Placer High to implement late start schedule for 2022-2023 school year.

Student sleeping in class

Student sleeping in class

Story by Rylee Yetka, Messenger Staff Writer

     With the passage of Senate Bill 328 all schools in California, including Placer High will need to begin school no earlier than 8:30 a.m. As expected, there are many mixed opinions regarding this bill. 

     “Change is always tough, school will be starting about 40 minutes later and I am an early morning person so I would rather start school earlier and get out earlier” stated Placer High teacher and girls basketball varsity head coach, Tony Camillucci, “but studies do show that teenagers function better if we start school just a little bit later.”

     Teenagers are known to have different sleep schedules compared to adults and young children, with them typically staying up later.

     Staying up later, but still having to get up early can have many negative effects on teenagers even though they still need the 8 hours of sleep they are lacking to be able to properly focus throughout the school day. 

     “If we look at brain research, and we are talking about science for a long time they have been saying that teenagers sort of have to stay up later at night as it’s a biological change that happens. Staying up later means there is a need to sleep in more, and I think that even that half an hour can bring lots of benefits.” said Placer High teacher, Jason Long, “Other states that have done this have fewer early morning traffic accidents, they have seen depression rates go down, sleep habits become better, and even sickness go down.” 

     Construction on Placer High’s campus also might cause potential problems for athletes and coaches during fall and some of winter season sports. 

     “Starting later affects high school sports greatly, so the negative is going to be seen on how this will affect our athletes. Games will probably still have to start early because of facilities due to daylight, so athletes will potentially have to miss more school than they usually would have to on game days.” explained Placer High counselor, Karen Garcia, “It will be especially hard for winter sports due to construction of the gym for Placer High, so it will be pretty crazy at the end of girls volleyball season and start of basketball season.”

     School starting later will be a problem for athletes for practices and games. Practices will have to start later causing athletes to get home later, and for away games athletes will have to miss more school than usual.

     “I am not happy about what the late start is going to do to after-school sports because everything is going to start later. Being a coach, athletics having to be later just means athletes are going to get home later from practice, and all the games will have to start later and freshmen will have to skip almost all of the last period to make away games,” said Camillucci. 

     A new class is starting next year at Placer High for students with jobs, they will be able to get credit for their hours worked. 

    “Some of our juniors and seniors work, so getting out later will probably have a big effect on them and their part-time jobs. But we have started a new class for next year called work experience, so juniors and seniors that have a job can actually take a period and get credits and leave to go to their job,” stated Garcia. 

     A big change being made due to the start time change is the option for students to take an asynchronous 1st or 5th-period class. 

    “We are starting these new asynchronous classes next year as an option, I think there are more 5th-period asynchronous classes with students who want to end their day earlier and do an online class,” explained Garcia. 

     This change brings many positives and negatives, with both students and staff having different opinions of the later start.