Later start times coming for California middle and high schools

Oct 14, 2019

California is now the first state in the U.S. to insist on later start times for most public schools with grades 8 through 12. Governor Gavin Newsom signed a bill over the weekend that phases in a requirement for junior high schools classes to begin no earlier than 8 a.m. and high school classes no earlier than 8:30 a.m.

As the L.A. Times reports, the law “does not apply to optional early classes, known as 'zero periods,' or to schools in some of the state’s rural districts.”

Meanwhile, Newsom vetoed more than a hundred bills over the weekend as he cleared his desk for the year.

Newsom attributed most of his rejections to cost. For bill after bill, he praised the authors’ goals — such as expanding full-day kindergarten — but told them to work through the state budget process instead.

The most expensive measure he vetoed would have let cities and counties divert 2 billion dollars a year in property tax revenue for schools to affordable housing projects.

He also rejected a bill that would have required large cities to create safe parking programs for people who are homeless, saying that decision should be made locally. He sent back a bill setting rules for commercial blood banks for animals, saying it doesn’t go far enough. And he vetoed a measure that would have let more cities use ranked choice voting, saying it’s created greater confusion instead of greater democracy.