California Late Start Law


Judith Boyadjian

In 2019, California’s governor Gavin Newsom signed law SB 328 to mandate later starts in schools. The mandate enforces high schools and middle schools to begin class no earlier than 8:30 AM. Schools were provided a 3-year grace period to implement the law, this period ends on July 1st, 2022. Schedules will accommodate for the late start by shortening the day or extending it in the afternoon. This law does not apply to rural school districts.

 Health officials and educators say law SB 328 greatly benefits students. It gives students more time to rest, which helps prevent sleep deprivation and it allows students to get to school safely because more modes of transportation will be available during later hours. According to health officials, a later start could reduce suicide rates, depression, and obesity amongst students. It could help increase attendance, which in turn will help schools financially.

Overall, this law will improve the well-being of students and staff by providing them with a healthier environment.