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2018-2019 Bell Schedule Approved by School Board

October 17, 2017

For Immediate Release

Contact: Tanya Arja
Office of Communications

Tampa, Fla. – (October 17, 2017) – The Hillsborough County School Board approved the 2018-2019 Bell Schedule at Tuesday’s board meeting after months of input from parents, students, district employees and the community. 

The new bell schedule will take effect in August 2018, giving families nearly a year to make needed adjustments to their schedules. 

Hillsborough County Public Schools heard feedback from stakeholders in a variety of ways. Nearly 57,000 people chose a preferred option among the six possible bell schedules on the district’s Bell Schedule Survey. In addition, more than 1,800 stakeholders provided input using the Bell Schedule Simulator. The district hosted three community meetings to gather additional feedback and answer questions. Last spring, students, parents and district staff took part in bell schedule focus groups. 

The adopted schedule is based on the schedule option that was most preferred by parents, students and school employees.

The 2018-2019 bell schedule, based on community input, is listed here.

 Type Start Time End Time
 Elementary Schools 7:40 a.m. 1:55 p.m.
 Elementary Magnet 8:45 a.m. 3:00 p.m.
 High Schools 8:30 a.m. 3:25 p.m.
 Middle and High Magnet 8:30 a.m. 3:25 p.m.
 Middle Schools  9:25 a.m.  4:20 p.m.

Individual school schedules, including K-8 schools, may vary. For a complete school-by-school list, see this link:

Next school year, high schools will start an hour later than they do now. This matches guidance from the American Academy of Pediatrics, which recommends high schools start at 8:30 a.m. or later.

Before-school and after-school care at elementary and middle schools will be available, at a low cost, for families where there is a need. These programs provide a safe, supervised environment that develops the physical, social, emotional and intellectual growth of students. 

The new bell schedule supports additional planning time for teachers, giving teachers more time to collaborate on instruction for students in the classroom. The new schedule still maintains seven periods per day, allowing students the chance to benefit from valuable learning opportunities such as Dual Enrollment, Advanced Placement, Credit Recovery and various electives, ensuring students have every opportunity to reach their graduation requirements and go on to college or a career. 

Every student deserves a full day, so the district had to make changes to its existing schedule. Thousands of students arrive late to school because the current arrival and dismissal schedule does not allow buses enough time to run their routes. Last year, 12,000 students were unavoidably late to school every day. The new bell schedule will afford our bus drivers more time to safely navigate traffic and get students to school on time.

For more information and to see the frequently asked questions, please visit our website at


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