Problems often arise because politicians fail to properly predict and consider indirect consequences of their policy decisions.  We see it time and time again on the federal level.  But it can happen at the local level too. 

Just outside of D.C., the Fairfax County Public School system is considering a new policy that would push back the start time of school.  The initiative is designed to promote healthier sleep schedules for students, namely by letting them sleep in a little longer.  That all sounds well and good until you look at the other consequences of the policy.  Moving the start times might let kids sleep in a little, but it would also create a tremendous strain on scheduling extracurricular activities.  Already, some extracurricular activities are talking about moving from after school to before school to accommodate the new schedule — so much for getting some extra sleep.  But more disturbing, several sports teams might have to be cut because the schools wouldn’t be able to rent out facilities like swimming pools later on in the day (because prices are higher due to demand).  So a well-intentioned initiative about sleep schedules might end up robbing lots of student athletes of the ability to participate in their sports.  How’s that for unintended consequences? 

Learn more about the issue here.