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Should high school classes start later in the morning to allow teenagers to get more sleep?

Response Percent Votes
58% 905
39% 603
Not sure
1% 28
Total 1536


notajayhawk 7 years, 1 month ago

As if students wouldn't stay up later because classes started later!

notajayhawk 7 years, 1 month ago

You're right. The government needs to do something about putting more hours into the night time.

denak 7 years, 1 month ago

No way!. If your student is having trouble getting up in the morning, take the t.v. out of the room, the computer out of the room, turn off the cell phone or withdraw him or her from extracurriculars that interfere with him or her getting homework done and into bed on time. It is the parent's responsibility to get the kid up and to school.

However, I am willing to bend a little on this issue. If the school board can convince my boss to let me come in later to work, I will let my teenager go to school later..... somehow, though, I don't think that is going to happen.


DaBrain_5000 6 years, 10 months ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

KS 7 years, 1 month ago

Sure, and when they get out of school, let them start their jobs later in the morning for the same reason. Who is coming up with these dumb poll questions?

Stuart Evans 7 years, 1 month ago

the poll questions are usually in relation to some stupid idea by a parent or school board member.

Armored_One 7 years, 1 month ago

Only if the classes run longer into the day...

irvan moore 7 years, 1 month ago

i had a guy who worked for me years ago who was a half hour late every day, we started opening the store a half hour later (not because of him) and from day one he was still a half hour late.

Kris_H 7 years, 1 month ago

They should start later to let the teachers get more sleep, they're the ones who need it.

Monty Amick 7 years, 1 month ago

This question was obviously by someone that can't get out of bed in the morning.. jeez

notajayhawk 7 years, 1 month ago

So far the answers all seem to be against the idea.

Somehow I believe the answers that come later will be for it ...

Stuart Evans 7 years, 1 month ago

I voted no before I saw that you also voted no.. now I'm questioning my rationalization of this topic...

Maracas 7 years, 1 month ago

If high schoolers start laying around in bed all day because the poor babies can't seem to go to bed early enough, then the terrorists win. Do you want the terrorists to win?

notajayhawk 7 years, 1 month ago

Um - except school pretty much has to start at the same time for everyone. Or maybe we should keep school open around the clock, and let students drop in when their circadian rhythms make it comfortable?

Kendall Simmons 7 years, 1 month ago

Nope, far too many apparently haven't. They also apparently aren't aware that, as a result of studies, it's been shown that "When kids start puberty, they develop a delay in their sleep-wake cycle of up to two hours, which means they naturally go to bed later and wake up later, developing a biological preference for an 11 p.m. sleep time and an 8 a.m. wake time"

More important, they aren't aware that, for example, a study in Rhode Island (which demonstrated this) led to high school not starting till 8:30 AM...with huge positive results. In Minneapolis 3 years ago, they changed from 7:20 to 8:40...with the same huge positive results.

My high school classes (1959-1963) started at 8:30. We were consistently ranked academically as one of the top 5 high schools in Massachusetts. (We weren't too shabby in athletics, either.)

But, following"best practice", the classes got earlier and earlier...and our academic ranking dropped. About 10 years ago they changed back to a later start time...and our academic rankings went back up again.

Apparently too many of the posters don't care if kids sleep through their first period class. They want to argue that it's a matter of "personal responsibility"...with no thought to biology and demonstrable effectiveness.

Yeah...don't let the facts get in the way. Makes me wonder what classes THEY slept through!!

zenmon 7 years, 1 month ago

I think posters commenting do care about students, most figure if they some how managed to make it on time, get good grades, participate in sports, music, other extra-curricular activities or helped on the family farm that students today would be able to accomplish the same.

Once the studies prove that academic excellence can be achieved by moving the start time to later in the day I'm sure most would support the move. I certainly would support it if my kids would benefit, of course I would also have to make arrangements with my employer so that I might also benefit from late start.

booyalab 7 years, 1 month ago

I thought school was supposed to prepare kids for the real world by not being ridiculously accommodating.

Maddy Griffin 7 years, 1 month ago

My thoughts exactly. By the time a kid reaches high school, he should know how much sleep he needs and be responsible enough for himself to take care of that.If it becomes a problem, it is the parents' responsibility to enforce a reasonable bedtime.

walkthehawk 7 years, 1 month ago

Absolutely. We've learned so much about the developing brain in the last few years--why not use OUR brains and put what we now know into our policies? Our entire nation is sleep-deprived; we should all start later, but there is a growing body of evidence that the teen body gets its deep sleep "for the night" right when we force them to wake up and start the day. Your adolescent is exhausted? Sleeps through the alarm? Needs multiple wake-up calls from you? There is a reason, and it's not the "laziness" that we so often attribute to teens.

remember_username 7 years, 1 month ago

That was really great! I looked carefully and couldn't find a hint of sarcasm in this post. A beautifully composed comment.

mr_right_wing 7 years, 1 month ago

Why not. Then maybe we can make it that college classes don't begin so early...and eventually employers won't expect us into work until 11 or 12.

labmonkey 7 years, 1 month ago

Lets the real world, you have to go to jobs early in the morning, or in many cases, well outside a normal sleep schedule. Make them go to school early like we did.

