Should there be a change in school hours?

Sam Payne, Editor-in-Chief

There has been a growing problem in our modern-day school system as students have an unadaptive schedule that forces them to conform to a sleep schedule that is unnatural to a growing teenager. Forcing them to conform to this schedule may not only be harmful to their health but it can also be very damaging to their education.

The school needs to amend the school hours to start at a later time in the day and to go on later through the day.

It has been found in a recent study by that teenagers who are in their growing phase naturally stay up later and sleep in later in the day this is called “night owling.”  It initially starts with teens having a much slower building sleep drive obviously causing them to stay up later due to not being tired, and additionally, the body starts taking longer to produce melatonin.  Due to this completely natural change in the sleep cycle, it is obviously harder for teens to wake up in the morning. School schedules these days refuse to take this into consideration. Forcing teens off their natural sleep schedule can only hurt their learning throughout their four years. If students come to school to learn, they need to be well-rested and wide awake for maximum focus.

Teen drivers are very young and new to driving, and many driving accidents can be attributed to distracted young drivers, but another risk that no one ever thinks to research is drowsiness. Statistics done by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety have reported that around 100,000 crashes a year occur due to drowsy drivers on the road. School schedules put students at risk by forcing them to drive to school so early in the morning when they are still such un-experienced drivers. While some may argue that not all teens are at such risks, that their child is a good or “safe” driver, accidents can happen to anyone at any time in their life even to the most cautious drivers. It may not even be your child that may be drowsy or tired; it could be another irresponsible driver that could make such a terrible and costly mistake.

Everyone knows about and or has experienced how moody teens can be at times. While most of this is just natural in their phase it has been found that sleep deprivation can also add to or amplify this. According to reports done by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine when a teen lacks sleep they not only get “moody” but they also have an increased amount of anxiety, they become increasingly irritable, and they experience a lack of motivation. It is clearly becoming more and more obvious that sleep is a necessity to not only physical but mental health as well.

The solution here is obvious; we must update our school schedule. School hours need to be changed and tailored towards our student body to both keep our students healthy, safe, and happy. This change in hours may range anywhere from starting at 10 to 11 a.m. and letting students out at 5 or 6 p.m.

So to recap on everything, the current school schedule for students has become outdated and downright destructive to our student’s mental and physical health and changes must be made.