New School Start Times Delay After School Activities

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COLUMBIA - The later start time for Columbia's public high schools brings a delay in after school activities.  The Hickman girls tennis team started its first official practice Tuesday and players expressed mixed reviews about the new time change. High schools now let out at 3:55 p.m.

Hickman teacher and head tennis coach Tom Sheridan thinks the hour delay will give him more time to focus on school during the day and tennis in the afternoon.

"I think overall from my perspective, I like it. It allows me to get a lot done in the mornings and I can get into work earlier and then I can strictly focus on coaching in the afternoon," Sheridan said.

However, Sheridan explains there are problems with lighting for tennis matches after school and the students getting enough sleep.  "You never know how long a match is going to last. It can be three, plus hours and that's cutting into night time. Again, you have to think about that wearing on the kids the next day."

Hickman sophomore and tennis player Eden Crane said she liked going to school later in the morning but doesn't like getting out later in the day. "I got to sleep in a lot more and I wasn't as tired as usual. I didn't really like how it got out so late."

Columbia public schools told KOMU 8 News some activities are meeting before school and some are meeting after.  High schools are also offering an early start option for students who want to finish their school days earlier.