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Latest School Start Time Petition Gains Ground

The latest petition to change public schools to a later start time met its first goal to get 500 names with some help from some local signers.

The latest petition to change public schools to a later start time met its first goal to get 500 names with some help from some local signers.

"It is totally unnecessary to start high school @ 7AM. Instead of worring about paying for buses start worring about students well-being. How bout some lottery money to pay for additional buses?" wrote Jean Donohue of Palm Harbor who is no. 282 on the petition.

"The 7:05 start time is way to early. It should be around 8:00 instead," wrote Pattie Kuzio of Clearwater, who is name no. 211, on the petition. "That way maybe half of the kids would not be asleep in first period class."

The petition to set a national minimum start time for public high school still needs more names before being sent to the Senate, House of Representatives and the President.

"I never understood why school started so early," wrote Carole Simmons of Clearwater who is, name no. 249, on the petition. "Especially when bed time for the older kids is later due to homework, afterschool activities and some time for themselves."

, who started a , got an email from SignOn.org about starting the new petition. 

"It seemed like a shame to waste the momentum the first petition generated, and the publicity that was just starting up when the ," she posted about the second petition. 

Snider is excited the latest effort reached a goal of 500 names.

"Thanks to the many who have signed so far," Snider posted Monday (Nov. 14). "Please keep spreading the word."

Here is a link to the signon.org petition.

Maribel Ibrahim November 16, 2011 at 03:40 AM
You can also keep tabs on the petition and it's organizers at www.facebook.com/StartSchoolLater and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/StartSchoolL8r
Carol November 17, 2011 at 03:34 AM
This is just crazy. I went to school that early and I am still breathing. Stop babying these kids. They are older now and need to learn to cope with life and its rules and learn to get up early for a job. It is not all peaches and cream out in the world. Quit trying to fixing things that have work for years. So far it looks like we are going to have a bunch of winey babies running our country. You parents need to find something else to do in your spare time. Maybe help the homeless or help animal's. If we get money from the lottery it should go to the classrooms, teachers., etc. We don't need more bus's. We just need parents out in the world with some common sense!! STOP BABYING THESE KIDS!!!!!!!!!
Anne Onomous November 17, 2011 at 04:45 AM
Back where I'm from we started High School at 8am..... so 7am would "stink" to put it nicely. But Carol, I'm with you 100% on the babying part in general. This coddled generation has been so accustomed to not getting their feelings hurt...."Whaaaa Call The WHAMbulance"........ that they'll have no skills to compete in the REAL world. The LAST thing we'll need is to worry about these "whiny babies" (as you refer to them) running the country..... by the time they ARE of age, the way things are going - some OTHER country's kid will be running the show here. We're too busy worried about raising a bunch of smart mouthed, falsely over-confident underachievers that have no respect in general for anything anyway.
Voice of Reason November 17, 2011 at 12:06 PM
Whether kids are spoiled or not is irrelevant to this issue. This petition makes a lot of sense when you consider how ridiicuolous early schools start nowadays and how much sleep teenagers need. Tthere was an article in the Patch just last August saying that according to the National Sleep Foundation kids ages 10-17 need 8.5-9.25 hours of sleep.. How on earth can they get that much if they're getting up for school at 5:30 or 6 am? Do the math! They'd have to be asleep at 8 or 9 p.m.! Not only is that biologically impossible for most of them, but today's schools are so jam-packed with hours of homework, sports practices,rehearsals etc.--and then the kids have jobs, chores, all the things we want our "unspoiled" kids doing--that going to bed at such a time is unthinkable. Besides, I don't even know too many adults who get up at 5:30, do math and take tests at 7 a.m., get out of work at 2 p.m. to get to a second job, work until 6, do homework until midnight, and then get up again at 5:30. These kids are growing still, their brains are growing, and this is a life I wouldn't wish on anyone--much less the people who are the future of our country. Go visit a real high school and see what an ambitious teenager's life is like, one who takes school seriously and works hard to achieve. They are sick mentally and physically because of what we adults are doing to them, and it's time to put an end to it. A later start time would be a sensible first step.
Carol November 17, 2011 at 12:53 PM
U do the math!!! Middle school starts at 9:30 and the kids are so tired and they don't want tio get up. So if 2.5 hours later isn't working what makes you think 1 hour is going to make a difference! I do agree with the homework and the lessons. There is no reason for these kids to have to do Algebra or Magess in middle. We didn't have that till high school and we didn't have to take that math. These poor kids being forced to learn things that they dont need or may never use. They could take that in college. Anything above regular math should be optional. What are you all going to do when they go to college. Lots of homework and lots of parties. You going to tell them to start later too?
Voice of Reason November 17, 2011 at 01:21 PM
The petition only asks that no school start before 8 a.m. That seems perfectly reasonable. If you think 9:30 is too late for middle school, then work for change. But 7 am for high school is crazy. I don't know any college classes that start that early, or professors willing to teach at that time--and, besides, college kids have a choice about when they go to class, and also get plenty of breaks during the day. High school kids have no choice. There is no reason to start school before 8 am for any age except to save money on buses, and there are more creative ways to do that. Education, health, and welfare of the kids (and the young teachers) should come first when we set school hours. All the other things will fall into place.
Anne Onomous November 17, 2011 at 06:12 PM
Hey Voice.... your comment saying "whether kids are spoiled or not is irrelevant to this issue" was correct and I THINK I noted that as such. Seeing kids walking like zombies at 5:30-6am to catch a bus in the dark IS nuts in my opinion and I don't think the teachers appreciate the super early schedules as well. I applaud the ambitious teens out there these days in this media driven world - it HAS to be difficult to stay focused, but a growing majority doesn't and as noted before - are coddled. A friend of mine who is a professional in the HR field said she just had to complete a course with her Fortune 500 company so they knew how to "gently" approach newly graduated employees during their first "on the job" assessments at the 6 month review. It seems they weren't used to criticism, constructive or otherwise.....(Awww, I'm heartbroken!). Anyway back to the subject at hand. I'm sure there has to be reasons for the early starts (i.e. traffic flow, bus efficiencies, even savings on A/C during prime seasons) BUT....... 8am seems reasonable all around and hopefully gives the kids time for the most important meal of the day - breakfast! In the interest of full disclosure, the Onomous family does NOT hold stock in Kellogg Company :)
Terra Ziporyn Snider, Ph.D. December 01, 2011 at 12:45 PM
The petition for later school start just reached 1000 names! We're now going for 5000, and then we'll be taking the petition to Washington, DC. If you haven't had a chance to do so yet, please add your name & spread the word: http://signon.org/sign/promote-legislation-to.fb1?source=s.fb&r_by=1521139 And check out the website of our growing national coalition at StartSchoolLater.weebly.com
Terra Ziporyn Snider, Ph.D. February 21, 2012 at 12:20 AM
Update: We're delivering this petition (http://bit.ly/tWa4dS) to members of Congress, including those representing Palm Harbor, on March 6-8 if we get to goal of 5000 names by then. Right now we're at 3600, so please keep signing and sharing the link if you're tired of waiting for schools to "wake up" to the idea that it's time to put health and learning first. Meanwhile, thanks for all your support!

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