Last Friday, the high school adopted a new block schedule. Fridays are now split up into three ‘sessions’ with 50 minutes in each session. The day starts in advisory, where you decide where you will spend each period, and also ends in advisory, where you spend some time reflecting on the day. Previously, the day was essentially the same as a normal weekday, but with much shorter periods at 20 minutes in each one. Students would be cycling in and out of classes, getting very little work done in each. 20 minutes didn’t allow students to really settle into their work, and was not an effective use of time. This new schedule is now giving students three 50 minute periods to work on unfinished work and/or receive help in classes that they may be struggling with.
Students who are not having troubles in any of their classes can spend this time discovering new skills and opportunities. During the first couple of runs of this new schedule, teachers provided and hosted different activities for students who fit into this group. These activities included a ping pong tournament, art, a guitar lesson, book club, and a few others as well. Of course, the variety was more limited, as the idea was only recently applied and teachers had a limited amount of time to prepare. A plethora of different and exciting activities should be expected in the near future, as teachers become more accustomed to the change.
So far, the new Friday schedule has been received quite positively by both the students and staff. Many students are happy with the new variety of choices that are available to them, and they like that they’re now able to decide what they’re going to do with their day. Principal Scott Shoop also finds that the new schedule is doing well and looks forward to it getting better. Thankfully, many people in the school also share his sentiments. Hopefully, this change will continue to have a positive impact on the productivity of students on future Fridays.