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When students returned to school last year after the pandemic, a new schedule took place, which reaps many advantages.
Instead of having eight 50-minute periods, and late start Wednesdays with eight 45-minute periods, there are alternating green and white days, with four periods per day, 90 minutes each. This new system is loved by many students and staff, including myself.
Senior Bella Gamerman is in favor of the new block schedule because of the easier workload. “My favorite part is being able to equally divide my homework between days,” she said.
Eryn Molley, also a senior, feels that she is more alert during the school day because she does not have to focus on as many different subjects. She said, “Block scheduling is less tiring compared to a normal eight-period day.”
Upper Darby High School located in the Philadelphia, Pa. area, also took on a new block schedule recently. Pete Bannan of Delco Times wrote, “Officials said students and parents also preferred block scheduling as it gave them fewer classes to focus on at one time and more resembled a college format. The school aims to encourage more students to take AP classes.”
Gamerman, who plans on attending college next year, appreciates how the new block schedule is preparing her for that change, especially with the open campus policy for seniors. She said, “Students have a lot more freedom when it comes to going to school. I feel as though being able to leave when I don’t have a class is preparing me for the college environment. The open campus policy is a great addition, it genuinely lets me get a feel for college life.”
Molley appreciates the extra time she has after school to do other activities besides just focusing on homework. “My homework is different because I don’t have as much every night, so I can space it out,” she said.
Although the new block schedule has many positives, it also has some downsides. One parent from Upper Darby High School said, “These kids aren’t in college. They need to be in a structured school setting.”
Gamerman admits that she noticed that some teachers have struggled with the new schedule. “Teachers are definitely struggling with block scheduling. They are trying to cram in a lot of material in little amounts of time,” she said.
She also appreciates how teachers have improved with classes this year compared to last year. She said, “Teachers have definitely adapted to that better this year than last year because of the experience.”