Later school start times in California gain steam in Legislature

Charter schoolSchool boards and teachers unions successfully shot down a legislative proposal last year that would delay start times until 8:30 a.m. at middle and high schools in California.

Now the bill is back, with a better shot at becoming law.

Sen. Anthony Portantino, who introduced the bill, cites public research that says later school start times improve pupil health. He has several studies on his side, and his staff put together a 218-page book on the policy last year to prove it.

The Democrat from La Cañada Flintridge cites a 2014 recommendation from the American Academy of Pediatrics to start middle and high schools no earlier than 8:30 a.m. to offset sleep deprivation. The AAP linked insufficient sleep to physical and mental health problems in adolescents. …

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