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Kids on the Block

Sounding Off on the Bell Schedule

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Do you prefer traditional (6 periods everyday, current schedule) or block (4 block periods every other day)?

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For many years SPHS has changed how the bell schedule works, in this reporter’s four years he has attended SPHS, the schedule has changed twice. During my freshman year, the schedule was an 8-period block schedule days with a reverse minimum day on Fridays.  Students took four periods a day on an odd and even basis.

During my sophomore and junior year, the reverse minimum Friday was changed to a minimum Tuesday for every other week with early dismissal every other week.

Now in my senior year, the school radically changed the school’s schedule once more, this time taking away two periods and having all six periods happen in one day.  The minimum Tuesdays for every other week still applied. Due to this radical change to the schedule many students were used to, dislike of the new schedule has erupted.

According to my sources, the faculty was split 50-50 on moving from the 8-period block schedule (alternating odd-even four classes per day) to the traditional six period schedule.  After years of defeat, the six period schedule finally won the faculty vote by a fraction. Many class offerings and three teacher positions were lost because of the reduction in periods and class offerings.

A non-scientific random survey was conducted by this reporter from a sample of 80 students on whether they like the block or the traditional schedule.  Fifty-four students said they disliked the new schedule, 26 said they liked it. That is nearly half the students sampled. The reasons for so many dislikes on the new schedule vary. Some say they dislike the schedule because of how many periods there are in one day, others say they dislike having to see certain teachers or take certain classes everyday. Students who were behind in credits disliked not having the extra periods to make up credits. The most common reason was there was no extra day to finish up any homework they couldn’t get to because of personal or for work-related reasons.

Surprisingly, many students disliked the shorter periods on the traditional schedule because they get less time for individual attention from their teachers and many lessons can’t be completed in one period. The students who preferred the six period traditional schedule, liked it only for the shorter classes and did not seemed to be concerned about homework when asked.

All of the students felt they should have a vote in the schedule or their voices should at least be taken into consideration.This reporter will be graduating, but nonetheless hopes teachers will take another vote and give the students the 8-period block schedule that works better for them, and at least half the teachers.

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Kids on the Block