Elise M. Missouri

Can I Get Some Sleep Please?

Do teenagers really get enough sleep? No. Does sleep deprivation have effects on school performance? Yes. Can we stop it? Yes

Dear Future President, 

Did you know there was a reason behind why students fall asleep in school? That there are certain time that our sleep cycle starts? The typical sleep cycle for teenagers begins at 11 p.m and ends at 8 a.m. So starting school as early as 7 forces teenagers to wake up, stopping their REM sleep. This can cause sleep deprivation.  "Sleep deprivation increases the likelihood teens will suffer myriad negative consequences, including an inability to concentrate, poor grades, drowsy-driving incidents, anxiety, depression, thoughts of suicide and even suicide attempts." (med.stanford.edu)

87% of high-school students get far less sleep than the recommended 8-10 hours. A solution for this is to start school after 8:30. This allows students time to finish their sleep cycle fully and time to get ready. School could end at 3:30 or 4 p.m. I know not everyone would be up for this, but shorten breaks by just a tiny bit, so we don't have to end school at 4:30. Not ending super late would still allow time for sports and afterschool activities, which is also crucial to a teenagers life. 

Another thing that could be proposed to help teenagers get to bed earlier is don't give so much homework. And no this isn't just because I hate taking home work, it is a very common reason students don't get to bed at a reasonable time. I offer that teachers have sort of a homework schedule. This is so teachers don't all give out homework on the same day, forcing the student to spend many hours going into needed sleep hours on homework. 

All in all, starting school later, shorting breaks by tiny bits, and adjusting when homework is given will allow adolescents to acquire the correct amount of sleep to enable that they function properly throughout the school day and focus more on their education.


Elise M.