teen sleep

MCT ILLUSTRATION

The starting times at high schools in Massachusetts are completely unreasonable and unhealthy for teenagers.

Students have a lot of stress that is piled on top of them every day for at least 180 days. This stress includes homework, jobs, sports, family life, clubs and/or other activities.

Many students who strive to have a bright future or go to college take AP (Advanced Placement) classes that carry an extremely heavy workload. The homework can take anywhere between one and five or six hours a night. If a student also has a job, club or sport, then they might not arrive home until late.

Students must then stay up late trying to finish all of their homework while also balancing other tasks. Students have been known to work until after midnight to finish all their work. It is ridiculous that after staying up that late to finish assignments for school they must then wake up at 6 a.m. for more work to be added.

Also, children and teens are supposed to be sleeping at least seven hours a night. If a student is up until 1 a.m. doing homework and must wake up at 6 a.m. for school, that's only five hours of sleep. Sleep deprivation is very common in teens because of all the responsibilities they have as high school students.

In Massachusetts, most high schools start about 7:15 a.m. This should be pushed back a couple of hours to about 9:30 a.m. If students had more time to finish all assignments and sleep seven hours or more, stress would be reduced. Students could be more alert and ready to learn instead of exhausted and napping during first period.

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