"During football season in particular, the focus of American principals, teachers, and students shifts inexorably away from academics. Sure, high-school football players spend long, exhausting hours practicing (and according to one study, about 15 percent experience a brain injury each season), but the commitment extends to the rest of the community, from late-night band practices to elaborate pep rallies to meetings with parents. Athletics even dictate the time that school starts each day: despite research showing that later start times improve student performance, many high schools begin before 8 a.m., partly to reserve afternoon daylight hours for sports practice."
I know it's fun to pick on Football and jocks in general but I don't think we can have a serious debate on the subject when the bias is so obvious.
What about we make athletics part of the school day? Shocking I know, but if we recognize athletics as an important key to youth development and not something that has to happen after "real school" than maybe we might be able to tackle this issue of kids being so overwhelmed and having to stay up late just to stay afloat.
Harming school performance and sleep depriving developing children in the time that they need sleep the most, just to give a self-selected portion of the student body extra time for sports, debate team, student council, etc. makes absolutely no sense to me.
>What about we make athletics part of the school day?
We already did, it's called "gym."
My school started at 7:30AM, which required I get up just before 6AM, from middle school onward. I don't think that's a natural time to require growing teenagers to wake up at. It was still dark outside then, where I lived. Even amongst grown adults, those that can wake up that early and function without incurring a sleep debt are rare.
>So the issue.. is most likely staying up unnaturally late.
Kids naturally begin staying up and waking up later after they hit puberty. Trying to fight that is stupid and harmful.
I'd like to be able to say that it gives me closure to finally have an explanation, but honestly it just makes me madder that football was responsible.
7:30 for primary/elementary school and 8:30 for HS and JHS would have been great (or maybe even 8 and 9 respectively), but I suppose some kids skipping class after their parents had left for work would ruin it for everyone.
EDIT: How much do you think reusing the bus fleets actually saves? Compared to have one big fleet that transports all schools at the same time, you need less buses, and probably save a little by paying less drivers for more time, but I'd expect the cost of fuel to dominate, which should be about the same regardless. Operating more busses also means that each is sustaining less wear per day as well.
Seems like it might make more sense to put the training mid school-day. Exercise typically helps mental function.
When I read the title I though schools would be letting teenagers sleep in for an 11 am start.
Anecdotally, I don't remember any school starting before 8:45 or so when I was a kid 30 years ago.
Yet most of the news/research I read is about appeasing groggy teenagers. Why aren't we focusing on elementary and middle schoolers? One of my other replies in this thread was about how locally they've shifted high schoolers to a later start time and as a result the younger kids are forced into an earlier time schedule. Makes no sense if we're using the data referenced.
If they don't get out of school until early evening, I would consider them mostly un-employable. Oh well, its not like they are in an economy that can support them... and surely this won't lead to a sense of entitlement later in life.
The students who will succeed likely will be able to handle employment and school. Aren't most high schools now days, you show, you pass?
f.lux might help but lack of sleep is not necessarily the problem but rather quality of sleep. Excercise improves sleep quality.
Really?! This is how much value you place on your education and your future life that an extra 30 minutes a day can prompt you to throw it all away?
Growing up fairly privileged in a USSR military family I myself have seen relatively few hard times (country collapses are rarely fun...), but my Grandfather's stories of having to carve math equations out on logs with a knife so he could do his homework because post WWII paper and pencils were in very short supply... He constantly emphasized how much he had to fight for his education and it seared in my brain that I must succeed. Dropping out was never an option I would even consider.
At 17, I managed to work full time, graduate from high school and start at a university, and have so much fun that I keep worrying some odd photo will surface that I have no memory of... Yes, I did not sleep as much as I wanted, but I have no regrets about how I lived life or do now.
As someone who had sleep apnea for several years I can tell you that an extra half hour of sleep means a lot to you. And the sleep deprivation caused me to suffer a lot and really ran my brain capacity down to a nub. So if you really want to have children dedicate a decade or more to mental training you should listen to their feedback about what is hindering them.
For dangerous jobs, the stake are much higher. It can mean the difference between death or a really a close dangerous incident.
