New York Magazine published an article last month about how kids today are getting a lack of sleep. And apparently, their cognitive performance suffers because of it.

Here’s the numbers from the article:

Half of all adolescents get less than seven hours of sleep on weeknights. By the time they are seniors in high school, according to studies by the University of Kentucky, they average only slightly more than 6.5 hours of sleep a night. Only 5 percent of high-school seniors average eight hours.

I really do think that it’s a good study, and a point well worth making – that students today are overstressed and overworked. But reading it, I’m kind of cynical as well. Mainly because, well, here in Singapore 6.5 hours of sleep a night tends to be a rarity in itself. At least from the schools I’ve been in, and the friends I have. I used to sleep about 6 hours, and that was average (or slightly above average). I’ve got lots of friends who sleep less than that, staying up to do work. I would say (from my personal experience) that a 15 year old student here averages the same amount of sleep as the “seniors in high school”. Just for the sake of comparison, there were days in my last school where my school day lasted from 7.30am to 6pm. Which is ridiculous, if you ask me. Given this sort of schedule – and the addition of homework – is it any wonder students lack sleep?

I know this post sounds cynical and angry, but part of this is just a rant against the education system. Especially the system here in Singapore. Because I really think that something needs to change.

Link via Nerd News Radio: NNR #33