Newly Formed Greenwich Coalition for Student Health & Achievement to Host Third Board of Education Debate

A newly formed group, “the Greenwich Coalition for Student Health & Achievement” that sprung from “Start School Later Greenwich” has organized  a third Board of Education candidate forum.

The debate is set for November 1 from 7:00-9:00pm at Christ Church.

This Nov 7 voters will have a choice, as there are more candidates than there are slots. Specifically, there are three Republicans running for two spots on the board: Peter Bernstein, Peter Sherr and Jason Auerbach, the latter two having been endorsed by their party. Mr.Bernstein, an incumbent seeking another term, petitioned his way onto the ballot this summer by accumulating over 1,000 signatures for the 637 signatures required.

According to the coalition organizing the debate, the group was founded by Greenwich parents and community members from across party lines, who are advocated for later school start times. They  cite recommendations from the nation’s leading medical organizations and scientific evidence on adolescent sleep biology.

“While bus cost issues were raised as an obstacle, research by the Brookings Institute that showed a benefit-to-cost ratio of 9:1, or more, has been validated and improved upon by a much larger, groundbreaking study recently released by The Rand Corporation,” the group said in their statement.

On Friday, Kim Eves, the director of communication for Greenwich Schools released an update on impacts of new school start times on school buses and athletics.

She said the district is pursuing a Municipal Improvement to provide temporary lighting on one Central Middle School field. The idea received the Board of Selectmen’s blessing and next goes to Planning and Zoning on Oct 24. Also, Greenwich High School has secured the use of a lighted and artificially-covered field at SUNY Purchase.

Another change is that GHS student athletes formally dismissed at 3:00 for away contests will now be dismissed at 2:50 pm to avoid congestion.

The district is also busy collecting data. They have initiated several traffic studies at critical intersections with an eye to alleviating congestion.

Greenwich High School will administer a student sleep survey to all students later this month to compare to last year’s baseline survey.

They also seek feedback:

The Greenwich Coalition for Student Health & Achievement are pleased that start times have changed, and during its early stages of implementation, they established a petition that garnered more than 2,000 signatures. They are also communicating with their base of supporters on various school issues.

The group notes that while they initially came together over a mutual interest in teen sleep and school-start times, they are not single-issue voters.

“We do, however, share a strong interest in student health and achievement,” they said, and  accordingly, we’ve changed the name and focus of the group to reflect their broader interest in student health and student achievement.

See also:

Selectmen Bless Temporary Field Lighting at Central Middle School for GHS Sports Practices

GHS Cardinal Stadium Lighting Upgrades and Deed Restrictions Leave Greenwich Hamstrung. Again.

Read our debate coverage to date:

Greenwich BOE Candidates Hash Out Racial Balance, Achievement Gap, Redistricting and Equity during Oft Testy Debate on the West Side of Town (BOE debate 2 of 3)

Greenwich Republican Candidates Differentiate Themselves at Crowded BET Primary Debate (BOE debate 1 of 3)

Selectmen Debate: Tesei and Litvack Scuffle over Greenwich’s Economic Development


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