Everyone's job was dangerous, of course, but the reaction time of a well-rested versus a not well-rested pilot could mean the difference between a dozen deaths or a routine day.
Did you believe him?
My grandfather used to walk 10 miles each way to get to school. With no shoes. In the snow. Uphill. Both ways.
[ObCulturalExplanation: above is the standard American clichéd hyperbolic of the clichéd "kids-these-days" rant delivered by ancestral males to teenagers. Maybe in the CCCP, they really did carve homework into logs and bring them into class the next day. I certainly don't know.]
Why not, instead, shift the school end time back to 5:30? Instead of 3:15 (as it was for me, though I'm sure it varies), this adds 2 hours and 15 minutes to the day. As a result, the academic day can begin at 10:30 rather than 8:15. Labs, libraries, etc can all be open during this period to allow students to catch up on work, get help, etc if they wish to come in early (or need to due to their parents' work schedule). The cafeteria could even open on a limited basis to serve breakfast in this time. But there's no rush to get in class by 8:15 and no need to start serving breakfast at 7 AM or earlier.
Then athletics can start early (say 6:30-7) instead of running excessively late. And further, the school can remain open in the same state it did for morning for these students and others who wish to stay late and work on their assignments.
I felt, in HS, so rushed to get in class, "learn" (hard to do when you're constantly moving from room to room) and then get out and do all the work at home. Ok that's fine, it was convenient for me since I was able to walk home in just 5 minutes, but for most people I suspect this was a horrible pressure. And for people who don't have access to everything at home, this is also probably damaging to their ability to complete work, and likely discouraging. Not to mention distractions, etc.
I really liked how it was in college. Because I had to commute, I tended to stay on campus later. I didn't have my distractions (home, games, computer, etc) with me, so I'd end up just doing my work or research. Then when I went home, I had nothing but free time. Time I spent reading articles on hacking, watching defcon videos, chatting in IRC, playing games, reverse engineering, etc. All tasks which I thoroughly enjoyed. All made possible because I had a place to work separate from my home. So the notion of "home work" seems broken to me. Totally broken. There needs to be work/life balance, and part of that includes a separation of "home" and "work". I never felt that in HS.
I found it really strange that morning detention was incredibly productive. I had the pleasure of receiving this once in 7th grade. I brought a book and read half of it in that time. In fact, working was required, no talking. Otherwise I would've been just standing outside goofing off. There was no place for us to go like that at the school to be productive. We had to stand around outside until classes started. And you realistically had to do that to be on time to class. Doesn't this seem odd?
Also interesting was the partial schedule I had in my senior year. I had a calculus course that began at 11 AM, which means I got to sleep in most days of the week. I would often go to school at 10 AM and go sit in the library and read or go over my work, then go to class at 11. I don't think I ever received a B on anything in the class (sure, it was easy, but this was statistically anomalous to my other grades, I never did homework at home; I always did it on campus, and my grades reflected that, and I didn't care because "home" was not a place to do work). I also got a perfect score on the Calculus BC exam and skipped multiple college courses as a result. And because of that experience, I realized I enjoyed math far more than I had previously thought and wanted to learn more, beyond Calculus, and so I ended up getting a math degree.
Are there actually any negatives? Sure, the pay for teachers needs to be increased to justify spending more time at school, and even more than that, it should probably be doubled or more realistically because there's currently no economic incentive for the smartest people to teach. But that's an existing problem.
Seriously get off the damn cell phone, shut down your Mac and go the fuck to sleep. The more of a routine this becomes the easier it is to drag your ass out of bed early in the morning. Don't force little kids to be in bed at dinner time just because your teenagers are ...cranky.
Maybe I'm showing my old-age here but I think most of this is bull.
Younger kids naturally rise earlier than teenagers. You can talk as much as you want about "they should do this" and "understand that", but you can't fight their basic biology.
If you need 10hours of sleep, my all means get it! But adjust your schedule so you get it, don't make everyone else adjust.
I would let my kids stay up much later (and they would gladly take me up on the offer) if I didn't have to get them up at 6AM. They aren't newborns who need to go to bed at 5PM, they would bounce of the walls until 10 or 11 if I could let them. This isn't logical, it's the result of the decisions made regarding school start time.