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“Wake up, it’s time for school!”

In an article from The New York Times, “California Tells Schools to Start Later, Giving Teenagers More Sleep”, Christine Hauser and Isabella Kwai wrote about a new law that has passed in California, requiring later start times for middle schools and high schools.

In October, Gov. Gavin Newsom signed the law in pushing back the start times at most pubic middle and high schools. California is the first state to do this. Schools will start no earlier than 8:30 a.m. The reason for this is years of studying the effects sleep deprivation has on adolescents in school. 

Dr. Sumit Bhargava, a clinical associate professor of pediatrics at Stanford University and specialist in pediatric sleep medicine at Stanford Children’s Health, said that brain development in adolescents is still occurring and sleep deprivation can be a cause of disease later in life. Bhargava said, “the effects of that one hour is something they will be feeling as 40-year-old adults.”

Anthony J. Portantino, a Democratic state senator who wrote the bill, said that this is the “magic bullet” that everyone is looking for in order to cut across all demographics and ethnicities that “has a positive, measurable increase in test scores, attendance and graduation rates without costing money.”

Many concerns come to mind when thinking about parents and guardians needing to change their work schedules in order to get the students to school at these later times. 

I think this article was well written. It was written in inverted pyramid form. The beginning is filled with facts about the bill and the reason for the bill being created. The facts and statistics are presented in the middle. And at the end of the article, a point of suicide in adolescents in South Korea is brought up. 

With mental health concerns in adolescents rising, this article uses relevance to get the story out. For communities in California it also uses proximity, because it will be effecting them directly. 


1 Comment

  1. crstaff

    The mental health tie-ins do give this story currency. Why mental health is all of a sudden such a big topic, I”m not sure. Guns?

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