We are involved in a discussion about a later school start time for high school in Burlington as we look at a possible change for the start time at BHS in the fall of 2018. I first wrote about the positive research on school start time in a post back in 2010 and referenced research from Minnesota from the late 1990’s which referenced a change in the start time at Edina High School. The folks in Edina, at the urging of the Minnesota Medical Association, moved their start time from 7:30-8:30.
The result of this change led to the following (source University of Minnesota Center for Applied Research and Educational Improvement):
- Students in Edina reported statistically significant less depression compared with two similar districts.
- School counselors and nurses reported fewer students seeking help for emotional problems and somatic physical complaints.
- 92% of parents in Edina said their teenagers were “easier to live with”
While a later school start times is one accommodation that schools have made to support the health of their students, there are additional ways we can support our students in getting a full night’s sleep. One of the other big issues for our students according to recent studies is the impact of extended exposure to blue light from electronic devices, especially exposure right before bed. The video below explains this phenomenon.