Tennessee bill filed to push back public high, middle school start times

If passed, start times would change in 2023
School bus
Posted at 2:11 PM, Jan 20, 2022

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Two state lawmakers in Tennessee have filed a bill that would change public school start times, giving students more time to sleep in.

The bill was filed by Democratic Nashville lawmakers Rep. John Ray Clemmons and Sen. Brenda Gilmore on Wednesday.

Right now, most public high schools in Nashville start at 7:05 a.m.

If passed, this bill would push back the start time for high schools to no earlier than 8:30 a.m.

Middle schools would be moved to no earlier than 8 a.m.

The bill has no mention of elementary schools.

Groups like "Start School Later Nashville" are excited.

In a statement on Facebook, the group said these start times would align with recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the American Academy of Pediatricians, and the Surgeon General for teen health.

Start School Later believes kids need to start class later to ensure they get enough sleep.

They say it would mean better brain function, which means they get more out of their education.

If the bill passes, they would look at changing school start times for the 2023-2024 school year.

Aaron Cantrell at WTVF in Nashville, Tenn. first reported this story.