Sleep Deprivation Plagues CVHS

In a recent survey of 69 CVHS students, only 4.3% report receiving eight or more hours of sleep, the recommended amount for 13-18 year olds according to the Center for Disease Control. Meanwhile, 53.6% of students reported receiving six to seven hours, and 42% reported receiving five or less hours of sleep. 

Going into effect during the 2022-23 school year, Senate Bill 328 will require California high schools to begin regular classes no earlier than 8:30 a.m. The law was signed by Governor Gavin Newsom in 2019 to better serve teenagers’ biological clocks and combat the alarming rate of sleep deprivation among high school students. 

Teenagers who receive less than eight hours of sleep are more likely to use cigarettes, drugs, and alcohol, and are more likely to cause car accidents. Scientific study has proven that a teenager’s brain is more active at night, and shows that teenagers are unable to feel fully awake and engaged in class until about 9 a.m. to 10 a.m. 

Effects of lack of sleep include high blood pressure, diabetes, heart problems, anxiety, and depression. Many CVHS students report that when not receiving much sleep, they tend to display, “lack of focus, irritability, no motivation, mood swings, stress, and lack of knowledge retention.” 

Homework, sports, extracurriculars, part-time jobs, and screens all hinder sleeping hours and contribute to the drowsiness of students. Among 69 CVHS students, 23.3% reported falling asleep in class “Often” and “Almost Always,” with first and fifth period being the most popular napping times.

In fact, the number of students seen falling asleep in class combined with social media trends has inspired the creation of multiple CVHS sleeping accounts on Instagram. Students send in photos of their classmates dozing off in class to these accounts, which are posted in a humorable fashion on the page. There are dozens of sleeping beauties seen passed out on their desks. Who knew that a funny TikTok trend has brought light to the sheer amount of sleep deprivation seen around campus. 

Next school year, first period classes will start no earlier than 8:30 a.m., but an important question is if dismissal will be later as well. 

“I would hate that, imagine getting out later than 4:00. That’s a whole day gone just for 20 minutes of sleep that I’ll probably use to stay up later,” shared junior Mia Wierzba. 

About 38% of surveyed CVHS students agree, while 62% support a later start and release time. 

“Since our brains are more active later we need more time to ourselves,” said junior Bianca Petalver. 

To answer these pressing questions, Principal Blaine Torpey states, “There is an Instructional Minutes Committee that has been meeting and will continue to meet. There are many different factors that affect a school’s schedule and instructional minutes, so it is difficult to predict our potential end times. I think that any effort to support the development of young people with a focus on their health and wellness is worth it.”

    As questions arise about next year’s schedule and its impacts, only time will tell how effective Senate Bill 328 will be to the youth of California. 

10 thoughts on “Sleep Deprivation Plagues CVHS

  • February 23, 2022 at 4:54 pm

    I think that moving the start and end time of school won’t due anything than just give us like 20 more minutes of sleep. The answer to the sleep deprivation come from the amount of homework and other things, not from the start and end time of school. A later release time would just make studens more tired because the time to do personal activties shortens, which could then result in sleep derivation.

  • February 23, 2022 at 9:31 am

    For the next school year, I don’t think starting school 20 minutes later will inflict a drastic change on students getting more sleep. Starting a little later is great, but I don’t think it’ll solve the sleep deprivation that students have. I think the focus should be teachers reassessing the workloads they give their students to do after school. Heavy workloads given by teachers are a factor in students not getting a sufficient amount of sleep at night. Essentially, the heavy workloads that are taken home are indirectly adding onto the time students spend on school related things. In other words, students go to school, majority having 6 classes, and take all the work home that’s given for homework. Thus, students having time for themselves, their responsibilities outside of school, family time, and more are impacted. So, the sleep deprivation will still be prominently shown even with the 20 minutes later start time.

  • February 23, 2022 at 9:08 am

    It’s good that school start time is being pushed back, I myself don’t feel as if I’m getting enough sleep during school days. Even when I go to sleep relatively early at around 10 pm I have trouble staying awake throughout the day. I have trouble paying attention and keep dozing off in class, and have trouble finding any motivation to be productive.

  • February 22, 2022 at 10:04 pm

    Sleep is a very important aspect in school performance and unfortunately many kids in high school struggle with sleep deprivation. This causes bad memory retaining and could lead to bad performance on tests or assignments. I think school should start at 9 to help students get closer to 8 hours of sleep each night.

  • February 22, 2022 at 4:04 pm

    I don’t think adults understand that it is not the time students start or end school that determines the average amount of sleep; it’s the amount of after-school work. If a student is working on school work for 8 hours, those 8 hours are going to be carried over to the new schedule making the amount of sleep the student gets the same. This isn’t even including sports or extracurriculars that take place after school, which will be inconvenienced due to the late release time making the day even shorter. I also agree with the statement about losing an hour to only gain 20 minutes; how is that going to help anybody.

  • February 22, 2022 at 11:49 am

    Even when I have enough sleep I will still feel tired because of the hard school day I just had. Moving the times we leave or start won’t change anything if teachers are still going to assign piles of homework day after day. If you change the time that students get out you will also have to account for the students walking home in the dark during the winter and the parents that work late, also the independent sports students play. If this does happen then we will have less time to do the thing we like and have more time to do the homework we’re assigned.

  • February 22, 2022 at 9:38 am

    I don’t completely object to the later start time, but I also am not fond of a later end time. I am sleep-deprived due to the amount of homework and activities outside of school that I participate in, which I think might just get worse if I have less time to work and study after school. Pushing school hours back will probably result in staying up later to finish the homework and get about the same sleep I get now, which is about five hours give or take. The stress on the importance of homework, tests, and grades is the real issue for me, not the school hours.

  • February 2, 2022 at 5:25 pm

    Even when I get to bed early(10:00 to 10:30 pm), I usually don’t get tired until around 11:00/11:30. It’s good that the start time is being pushed back, but it only makes a twenty minute difference at this school. I personally think it should be pushed to around 9:00/9:30, it would be much easier to get better sleep that way, even if that means a later release time.

  • February 2, 2022 at 9:30 am

    I think that if we really want to deal with the issue of sleep at CVHS it shouldn’t come from moving the day half an hour later, but instead reassessing how teachers deal out homework and their policy on late work. Having strict deadlines and tons of homework in all of your classes is what is really impacting sleep schedules. It’s true that having later starts can help, but I don’t see moving it back just a little bit later having a great effect on sleep patterns.

  • February 2, 2022 at 7:50 am

    Having a zero period, I am almost always sleep deprived. I definitely sometimes show a lack of focus and a lack of knowledge retention. I think it is funny that there are CVHS sleeping accounts, and I have to admit I joined in on the bandwagon of running a CVHS parody account too, just not with the focus of sleeping. Though this will not effect me since I will have graduated, I still think that despite how tired I am, the schedule should not change. Students are going to be tired either way, so overall there would not be much benefit.

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