Compared to other districts, the high schools in Springfield City Schools, Clark-Shawnee Local Schools and Greenon Local Schools all start at 7:30 a.m. However, Springfield’s middle schools start between 8:45 and 9 a.m., but Clark-Shawnee and Greenon’s start at 7:30 a.m.
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“There is an abundance of research that supports students starting later in the day. Specifically, the research tells us a later start time provides students with the opportunity to be more alert and engaged in class, improve attendance and tardiness, and often times increase in their overall grades and learning,” she said.
According to a local pediatrician, both high school and middle school students can benefit from later start times.
“High school students see the most benefit from later school starting times, but middle schools see improvements too,” said Dr. Jene Bramel of Mercy Health - Urbana Hopsital Family Medicine and Pediatrics. “Studies on later school start times show teenagers get more sleep, are more likely to eat breakfast, attend school more often, fall asleep in class less often, are less likely to suffer from depressed moods and do better in school.”
Bramel said most teens have a hard time falling asleep early, which can cause behavioral and health problems.
“Most teenagers struggle to fall asleep before 10 or 11 p.m. There are biological reasons for this, but homework, extracurricular activities and jobs also play a role in pushing back bedtimes. Starting school before 8 a.m. keeps teenagers from regularly getting the recommended 8 to 9 hours of sleep a night,” Bramel said. “Lack of sleep affects mood and focus, which in turn leads to behavioral health problems like depression and anxiety.”
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Although times for Tecumseh students are changing, the Springfield-Clark CTC will have the same times as last year - starting at 7:45 a.m. and ending at 2:16 p.m.
“We will provide transportation from Tecumseh High School to CTC as in the past. In addition, we will have satellite bus stops located throughout the district to bring students attending CTC to the high school,” Crew said.