Stop the babying. We have raised a generation of wimps.

notajayhawk 7 years, 1 month ago

I know, those TV shows that are on at 2:30 in the morning are just ridiculous.


BorderRuffian 7 years, 1 month ago

NO!!! Let the spoiled little brats get up and get going just like the rest of us. If they need more sleep than they are getting, teach them to go to bed at a reasonable hour.

These little twerps seem to think the world is all about them. Grow up!!

akuna 7 years, 1 month ago

After reading the responses here, it is no wonder why we have to fight for the acceptance of good science like Global Warming, stem cell research, and others. It seems that most people are too self-absorbed to allow a change that will benefit others.

The sad fact is that our school system is failing us - most posters here would blame this on the parents even though they themselves are probably parents and part of what they consider to be the problem. I have no qualms with trying new solutions. If the school district wants to try a pilot program to start the day later for high school students, I am all for it. With the caveat that they have clear and measurable metrics for success - unlike the Bush administration did when start a war with the "terrorists."

remember_username 7 years, 1 month ago

"allow a change that will benefit others"??? How in the world does this proposal benefit anyone other than those teens who stay up to late at night at the cost of everybody else but themselves?

notajayhawk 7 years, 1 month ago

Whether or not it has anything to do with 'good science', it is totally disconnected from the real world. As pointed out - by the people arguing for the late start - people's circadian rhythms vary. So does the age at which they start puberty. As I mentioned early on in this thread, you can't have school start individually for each person.

Like it or not, you can not accommodate everyone in an institutional setting. And like it or not, it's up to the individual to adopt to the needs of the institution, not vice versa.

2002 7 years, 1 month ago

Go to bed earlier and welcome to the real world.

Richard Heckler 7 years, 1 month ago

Absolutely let the students sleep in. They will be more alive in class.

If the teaching staff has no problem with starting and staying later what difference does it make?

Just think it eliminates USD 497 traffic from rush we're on to something!

notajayhawk 7 years, 1 month ago

Letting them out at 4:30 would somehow help rush hour? Are you serious?

And what about all the employers who hire teens - are they supposed to wait another hour - or two, or whatever - for the kids to get out?

Christine Pennewell Davis 7 years, 1 month ago

And this will teach them about grown up life how? The world is not going to revolve around them when they hit the job market and parenthood so why would you make them think it does now?

Richard Heckler 7 years, 1 month ago

No one knows about grown up life until they live it on their own.

When does one become grown up? Does anyone ever grow up?

Teaching growing up begins at home not public school.

If sticking to a schedule is part of growing up it should not matter if school begins at 9AM till whenever.

notajayhawk 7 years, 1 month ago

"If sticking to a schedule is part of growing up it should not matter if school begins at 9AM till whenever. "

Then it shouldn't matter if it starts at 5:00 am either, mertle.

GardenMomma 7 years, 1 month ago

I took calculus in my zero hour class during my senior year in high school (at LHS) and had a study hall during fifth period.

Kris_H 7 years, 1 month ago

Some people are early birds and some are night owls. Ideally we'll all find jobs that suit our natural schedules. I've done shift work most of my adult life, and have been happy to work during hours that most people are asleep, and sleep while most are working.

Alas, that option was taken from me and now I'm a night owl in an early bird suit, and I can't wait until I can retire.

Kendall Simmons 7 years, 1 month ago

Sorry about that. I am truly grateful to you night owls who are willing to work night shifts I couldn't possible manage. (I tried once...resigned after 3 days because I'm an early bird.)

LoveThsLife 7 years, 1 month ago

Actually I think classes should start later..they have done this at other schools across the country and test scores went up and there was less truancy. The schools mainly did this for other reasons, but were surprised by the positive impact it had on their students. Not all teenagers are staying up late to party or be irresponsible, many are involved in after school activities (which not only keep them out of trouble but look good on college admissions papers) and are trying to study and keep good grades as well..while some for various reasons need to hold down jobs.

As adults I think we forget that teenagers are still developing. The human brain doesn't stop developing until about 19 or so...and the development that goes on during the teenage years is very important.

