School Start Time Continues To Be Controversial

Back to Article
Back to Article

School Start Time Continues To Be Controversial

Photo by Clarissa Iglesias

Photo by Clarissa Iglesias

Photo by Clarissa Iglesias

Photo by Clarissa Iglesias

Clarissa Iglesias, student-journalist

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.

Email This Story

Students can be seen falling asleep in class, dozing in the office chairs, napping in the library but having a later school start time can affect students positively and negatively.

There are several cons to having school start earlier than usual.

According to a sleep expert Dr. Carol Ash, “When they (students) don’t get the sleep they need it can cause poor academic performance, drowsy driving depression, loneliness, social isolation, addictive behaviors and weight gain, obesity, and hypertension.”

In 2014, The National Sleep Foundation (NSF) worked with Zoe Logfren stating that “Over time, sleep deprivation leads to serious consequences for academic achievement, social behavior, and the health and safety of our nation’s youth.”

Chieftains currently start class at 7:20 in the morning, meanwhile other schools start around 8 am.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that five out of six middle and high schools in the United States start before 8:30 a.m.

Students may believe that going later to class would be a good idea since they will have more time to sleep, but in reality, it may not be the best choice for everyone all around. For example, teachers may see the earlier start more convenient rather than coming in later.

Journalism teacher Mr. Senteno says he would not prefer to begin work later than he does now. He believes that the current start time now has more benefits to it.

“In that case, we (teachers) wouldn’t be having our meetings before school – we would be having them after. And if we were to be having them after school, that means (teachers) would have to stay later.”

The staff at most schools have to spend more time on campus than students do in general. They have to come in early, prepare for the day, teach all of their classes, and still stay after time once in a while to have meetings with other teachers.

Most students come into school at the given start time and leave when the last bell rings. Sometimes, pupils may have to stay behind for a class or an extra period, but it does not compare to the amount of time teachers have to be in school.

Mr. Senteno said, “I, and probably most teachers, would rather come in early, be done for the day, do night school, and still have time to do other work as well as our own responsibilities.”

A later school time would probably make it harder for staff to find time to do their errands. This would be due to extra time being spent on campus.

This change would not be very convenient for everyone. Athletics Trainer Alfie Nowak said, “I think a good compromise would be about 7:40 to 7:50. I think coming into school around 9 o’clock is too late because I would be here until 9 o’clock at night. The later school starts, the later athletics start, the longer I have to be here.”

Recently, state lawmakers passed Senate Bill 328 that would require middle and high schools statewide to start no earlier than 8:30 am, but it was vetoed by Governor Jerry Brown reported various news outlets including the Los Angeles Times and the New York Times.

In the end, there is good sides to having a later school time. For now, the time that students come into school at Clairemont High might be the most convenient for everyone.