School start times pushed back for students

July 14, 2022 /

Students will soon be able to sleep in and start school later, according to Senate Bill No. 328 which went into effect on July 1, 2022.

This bill aims to promote longer sleep time for students to prevent sleep deprivation in classes. The following is the expected start time for both public and charter schools:

  • High schools will begin no earlier than 8:30 a.m.
  • Middle schools will begin no earlier than 8:00 a.m. 

This bill does not include rural school districts. Most students in rural areas require travel to school and accommodations for farmworkers.

Before-school extra-curricular activities and zero-period classes will not be included in this bill, since both are optional for students.

Lisa Lewis and Irena Keller, two Berkeley alumni, pushed for schools to start at a later time. Lewis testified before the California State Assembly Education Committee, and Keller started an organization, the California chapter of Start School Later, to advocate for the new legislation.

In 2019, Senate Bill No. 328 was passed by the California legislators, and it was set to go into effect for the 2022-2023 school year. 

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that teenagers ages 13-18 sleep between 8-10 hours per 24 hours. Teens who do not get the appropriate amount of sleep have a higher risk for many health and behavior problems.

The impact of sleep deprivation on adolescents is of primary concern, and schools will look into successful strategies for managing the change in school start times. The health, safety, and academic impact of sleep will benefit students in the long run.

Erica Murillo

Erica Murillo is a project coordinator and reporter at South Kern Sol. She was born in Bakersfield, California, and her origin is from Guanajuato, Mexico. She is a first-generation graduate from California State University, Bakersfield where she earned a degree in Liberal Studies with a minor in English. Murillo's first job was working in the fields picking grapes. She has been able to evolve and continue to grow within her career. She can be reached at