Finally being back on campus after so long takes a lot of readjusting, especially now with a different schedule. Our usual 8:00 starting period has been changed to 8:30 so students and teachers can get more rest and hopefully have a less rushed morning routine. Unfortunately, this has not been the case for many students; even though this change is supposed to be for our benefit, some of the students disagree with how helpful the late start really is.
For example, a fellow student, Kristen C., says “[she] like[s] school starting later” and that it “gives [her] more time to get there [school] and get in the daily pass line.” Similarly, Fanny Jo, a junior at Eagle Rock Highschool, feels she “can get up as late as 8:00 if [she] really need[s] the extra sleep.” When asked if she enjoyed the later start she responded, “I do! It gives me more time to actually have a morning at home, as opposed to just rushing out the door for school twenty minutes after I wake up.”
However, a few students including K.M. argue that starting school later has its pros and cons: “it’s not the best because I have to get to school still at the same time and wait for a while for school to actually begin. Although it is a long while to wait, I am able to get some homework done during that time.” Though some students appreciate the extra 30 minutes, others still have to arrive on campus at the same time and get out of school later. Gianna even says, “I don’t like the late start because it does not serve the purpose it is intended to. Not all of us are getting that extra half hour of sleep; I find it very unfair.” While some students feel less rushed and more relaxed in the mornings, others are frustrated with the extra wait.
Some students aren’t a fan of the late start, but even more disagree with the later dismissal. School ending at 3:18 gives students less time after school to do the things they enjoy and results in them getting home later. “The new schedule gives me less time to do things after school”, and “I don’t like getting out later because it limits the amount of things I can do after school,” says K.M. Maybe if school ended earlier students wouldn’t need to finish homework before school in the mornings and would have more time to get it over with after school.
Gianna also brings up an amazing point, expressing how getting off school at 3:18 leaves us sitting in the heat: “The new schedule leaves less time for me after school and it’s hot right now so the heat is like peaking while we are at school and when we are leaving school”. She continues, “I mentioned heat because if we got out earlier it wouldn’t be so hot because it gets super hot around 3-4.” Fanny Jo also explains, “I don’t like getting out later, per se, because the longer the school day goes the more drained I am afterward”. I would have to say I definitely agree with this statement as it makes it harder to want to do homework or be productive. Ending school at 3:18 has also led to athletes missing all of 4th or 8th period while cutting into 3rd or 7th period as well. Since a C average is required for sports, missing this much class time can end up being somewhat problematic.
It seems clear that many students have different opinions on the new schedule, they all seem to have great ideas for improvement. Fanny Jo expresses her suggestions for a better schedule, even if it is just an optimistic idea: “I’m fully aware that this wouldn’t work well realistically, but I personally would like it if we had a longer lunch, maybe 45 minutes, and school ended more around 2:30- but that’s just wishful thinking.” While getting out earlier and having a longer lunch may not be possible, it is an idea that other students agree with. For instance, K.M. agrees saying the schedule could “improve if passing periods were slightly shorter and either give us nutrition or let us out earlier.” Kristen C. also believes the school schedule could improve if we could “not get out of school so late like really, 3:18, I got a life.”
Overall, the students’ responses are all different but they seem to agree with each other when it comes to how late we end school. With a fantastic suggestion from K.M. saying shorter passing periods can lead to an earlier dismissal, nutrition, or even a long lunch like what Fanny Jo said, I think it becomes clear that students feel they would be more productive and operate better in class with longer or more breaks or if we got out of school a tad earlier than we do now.