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Glenn Hills principal wants to start school at later time

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It’s usually past midnight before Glenn Hills High School junior Kentrell Allen gets off his job at Zaxby’s, showers, eats dinner, finishes homework and crawls into bed on a school night.

Glenn Hills High School Principal Wayne Frazier speaks to a literature class. Frazier has asked to switch the school's schedule to the middle school routine that starts at 9:15 a.m. and ends at 4:15 p.m.  ZACH BOYDEN-HOLMES/STAFF
ZACH BOYDEN-HOLMES/STAFF
Glenn Hills High School Principal Wayne Frazier speaks to a literature class. Frazier has asked to switch the school's schedule to the middle school routine that starts at 9:15 a.m. and ends at 4:15 p.m.

He sets his alarm for 6 a.m. but is sometimes still sleeping when the school bus shuttles past his house and when students in his first-period physics class are closing their books.

“It’s pretty bad,” Allen said. “I was late to homeroom every day last week.”

He’ll have a little more time to get up if Glenn Hills principal Wayne Frazier has his way.

Frazier has asked to switch his high school’s 7:15 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. schedule to the middle school routine that starts at 9:15 a.m. and ends at 4:15 p.m.

He said the change will improve academic performance by helping students arrive on time.

“I found that they just don’t go to bed early,” Frazier said of the students. “Some of them have night jobs; some of them take care of brothers and sisters; and for the most part they just don’t go to sleep. For me personally I would love to keep it the way it is. I would love to be off everyday at 2 o’clock and have the rest of the day, but that’s not the best thing for the students.”

Frazier’s request must now be reviewed by Acting Superintendent James Whitson, who will look at the logistics to see if the switch is possible. Whitson said he supports the reasoning behind Frazier’s request but has to see if the buses and drivers could accommodate a high school running so late and if after-school sports would be affected.

After his review, the Richmond County Board of Education would vote on the issue this summer. Because the Georgia Department of Education only tracks days students are in school, not times, it would not need state approval.

“I understand why (Frazier) wants to do it, and his reasoning is not an issue,” Whitson said. “It’s more of ‘Can I do that and how many other schools would want to do it for very good reason, too?’ ”

Transportation Director Jimmy Wiley is also looking at how delaying the Glenn Hills route would affect the other schools and drivers. The system runs on a three-tier system, and Wiley said he needs to make sure the Glenn Hills buses wouldn’t conflict with the lower grades.

“What you have to do is look at the big picture before you say yes or no,” Wiley said.

While logistics are being worked out, research already supports later class schedules. Studies have shown that teens between 13 and 19 are physiologically programmed to fall asleep around 11 p.m. and not wake up before 8 a.m., according to Kyla Wahlstrom, a national expert on the effectiveness of later high school start times.

Wahlstrom is currently in the second phase of a research project on later high school start times that began in 1996. Her original research found that students had better attendance, grades and graduation times and that fewer reported depression when they arrived at school after 8 a.m.

“The benefits are clearly that they’re more alert and awake throughout the day,” said Wahlstrom, the director for Center for Applied Research and Education Improvement at the University of Minnesota. “The benefit also is that they regulate their emotions better.”

Frazier said faculty and parents supported the change when he presented it at a recent parent night. However, opinions among students are varied because of concerns over after-school jobs and sports.

Glenn Hills junior Shanarrian Lewis said students should be taught to wake up early so they are prepared for demanding jobs when they graduate.

“If you’re not responsible enough to get up on time and go to school, that’s your problem,” Lewis said.

Santo Nina, 16, said it would be nice to sleep later in the morning, but his afternoon schedule would be ruined with a 4 p.m. dismissal. After school Nina begins lifting weights and practicing with his football and basketball teams, and he couldn’t afford to start his routine later.

“It would be hard on my sports,” Nina said. “Plus waking up early teaches us to be responsible because they’re not going to change the times in college. If you’re not here on time, you’re losing your money.”

Along with Frazier’s request for a later schedule, he also asked the Richmond County School System to allow him to enforce uniforms on ninth-graders, starting next year.

He said uniforms would cut down on peer stigmas and help the younger group transition to a school of upperclassmen. The ninth-graders would also be isolated in a “ninth grade academy” where they can adjust to high school before being thrown in with the older students.

“I can’t wait until the whole system or the whole nation changes certain things,” Frazier said. “You do what’s best for the children first. If everyone agrees this is the best for our children, we’ll find a way to make it work.”

Comments (15)

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HighSociety
1840
Points
HighSociety 04/26/12 - 11:28 pm
1
0

I can see where this would be

I can see where this would be an improvement over starting earlier. I'm also impressed with some of the responses that the students gave on being responsible. This will be a tough decision to make.

showboat
266
Points
showboat 04/27/12 - 12:12 am
0
0

Want to change the starting

Unpublished

Want to change the starting time because the Principal isn't there before 9:30 a.m. each morning. Students should be able to get to school on time. When they get out in the world and start working can they tell the boss, i stayed up late last nite can you change my work schedule.

Craig Spinks
817
Points
Craig Spinks 04/27/12 - 02:53 am
1
0

The last two sentences

The last two sentences attributed to Dr. Frazier say it all.

And he'll "walk the walk" necessary to effectuate his suggested change.

