Opinion: Should School Start Later in the Day?

By: Sakthi Kasi.

The alarms blares at 5:30 in the morning and you rush to turn it off. You look outside and even the sun has not woken up yet.

The National Sleep Foundation states that the average time a teenager goes to sleep is around 11 P.M. Most kids get less than six hours of sleep each night due to school homework, after school activities, jobs, sports, and other commitments. Nationwide Children’s Hospital has proven that children need about 9 ¼ hours of sleep in order to function properly and carry out normal teenage brain development, but teenagers struggle to get in more than six hours of sleep. Sleep deficits can lead to problems such as heart disease, obesity, and emotional problems like depression.

Alaina Seigal, a freshman in the North Royalton High School, says, “With all the homework and studying from the night before, other students and myself end up going to bed very late, and to get up very early in the morning and go to school, it is very hard to perform at my best.”

Scientific reports prove that a teenager doesn’t fall asleep until 10:45 PM, and moving the school starting time to 8:30 will allow a student to gain enough sleep within their proper sleep cycle. Allowing a student to wake up according to their own natural sleep cycle will provide amazing results such as an increase in grades and attention span. Julia Rouge, a sophomore in the North Royalton High School, says, “I felt more refreshed when there was a late start because I could have more time to get ready and properly wake up. I had more time to prepare myself for the day.”

Not to mention safety issues. Many kids choose to walk to school in the mornings and having fourteen year olds in the streets by themselves when the sun isn’t even out yet poses a serious safety concern. Not many people are outside this early in the morning and alongside a lack of light, there is a high potential for these children to get hurt by cars and other dangers. Schools have invested a lot of money to ensure safety inside the schools. There are lockdown drills, fire drills, tornado drills, police officers, secure locks on doors, and a monitored school entrance, but what about on the way to school? There is nothing that can ensure the safety of these kids, but having the school start later in the day can provide public monitoring of these students.

Kate Young, a student last year at the high school states, “The school has invested so much money in school safety. We have taken time from our school day to ensure that we are prepared in case of an emergency, however, nothing is put in place to guarantee that the students walking to school during the early mornings get to school safely.”

Having school start later in the day will provide students safety as well as lower the stress for the developing teenage brain.

**The opinions, beliefs and viewpoints expressed by the various column authors on this Website do not necessarily reflect the opinions, beliefs and viewpoints of the Royal News Staff or North Royalton High School.

Sakthi Kasi is currently a sophomore who also participates in other clubs such as Key club, Spanish club, Model UN, and Science club. She is also a member of the yearbook committee and the North Royalton High School Marching Band. Outside of school, she can be found hanging out with her friends, writing, or painting. During the hot summer time, Sakthi enjoys spending time at the beach and riding her bicycle. During the snowy months of winter, she can be found curled up near a hot fireplace, reading a fantasy book.