Eight Major Obstacles to Delaying School Start Times

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take advantage of the extra time to sleep. This will enable them to be more alert and energetic in the classroom and more effectively handle problems and discipline procedures. Teachers also appreciate being able to incorporate the day’s news into their lessons.

Teachers who coach have seen very little impact on their role as coaches. The changes implemented to help students adjust to the new schedule also apply to the teachers who work as coaches.

6. Stress for Families

Many people are resistant to change and emotions can run high when someone is forced to alter his/her routine. Most families have a highly coordinated schedule worked out to balance the many activities of each of its members. The thought of reworking this delicate balance can be intimidating. Many parents have a hard time looking beyond this personal disadvantage to the benefits that will result.

In reality, a community can easily adjust to change, especially if given ample time and resources to prepare. A detailed outline of the expected changes is essential. Hotlines, message boards and meetings to discuss problems are helpful resources. It is also important to involve stakeholders in the process from the beginning, so they can voice their concerns.

7. Uneducated Community

One of the biggest challenges in any campaign for change is to educate the community and convince them of the merits of your proposal. It is extremely important to spread the word to as many people as possible about sleep and school start times. The change will affect the entire community, from students and parents to businesses, libraries, police, youth sports clubs, bus drivers and many others. Create a standard presentation, and offer to give it to as many groups as possible. People must understand the biological changes that occur in teens that make them unable to fall asleep early. This means that the issue cannot just be a personal matter of putting the kids to bed earlier, or a sign that teens are lazy, obstinate or defiant, but a serious issue that must be addressed by the schools.

Your education efforts should also inform adults