:00 p.m.

RUTLEDGE H. PEARSON ELEMENTARY

Wednesday, July 30th

6:00 p.m.

SAINT CLAIR EVANS ACADEMY

Wednesday, July 23rd

1:00 p.m.

SALLYE B. MATHIS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Wednesday, July 30th

6:00 p.m.

SMART POPE LIVINGSTON ELEMENTARY

Wednesday, July 30th

6:00 p.m.

THOMAS JEFFERSON ELEMENTARY

Tuesday July 29th

6:00 p.m.

WEST JACKSONVILLE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Wednesday, July 30th

6:00 p.m.

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Wednesday, July 30th

6:00 p.m.

FORT CAROLINE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Wednesday, July 30th

6:00 p.m.

HIGHLANDS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Monday, August 4th

6:00 p.m.

HOGAN-SPRING GLEN ELEMENTARY

Tuesday, July 29th

6:00 p.m.

HOLIDAY HILL ELEMENTARY

Tuesday, July 29th

6:30 p.m.

JUSTINA ROAD ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Wednesday, July 30th

6:00 p.m.

LOVE GROVE ELEMENTARY

Thursday, July 31st

6:00 p.m.

OCEANWAY ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Tuesday, August 5th

6:00 p.m.

PINE ESTATES ELEMENTARY

Tuesday, August 5th

6:00 p.m.

SPRING PARK ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Tuesday, July 29th

6:00 p.m.

WOODLAND ACRES ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

Tuesday, July 29th

6:00 p.m.

Comments

The views expressed below are not those of News4Jax or its affiliated companies. By clicking on "Post," you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Service and your comment is in compliance with such terms. Readers, please help keep this discussion respectful and on topic by flagging comments that are offensive or inappropriate (hover over the commenter's name and you'll see the flag option appear on right side of that line). And remember, respect goes both ways: Tolerance of others' opinions is important in a free discourse. If you're easily offended by strong opinions, you might skip reading comments entirely.

blog comments powered by Disqus