Arguably one of the hardest parts of high school is waking up in the morning. Hitting the snooze button for that sweet extra five minutes is a dangerous game to play. You blink, and all of a sudden you've missed the bus, or first period has already started!

Well according to ABC 7 New York, the morning school rush might get a littler easier, with a new bill that's proposing a later start time for NJ high schools.

According to the National Center for Educational Statistics, on average, NJ high schools begin classes at 7:51 a.m.,compared to the national average of 8:00. If the bill is passed, it would require high schools to begin classes no later than 8:30 a.m by the 2024-2025 school year.

So an extra 30 minutes! Might not seem like a lot, but it can actually make a huge difference, especially since in the last two years, child mental health has been on a decline amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, which in turn, negatively affects a student's ability to learn.

The bill is co-sponsored by New Jersey legislators Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin and Senator Vin Gopal, who are tackling the issue of worsening mental health among high school students. Especially since a recent study found that teens who start school earlier the 8:30 in the morning are at a higher risk for developing depression and anxiety.

"Sleep is fundamental to students' mental and physical well-being," Gopal said. "Ensuring students are getting enough rest is an important first step toward addressing the alarming rise in student mental health issues we're seeing in New Jersey."

Where was this bill when I was in school?!

Check out the video by ABC 7 below!

These are the best hiking spots in New Jersey

A trip to New Jersey doesn't have to be all about the beach. Our state has some incredible trails, waterfalls, and lakes to enjoy.

From the Pine Barrens to the Appalachian Trail to the hidden gems of New Jersey, you have plenty of options for a great hike. Hiking is such a great way to spend time outdoors and enjoy nature, plus it's a great workout.

Before you go out on the trails and explore some of our listeners' suggestions, I have some tips on hiking etiquette from the American Hiking Society.

If you are going downhill and run into an uphill hiker, step to the side and give the uphill hiker space. A hiker going uphill has the right of way unless they stop to catch their breath.

Always stay on the trail, you may see side paths, unless they are marked as an official trail, steer clear of them. By going off-trail you may cause damage to the ecosystems around the trail, the plants, and wildlife that live there.

You also do not want to disturb the wildlife you encounter, just keep your distance from the wildlife and continue hiking.

Bicyclists should yield to hikers and horses. Hikers should also yield to horses, but I’m not sure how many horses you will encounter on the trails in New Jersey.
If you are thinking of bringing your dog on your hike, they should be leashed, and make sure to clean up all pet waste.

Lastly, be mindful of the weather, if the trail is too muddy, it's probably best to save your hike for another day.

I asked our listeners for their suggestions of the best hiking spots in New Jersey, check out their suggestions:

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