School & District Management Report Roundup

Sleep and Achievement

By Marva Hinton — August 23, 2016 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

Do differences in sleep cycles between boys and girls help explain the gender performance gap? That’s the theory behind a paper released this summer by the Institute for the Study of Labor, a private, independent research institute based in Germany.

The study is believed to be the first study to find a connection between later school start times and improved academic performance by boys relative to girls.

Researchers from the University of California, Davis, studied data from a group of secondary schools in Eastern Europe where students alternate school start times each month. For example, one month middle school students would start class at 7:30 a.m., and high school classes would begin at 1:30 p.m. Then the following month they would switch start times. During each rotation, students had the same teachers and took their courses in the same order.

The researchers looked at all the students’ grades from month to month and compared their performance in the afternoon versus the morning from 2008 to 2014.

They found that, while girls outperform boys overall, the gender gap is narrower during the afternoon classes than it is during the morning classes. The work builds on previous studies, which found that girls deal with sleep deprivation more successfully than boys and are more likely to be early risers, while boys’ circadian rhythms make them more likely to stay up later and wake later in the morning.

Related Tags:

A version of this article appeared in the August 24, 2016 edition of Education Week as Sleep and Achievement


This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Data Webinar
Education Insights with Actionable Data to Create More Personalized Engagement
The world has changed during this time of pandemic learning, and there is a new challenge faced in education regarding how we effectively utilize the data now available to educators and leaders. In this session
Content provided by Microsoft
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
School & District Management Webinar
Accelerate Learning with Project-Based Learning
Earlier this year, the George Lucas Educational Foundation released four new studies highlighting how project-based learning (PBL) helps accelerate student learning—across age groups, multiple disciplines, and different socio-economic statuses. With this year’s emphasis on unfinished
Content provided by SmartLab Learning
School & District Management Live Online Discussion Principal Overload: How to Manage Anxiety, Stress, and Tough Decisions
According to recent surveys, more than 40 percent of principals are considering leaving their jobs. With the pandemic, running a school building has become even more complicated, and principals' workloads continue to grow. If we

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

School & District Management With $102 Million in Grants, These Districts Plan to Train Principals With a Focus on Equity
The new grant program from the Wallace Foundation will help eight school districts work on building principals’ capacity to address equity.
11 min read
Image of puzzle pieces with one hundred dollar bill imagery
School & District Management Opinion Toxic Positivity Has No Place in Schools
Educators can’t do everything, but we can do some things, writes district leader Cherisse Campbell.
Cherisse Campbell
4 min read
A teacher sits on her desk thinking in an empty classroom.
Joy Velasco for Education Week
School & District Management The Already Dire Substitute Shortage Could Get 'Worse Before It Gets Better'
School districts are trying all sorts of tactics, including increasing pay and relaxing requirements, to get more subs in classrooms.
10 min read
Image of an empty classroom.
School & District Management Opinion National School Boards Association Chooses to Be Part of the Problem
The NSBA chose to blur the distinction between permissible and suspect speech in suggesting the FBI should target unruly protesters.
5 min read
Image shows a multi-tailed arrow hitting the bullseye of a target.
DigitalVision Vectors/Getty