Staying in school may prepare you for the future but it won't give you a good night's sleep, according to new research released by the Centers For Disease Control (CDC) Thursday.

Published as part of the CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, the study's authors found that an overwhelming majority of the nation's middle and high schools are starting their day too early, which in turn is making it harder for their students to get the proper amount of sleep needed.

"Among an estimated 39,700 public middle, high, and combined schools in the United States, the average start time was 8:03 am," wrote the authors, noting that the American Academy of Pediatrics in 2014 strongly recommended that all schools shift to an 8:30 start time. "Overall, only 17.7% of these public schools started school at 8:30 am or later."

In some states, like Hawaii and Mississippi, they found that no public schools started by 8:30 am or later — about two-thirds of the schools in Alaska and North Dakota, by contrast, began their day by 8:30 am at the earliest.

Though a half-hour shift may not seem like much, the authors warn that these early bird schools can get in the way of the essential eight to ten hours of sleep that younger people need to function at their best. The less sleep that kids get, the worse off their developing bodies will be.

"Among adolescents, insufficient sleep has been associated with adverse risk behaviors, poor health outcomes, and poor academic performance," they wrote. "In view of these negative outcomes, the high prevalence of insufficient sleep among high school students is of substantial public health concern."

According to the authors, as little as one-third of students get sufficient sleep. And though school start times aren't the only reason that kids are sleepless, it's the sort of widespread but relatively easy policy change that can greatly reduce its incidence. Unfortunately, it's also one that's faced a lot of pushback.

"Common barriers to delaying school start times include concerns about increased transportation costs because of changes in bus schedules; potential for traffic congestion for students and faculty; difficulty in scheduling after-school activities, especially athletic programs; and lack of education in some communities about the importance of sleep and school start times," they wrote.

It's that latter factor that the authors hope can be mitigated through persuasive messaging from health providers who regularly interact with school-age children and their parents. They also note that parents can step in and help their kids get the sleep they need.

"Finally, parents might benefit themselves and their children by setting a good example," they wrote. "Adolescent sleep habits tend to reflect their parents' sleep habits."

Source: Wheaton A, Ferro, Croft J. School Start Times for Middle School and High School Students — United States, 2011–12 School Year. MMWR. 2015