It’s time for another new school year to begin, but experts say the school day is starting too early for many students.
This month, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a statement in favor of delaying the start of the school day until at least 8:30 a.m. for middle and high schools. This is in response to a recommendation issued earlier this year by the American Academy of Pediatrics, urging schools to start later so adolescents can achieve a healthy amount of sleep.
Those in favor of later school day start times for teens say if teens get more sleep, they’ll be more active, have healthier weights, have less depression and stress, and perform better in school. But some are also concerned that delaying school start times could interfere with other scheduled parts of the day, like after school jobs and athletics.
We asked parents of teens what they think about later school start times. Half of parents with teens whose schools currently start before 8:30 a.m. said they would support a school start time of 8:30 or later. 40% of parents said their teens would get more sleep if school started at 8:30 a.m. or later, but 22% of parents said later start times wouldn’t leave enough room for after school activities. Read the full report: Parents conflicted about later school start times for teens.
In this video, NPCH Director Dr. Matt Davis talks about support for sleeping in: