We can’t balance school budgets on the backs of kids

The Wichita school district is looking to move start time for the high school from 8am to 7am, in contradiction to all the research on early start times and the effects on sleep deprivation on teens. This article finishes with a great thought for all school communities:

“There are lots and lots of ways to run schools, and it’s ultimately a matter of what you think your priorities are,” Snider said. “We can’t balance school budgets on the backs of kids.”

Others, including the leaders of Start School Later, a Maryland-based advocacy group, called the Wichita proposal “unconscionable.”

They cite a growing body of research that indicates American teens are sleep deprived, a condition that threatens their physical and mental health, safety and academic performance.

“Clearly, in this case, people don’t think it matters all that much what time kids are going to school,” said Terra Ziporyn Snider, executive director of Start School Later. “They don’t think it matters, so they play around with it. And that was excusable in the ’60s and ’70s and ’80s, because we really didn’t understand much about sleep science. But now we do understand it, which is why it’s appalling to do it.”

Read more at Early school: Some families cite sleep deprivation, others ‘make it work’