By: Grace Schultz
More sleep or more hastel
As of recently, in early October, a bill was passed in California to push back school start times in middle schools and high schools to no earlier than 8:30 am. Of course, immediate opposition and support rang out from people of all ages. For parents, one of the biggest discretions is how to get their kids to school on time while also complying with their work schedule.
Although the bill was just passed, there is a three year period in place for the changes to be planned and implemented by the beginning of 2022-23. The benefits that this simple change could bring are numerous, but the main goal is allowing for more sleep.
This bill could be a big step forward to students getting better sleep, but it is also up to the students to show that they will use the extra time wisely. Rather than sitting on your phone for an extra hour at night, at least keep your regular bed time.
An unfortunate downside for students is the possible later dismissal time, which would in turn affect the end times of sports practices and other extracurricular activities. For some, this negative effect discounts the entirety of the later start times because the students would get to bed even later, cancelling out the extra time in the morning.
For this to not cancel out the benefits of the extra hour we would get in the morning, it may mean that we have to sacrifice something in return or work to plan ways to change things. Making change takes time and effort and everyone must work together to find the best solutions so as to procure the best possible outcome.
Studies done by the CDC show that “students should get the proper amount of sleep at night to help stay focused, improve concentration, and improve academic performance”. A national survey conducted in 2015 showed that “about 7 out of 10 students (72.7%) in highschool did not get enough sleep on school nights and the American Academy of Sleep Medicine recommends “8-10 hours” per day.
School start times have not always been as early as they are today and in fact only became this way about 40 years ago. As of the late 1900’s, school’s began making their start times earlier when little was known about sleep cycles, to save money, or better align the hours with after school schedules.
That change from over forty years ago continues to be detrimental to students sleep habits and in school focus today. The shift to earlier hours proves the capability for collective change and shows that adjusting to later hours is not impossible.
Differences in opinion on this new bill and its effectiveness will follow it to and long past the date of official enactment, but this will not change the inevitable. Depending on when Mission admin plan to implement this schedule change, many of the students currently attending MVHS or very few will be affected.
By the school year of 2022-23, you may no longer hear the phrase “I’m tired” anymore.