Read submitted comments from The Page’s school time change survey

Helena Savage, Co-Editor

The Page compiled a sample of all submitted comments to our survey regarding the proposed school times change. Below is a sample of all comments that were submitted. If you have any questions or additional comments, they can be emailed to [email protected].

The Page’s survey Comments

i’d rather them not change the time at all but since that isn’t an option i would prefer the earliest start time possible


I find it very important that highschools keep their current start times, because there are kids with jobs, kids with long-hour after school activities, and it makes everything easier if we keep the current times. ( I mean, we’ve been doing fine all this time, haven’t we?


I would rather have school start somewhere in between our current time and the proposed time such as 8:20.

Students have jobs to do!  Some of money from those jobs are used to pay the family´s bills.  Some students may not be able to do sports because of it being so late.  The school board cheers on schools that win a championship, so how would they feel if those amazing athletes are no longer able to do sports and they don´t end up winning the championship.  It may not be a big of a deal to you (the one reading this) but the school board makes such a big deal out of it!

i just want to come to school not tired at all

A reason why we should keep the current time that we do is because high schoolers can get jobs and maintain them with our current time. It will be harder for them to maintain them with a 9:20 start time, though. Additionally, after school activities will end even later, more bus drivers will be needed, and elementary schoolers would get home before their older siblings, and therefore need baby-sitters.

i believe that it is absolutely outrageous that virginia beach wants to put elementary school kids out when it is still pitch black out outside. many students are totally opposed to this new start time idea and i’m not sure why it is being imposed just because of some research. virginia beach has been running off this for years and it has worked. changing it would not be in the interest of the students and solely in the interest of admins clearly even though i’m not sure how it would help them in any way


I don’t like starting at 9:20, but I prefer it over 7:20. I’d rather school start at 8:20


I don’t want to wake up at 5:00 every morning, but I also enjoy having an afternoon to do hw and don’t want to lose that.


Being both an IB student and an athlete, it’s very difficult to get out of school, complete homework, and make it to sports practices after 4:30.

“The reason alot of people even proposed the idea of different school hours is because teens wernt getting enough sleep but the thing is that if teens dont get enough sleep then once school hours are pushed back they are just going to stay up longer and get even worse hours of sleep. changing the hours isnt going to fix anything. it will actually do more damage then help. for what of those students with jobs so they can save for college? there hourse are set so they can get to work after school but if the school hourse get pushed back then alot of highschoolers will be out of a job.”

I’d like to change the start time, but the new proposed time is way too late. The best option for me would be around 8 or 8:30 because it wouldn’t affect scheduling too much but it still allows more time for sleep.


The time change would greatly affect the schedules of those who attend the Governor’s School for the Arts. If the school time changes to 9:20, Virginia Beach GSA students would get done with their school day at 6:00pm, which leaves less time for after school rehearsals as well as homework.

With changing the times students will still run into the same issue of not getting enough sleep…if i get home at 4:30 eat dinner change go to work come home do my home work i would still stay up… rather leaving school doing my home work eatting and going to work when i get home i could just go to bed… a lot of people have family scheduals like i come home and my sister wakes up from her nap about an hour after i get home if the times where changed no one would be able to watch her and shes 1 1/2  with spending millions of dollars on new busses and bus drivers why don’t we improve schools and school food maybe implace clubs or things that talk about real life situations like bullying depression or even racism


I firmly believe that the time change won’t really change anything nor make it easier for students. Changing the high school time to 9:20 would not only take some time to get used to, but it would also mess up the schedule (be it work, school, extracurricular activities, etc.) of most, if not all, students. Based on my own experiences, the current time really helps a lot because I am able to finish many tasks, as well as efficiently manage or make changes to my current schedule. And because of the current time, I was able to go to my part-time job on time, (which usually starts at around 4-6 PM) stay there for a couple of hours, and earn what I think is a decent amount of money that slightly helps with my family’s current financial situation. And lastly, since I am currently involved in a dance troupe that consists of people that are of the same culture as me, I am able to attend practices, rehearsals, and even actual performances.

