San Juan USD gets 7,000 takes on sleep and later start times
San Juan Unified School District started considering later start times for its high school students after a group of parents and other community members approached the District’s leadership with research supporting the health and learning benefits of a later start to the school day.
The District held meetings to get an initial read on the community’s reaction to later start times and quickly came to some important realizations. The first was that the impact of moving start times is highly personal. In order to be able to support any change, families would need to be able to talk about how much they were impacted. The second was that finding a way to hear, appreciate and organize, these stories would be critical to fully understanding the impact of any decision.
Online surveys could not provide the nuanced understanding the District required and given the District’s size, holding the number of town hall meetings necessary for district-wide two-way conversations would also be a challenge.
"Everyone was really taken aback by how many people took the time and were able to participate because it was so easy for them, because it honored their voice, and because they got to hear the voices of others, unfiltered."TRENT ALLEN, APR, SENIOR DIRECTOR OF COMMUNITY RELATIONS