The idea of a 24/7 timetable is that we look at what is best for the children and their educational needs."
"Some people simply learn better at different times than others, so why should children be forced into a situation where they have to learn between 9am and 3.30pm?
Well, yes, fair enough. Except that one of the reasons is that our traditional working hours—work is what a few of these pupils might actually deign to do when they've left school (always assuming that they can read and write, of course)—are 9 to 5. Yes, one could try to encourage companies to work at other hours, but it's tricky.
When I started working for myself, I tried to set the hours at 10 to 6 since, given my lifestyle, I thought that starting work later would be a good thing. Unfortunately, the problem with working drom home is that it is your telephone that rings and people wanted to get hold of me first thing. Thus, I found myself working from 9 to 6 (actually, most days I found myself working from 9 till 9, but we'll leave that aside for the moment). The point that I am making is that there is an expectation that people work from this time to that time and it can be very difficult to prevent that happening.
Now, Tim does point out that:
Although we could note that many private schools, especially boarding schools, do indeed have very different hours. 9-1 and 4.45 to 7 from distant memory.
At Eton, we had compulsory Chapel every morning at 8.40 (apart from Saturdays, when the lessons started at 8.40am instead) and lessons until 1.30pm. We then had sports until 4, I think, and then lessons from 4.20pm until 6pm (there was a changearound in the summer when the last two lessons happened immediately after lunch, at about 2.30pm and then sports started at 4.30 or so).
However, the point is that these are not "very different hours": the crucial point is that the day started on or before that magic 9am hour. If part of school is to train people for working life—and some part of it must be—then it is pretty important that people get used to turning up at 9am. Otherwise, in most work environments, they will not hold down their job for long (and, let's face it, a great many people leaving comprehensive education in this country do not need another handicap).
Now, one could say that we should be trying to change work practices—as someone who works far better in the evening and nighttime than during the day, I personally would welcome it—but it isn't really practical. And, if we wish to revolutionise, how about we work on changing working hours first and then change the school learning hours?