I just had my first article published on Inquistr.com, an Internet news aggregation website. It’s a topic that’s near and dear to my heart, as a mother and an ex-teacher:
Most American schools start too early.
Yes, I said endanger. It’s not just an inconvenience. It’s unhealthy. It’s dangerous.
I wrote an opinion column on the same subject in the Millington Star back in 2014. Unfortunately, as I was no longer the proofreader at the Star, they added a typo in the second paragraph that changed my meaning 180 degrees.
You can follow the links and read either of these articles, or I give give you the Reader’s Digest version.
When you’re a teenager, your circadian rhythms change. You fall asleep later, which means if you don’t get up later, you don’t get enough sleep. Approximately 85% of the high schools in the United States start classes earlier than the American Academy of Pediatrics says is safe. This means American teenagers are risking weakened immune systems, weight gain, depression, lower grades, and more traffic accidents. Schools that have set their start times later in the day have seen grades soar, attendance improve, tardiness decline, and far fewer juvenile traffic accidents in the area.