Sleep Well: Later School Start Times & Student Health

By Nick Goldman

Most students would agree that the least productive part of their school day is the first forty minutes of their first class of the day. This feeling of lethargy makes student question why they would have a short period on Monday morning or why school doesn’t start later every day. School should start later to allow students to get more sleep and make their lives less stressful, inevitably resulting in more productive school days.

The suggested amount of sleep is seven and a half to nine hours per night. It is well know that most students don’t even get near this amount. Senior Lauren Lampl and sophomore Anne Schulze both say that they usually get between six to seven and half hours of sleep a night. They both play sports after school and don’t usually get to their homework until around seven. Many kids at Tam have packed days like these, filled with extracurriculars and homework, and it is obvious that they could all benefit from extra sleep.

Instead of starting school at 8 in the morning, why not push it back to the beginning of second period at 9:45? This simple time change may not seem like the solution to the problem but an hour and a half of sleep is usually the amount missing from attaining the recommended hours. Also, this time in the morning could be used for other things like a tutorial period. This solution would also eliminate the problem of people wasting tutorial, which is another column for another time.  If you needed to get things completed in tutorial, like retaking a test, you could come in early. If you don’t need that extra time, you could get more sleep. Students should be empowered to prioritize the use of this time for themselves.

These simple schedule adjustments could lower students’ stress levels, increase their productivity levels, and improve the high school experience for everyone.