Let them get their sleep.

Gareth Skarka 7 years, 1 month ago

"they have done this at other schools across the country and test scores went up and there was less truancy."

But remember, Hayseed Kansas is "agin" anything that the modern world does.

gccs14r 7 years, 1 month ago

More recent research shows that the brain doesn't reach adulthood until age 25 or so.

notajayhawk 7 years, 1 month ago

"Not all teenagers are staying up late to party or be irresponsible, many are involved in after school activities (which not only keep them out of trouble but look good on college admissions papers) and are trying to study and keep good grades as well..while some for various reasons need to hold down jobs. "

And if you start school later, then it ends later, then those after=school activities and studying and jobs are all later, and they get to bed later ...

vinividivici 7 years, 1 month ago

Or maybe they're just up as late as they would be anyway. Correlation isn't causation!

notajayhawk 7 years ago

WTF does correlation have to do with anything? And, um, when talking about a continuum of time, yes, causation is pretty straightforward - starting later means finishing later. That's not a correlation or a coincidence, it's a direct causal result. See, vini, when you have "X" hours of activity after school, and you start two hours later, you finish two hours later. It's pretty simple.

canusayduh 7 years, 1 month ago

Well let's see. If the students start school later, then all the parents will then be complaining about having to get them there at 9 or later, so they won't be able to make it to work when they are supposed to. Don't even start me on the stupid Wednesday schedule at LHS!!! Are you kidding? Getting to school at 9:30 and leaving at 2:30? Why go at all? NO! They should all start school at 6am!

kernal 7 years, 1 month ago

So the parents can get up at 4:30am to get the kids to school by 6am, then work until 5pm or later. Then the parent gets to go home and take care of dinner, etc. Sure thing, Duh.

unklemonkey 7 years, 1 month ago

it's quite obvious that the people who said no to this are a little bitter that they weren't able to go to school later as teenagers.

notajayhawk 7 years, 1 month ago

It's quite obvious that the people who said yes to this are either childless or people that have never said no to their children about anything.

notajayhawk 7 years, 1 month ago

It would have been had I been serious. Did you read the post I replied to? I'm hoping your omission of mentioning that one isn't an indication you think IT'S fair.

plivvy 7 years, 1 month ago

So when they become parents are they going to make a law saying that babies have to sleep through the night? Or that children have to sleep on their same schedule? The "biological clock" argument is bologna. So many high school students are just fine. I went to a class for my church at 6 every morning before school and I graduated with a 4.10 GPA and got a 31 on the ACT. Maybe that means school should start earlier.

LoveThsLife 7 years, 1 month ago

There are so many holes in this argument I don't even know where to begin...

plivvy 7 years ago

Can you not sense sarcasm? It's not an "argument." It's merely a comment saying that what is good for one is not good for another. I, personally, would have hated starting school later. I don't think I would have received any additional benefit. Those who participate in after school programs would be out even later if schools moved their start times back. My point is that at some point, people have to adjust to a schedule that is not perfect for them. Life is about adjustments. What about the kids who need to have school earlier to be successful? Either way someone will need adjustments. You can say, oh my school did that and we were more successful, but until someone does an actual statistical study (meaning, you can't tell the kids, hey if you want to sleep in make sure you do really well during the study so they'll think it's more effective) you can't say one way is better than another. What it seems is happening is the schools are blaming bad grades on the start time. That is flawed. Whether school starts at 6 or 10, what it comes down to is kids need to adjust and teachers have to help them be succesful in school and then parents need to help them after school.

vinividivici 7 years, 1 month ago

Absolutely start school later!

Surprised this isn't more common knowledge. I remember learning about this when I was in high school 15 years ago...

"In addition to needing more sleep, adolescents experience a "phase shift" during puberty, falling asleep later at night than do younger children. Researchers long assumed that this shift was driven by psychosocial factors such as social activities, academic pressures, evening jobs and television and Internet use. In the past several years, however, sleep experts have learned that biology also plays a starring role in adolescents' changing sleep patterns, says Carskadon.

Indeed, Carskadon's research is greatly responsible for that new understanding. In a pair of groundbreaking studies published in 1993 and 1997, she and colleagues found that more physically mature girls preferred activities later in the day than did less mature girls, and that in more physically mature teens, melatonin production tapered off later than it did in less mature teens. Those findings, Carskadon says, suggest that the brain's circadian timing system--controlled mainly by melatonin--switches on later at night as pubertal development progresses.

