| ' Night Owls' May Face Special Challenges|
Credit New York Times
Presently Redmond, Eastlake, ICS and Tesla STEM all start at 7:30 a.m. Lake Washington High and Everson High start at 8 am. And, it can take well over 30 minutes to arrive at school requiring some students to wake as early as 5:45 a.m.
In 2015 the CDC reported that adolescents who do not get enough sleep are more likely to be overweight (1); not engage in daily physical activity (2); suffer from depressive symptoms (2); engage in unhealthy risk behaviors such as drinking, smoking tobacco, and using illicit drugs (2); and perform poorly in school (3). However, insufficient sleep is common among high school students, with less than one third of U.S. high school students sleeping at least 8 hours on school nights (4). In a policy statement published in 2014, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) urged middle and high schools to modify start times as a means to enable students to get adequate sleep and improve their health, safety, academic performance, and quality of life (5). AAP recommended that "middle and high schools should aim for a starting time of no earlier than 8:30 a.m."
Kathryn Reith, LWSD Communications Director, says a Task Force is underway to study the problem. The Seattle School District, Issaquah, Bellevue and North Shore districts raised their start times. If you want to push for later start times, e-mail: email@example.com or the school board at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Bob Yoder, opinion