Freshman Loses Sleep

Studies have shown that a later school start time is just what students need.

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Madelyn Manenti

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Sleep. What is sleep? It’s an abstract concept, really. We know we need it. It’s good for us, so why not have more of it?

Studies have shown that a later school start time is just what students need.

According to the National Sleep Foundation, sleep is proven to improve grades, reduce health risks, and make students more likely to get the recommended amount of sleep. Even if school just started once a week at 9:00 a.m. compared to 8:00 a.m., this would help students immeasurably.

Just think, teens would be less reluctant to wake up in the morning, and they would be more willing to go to school. 

We all have busy lives. Sports, homework, chores: these elements all attack our sleep. When we try to sleep, we can have thoughts that keep us awake.

Add in some blue light from your phone, which is proven to keep you awake and make it harder to sleep, and you have a recipe for No Sleep.

I’ve heard many accounts of students complaining through the day:

“I’m tired. I went to sleep at 2:00 a.m.”

“ I woke up at 5:00 a.m. for the bus.”

It’s always the same story. Sleep is important, but how important is it really? Well, Mr. Keer, Dean of Students, recently conducted this sleep survey with one freshmen class:

“How many of you sleep 8 hours a night?”

Two students raised their hands.

“Who only sleeps five hours?”

Over half the class raised their hands.

The results were no surprise. We had just spent 15 minutes talking about how little people sleep. Falling asleep by 9:00 p.m anymore is completely out of the question. Midnight is more likely, but this leads to lethargic attitudes and increased health risks.

How can you fall asleep earlier?

Giving yourself a curfew and slowly increasing it over time makes your body clock shut down earlier. Also, sticking to the same bedtime routine — like washing your face, brushing your teeth and putting on fresh PJs — sets you in a rhythm. Research suggests it takes 27 days to truly get into a routine. Once you have it down, your mind will know that it is time to sleep.                               

Do you ever get tired of sleeping? I sure don’t. That’s why a later start time for school is needed, for our health, our minds, and our future.

Sleep on it.