The time and start does matter when concerning young adults, but not the positive way people are talking about. As well as young drivers dealing with rush hour traffic and leading to multiple risk factors with that, it also gets in the way of job opportunities. High school students are entering the work force to start gaining independence from their parents, but pushing the time back will interfere with that. Students will not be able to start shifts still about 5 and wont get off until late depending on the job. Where does that lead room for study and homework that teachers push for so much? For a student that works 4 or 5 hours a day and attempts to stay caught up on homework and assignments will not make it to bed to get that rest that this whole pushing back the time situations goal is. Another point is the monitoring of the younger children. Speaking from experience of having to watch my 2 young siblings ( elementary and middle school ) and having to be there to get them off the bus and get them situated after school this creates a huge issue that has no resolution. My family cant afford daycare for my younger siblings so what are families like mine meant to do? The overall idea is good, but its so flawed. Instead of focusing on our sleep cycle focus on out mental health. Highschoolers are stressed and depressed beyond belief out and going to school 2 hours later in the day and getting off 2 hours later in the afternoon will not bring us the change that we need. Consult the students being affected by this change before you make changes that will create and infinite amount of stresses for these people.

i feel that since high schoolers get way more hw than other grade levels we need more time after school to do that said work also many of us have jobs after school and would get fired if the times change. Also i do lacrosse and practices are already about two hours so i wouldn’t get home till around 6 and then i eat dinner so i wouldn’t be able to start hw till like 7:30 at night.

A 2001 study showed that school administrators cited extracurricular activities as a major reason why high school campuses would rather start earlier in the day. Sports needing to practice outdoors have more daylight, and students walking home from these activities can take advantage of the extra daylight for their safety. In some cases, students may need to travel, and an early start and release may mean more time in the evening for homework and family. High school students also have more time for after-school jobs.

School days beginning after 8 a.m. have many benefits for students, especially those in middle and high school, according to Psychology Today. These benefits include better academic performance, fewer absences and even improved health. However, early start times do have some advantages that may be worth considering. Students who begin earlier have more time for after-school jobs and activities; schools may benefit by saving some money; and parents might find that an early start works better with their schedules.


While studies show there are academic advantages to later start times for adolescents, schools that begin early in the day still can excel academically. According to an article in the Baltimore Post-Examiner, Montgomery County Public Schools in Maryland has 30 high schools, and the three ranked highest by U.S. News and World Report for college readiness and algebra and English proficiency all begin classes at 7:25 a.m. Starting the day early also means more time for after-school tutoring and that student-athletes miss fewer classes to travel to after-school competitions.


School days beginning after 8 a.m. have many benefits for students, especially those in middle and high school, according to Psychology Today. These benefits include better academic performance, fewer absences and even improved health. However, early start times do have some advantages that may be worth considering. Students who begin earlier have more time for after-school jobs and activities; schools may benefit by saving some money; and parents might find that an early start works better with their schedules.


A 2001 study showed that school administrators cited extracurricular activities as a major reason why high school campuses would rather start earlier in the day. Sports needing to practice outdoors have more daylight, and students walking home from these activities can take advantage of the extra daylight for their safety. In some cases, students may need to travel, and an early start and release may mean more time in the evening for homework and family. High school students also have more time for after-school jobs.


Schools may also be able to save up to 30 percent on transportation costs by starting some campuses early and staggering start times within the district. This method saves money by allowing drivers to run more than one route at a time, so fewer buses and drivers are needed. Lubbock ISD in Texas is anticipating saving more than 1 million dollars by utilizing start times prior to 8 a.m. at some campuses. Suffolk Public Schools in Virginia estimates that by starting some campuses at 7:25 a.m. they will be able to save around $680,000 a year. This schedule also means shorter bus rides for students and less time sitting in traffic.


There are specific advantages for parents if younger grades have early start times. Starting school early may eliminate the need for morning childcare if parents are able to drop off their kids before work. They may drop them off at a center that buses them to their campus later in the morning. After school, the daycare picks up the students and parents retrieve their children in the evening from the center. This is necessary for some parents to have time to travel to work, especially if they have a longer commute.

