School Adjusts to the New Schedule

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School Adjusts to the New Schedule

Ashley Kuropatkin

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For the past 20 years, the high school has implemented the same, 5×7 schedule—but this year, the school has introduced a new, 6×8 schedule to fulfill the requirement of taking physical education (PE) each year.

“The PE requirement was definitely part of the new schedule change, and over the last few years we’ve seen students struggling in school,” Jennifer Dolan, the director of School Counseling, said. “There are so many demands of students outside of the school day, that we were looking for a time during the school day where kids could access support—whether it’s mental health, or academic, it will only benefit students.”

This year, each student is allowed to take a study hall. Many opportunities are presented for students during this block, whether it is a chance to complete homework, take a break from the school day or seek extra help. By maintaining a variety of options for the students, students are not limited by the requirement to enroll in PE.

“At first, I didn’t think I was going to like the study because I wanted to take an eighth academic class or an elective,” junior Emme DeVito said. “But after having a few weeks of study, it’s been beneficial at least for me because I don’t have a lot of time out of school to do my homework, so I feel really productive and I’m able to get work done.” One of the newest changes is having three longer lunch blocks rather than four. Due to the addition of an eighth period, more classes are grouped together in the same lunch, making the cafeteria more crowded than before. In order to solve the problem of overcrowding, more tables have been added to the cafeteria.

“I think having three lunches is too small and crowded because last year, you could use lunch to talk and catch up with your friends. This year, I feel like you get drowned out, and it doesn’t make lunch relaxing anymore,” junior Alison Giffen said.

With reducing the period length from 67 to 56 minutes, teachers will have less time with their students over the course of the year.

“It is still early in the school year to know how the new schedule will impact classes,” said science teacher and member of the scheduling committee, Daniel Mullaney. “Teachers will have to make decisions as to what content will be emphasized less or dropped completely.”

Both the staff and students are looking forward to working with this year’s new schedule. In order to provide its students with as many opportunities as possible, the new schedule does not restrain an individual to limit their interests.

“I think that everybody—teachers and students—has been very accommodating and accepting to the new schedule in a way that I’m very impressed with,” Principal Stephen Imbusch said, “Everyone is rolling with it.”