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Petition for Later Start Times for High School?

When you have children in elementary school the conventional advice is easy to follow: get your child to bed at a reasonable hour and they will have an easier time in school. Fast forward several years to high school and the same wisdom applies. Unfortunately, early to bed in high school is usually an elusive and rare feat.  Compound a late bedtime with very early start times at school and it's not pretty. And yet, this is the standard. 

Countless studies have been done on teens and  how lack of sleep affects academic performance and teens in general. Ability to concentrate, memory, coping skills, mood and physical coordination are just some of the things affected by too little sleep. It makes me wonder if there might even be less bullying in schools if kids got more sleep. A recent blog I came across talked about how early school starts affect teen driving and accidents. Now that's scary. But what is a parent to do? Make your teen go to bed early? Right. 

I know my high schooler has lamented many times that the elementary school kids start school so much later when they are the ones who are early risers. Why not flip the sequence? It makes perfect sense until you factor in sports, jobs, and homework. Like with so many teen topics, there are no easy answers. 

Do you know of any schools that have adopted the later start times? Are you ready to start a petition to have the high school students in your town start school after the elementary school kids? Would love to hear from you!  




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#5 Terra Snider 2011-11-09 22:14
Many people had trouble signing the WhiteHouse.gov petition, so we have a new one going--much easier to sign. The link is https://signon.org/sign/promote-legislation-to?source=c.em.cp&r_by=1520974
#4 Terra Snider 2011-10-28 11:42
Don't know if this forum is still active, but I did start a petition, and it will be responded to by the White House if we get 5000 names by Nov. 2, 2011. This is a highly publicized new petition format that has a great chance of getting national attention--but we have to act quickly! Can you sign & help spread the word? To sign, go to https://wh.gov/2qJ . Any American 13 or older can sign.
#3 Jennifer 2010-08-11 01:09
I am looking to build out a Family contract for my husband and 11 year old stepson to all participate in and sign off on.

I would like to see something that contains:
Rules around kindness, honesty
Academic focus
Personal Growth and Accountability as well as the ability to alter it as everyone grows together.

Purpose: Clear rules for the child. Provide a tool so everyone understands what each person needs to be happy and successful at the same time make certain the child feels safe yet understands we are PARENTS not their buddy.

Looking forward to examples of successful templates.

Thank you.
#2 Cassondra 2010-07-30 20:09
Im a high school student and it's really hard "waking up" and jumping into class at 7:30. I have a hard time paying attention and getting focused. By the next day, i don't remember a lot of what we did. We learned, practically nothing, and it was a waist of the teachers time. I really suggest a later start time, especailly when they put very important subjects first period.
#1 Pam 2010-07-29 17:33
The recent brain research has stated that high schools need more sleep. Dr. Jensen (1998) discusses this in his book Teaching with the Brain in Mind, an excellent resources I might add. I run a high school program and my students start at 8:30 and they are greatful.

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