A National Sleep Foundation poll found 59 percent of 6th through 8th graders and 87 percent of U.S. high school students were getting less than the recommended 8.5 to 9.5 hours of sleep on school nights
Most adolescents (ages 12-25) need 8.5-9.25 hours of sleep per night
Girls are less likely to report getting > 7 hours of sleep per night than boys, as are racial/ethnic minorities, urban students, and those of low socioeconomic status (SES). However, minority or low SES teens and families are also more likely to believe they are getting adequate sleep. (Pediatrics, Feb. 16, 2015)
Shifts in the sleep-wake cycle at puberty mean that most adolescents get their best sleep between 11 p.m. and 8 a.m.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that middle and high schools start class no earlier than 8:30 a.m. to allow students to get healthy sleep
About 10% of U.S. high schools start the school day before 7:30 a.m., 42.5% before 8 a.m., and only 14.4% at 8:30 a.m. or later
The average public high school in the U.S. starts at 7:59 a.m.
The average American high school starts class at 7:59 a.m.
20-30% of high school students and 6% of middle school students fall asleep in school each day
Insufficient sleep in teens is associated with obesity, migraines, and immune system disruption and with health risk behaviors including smoking, drinking, stimulant abuse, physical fighting, physical inactivity, depression, and suicidal tendencies
Sleep-deprived teens participate in more violent and property crime than other teens
When schools have delayed the start of the school day, communities have seen reduced tardiness, sleeping in class, and car crash rates, as well as improved attendance, graduation rates, and standardized test scores
A major, multi-state study conducted by researchers at the University of Minnesota and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention linked later high school start times to significant decreases in teen substance abuse, depression, and consumption of caffeinated drinks.
When Jackson Hole High School in Wyoming shifted its start time to 8:55 a.m., the number of car crashes involving teenage drivers dropped by 70%
Switching middle school start times by 30 minutes or more to after 8 a.m. in Wake County, NC was associated with increased math and reading test scores, with disadvantaged students benefiting most
A study at the US Air Force Academy showed first-year students starting classes after 8 a.m. performed better not only in their first classes but throughout the day
A report published by The Brookings Institution associated a significant increase in test scores with later middle and high school start times, with benefits roughly twice as great in disadvantaged students
The Brookings report also estimated that later high school start times create a lifetime earnings gain of $17,500 per student with a school system cost of $0.00 to $1,950 per student, a benefit-to-cost ratio of 9:1 or better
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