Earlier school start times as a risk factor for poor school performance: An examination of public elementary schools in the commonwealth of Kentucky

Peggy S. Keller, Olivia A. Smith, Lauren R. Gilbert, Shuang Bi, Eric A. Haak, Joseph A. Buckhalt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations

Abstract

Adequate sleep is essential for child learning. However, school systems may inadvertently be promoting sleep deprivation through early school start times. The current study examines the potential implications of early school start times for standardized test scores in public elementary schools in Kentucky. Associations between early school start time and poorer school performance were observed primarily for schools serving few students who qualify for free or reduced-cost lunches. Associations were controlled for teacher-student ratio, racial composition, and whether the school was in the Appalachian region. Findings support the growing body of research showing that early school start times may influence student learning but offer some of the first evidence that this influence may occur for elementary school children and depend on school characteristics.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)236-245
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Educational Psychology
Volume107
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 American Psychological Association.

Keywords

  • Free lunch
  • School performance
  • Sleep
  • Start time

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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