Less School, More Sleep

Jefferson-Morgan starts their school day at 7:30am, starting with homeroom. They end the school day at 2:47pm. This means their students attend school for 7 hours and and 17 minutes each day. Most other schools in the county and in the area start later than that in the morning.


This time to start in the morning is too early for students. Getting up in the morning due to a lack of sleep is very difficult. The time that the school starts should be changed to a later time.


According to www.sleepfoundation.org, teenagers need anywhere from 8 to 10 hours of sleep, but a study showed that only 15% of teenagers get 8 hours and 30 minutes of sleep a night. To get the required amount of sleep at night, a student who wakes up at 6:00 am would need to be asleep anywhere from 8:00-10:00 pm, an almost impossible task for some students. “I typically get to bed around midnight after work and school work,” said Kaylee Marion, who attends school and also has a job. “It is hard to maintain steady grades and get good grades while also having a job on top of school.”


A student who plays a sport will most likely never get to bed between 8:00-10:00, like recommended. Football games, volleyball games, basketball games, and wrestling matches start around 7:00-7:30, depending on the sport and specific day. If a game ends at 8:30-9:00, by the time a student showers and does any homework they have, they will not be in bed by 10:00. This also makes a student choose between homework and sleep. Junior cheerleader Kaitlin Wood said, “Cheering throughout the weekdays for basketball and wrestling kept me out until 8:30, and I still had to shower and do my homework. When I actually did my homework, I was usually up until midnight, but often, I choose sleep over homework.”


Of course, there are also those opposed to this idea. Some against this idea of starting the school day later say that they do they want to start school later. “I really don’t wanna be in school any longer than I have to,” said student Madelyn VanDivner. Although school would remain longer, it would only be 13 minutes longer, from 2:47 to 3:00. The 8:00-3:00 timing is a standard for many schools in the area, some even shorter than that. Waking up half an hour later is worth staying in school for 13 minutes later than the current usual.


In order to fix this, major changes would have to occur. It would have to be discussed at school board meetings, with the principals and superintendents, and also with parents and administration. A list of the pros and cons would have to be brought up with compelling arguments for a decision to be made. Overall, this process would be lengthy and difficult, but much worth it.


Even if it doesn’t seem like much, an extra half an hour of sleep in the morning can be very vital. This change should be made for the better of the student body. There are very few cons to change, but it can help so many people. This change to make school start later is possible and can occur with the help of students from the school.