“I think that these two options presented are the two extremes of these ideas. Keeping school start times the same is obviously harmful to students(scientifically proven with circadian rhythm studies) and it likely would be better to move these times. However, considering the schedule and requirements of high schoolers, pushing start times back until 9:20 is much to late. This makes it extremely difficult for students to have jobs, for students to do sports(they would be much later. PA doesn’t even have enough practice fields to accommodate for the number of teams that would need to practice in the shortened amount of time), for students to watch their siblings, etc. It also burdens parents, as you get students are getting out often for early than parents leave work.  Lastly, for me as an IB student, this proposed schedule on top of every thing else I am involved in will not leave enough time to do all my homework at night. So I likely will not get anymore sleep than I did before, and likely will not even have time to eat dinner or spend time with my family in the afternoon due to later sports. I wish the the school board had decided to start schools at around 8:20. Which is much more responsible, and a middle ground between these two extremes. 

-Kailey Monroe. “

changing the times would shift everything about a lot of students after school routine. sports and band would stay until 6 or 7 or later, shifts at jobs will be later, any outside of school after school activities would essentially have to be canceled. the schedule change is not fair to students and the routine that is already set in place that works perfectly fine is perfectly fine.


DO NOT CHANGE THE TIME!!! I don’t know if you guys realize this but if school opens later than people are gonna go to sleep even later so there’s no point. Also the majority kids have after school practices and if they have to attend it than when they get back home their gonna have to do their homework which means staying up late. SO DON’T CHANGE THE TIME!!!!!! 🙂


9:20 seems almost too late, i was expecting something closer to 8:30-45. I prefer anything later than 7:20, but it’s more extreme than i expected

instead of 9:20 maybe 8:20 would be easier because it would be later but not as late.


Please keep it we really all want it to stay 0720

I would prefer a middle ground to be met… like 8:30 or something


I’m in marching band and most of our rehearsals start at 4 and end at 8-8:30, and this time change will really mess up the schedule and will either make our time shorter (which isn’t good, we need to improve) or it will end at a later time which is also bad because we need sleep and time to do homework.


i think keep that is better because we have more time for homework when we get home early and have more time for family


i would like to keep the same time because i cant watch my siblings when they get home i wont have enough time to do homework and i would lose my job and i wouldn’t be able to get a job because i wouldn’t have any time to work


i wont be able to work and teenagers will just stay up later anyway so they might as well keep the times the same because either way kids are still gonna complain about being tired.


While I understand that there is a more advantageous circadian rhythm which is connected to teenagers that makes a later start time hopeful to produce more lively and better performing students, no sleep time would increase as a result of this change solely. Students will have to postpone all of their activities in which they participate and in some circumstances, will have to quit activities which could aid them in future endeavors such as college and job applications. Multiple students have already expressed concerns about being able to work if school start times were pushed back as many students work beginning at 3 or 4, and the later start times would force that to be pushed back. This is detrimental to the families who rely on the extra income from the student to provide for the family. Another issue with the change in times is that by pushing the high schoolers to the latest slot, disturbances in schedules in terms of after school care for elementary school students become apparent. While I do no have any younger siblings, the current start times allowed my sister to be home from high school by the time that I got home from elementary school in order to make sure I got home safely as my parents were at work. By changing the times, the schools force parents to make new arrangements in childcare, which can be costly, as there is no longer an ability to gather children off of the bus and take them directly home safely because the older children are still in school.


Changing the time would affect the jobs many teenagers have. Ending school later will also affect the sports times and after school activities which would deprive students of the sleep they already do not receive. If the debate of changing times is for students to be able to sleep more, that can surely be argued against because students would just be more overwhelmed with the lack of time they have after school for homework, sports, and other activities.


I know the school system wants to change it but its going to make life for high school students. A lot of us are on sports teams and practicing early is really just making us get less sleep and if you change the time we are just going to do worse in school.


if we go to school later then we wont get home till later so we will be out doing sports later so we would do homework later and end up getting less sleep


With the new school start times students will not be prepared for the real world where they will not be waking up at 8:00 every morning. Also, sports outside of school will be impossible to play and even ODS middle school will not be able to even give their students the opportunity to play sports.