No wonder Frazier scares the Hell out of the several excuse-making, self-serving educrats on the RCBOE and the numerous ones in the RCSS.

desertcat6
1140
Points
desertcat6 04/27/12 - 03:26 am
2
0

There are middle schools that

There are middle schools that start receiving kids at 0700 and start classes at 0730. My 6th grader's bus picks up as early as 0630. It all related to traffic management, number of buses and bus drivers. Three schools - HS, MS and ES - are co-located in the same area. I would prefer his school start later, but we manage to get our kids up and to school on time.

I managed to work, play sports and excel in school in my day with a little discipline and a wind up alarm clock. In college I took a full load of 18 to 21 credit hours, worked 40 hrs a week as a security guard from mid-night to eight Monday through Friday, and played soccer the first two years. Managed to graduate with a science degree in 4 years with no student loans. Discipline, hard work, and my alarm clock got me through it all.

justonevoice
0
Points
justonevoice 04/27/12 - 05:03 am
0
1

What about single parents

What about single parents that depend on their High School Children to help with getting the younger siblings from school. It would help in the morning but most parents need assistance with the Elementary and Middle School kids in the afternoon.

Riverman1
70886
Points
Riverman1 04/27/12 - 06:29 am
1
0

I wish the whole world

I wish the whole world started at 9:15 instead of my 6 AM start.

Martinez
154
Points
Martinez 04/27/12 - 06:44 am
2
1

I don't think school times

I don't think school times should be based on a parent's need to use their older children to help with their younger children. That's not the school board's responsibility to figure out. I can see where the later start time would be more desirable to students but I also don't believe you can blame tardiness on the schedule itself. If you know you have to wake up early, you don't stay up as late. In the working world, in college or wherever else, no one is going to adjust a schedule to accommodate those who don't show up on time.

seenitB4
73030
Points
seenitB4 04/27/12 - 07:01 am
2
1

Good idea...try something

Good idea...try something that works...doing the same=o & getting the same results hasn't been working.

Patty-P
3516
Points
Patty-P 04/27/12 - 07:45 am
2
2

I don't think changing the

I don't think changing the schedule to start as late as 9:15 is the answer. Perhaps the students need to change their non-curricular activities instead.

hoopshype
11
Points
hoopshype 04/27/12 - 07:57 am
3
2

If he wants to start at 9:15

If he wants to start at 9:15 maybe he should go back to middle school. A lot of high school students work after school because they have to not because they want to.

InChristLove
21889
Points
InChristLove 04/27/12 - 08:12 am
4
0

Why not a happy medium, 8:15

Why not a happy medium, 8:15 to 3:15? Gives them an extra hour in the morning and isn't too late for those who have to take care of siblings or have part time jobs.

Mr. Thackeray
766
Points
Mr. Thackeray 04/27/12 - 09:13 am
4
0

The issue is beyond any

The issue is beyond any doubt...high school kids performance IMPROVES with a late start. Much of the negative comments are a smoke screen however. The real reason ti will not happen is football. This principal needs and deserves support for trying to do with is best for kids...nothing else matters.

justthefacts
18053
Points
justthefacts 04/27/12 - 10:37 am
0
0

We need more young folks like

We need more young folks like Kentrell Allen.

Jane18
12331
Points
Jane18 04/27/12 - 10:48 am
0
0

This is for Kentrell. Hang in

This is for Kentrell. Hang in there,son! What you are learning and going through now, is going to make you a good man that will be able to handle many things in your life. You do not know how many of us admire you................

iLove
626
Points
iLove 04/27/12 - 11:09 am
1
0

We need more OUTSIDE FO THE

Unpublished

We need more OUTSIDE FO THE BOX THINKERS like Dr. Frazier! I believe the late start is because of BUS SCHEDULES. . . but nontheless....keep on keeping on Dr. Frazier!!!! We need more like you in RC!

iLove
626
Points
iLove 04/27/12 - 11:10 am
0
0

There are acutally MANY MORE

Unpublished

There are acutally MANY MORE young folks like Kentrell.....don't listen to the media all the time.

allhans
21982
Points
allhans 04/27/12 - 11:30 am
1
0

A working mother won't

A working mother won't appreciate changing the hours to 9:15. Too many teens will climb back into bed after Mom leaves the house before 7:30.

justthefacts
18053
Points
justthefacts 04/27/12 - 11:47 am
0
0

Who said there weren't many

Who said there weren't many more like Kentrell? Is it neccessary to put a negative spin on everything? That chip must be mighty heavy.

twolane
191
Points
twolane 04/27/12 - 02:36 pm
0
0

need more people that think

Unpublished

need more people that think outside the box like frazier.....this is the guy that was arrested for driving drunk isnt it

twolane
191
Points
twolane 04/27/12 - 02:37 pm
0
0

need more people like

Unpublished

need more people like frazier..wasnt he the one again arrested for driving drunk

twolane
191
Points
twolane 04/27/12 - 02:40 pm
0
0

more of the same change the

Unpublished

more of the same change the world because lazy little angel dont like it having to get out of bed......give me a break....these kids are gonna get a really huge shock when they get out in the real world and find out nobody cares what they want

iLove
626
Points
iLove 04/27/12 - 02:45 pm
0
0

"We need more young folks

Unpublished

"We need more young folks like Kentrell Allen." -justthefacts

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