By Justin Schmidt, Multimedia Journalist - bio | email
GRANDVIEW, MO (KCTV) -
Most of the schools in the Kansas City metro have first bell at about 7:30 a.m. But now the Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan, said he would like to see the start times moved back.
Grandview High School starts every morning just before 7:30 a.m. and there are a lot of reasons why it has to be so early.
"Secretary Duncan is right, high school kids would do better to start later, in my opinion. But therein begins issues that have to be considered," said Dr. Ralph Teran, the superintendent of Grandview C-4 District.
Teran said the first issue is the bus schedule.
"Our (bus) runs start at 6:30 in the morning for our earlier stops. If someone is going to stand on a corner at 6:30 in the morning to wait for a bus, I don't want it to be a kindergartner, it's going to be the older student," he said.
Morgan Shaw, a senior at Grandview High, said 7:30 a.m. comes around too early for him.
"I try to get to bed before 11 p.m., try to get at least seven hours of sleep, but I don't feel I really get started until about 8 a.m., or halfway through first block," he said.
Shaw said he'd take a later start and feels he'd do better in class.
"Our minds don't function well that early in the morning, we need maybe an hour to wake up. I function the best in the afternoon," he said.
But not all of his classmates agree.
"I like starting early, it gets us out of school early. I have a job so it gives me a blanket of time to get my homework done before going to my job," said senior Katherine Bartlett.
Teran said part of the problem is you'll never make everyone happy.
"The ideal thing would be to have that kind of flexibility, but then we're talking about time, money, energy and resources," he said.
Another issue would be after-school activities. Grandview's schedule is set up similar to other schools, so teams can play at regular times after school.
"If the district wanted to do that, I don't know how we'd do it without being dependent on a lot of other districts. That would take a lot of effort and collaboration," Teran said.
Teran said that even if it would require a lot of effort, possibly more money, it is a good decision to at least talk about what time would be best for the students.
KCTV5 checked into several large districts in the metro. Most of them start high school between 7:25 a.m. and 7:45 a.m.
Copyright 2013 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.
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