Lauren Johnston takes concerns over new start times to the school board

Kendall Peterson

By Kendall Peterson

Freshman Lauren Johnston attempted to keep the school start times the way they are by discussing the issue with school board members in early May.

Johnston emphasized who exactly would be affected, such as “high school athletes and students involved in fine arts, low-income families, single parents, and students who attend the Governor’s School for the Arts.”  

When Johnston arrived, she “didn’t know what to expect,” but there were four school board members taking questions. After her speech, they said there would definitely be a change because they have been talking about it for years.

On the school board website, there is a survey asking which start time people want; however, there is no option for “No Change,” resulting in people choosing the start time that is closest to what it is now.

Johnston said, “Many athletes don’t get home until 7-9 at the current times, and that would only get later with a time change.”

Johnston also argued that “high schoolers would no longer be available for after school care,” which would impact parents who rely on older children to babysit. Now parents will have to change their schedule and make other plans.

Almost everyone else who went to the school board meeting was frustrated because of the refusal to change to school start times.

If the school board does change the time, it will cost approximately $10 million, said Johnston.

Johnston used the PA school start time survey results to prove some of her arguments during her speech. She said, “Of over 50 interviews with students, over 75 percent of the students admitted they would probably procrastinate more than they already do.”

Johnston wrapped up her speech at the meeting by saying, “Overall adjusting the start of school times would have more negative impacts then they would have positive impacts.”