• Find one volunteer at each of the high schools in your area to be a point person for outreach and to determine the problems at that school and those at its elementary and middle feeder schools. Those problems can then be brought to the attention of the main group.

  • If volunteers aren’t available at some schools, look for student coordinators who are willing to help. Students can also act as adjuncts to adult volunteers.

  • Gathering signatures for a petition is easier and faster when done online. The Web site will let you establish one free of charge; you can make a donation if you like.

  • A short PowerPoint slide show is a great way to get the word out to administrators, PTAs, and others you want to reach. You can also connect with wider audiences by:

    • Putting articles in parent newsletters and student newspapers

    • Answering articles or letters to the editor about sleep and school start times

    • Making up and distributing bumper stickers that include your Web site address (one of the S.L.E.E.P. stickers says “Tired of Early School Start Times?” and features the Web address)

    • Linking your site to the PTA site

    • Making presentations at Back to School Night and other events

  • Work with your school administrators. Some will resist the move for change but others will get behind it.

  • Recruit local college students to help compile data and to write reports.

  • Keep a file of all positive articles and data related to later start times and send copies to the superintendent of schools and all the members of the school board.

  • Network with schools in other districts where start times have been moved later.

Spreading Sleep Deprivation Awareness

As Phyllis Payne of S.L.E.E.P. said, above, it can take some time to see the drive to move school start times later succeed. But while that effort

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