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The Oakmonitor

Does school starting too early affect attendance?

Does school starting too early affect attendance?
Cecelia Sears

Every weekday kids ages eleven to eighteen wake up for school. Depending on where you live can determine the time you wake up: the unlucky ones rise as early as 4:30 am. But the question we are asking is, does school starting too early affect tardiness & attendance? 

According to CNBC, an average job starts at 9 am. So, why are high school students waking up so early for school when it does not prepare them for a job? According to the National Institutes of Health, even an average college student wakes up at 9 am for class. 

There are many negative effects of school starting early. The main one, is students being tardy. At Oakmont, many teachers classified being tardy as one of Oakmont´s biggest issues. From data provided by the main office, freshmen have the most tardiness, followed closely by sophomores. During the second semester here, which has not been completed, there have already been 983 tardies as of April 11, 2024. 

School starting too early also affects absences. According to Pole College of Management located in North Carolina, the absence rate increases by 1% yearly. Here at Oakmont, the average student is absent ten days. 

Nationwide the leading cause of absenteeism is mental health. How can schools help students maintain good attendance and also keep students mentally healthy? Many students believe in creating a positive school environment and climate. Schools can do this by establishing school safety, prompting positive relationships between staff and students, using student feedback, and developing classroom agreements. 

Most teenagers need to get the necessary 8 to 10 hours of sleep but do not. Around 23.8% of high school students suffer from insomnia. Insomnia is a common sleep disorder that makes it extremely difficult for people to fall asleep. According to eMedicineHealth, an average person with insomnia gets 5 hours of sleep per night. 

During the 2nd semester, 1/23/24 to 4/5/24, the freshmen class (2027) had 339 absences as well as 190 tardies. The sophomore class (2026) had 329 absences and 190 tardies. Next, the junior class (2025) had 352 absences and 145 tardies. Lastly, the senior class (2024) had 256 absences and 318 tradies. This leaves freshmen to have the most absences during the second semester and juniors to have the most tardies.  

2nd Semester 1/23/24 – 4/5/24


339 Absences

190 Tardy 


329 Absences

145 Tardies


352 Absences

330 Tardies


256 Absences

318 Tardies

These stats show the amount of tardies and absences there was in each grade in the second semester of school. Hopefully, research will continue and school start times will be examined more closely. 

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About the Contributors
Cecelia Sears
Cecelia Sears, Reporter
Cecelia Sears is part of the class of 2027 at Oakmont Regional High School. This is her first year being part of The Oakmonitor. During the school year she is apart of Oakmont´s winter and fall cheer season, and has been cheering since she was ten. Durning Cecelia´s free time she likes to hangout with friends. She enjoys going to the beach, baking, and listening to music.
Frankie Donahue
Frankie Donahue, Reporter
Francesca Donahue is a part of the class of 2027 here at Oakmont.  This is her first year writing for The Oakmonitor.  She had done cheer since she was 5 years old and currently does cheer for Oakmont in the fall and winter . Outside of school, she enjoys listening to music, shopping, traveling and being with friends and family.  In the future, Francesca plans on pursuing a career in the medical field or early child education.

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