(Memphis) In August, all Shelby County students will start school at 7, 8, or 9.
Right now, they plan is to have older students start earlier with younger children not going to school until 9:00.
There are many reasons for this, but some argue this plan isn’t what’s best for the classroom.
“Unfortunately this system has it exactly backwards,” said Shelby County Commissioner Steve Mulroy.
Mulroy says this is a problem and lack of sleep causes older students to struggle in the classroom.
“Studies show the academic performance is significantly enhanced by allowing teenagers an extra few hours of sleep. They should be the ones starting later in the morning not at the crack of dawn,” said Mulroy.
They need to stagger the buses because there aren’t enough to be used at one time.
The school district says they’re using this schedule for security reasons so younger children aren’t waiting in the dark in the mornings, and so older children can be at home with their younger siblings in the afternoon.
It also frees up teen’s afternoons for jobs and extracurricular activities.
“For years we’ve been saying we’re going to remake the unified system, start from scratch and make a world-class system, and our sole focus is going to be on educational outcomes, the students, what will help them learn the best,” said Mulroy.
Mulroy says if they’re serious about that the district should flip the start times, but he doesn’t expect they will change it.
Becky Gatewood likes the way it is and doesn’t think 7:00 is too early for high school and middle school students, “Oh no they can handle it. They should be able to. Mine did.”
Under the plan schools will get out at 2, 3 and 4 based on what time they started.
If you would like to see exactly when your schools will start click Here.