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Changes to School Start and End Times

Effective September 2020, the TDSB will be changing school start and end times at 129 elementary schools across the city. By staggering the start and end times of these schools, the TDSB is able to plan bus routes more efficiently and this will be better for our students by ensuring that:

  • Students get to school on time; and
  • We reduce the number of busses used for transporting students.

Additionally, this is projected to save the TDSB approximately $2.5 million, which is important as the TDSB currently spends more on student transportation than we receive from the government.

This decision was made in June 2019 as part of last year’s budget process. TDSB Trustees approved an operating budget plan for the 2019-20 school year that required $67.8 million in staff reductions and changes to programs/services to address provincial government funding reductions and the TDSB’s annual structural deficit.

These changes align with the recommendation from the Auditor General of Ontario – “In order to increase the efficiency of school transportation services and in turn decrease costs, transportation consortia should stagger school start and end times where possible to reduce the number of buses needed, by allowing them to be used on more than one run.”

Why are school start and end times changing?

Beyond the cost savings of adjusting bell times to find efficiencies in student transportation, other benefits include:

  • Improving service to remaining routes, as fewer bus drivers will be needed, which will help address the ongoing bus driver shortage;
  • Ensuring transportation services for all students currently being bussed are maintained (no service reductions), and other important supports and services for all students are not impacted; and,
  • Removing approximately 55 busses from transportation routes, thereby reducing the board’s carbon footprint by approximately 2,750 metric tonnes per year.

We understand that these changes may impact the routines of some families. However, if we did not reduce transportation costs by staggering school start and end times, we would have to reduce other services and supports to students that would have more direct and negative impact on classroom teaching.

There are a number of options you can consider:

  • By law, employers must consider changes to meet their employee's child care needs as part of their duty to accommodate
  • As a parent/guardian, you are encouraged to speak with your employer to find ways to accommodate your child care needs such as flexible scheduling or alternative work arrangements
  • If you are a unionized employee, you can also seek assistance from your union representative
  • More information is available on the Ontario Human Rights Commission - http://www.ohrc.on.ca/en and Canadian Human Rights Commission - https://www.chrc-ccdp.gc.ca/eng websites

Additional options:

  • School council and community options
  • Daycare or Extended Day Program
  • Family and friends

Information Meetings

In-person and online information meetings will be held to answer questions and provide additional information to parents/guardians.

In-person Information Meetings:

  • Mon. March 9 (Earl Haig - 100 Princess Ave., North York) at 7 pm
  • Thurs. March 12 (David and Mary Thomson - 125 Brockley Dr., Scarborough) at 7 pm
     
  • CANCELLED - PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT CLOSES SCHOOLS – MARCH 14 – APRIL 5, 2020
    - Mon. March 23 (Danforth CTI - 800 Greenwood Ave., Toronto) at 7 pm
  • CANCELLED - PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT CLOSES SCHOOLS – MARCH 14 – APRIL 5, 2020
    - Wed. March 25 (Richview CI - 1738 Islington Ave., Etobicoke) at 7 pm - Rescheduled
     

Child-minding and interpretation services will be available upon request for the in-person meetings. Please email belltimes@tdsb.on.ca to request these services.

 

Bell Time Promo

Did you miss our virtual information meetings on school start and end time changes? You can read the transcripts here: 

Questions?

Please read the Questions and Answers below for more information. If you have any additional questions, you can email belltimes@tdsb.on.ca.

Questions and Answers

Bell Times Q&A [pdf] – March 9

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