Issues with High School Starting Times

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Honors English Nine 26 April 2019 The Issues With High School Starting Times The starting times of high schools are excessively early to be healthy for students. Surprisingly, most schools in the United States of America follow exceedingly early schedules. Studies show that the starting times of high schools have detrimental effects on students. These effects may harm their own physical and mental health as well as their academic performance. Even though there is a multitude of reasons and benefits for this change, not many schools have agreed to transition.

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The lateness of high school starting times affects students’ likelihood to be overweight, form depressive symptoms, and participate in unhealthy behaviours, such as smoking tobacco and drinking alcohol. Only about 17.7% out of an estimated 39,700 U.S. schools start after a reasonable time of 8:30 a.m. The tests and studies of the schools that start at a sensible time have shown benefits compared to the large margin of schools that start earlier. Research shows that high schools would likely benefit from the transition to later starting times. Changes as such shall fit a more healthy and reasonable standard for students. High school starting times should change in order to maintain students’ physical and mental health as well as focus on students’ behaviour in order to increase chances at a brighter future at a positive level. The risk of health complications grows as students continue waking at unhealthy times. Gaining weight is one of the complications as a result of disorderly waking schedules. There are many more problems, such as stress build-up. Students may also suffer from depressive symptoms.

Depression can branch into more unhealthy behaviours, such as smoking tobacco and drinking alcohol. Early schedules may affect a students’ ability to stray from absenteeism. Academic performance will likely drop due to missing school/classes. Teachers and administrators may have difficulties with organizing many absent students. The lack of teacher organization means less learning for students. Key factors as these affect the students’ ability to have a successful life in the future, such as which colleges they can attend and which jobs they can work for. Sleep deprivation can also cause most complications with the lives of students outside and inside of school. As a result of premature schedules, stress may build up in people at schools. Stress adds to more health complications in people. This amount of strain in students can negatively impact the students’ ability to concentrate on school-related things. Distraction is an outcome of stress.

This complicates students’ grades and performance. Additionally, sleep-deprivation does not comply with a students’ life outside of school. Extra-curricular activity performance declines when the student is not sleeping enough. As a result of waking up at these times, students may miss other important activities due to oversleeping and tiredness. These activities include appointments to the doctor and keeping up with friends or family. Awareness of necessities like regular routines or activities that keep sleep-deprived people healthy decreases, putting them at risk of harmful consequences. Forcing students and teachers to wake up at abnormally early times decreases safety for students and teachers. The concentration of students allows teachers to control what is around them. An inability to have control over students puts both teachers and students at risk of danger.

During weather drills, students may not remember the factors of being safe while in a real emergency. Uncontrollable students may start acting dangerously and committing ignorant actions such as fights. This type of behaviour may lower the overall status of the school and its administrators. Getting enough sleep determines how decent the quality of life for a person is. If people are lacking sleep, then they may be at risk of lowering their life quality. Lack of comfort and happiness may harm the mental health of those affected people. The decline of mental health leads to other severe complications with a person’s life. Some of these complications include symptoms of mental disorders and the build-up of clouded emotions.

After professional testing of different factors of sleep-related topics of a student, is has been concluded that irregular wake-up times have detriments to the people going to school. Teachers may have difficulties teaching due to stress and the lack of control over students. Additionally, health problems and a decrease in safety in the school may occur as a result of current awakening times.

Effects as such may branch into more in-depth problems. The concern of decent health is a clear sign something is wrong with the starting times of most high schools. It may be some time before the administrators of these schools realize the consequences of untimely starting times. The number of benefits overcomes the negatives of changing the irregular schedules to a more controlled schedule.

Works Cited

  • https://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/134/3/642.short – September 2014. Volume 134/Issue 3. From the American Academy of Pediatrics.
  • https://www.dublinschools.net/Downloads/apa.pdf – By Siri Carpenter, Monitor Staff, October 2001, Vol 32, No. 9 Print version: page 42
  • https://stacks.cdc.gov/view/cdc/53341 – Sonja A. Rasmussen, MD, MS, Editor-in-Chief Charlotte K. Kent, Ph.D., MPH, Executive Editor Jacqueline Gindler, MD, Acting Editor: MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep Vol. 64, N. 30: 2015, August 7
  • http://jcsm.aasm.org/Articles/040602.pdf – Danner F; Phillips B. Adolescent sleep, school start times, and teen motor vehicle crashes. J Clin Sleep Med 2008;4(6):533- 535.
  • https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jamapediatrics/article-abstract/383436 – Judith A. Owens, MD, MPH; Katherine Belon, BA; Patricia Moss, Ph.D. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2010;164(7):608-614. doi:10.1001/archpediatrics.2010.96p
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Issues with high school starting times. (2020, Aug 20). Retrieved January 27, 2023 , from
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