The 1st-period bell for HSW rings at 7:19, which is too early. Other schools mainly start at 7:30, 8, or later depending on the school schedule and classes. This starting time is not only detrimental to our sleep schedule, but it also affects our learning abilities and mental health.
School before 8 is too early for students to get proper sleep. Most high school students wake up around 4:30-6 am to prepare for the school day. I wake up at 5:30. This time would be acceptable to wake up if we went to sleep earlier the night before. Most kids participate in after-school clubs and sports, stay in the library, or stay for extra help. After this, students usually arrive home around 4:30 to 5, but athletes will tend to arrive home from 5:45- to 6:15. After the students get home, we have to complete homework for our classes from the school day, which takes around 2-4 hours to complete, depending on the amount of work assigned. Between all of this, we have to take showers, eat dinner, and take a break from all the stress. Most people don’t go to sleep till around 12-1. This is a wrong sleep schedule because, in 4 hours, students have to wake up again to repeat the same schedule. School should start at 8, so we can get long hours of sleep to learn and function better.
Freshman Ethan Clyde-Milewski supports this by saying, “Few hours of sleep every night can affect students’ learning, and as of school starting later, I would love it if school started late. Are you kidding me? I get to sleep late, and because of that, I don’t have to wake up at 5:45 in the morning. So if I’m being frank, if the school can start later, that would be a dream come true, so please start school later now.”
Having a good sleep schedule helps us to learn and understand the material in school. The brain takes longer to process new information and doesn’t understand it fast enough in school. This affects how students learn, their test scores, and how students complete their homework. A lousy sleep schedule also causes students to sleep in class, missing the information entirely, and they have the learn the class topic on their own. Most of the time, especially in advanced classes, learning the material yourself is challenging as the teacher has a specific way of teaching the topic.
Sleep also takes a toll on teens’ mental health. Little amounts of sleep cause teens to have no energy the following day, making them tired and prone to falling asleep. Teens can’t enjoy their everyday activities, and it’s harder to concentrate on school and extracurricular activities. From my experience, I get fatigued, and I am “meh” all day. This probably describes most teens who don’t have proper sleep schedules until they get used to it.