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Chatham County schools resume Tuesday

Posted Wednesday, August 19, 2009

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Pittsboro, NC - More than 7,700 students and 1,200 employees in Chatham County Schools will usher in a new school year when classes resume on Tuesday.

But before then, there will be optional teacher work days today, Friday and Monday. Thursday is a required work day during which employees will attend a district convocation at Chatham Central High School in the morning and have faculty meetings at their individual schools in the afternoon.

Bus driver orientation will be held from 8 a.m. to noon Friday at Northwood High School's cafeteria from 8 a.m. to noon.

Many schools in the district will hold open houses. Individual school open house dates will be posted on the Chatham County Schools web site at www.chatham.k12.nc.us. Schools will have information related to classroom assignments, supply lists, etc.

School opening and dismissal times will remain the same. All elementary, middle, and K-8 schools will begin the student day at 8 a.m. and end at 2:45 p.m. The daily schedule at the county high schools and SAGE Academy will be from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m.

School lunch prices will increase by 25 cents in the 2009-10 school year. The price of breakfast for all grade levels in the district will remain $1. The price of lunch for all grade levels in the district will be $2.25. For those who qualify through federal guidelines, the reduced prices for breakfast and lunch will not change. The prices are .30 for breakfast and .40 for lunch. Lunch items for adults are a la carte. The entrâ??©e price is $1.50 and fruits and vegetables are $ .75 each.

Families needing information about school bus routes should contact their child's school for details. Last year the district ran 98 buses traveling routes across the 707 square miles of Chatham County. This year, due to state budget reductions, the district plans to run 90 buses to cover all routes, some of which will be double routes where one group of students waits while a first group is picked up or taken home.

During the 2008-09 school year, the district fleet of yellow school buses logged over 1,158,000 miles transporting more than 3,800 students in kindergarten through twelfth grades. Due to reductions in state funding, the district is looking for ways to reduce frequent stops along routes, particularly in subdivisions and in communities with houses in close proximity.

Cameras and GPS systems have been installed on all regular route buses. The camera systems will monitor routes and be used as a safety feature during bus routes. This should be a deterrent for bus violence and also help in dealing with bus vandalism. Transportation Information Management System (TIMS) and the bus GPS will be compared with each other to maximize bus efficiency.

 
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