Changes in adolescents' circadian timing system, combined with external pressures such as the need to awaken early in the morning for school, produce a potentially destructive pattern of early-morning sleepiness in teen-agers, Carskadon argues. In a laboratory study of 40 high-school students published in the journal Sleep (Vol. 21, No. 8) in 1998, she, Wolfson and colleagues examined the effect of changing school starting times from 8:25 a.m. to 7:20 a.m.

Their results were disturbing: Almost half of the students who began school at 7:20 were "pathologically sleepy" at 8:30, falling directly into REM sleep in an average of only 3.4 minutes--a pattern similar to what is seen in patients with narcolepsy."

vinividivici 7 years, 1 month ago

Super sorry! Wrong link above! ^ ^ ^Correct one here ^ ^ ^This is what I get for multitasking...

notajayhawk 7 years, 1 month ago

"she and colleagues found that more physically mature girls preferred activities later in the day than did less mature girls, and that in more physically mature teens, melatonin production tapered off later than it did in less mature teens"

Great. Now if you could find a way to get every child in the high school to start puberty on the same day, you could come up with a schedule that accommodates everyone. Shouldn't be a problem.

vinividivici 7 years, 1 month ago

Of course that's impossible. Are you expecting someone to refute that?

Starting later would simply cater to more teenagers needs, as opposed to the very few its catering to now.

notajayhawk 7 years, 1 month ago

And you have numbers for that? By numbers, I mean what percentage have later rhythms and what percentage have earlier ones?

vinividivici 7 years, 1 month ago

The research is there to support teens starting school later in the morning. Where is the scientific support to the contrary?

notajayhawk 7 years ago

"The research is there to support some teens starting school later in the morning."

There, fixed that for you.

I never disputed that some children would benefit from a later start. Just as some adults would benefit from a later start at the auto factory.

Heck, some people would benefit from having larger print in the newspaper, louder volume at the movies, wider lanes to drive in on the freeway.

But we don't have separate start times at work, newspapers printed in several different type sizes, the same movie playing at all the theaters at different volume levels.

Or separate start times at school for different kids. It's pretty much one-size-fits-all. And you didn't answer my question: What did your research say as to what percentage of kids would benefit? You made the claim that it would be "more teenagers" who would benefit. If you can back up that claim, then tell me how many more?

kernal 7 years, 1 month ago

Don't know if this is the same study I saw several years ago, but that study showed that teenage boys, say from the age of fifteen to nineteen, need at least nine hours of sleep and some of them need eleven hours. Also, they did not say up late for the study.

IndusRiver 7 years, 1 month ago

This comment was removed by the site staff for violation of the usage agreement.

DillonBarnes 7 years, 1 month ago

This isn't the kid's ideas people. And high school students don't have the same bodies as adults, if you believe they do, you were apparently asleep during high school biology (probably because it started so early).

I'm not saying it should be done, but it's not some ridiculous "catering to laziness" idea, it has some merit and science to back it up. Also, whether school starts at 7:00 or 9:00, that is still a responsibility to meet. Are you saying we should start school at 4:00AM because that would teach even more responsibility!?

Should science be thrown out the window because that's not how you were raised?

Jeremiah Jefferson 7 years, 1 month ago

While were letting them sleep in later, lets add a few more pop and candy machines, and remove Phys Ed... Nothing works better than a steady diet of crap and too much sleep to keep the kids healthy

LoveThsLife 7 years, 1 month ago

Here is a study published in the Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine.

To get more insight to the question here are a few news reports from other sources. I think it is kind of interesting.

Even by just delaying the school day by 30 minutes teenagers benefit more.

LoveThsLife 7 years, 1 month ago

I just realized I totally pulled a Merill.

notajayhawk 7 years, 1 month ago

That's okay. I skipped over it, just like I do merrill's.

Hoots 7 years, 1 month ago

Several studies concluded that even adults benefit from a later start time to the day. If you tell me you as sharp at 6am as you are at 9 or 10 am you are full of it. Yeah, farmers had a need to start early but for the rest of us why.

ralphralph 7 years, 1 month ago

"Early" is arbitrary. You can set your own body rhythms by determining when you go to bed (and to sleep, not necessarily the same), and when you get up. If you aren't on Facebook until 2AM, morning doesn't come quite so soon.

booyalab 7 years, 1 month ago

But my circadian rhythms make me stay on Facebook until 2am!

Armored_One 7 years, 1 month ago

I took R.O.T.C. in high school. 5 A.M. to 7 A.M., we were drilling, either in uniform, B.D.U.s or in civs. 9 out of 10 that were in the color guard, drill team, or weapons drill were also honor students.

This whole 'biological clock' nonsense is exactly that. The body can be trained, just like the mind can be trained.

