Should School Start Later?

Should School Start Later?

Allison Birkhimer, Writer

Should School Start Later?

Life for a student can be stressful, between the school work, homework, sports, clubs, jobs, sometimes there’s just not enough time in the day. Every day we are expected to be alert and ready in the early morning. But it becomes a problem when we are sleep deprived from all the stress of being a functioning student. Could we achieve the goal of being alert in class by simply starting school an hour later, or will it just cause more issues?

Teenagers are recommended about 9 hours of sleep a night to be healthy. As a teenager develops the brain releases melatonin(a sleep hormone) on a delayed schedule. This delayed schedule makes it hard for teenagers to feel tired before 11 pm, making it hard to get the recommended amount of sleep. If we don’t obtain that amount of sleep we can become sleep deprived.

Symptoms of sleep deprivation are moodiness, fatigue, irritability, depressed mood, difficult learning, forgetfulness, and lack of concentration. All can be hard to deal with if we are expected to do our best in school. Many of these issues could be solved if school started an hour later. Students would be more likely to obtain the recommended amount of sleep, which may improve their academic performance. Better sleep habits can also improve mental health, which could help in all aspects of life.

A lot of students also depend on caffeine (which can have negative effects) to get them through the day. If they got more sleep they may be able to be less reliant on caffeine.

Although there is a reason why most schools haven’t gone through with this change. One of the main reasons is the parent’s start time for their jobs. The average start time for jobs around 8-9am. If the school start time changed to around 9 am, then it would affect parents drop off schedule. This change would also have to affect all of the schools, elementary, middle school, and high school.

It would have to change for all of the schools because it would affect the bus schedule for picking up kids.  It would also affect all the extracurricular activities such as sports, clubs, jobs, and any other activities outside of school. It is also just a big change in general. Most of us have started school at the same time for the entirety of our school career. It would mess up schedules and routines.

BUHS, Highschool, Sleep deprived, Bishop, 2019