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Opinion >  Letters

School starts too early

Ever since I was a seventh-grader at Northwood Middle School, school has started at 8:15 a.m. To begin school at this early hour is illogical for every student.

According to scientificamerican.com, the average teenager needs nine hours of sleep. Students are the least perceptive and least likely to retain information in the early hours of the day, especially if, on average, students have to be awake before 7 a.m. in order to get to school on time.

American Academy of Pediatrics issued a statement saying that schools should not begin any earlier than 8:30 a.m. in order for students to get enough sleep. A large study done by the director of the Center for Applied Research at the University of Minnesota showed that by starting school 20 minutes later than normal, student grades typically rose by one-quarter of a step (B to B+).

By these calculations, starting school one hour later than normal could increase the average student’s grades by almost a whole step. In conclusion, it is irrational to expect a student to get to school at starting times earlier than 8:30 and also get enough sleep to maintain a healthy and perceptive lifestyle.

Rana Kutsal

Spokane



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