Students have jobs, places to be, people like to have time to hang out with one another, it will screw up my sports schedule, I will have less time to go to club meets after school, I get more time for homework ( and I will have more time to spend with my family instead of doing homework all night until 12:00 AM. This is how my freinds, family, and I feel about the time change.


From Diego Billington- Visit to sign the petition to KEEP PAHS TIMES


The new start times would greatly interfere with life at home, not just for students, but for adults as well. Here is a link to a recently created petition:


The current school time is much better for students because it allows them time to do extracurriculars and have jobs.

Changing the current time for high school would prohibit high schoolers from working and it would complicate many after school activity rehearsal times like marching band which has rehearsal from 4-8 or 5-8. 


I really do think that the start and end time should stay the same. However if the school board needs to change the time the time that would least affect high school students would be 8:00. I prefer the start time to stay the same because high school students have jobs and extra curricular activities. Also the main reason that teenagers don’t get enough sleep is because some choose to be on their phones all day so the rest of the students that do that shouldn’t have to suffer.


I think that it would be beneficial to have school start at 8:20 and then we get out at 3:10. This is so people who are participating in after school activities have enough time to do whatever they need to do to prepare for a test or any work that they need to do.


Students can’t focus if they are exhausted.


The current time is too early and the proposed one, too late.

8 am would be better though

College and jobs will not accommodate to our sleep schedule. Our siblings need us older kids to be home to pick them up and such- after school sports will go too late which will force kids to either drop a sport or push away homework.  


I want to be able to do my regular amount of homework (which is a lot) before 10 o clock with my daily after school activities. Yes getting up early is not very pleasant but it works better and everyone I know prefers the time now.


I believe that a change in the school start time will prove totally ineffective in accomplishing the intended goal of improving attendance, test scores, etc.


I think that everyone are so tired and that we need more time to sleep.


I am all for starting school later but if I got to school at 9:20 then that means  ill be getting home after my siblings and my little sister is still to young to stay home by herself. Also is starting school at 8:20 an option?


In my opinion the new start time is basically setting us up for failure when we actually go out in the real world after high school. We are still going to get the same or even less amount of sleep when we get a real job and if they change the start time it is going to make us stay up even later than we already do. Plus, if we do decide to change the start time elementary school kids would get out first and high school student have jobs to go to. And what if the high school students have to watch their little siblings. I would really like you to reconsider changing the start time


I think we should make school start at 8. It is a much more reasonable time. We would get out around 2:40 and after school activities would be over around 5. This is compared to the 6:30 time they would end at if school started at 9:20.


Starting at 7:20 and ending at 2:10 gives me plenty of time to get my homework done and get to my softball practices on time. And it is super to important to me and my coaches and teammates that I am there on time for practice.


In my opinion, the new school start times will cause students to not be as happy because they will not be able to be apart of the things that they love. The reasoning behind this is because many high school students play sports, babysit, have jobs and want to spend time with their families and friends. If the school times change then most students will not be able to get to the sports they love, especially if they are in an academy such as the IB program because our bus rides can be up to 2 hours long; for example I will be getting home at around 6:00 with these new times; which will cause me to not be able to make it to practice! Since we will not get home until later we will not be able to babysit or work a job, which helps students find independence and helps them adjust to the real world as it is slowly getting closer. Finally, we will not have as much time to spend with our families and friends. We will already get home late, try to get to our activities on time, have a lot of homework to do and by that time our families are asleep and it is too late to hang out with friends. The new school start times will make students lives completely revolve around school and will not allow students to start to create their identities in the real world after school. Please consider my opinion because the start time will be majorly effecting me, my peers and my life. 


I think the best solution and best compromise is to start high schools at 8:00 AM. If we get out at 4:20, like proposed right now, it will not only cause more stress but also reduce already insubstantial amounts of sleep teens get. Students who DON’T do sports won’t get home until 5:00 leaving not enough time to do homework, unless they stay up super late and therefore ruin the piunt of getting more sleep or they get up early, which also ruins the point of changing the start times. In addition, starting so late will ruin high school sports. Participation will drop due to lack of sufficient tome for homework. In the spring, there won’t be enough time for the many spirts teams to practice on our fields, and to make more it would be very expensive. Another thing is that students who work to support themselves or their families wouod be forced to choose between school and family, which is completely unfair. However, starting school at 7:20 is also unsustainable because many studies have procen that it is unhealthy and even dangerous (teens driving on road).


