As Philly schools propose later start times, Carroll students weigh in on the idea

Gabriel Petrecz, Staff writer

Following action taken by several suburban school districts, the School District of Philadelphia has proposed a new start time of 9 a.m. for its high schools, according to CBS Philadelphia. Although the Archdiocese of Philadelphia hasn’t publicly announced that it is considering the same move, Archbishop Carroll students have expressed opinions about the idea perhaps one day becoming reality here.

“I think that this change would be beneficial to our schedule,” said junior Caroline Pascual. “If we were to change the start time of school to later, it would help people’s sleep schedule and mental health.” 

Junior Lindsey Davidson also strongly thinks that the time change will help students’ sleep schedules. 

“Changing the start time of school to 9 a.m. would be much better for the students and the school as a whole,” said Davidson. “A lot of teenagers stay up late because of schoolwork, sports, and other extracurriculars. Pushing back the start time would allow for us to get the sleep that we need.”

Although senior Laura Wallon is going off to college next year, she still thinks the time change will provide benefits to underclassmen. 

“I’m glad that the newer generations might have that privilege, but as someone who takes two buses and a train every day, that would’ve been nice to have,” said Wallon. 

Not everyone is a fan of the idea, though.

“This might be an unpopular opinion, but I don’t feel that the time change would be beneficial to students in the long run,” Hall said. “In the real world, jobs require people to get up early. Having to power through the day despite being tired is necessary for some careers and it’s an indication of the future. This also means that school days will have to end later, which will result in after-school activities having to be pushed back, and to me sounds worse.”

Junior Paige Quigley stands with Hall. 

“While I would like to start school later in the day, I do not think I would benefit much from it because the school day would end later, and I would have less time to do after-school activities,” said Quigley. 

Among the high schools in the region that have changed their start times is nearby Radnor High School. In the 2019-2020 school year, the Radnor Township School Board voted to change the high school start time to 8:30 a.m., almost an hour later than its previous start time of 7:35 a.m. The change was made “to support more sleep for students as recommended by numerous medical experts and organizations,” according to the district’s web site.

Other area districts that have opted for later start times include Phoenixville, Unionville-Chadds Ford, Garnet Valley, and Upper Darby, according to published reports.

Philadelphia school district families will have the opportunity to express their ideas on the proposal by completing a brief online survey regarding the 2022-2023 bell schedule, according to