PRO: Later school start times increase student productivity

One of the most debated topics in education, school start times, is close to becoming law in California. 

After it was rejected by  former Gov. Jerry Brown last year, Gov. Gavin Newsom should not forgo this opportunity to make a change that could increase teen efficiency and drastically decrease depression rates.

While some research shows the inability of later start times to drastically increase the number of hours teens sleep, there is no denying the positive outcomes that did occur. According to an analysis by the state Legislature, pushed-back start schedules prompted students to get more sleep. 

Although some studies showed that students adapted to later start times by pushing back bedtimes within a year, it is still valuable to note that the teens did sleep more during the first year, an improvement that should be recognized.

More sleep also comes better results. Researchers at the University of Washington found that not only did later school start times allow teens to get 30 more minutes of sleep, but also their grades were 4.5 percent higher than others who had earlier start schedules. 

These are some significant findings that prove that there are indeed positive outcomes for setting back school starting times. Although other issues regarding bus times and parents’ schedules will come with the bill, it is more important to look at the beneficial results of these studies.

Early school start times is a problem many students face every day. Like most Diamond Bar High School students, I am in extracurricular activities that demand a lot of time. Most days, sleeping at midnight is nearly inevitable, and waking up has become more of a task than a natural act.

For me and many of my classmates, later start times would not only help with taking away some of the grogginess that many of us feel every morning but also prevent feeling tired in my classes later in the day. The facts have been laid out on the table: later start times will allow students to get more sleep, which in turn improves their grades and mental stamina. 

The sacrifices made to accommodate the new school schedules would be insignificant compared to the growth that would be exhibited in the students’ newly improved academic capabilities. If the government is made for the people, then it should make necessary investments to reap the rewards of a generation that is able to sustain themselves and work toward a brighter future.