Late start has mixed reactions from students and staff


Alisal students entering school at 8:25 am when class starts at 8:30, thanks to Senate Bill 328. While opinions on the change are mixed, a slight majority prefers the late start. “I love it because I can wake up a bit later in the morning and feel more energized throughout the day,” senior Michael Zamora said.

This school year Senate Bill 328 went into effect in California. The new law requires classes not start earlier than 8:30 am. It has been a huge change for students, parents, and staff.

The idea was teens need more sleep and a later start time was supposed to help this.For some it has been a positive change, but for others it’s been a negative change towards their daily routine. “I believe the purpose of it would be so students could rest a bit more and come to school with more energy, but most of the time that is not the case. It also creates more difficulties for some parents that have children in elementary schools and have full time jobs,” Spanish teacher Juan Torres said. It looks like in some cases it is effective, “I like this new schedule because I get more sleep and I’m able to focus better in school,” sophomore Aurora Tafolla said. 

Some teachers like the later start and some don’t. “I have adapted to the new schedule, except for our collaboration schedule on Wednesday because lunch is nearly at 1pm,” economics teacher Jenness Kelly said.  “I have more time to do yoga and meditation in the morning before school,” science teacher Lucy Lynn said. “I like waking up later,” art teacher Jude Saleet said. 

English teacher Jared Hart said, “It doesn’t seem to have made any positive improvements to student grades or attendance, in fact it seems to have a negative effect.”  Steven Munoz, who teaches World History and coaches cross country and track agreed, “After school activities are pushed back even more, which leads to students getting home later and having less time for dinner, time with family, and school work,” he said. “Students are still coming late to school. Sporting competition times have not changed, which means student-athletes miss more class time than before.” 

There are mixed reactions on whether the students like the new schedule or not. According to an informal survey of 384 students, 46.5% of the students don’t like the new schedule and 53.5% of the students like the new schedule. “This is affecting my after school and home activities,” sophomore Kenrry Sevilla said.“ I have personal things to do at home as well, and I can’t always be at school for so long.”   Junior Jonathan Altamirano said, “I have Link Crew, so even with the new schedule I still don’t have the chance to sleep in, plus it makes me wanna sleep later because I know school starts later than usual now.”

On the other hand, “I like the extra hour because it gives me a little more sleep and it helps me be more productive in the morning and gives me more time to eat breakfast and get ready rather than rushing,” sophomore Alyssa Gomez said.

One area where there is some agreement is athletics, as It has negatively impacted sports and tutorials. Students who play sports are not so happy about the new schedule since they get out later now and it gives them less time to do their own things. “This new schedule has affected me negatively because tutorials now end at 4:30 causing practice to end at a later time,” senior Joab Murillo says. Senior Nathan Saldana agreed with Joab, “This Schedule has affected my after school activities because now I have less time to do homework after sports.” Athletic Director Jose Gil believes that it was not an ideal change for athletes. “We had to move everything back, tutorials and practice. This is an obstacle that we have to overcome and get used to. Now it gets dark earlier so when students get out of practice it’s dark outside already and it makes it difficult, but like I said we have to accept it, make adjustments and move on.”