Start and end at the current middle school times instead because getting out at 4:10 is really late.


For the last question, I’d pick either. I really just want elementary school times. I like the idea of getting to school at 8 and leaving around 3. That would be a really nice compromise, and to all the people who I’ve talked to, they said they would like that option too.


Schools have used the same times for many of years and it has not stopped students from excelling, graduating, etc. Changing the times would just cause high school students to struggle more with homework and not give them time to have a job. Going to school early is also preparing students for once they graduate and start working early hours.


I would rather have something in the middle – or fix the bus routes so we don’t need to wake up two hours before school when we live 5 minutes away.


Adults aren’t taking into consideration how the new hours will affect after school activities and health of us students. With later start times, students will stay up later because we will know that we don’t have to go to school until later. Also, sports will run later and practices and games will be held in the DARK. It’s ridiculous and we shouldn’t have to change times. Most of my friends have said that they like the times we have now. What will happen to jobs? Students won’t be able to have them because they will be later and night shifts.


At the end of the day, once you graduate from high school, jobs and colleges are not going to accommodate to your sleep schedule. Isn’t the point of high school to make students and young adults prepared for the “real world”? If start times are pushed back students will be forced to stay up later into the night by sports and various other extra curriculars, not to mention the necessity of jobs and caring for siblings after school that affect a large portion of students. Overall, changing the start times for schools would ultimately prove ineffective.

High schools should keep the same start time because some high school students have jobs in the afternoon or they have to watch younger siblings or pets. Pushing the start time back to 9:20 would delay high schools getting out until 4:10 which would interfere with many high school students’ jobs and responsibilities.


I feel like 8:20 is a good time to start. 7:30 is really early for some students so they sleep in class or accidentally cause a car accident, but 9:30 is way too late. This would mean that some sports may even end when it is extremely dark outside.


Although this time does not affect me personally, I know many people who would find this switch to be incredibly difficult for their current routine. It’s not worth it…


Starting so late means that I won’t be able to participate in both activities/sports at school in addition to the club sport I participate in outside of school.  Also, at the regular dismissal time, we’d be leaving close to rush hour — especially since we’re on Virginia Beach Boulevard. If part of the goal is to reduce accidents, this may be counterproductive.


Your willing to waste billions of dollars on adding lights to fields and make your students parents spend more money on school care if elementary gets our time. I also work and do sports so I need to be home by 3:00. Not to mention are you willing to risk elementary kids to get kidnapped early in the morning if they take our time?


I work two jobs, changing the start time would get in the way of both of them, I already get home late and do my work after, so I would get home at 11-12 at night, then do my homework on top of that.


when I wake up early, I get more time in the day to do what I need to do


I would like to keep the current time of 7:20 as I believe this is a perfect time to start school. This time gives a very good amount of after school time needed for sports and other activities such as work.

I feel that the new start time will be better for us since we are fully awake, however this will cause school to end later than normal which will push out student activities further into the day.  But this will also affect the start of middle school times so that buses can get between locations. However since high school students are more responsible and mature than middle school students, they should be able to handle themselves later at night than middle school students.


The new proposed time would ultimately harm high school students more than help them. While the school board is thinking about the science behind the change, it is unlikely that students would get more sleep in the long run. No one is really considering the reality of the situation — high school students have jobs, a large percentage participate in after school sports or activities, and students, especially those in the IB program, have a ton of homework on top of that. People will stay up even later, sports teams will be practicing almost in the dark at certain times of the year, and a lot of students have lamented that they will have to quit their jobs. Frankly, the idea to push back the high school start time is ridiculous, and if the school board would listen to the voice of the students instead of just the objective facts of researchers, then they would see that, too.

I feel it should switch to 8:50 , 9:20 is too late.