How in the hell did we ever manage to get to the year 2010? I doubt this whole "phase" crapola just suddenly sprang up out of nowhere. I know, it's because of the terrorists. rolling my eyes And yes, I bit that off someone who posted earlier. Funny stuff bears repeating.

I notice no one mentioning how diet and exercise impact sleep scheduals, but they sure are keen to site all these studies that show kids have to be catered to. Blow me. If they shift the class start times to a later time in the morning, without shifting the exit time for school proportionately, I will jerk my kids out of public school faster than a jack rabbit running from a dog.

The early bird gets the worm.

There is a reason for that saying, no matter how trite it sounds. It's the truth. Damned hippie kid huggers. First parent groups are saying that giving a kid a 0 when they don't turn in homework is detrimental and discourages kids and now they shouldn't even be in school long enough to learn squat.

This is going to screw the teachers violently. Less time to accomplish the same amount of educating is NOT going to work.

Damned fools, every one of you that insist that this would be good for the kids and the teachers. Make it the same time line as a full time first shift job. 8 AM to 4 PM. Routines are learned, not just suddenly aquired like a quarter on a sidewalk. We are creatures of habit and those have to be learned. I guarantee if we went to that style of a class schedual, and do away with this BS of late start and early release, kids in this country would be a damned sight more prepared for the real world in general and college specifically.

Year round schooling would be nice as well. A quarter would actually be a quarter of the year, not just a few weeks crammed together. Blow a test and yer not instantly screwed and what not like that.

But noooooo...

That would impose too much of everyone to actually establish a routine.


DillonBarnes 7 years, 1 month ago

I disagree with your premise, your experience won't necessarily hold true for everyone else. However, I have to agree on the year round school year. Our current system is out of date and has a negative effect on education.

booyalab 7 years, 1 month ago

Even though the sleepy-time preference is genetic, it's still possible for anyone to become a morning person. This lady trained herself to be a morning person using advice from doctors and sleep researchers(no caffeine after 3pm, avoid bright lights at night, go for a walk immediately upon waking, etc.)

somedude20 7 years, 1 month ago

"I believe the children are our are future Teach them well and let them lead the way Show them all the beauty they possess inside Give them a sense of pride to make it easier Let the children's laughter remind us how we used to be "

Randy Watson and Sexual Chocolate

Joe Hyde 7 years ago

Back in high school my buddies and I would have liked it lots better if First Hour had started at noon.

In the fall, we could have left town before dawn and enjoyed hunting doves, quail, pheasants, prairie chickens, ducks and gees during the choice early morning hours, and still had enough time to run home and clean our birds before going to class.

Except for maybe some rabbit hunting or trapping, the months of February and March would have been boring for us, but come April we'd have gotten back into the routine by rising early and going fishing. Same thing there, too; we'd have been home with our catch and had the fish cleaned in time for First Hour.

Even if Final Hour classes had dismissed at, say, 8pm, this would have been no burden; we'd have busied ourselves with homework asignments until midnight and then called it a day. Teenagers stay up until midnight every night anyhow, so why not exploit that tendency by altering high school class scheduling?

CreatureComforts 7 years ago

What about morning people? I have always been a morning person, and my 7:30am start time in high school was LATER than I would want...largely because I worked after school, and getting out by 2:30pm left time to do some homework, some work work, and still get some sleep.

TopJayhawk 7 years ago

Kids need consistancy, and predictability. A lot of this is a regular reasonable bedtime. I work with troubled kids who stay up to all hours of the night. They all say they can't go to bed and sleep early. Yet they get here and bedtime is 9:30 or ten. And guess what? They all sleep like babies.

TopJayhawk 7 years ago

Parenting is not about being their "buddy" You have to set limits. You have to be able to say NO. You are not their buddy, you are their parent. Kids want limits set. They will not respect you if you do not do this. That is a basic fact. Some exceptions may exist as with all rules, but this is true.
Wimpy parents are not respected, and do not have a lot of respect for themselves.

LoveThsLife 7 years ago

How does looking at research and saying "Maybe we should alter the starting time of school by a 1/2 hr or so because it results in a better outcome for students" end up being a model of passive parenting?

In an ideal situation not only would school start 30 minutes later but it would also be year round.

morganlefay 7 years ago

Great comment TopJay. Most parents today are bitter at their parents for setting limits and now they don't want to put their kids through that. That's why today's society is filled with a bunch of primadonnas who think that their actions shouldn't have consequences and that they are all "special". This is the "Me" generation now and it's pathetic!

beatrice 7 years ago

Will it improve performance? If it will, then being against it is silly.

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