Albany High School's start time is moving to 8 a.m., 20 minutes later than before, for a one-year experiment. It may decide to start even later in the future, in line with research showing later start times better match teen sleep cycles.
The change follows school community discussions spurred by research showing that that teens perform better with at least nine hours of sleep on average and that their natural sleep rhythms make it easier for them to get the required sleep when school starts later.
It had been proposed last year that the start time be moved to 8:30, but the Instructional Improvement Council (IIC) decided in April to take the more gradual step of going to 8 a.m. and then assessing the later start time before deciding on making it later, according to a notice posted by Principal Ted Barone on the school website.
"This is likely a 1-year compromise," Barone said. "The IIC will take up the issue again in the Fall and again consider moving the start time later to be more in line with teenage circadian rhythms. The Council decided that it needed some time to evaluate the new schedule, examine its impact, and make changes as needed." "Thanks to all of the parents, students, and teachers who provided input in this painstaking decision-making process," he said.