The Student Newspaper of Bingham High School

The Prospector

The Student Newspaper of Bingham High School

The Prospector

The Student Newspaper of Bingham High School

The Prospector

Another Year of Waking Up Too Early

It’s the start of another school year. You know what that means! Time to go to bed probably later than you should and then wake up at an unreasonably early time. Chances are that’s most of you, unless you’re taking classes that test your patience and sanity, I.E. Concurrent Enrollment classes or some class that basically requires you to study for the next test like your life depends on it. If that’s the case for you, your definition of going to bed early is probably 8:00-9:00. If that’s you, congrats, that means you’re getting the amount of sleep that the CDC recommends, which is 8-10 hours for teens. I know for a fact that at least half of you probably aren’t getting that much sleep. 

“But surely my sleep schedule isn’t to blame,” is probably what you’re thinking, which isn’t completely wrong. Look, I’m not an advocate for going to bed at midnight on a school night, but you know what else I’m not an advocate for? Having to wake up at 6:00 A.M. every morning, leave at 6:30 which is an entire hour before school starts, just to get good parking (thank you, Bingham, very cool). 

The age old question of school is if it starts too early. Lets face it, some of us are going to have jobs after high school that start earlier than that, so that fact alone isn’t the problem. The problem is what school starting too early is causing. 

You go to bed at around 10:00-11:00, which isn’t a terribly late time. Next morning, It’s Monday, your alarm clock goes off around 6:00. You wake up, maybe eat breakfast, get dressed, make sure you got all of your stuff in your backpack, then you have maybe 10-15 minutes to chill before you leave. You drive to school around 6:30-6:40, get there at about 6:45-7:00 depending on how far away you live. Congrats, you made it to school and got good parking. Unless you get on the bus to get to JATC for first and second period, now you have 30-45 minutes to chill. Now (assuming you aren’t a senior that doesn’t have four classes a day) you have four classes to get through, 7-8 hours in total. Then you go home and have to work on homework but by that point, your mentally done, ready to check out. There are numerous problems in this scenario.

The point I’m trying to make is that most of us are going to bed anywhere from 10:00-12:00. Most people I know think 9:00 or 9:30 is a little too early for them, which is understandable. I had the chance to interview  Ashton Stevens, a Senior at BHS, and he thinks, “9:00 P.M. is too early for bed. I’m personally not even done with work by that point. I’m not even thinking about bed at nine.” 

“Nine is usually when I get out of work, so a lot of times that’s the only time I have to go hit the gym or do homework I have,” says Kaidyn Korpf, also a senior attending BHS. “Many nights I’m up easily past eleven because I have stuff I have to do.” Both Ashton and Kaidyn bring up another point. Not all of us can go to bed at a decent time for school the next day. Some of us have work, extracurricular activities, or special circumstances that just don’t allow us to get to bed at a decent time. And that’s just one of the many problems with school sarting as early as it does. 

Another problem? Ashton had this to say; “Juggling school work, extracurriculars, and work takes a lot out of my day. Then along with that I need to have time for my family, friends, and myself. With school starting as early as it does, I don’t have time for for all of those things. I have to stay up really late just so I can finish my day.” Now, I personally don’t have a job. I work for my dad’s company whenever I don’t have school and we had to wake up pretty early and had some very long shifts, but that was just work, nothing else. WIth students like Kaidyn and Ashton, they have school, work, then they still have other things to do afterwards. That sounds miserable. So if we’re going to bed at around 10:00, that’s about eight hours of sleep, which is good. It’s the minimum amount of sleep we should be getting, according to the CDC. Most of us aren’t getting that, which is because we’re waking up so early for school, or you’re insane and go to bed at 1:00-3:00. I believe that if school started an hour later, that would be so much better on all of us. Teachers included. 

Kaidyn shares this sentiment, stating, “I think 8:30 could be a good start time, I just wouldn’t want to sacrifice it for getting out later- If they could shave off the filler minutes of every class and start us later, that would be amazing.” 

Now I know you’re probably thinking “you realize that means we’ll probably get out of school at 3:25 instead of 2:25, right?” Not necessarily. Classes could probably be shorter. Maybe instead of having (assuming you have four classes) one ninety-five minute class, three ninety minute classes, and a thirty-five minute lunch, it could be three seventy-five minute classes, one eighty minute class, and a thirty minute lunch. “Yeah that’s cool and all but doesn’t that mean we’ll have more school days in the year?” I doubt a fifteen minute shorter class will warrant more days in the school year. And I’m not suggesting fridays should be shortened or just cut altogether. 

Teachers and the district may disagree with classes being fifteen minutes shorter but it doesn’t make that much of a difference in comparison to school starting an hour later. Setting aside the fact that most students would want this over our current schedule, it’s more beneficial to all of us in the long run. More time for teachers to sleep or come in a little early to grade papers, prep lessons for the day, you get the point. But hey, don’t just take my word for it. The CDC claims that schools shouldn’t start earlier than 8:30 A.M so that the students can get the right amount of sleep before school.

I don’t know about the rest of you, but school starting an hour later sounds great to me. More sleep sounds fantastic. I could go on and on for hours about this, but ultimately, a later start time would benefit everyone. More sleep for both teachers and students, more time to get to school, more time for teachers to prep for the day, etc. While this change is highly unlikely, it’s something to think about at the very least. Us students have lots of other things to worry about outside of school and have very little time and even less sleep. A few minutes shaved off of classes wouldn’t be the end of the world.

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