The Patriot Press

OP-ED: Pros of Block Schedules

By Lily Waterman, Staff Writer

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Despite the length of each class period, I believe block scheduling will ultimately serve to benefit our school. The rotating drop schedule was introduced to replicate the flexibility of a college schedule and extend periods for teachers to have the ability to integrate different forms of instruction and activities. By gaining 270 minutes per class per week, teachers can spend more time varying learning experiences and a more focused curriculum.

Significant differences include six academic classes meet per day for 58 minutes each, instead of the eight structured classes now for 42 minutes each. Science labs will meet once every four days during the lunch period for 20 minutes. Also, general passing time to get to a class will be deduced by half as well as one generic lunch period for 54 minutes.

The unit lunch would be an exciting and fun introduction mainly because it is a major social problem every year to not have lunch with all of one’s friends and to thus feel left out. With the new block scheduling, everyone will have the same lunch and be able to have access to the gym and extra-help.

Another main problem is stress and anxiety that student’s face on a daily basis regarding the amount of work needed to be done for each class per day. With block scheduling, students only have to prepare for 6 out of 8 classes every day. This is beneficial particularly in AP classes, for the length of time required to simulate test-like conditions will be able to be replicated, such as a DBQ or long essay question.

Sophomore student Yulieanna Sim says, “I’m excited for the change in classes every day, but I feel like 60 minutes is too excessive for one class and I won’t be able to concentrate for that long. Tests and in-class assessments are already long and difficult now; I cannot imagine adding 20 minutes. Generally, I think it will benefit my time management and extracurricular activities by allowing more time for each assignment.”

According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, anxiety disorders affect one in eight children. These children mostly go untreated and are more likely to perform worse in school, compromise social experiences, and engage in substance abuse. By increasing time in each class and eliminating two academic classes per day, students have less assignments every night and can spend more time with their teachers understanding concepts.

On a personal level, I am very interested in a changing schedule, especially to incorporate differences in my everyday life.

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