Doctors say middle school and high school classes should not start before 8:30 a.m.

The American Academy of Pediatricians says delaying the start of the school day until 8:30 a.m. or later would effectively counteract what the doctors call an epidemic of insufficient or erratic sleep patterns among teenagers. The nation's biggest pediatric organization says pushing back school start times would help teens get the eight-and-a-half to nine and-a-half nightly hours of sleep they need.

The study is published online in the journal "Pediatrics."

[Metro Networks]

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