If you start school earlier than we get more time at the end of the day to do homework and do sports and to work and make money, if you are planning us for the future we need to make money to go to college or buy a car but we need good grades to get a job. kids are not going to wake up at 7 am everyday to go to school, they are going to wake up at 8:30 and go to school. They are not going to get home till 4 or if they have after school activity  get home around 6 then they need time to do homework eat dinner and chores and family time and still get the recommended amount of sleep. With the time now people have form 2-10 about is lots of time to get homework done with an additional 85 minute study hall ( many students are very lazy). people will go to bed when they want to go to bed weather it is 8 pm or 3 am it does not matter if you start school at 7 or 9, people will have more chances to get homework done when school starts at 7 because they have the whole afternoon. Also many people have younger siblings that they help off the bus. It will save parents money to have the kids home earlier to get the little ones off the bus. lots of people need to realize  that many students want to start school earlier, everyone is stating information over and over again. They do not want school to start later. Half the school day is over at 10 am. It make the school day more enjoyable and less stressful because you know that by 2 pm you are free and have the whole day. Personal for me I have a younger brother that comes home at 3:30 that I am home for him to help him with his homework before my parents get home at 5, then he goes and plays with the neighborhood kids and I sit down and get my homework done before my parents get home, then I will do anything else I need to do for the day. If school time is changed, I feel that this will have a very negative impact on the students. do not  get me wrong I would love to sleep in my I will just go to bed early so I can get some sleep and wake up and go to school. All of these reasons I just stated are for who ever if in charge to NOT change the school times for the 2020-2021 school year. Thank you for your time


It would be better as high schoolers have more time in the afternoon to be able to work, do schoolwork, and participate in after school activities instead of making these mutually exclusive

I would prefer if they do change it, they change it to 8:00am start

I work best staying up late and waking up late


I think it would be completely wrong to make high school start at 9:20. High school students need more time after school! High school students have jobs and after school activities to attend to after school. We as well have more homework then elementary and middle school students so more time is required for us. I personally believe if any school times should be changed, it should be elementary and middle, it would make more sense to flip those and leave high school times as is then to make high school start later. I strongly hope high school hours do not change, there are no worthy benefits to it. Thank you.

While the proposed time would end up pushing people’s schedules back, particularly if they participate in after school activities, I think that this is a much healthier time. Many students already go to bed late, but wake up incredibly early, which is scientifically proven to be unhealthy for teenagers, so continuing to stay up later, but waking up later as well is the best option.


8:20-3:10 would be my optimal time

Anytime around 8:00 am would be the best time because if schools start at 9:20 am, more homework will be given and we will get out of school later. There will be no time for students to get together and study after school, no time for after school fundraisers, and students who play sports and attend clubs will not get out of school until about 6 or 7 pm. That is unfair to teenagers as a whole, because it’s just putting more stress on us. There should be a medium, like 8:00 if we are trying to make a good change. Going from 7am to 9am is a big extreme.


I do not prefer the current school start time, however, it gives us more free time which the other time schedule will not be providing. I, along with others, know that the proposed time is better for our bodies, but not for us socially and educationally.


Although I am an athlete, moving the starting times back would not impact me negatively because there is already a lot of wasted time between when school lets out and when practices starts during which it is difficult to get work done. Also, many rehearsals and activities for clubs begin late anyway.


If it changes to the dismissal time of 4:10, then people will have to find out how to pay for daycare, kids will have to work night shifts at jobs which will make them more tired, kids who are enrolled in GSA won’t get home until even later (around 7-8), extracurricular activities will run later or there will be less time, and kids will have less time to do homework or social events. A one hour difference would be good, but 2 hours is too much time.


After talking to teachers, I’ve noticed keeping the times is not only convenient for student drivers but also for teachers with families.


who will be home to get elementary students off the bus if the high school students and parents are at work


Much better time to start school


I go to Governors School for the Arts, and I have to take a bus there at 12:15 each day. Classes there start at 1:10 and end at 4:10. I get home at around 5:25 every day, and it would cause issues to my schedule if the time is changed to 9:20. I would get home much later, and not have enough time to complete Homework Assignments. 

9:20 is not only the most costly option for the city, but it is also the least preferred because not one person I have talked to wants the later start time. Think about the high schoolers who play sports until 6:30-7 at night already. It would be extremely unhealthy to get home at 9 every day.