The Ideal Time for Your Teen to Start School May Be After 11:00 in the Morning (VIDEO)

If you've been having trouble trying to push your high school student out of bed, just know, you aren't alone. As annoying as it is to hear "Five more minutes, Ma," it looks like science might be in their corner. Researchers from Oxford University and Harvard now believe school should start later for high school students.


So exactly how late are we talking here? Well, according to an article published in Learning, Media and Technology, students age 16 should begin school between 10-10:30 a.m., while those closer to age 18 would benefit from an 11-11:30 a.m. start time.

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What's pretty interesting about this study are the comparisons to the time in day school starts and correlations to general academic performance -- including memory and test scores. Researchers also point out the biological changes in adolescents that affect the way they sleep. In case you're looking for the Cliff Notes, know this: Experts believe students are suffering from chronic sleep loss than can cause a negative impact throughout different areas of their lives. One of the best ways to remedy this -- that follows their natural desire to sleep at that age -- is for school to start a few hours later.

I must say that this study brought up some interesting points (I can't believe I'm actually saying that about a study!). Yes, there are plenty of teens who need to stop staying up late and go to bed, but that generalization can gloss over the fact that teens typically need more sleep than adults (I guess I should apologize for calling my younger sister lazy back in the day).

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On one hand, I definitely think there needs to be quite a few changes on the education front. Then again, how would these said changes impact other areas, like extracurricular activities and the never-ending amount of homework that causes teens to stay up trying to finish? Even with stats about the need for sleep, some naysayers might argue that starting school later doesn't set a realistic expectation about the pending workforce (technically, there is college that offers an assortment of classes -- including early ones that can prep you. Perhaps they don't count?).

I honestly don't know the answer, but I can imagine parents who have to wake up earlier to get their kid to school might enjoy sleeping in a little more.


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