German Study Suggests Later School Start Times Can Help Kids Get Adequate Sleep

Teenagers who begin school at 9 a.m. could get about an hour more sleep at night than others who must be in school at 8 a.m., a small German research suggests.

Researchers followed 65 students at a high school in Germany for three weeks prior to the school shifted to a flexible schedule permitting teens to decide on an 8 a.m. or 9 a.m. start.

The students received the same amount of sleep before and after the schedule adjustments took effect.

Nonetheless, this might be a result of too few students took advantage of the option to start school later.

Half of the pupils selected the later start time not more than twice a week, and a few of them never did it at all.

Adolescents want 8 to 10 hours of sleep, in keeping with guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). Too little sleep is linked to an elevated risk of injuries, hypertension, obesity, and despair – particularly for teenagers who might experience a high threat of self-harm, according to AAP.

In the research, the proportion of teens getting the minimum recommended amount of sleep surged from 18% after they began school at 8 a.m. to 52% after they started an hour later.

Several pupils who did begin later were able to start faculty closer to 10 a.m. as a result of they had no scheduled lessons throughout the first period of the day, researchers note in the journal Sleep.

This will clarify why they equated more than one hour of extra sleep even when the beginning of the school day was only delayed by one hour.

Researchers had been stunned that so few college students selected the late start time.