Parents To Deliver Early Start Time Petition to DC
Supporters of a local effort to push back the start time for high schoolers are hand-delivering a signed petition to lawmakers in Washington, DC, but they are still asking for your help.
Several Annapolis parents are joining a group headed to Washington, DC, Wednesday to hand-deliver a petition in an effort to push back the start times for high school.
The effort, part of National Sleep Awareness Week, is a push for a minimum school start time of 8 a.m., according to a release.
“Most U.S. high schools today start in the 7 a.m. hour, a practice that began several decades ago primarily to save money on bus runs,” Terra Ziporyn Snider, a medical writer and the petition creator from Maryland, said in the release. “Although evidence is crystal clear that starting later is best for health and learning, political obstacles and myths have made change virtually impossible in most districts.”
The Annapolis parents making the trip include Kari Oakes, Gioia Mapp, and Heather Macintosh.
The petition effort has included health professionals, sleep researchers, educators, parents, and a group called Start School Later. The coalition has representation from 16 states and includes an advisory board comprised of notable sleep researchers, adolescent health care providers, and education leaders, according to the release.
According to information provided by the coalition, later school start time can lead to:
- Reduced sleep deprivation, depression, mood swings, and suicidal ideation.
- Decreased stimulant abuse, weight gain, and diabetes risk.
- Reduced early morning traffic accidents and drowsy driving by new teen drivers.
- Improved safety by eliminating waiting or walking in dark, low visibility settings.
- Reduced risk of after-school behaviors in unsupervised adolescents.
- Reduced truancy and absenteeism, and improve school performance.
- Improved lifetime earnings potential, according to a recent study published by the Brookings Institute.
The petition delivery is the first in a planned series of weekly deliveries to legislators known as “Wake Up Wednesdays,” according to the release.
For more information and to sign the petition, visit http://signon.org/sign/promote-legislation-to.fb1?source=s.fb&r_by=1521139.
You can also visit www.startschoollater.net, for more information on Start School Later.