Research shows that older teens may actually need more sleep than younger teens. The bad news is that most high school schedules make it hard for students to sleep late. High school classes often start earlier than middle school classes. So teens must get up earlier when they really need to sleep later.
Some school districts are starting to respond to this. Among them is the city of Minneapolis. At the beginning of the school year, officials there decided to start the high school day 45 minutes later. Students in grades 10 to 12 are now starting school at 8:30 instead of 7:45. School officials did this in the hope that teens would arrive at school fresh and ready to learn.
Changing the start of high school may not be an option for your teen. But you can still help by setting a bedtime of about 11 p.m.. Most older teens get sleepy naturally about 10:30 p.m.
Lost sleep for two or more nights in a row may make teens moody and cranky. Their attention span may decrease. They may not perform as well on tests. If you start to notice things like this, your child may be sleep-deprived. Get your teen back on a regular, healthy sleep schedule.
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