New Schedule on the Block

After many years, North Springs tries its hand at moving to a block schedule.

by Jasmine Potts

As the 2020-21 school year begins, North Springs students will find themselves in new setting: Block schedule. Block schedule is typically used in schools K-12, when each student has fewer daily classes but longer class periods. There are many advantages of applying this schedule which include making transitioning easier, fewer daily classes, and students receiving more instructional time. There are also drawbacks, such as having longer classes, the loss of focus during longer periods, and students losing continuity. 

On the one hand, block schedule can be beneficial to teachers and students who are in courses with testing and advanced placement classes. More instructional time is authorized, teachers have longer planning periods, and transition becomes easier. Students have reduced homework because of the increased time in class. With time, students are able to learn more information. With a block schedule Electives like theater and music also benefit from more time.

As students, we like the sound of a reduced schedule, but on the other hand, one of the drawbacks is the possibility of missing information. Missing one day of school equals missing two full days of that class. With those two days, students could fall behind and become frustrated. Decreased learning could come from being tired in longer class hours, or even worse–being bored.

The school anticipated some of these issues, as well as the positives by running a “practice block” schedule this week.” Teachers spent part of their most recent development day in training learning strategies to plan on the block and make the longer periods engaging. Wednesday was the “A” day of periods 1, 3, 5, and 7, and Thursday sees a long homeroom followed by periods 2, 4, and 6.

The Oracle spoke to several staff members prior to this week about the anticipated changes:

Oracle: Do you recommend the Block schedule over the schedule we have now? 

Dr. Johnson (Head of counseling): “I totally recommend the block schedule. Students get to learn more, have a better understanding of lessons, have more one on one time, and ask questions.” 

Mr. Jones, Administrator: “The block schedule is supposed to help students. We are switching to eight classes next school term but it’s for a better education environment. School is for learning.”

Ashley Pope, Junior:  “No, I feel like the block schedule will only benefit the AP students and not the other students that aren’t as advanced”

Courtney Suber, Sophomore: “ Yes, at first I was against it, but now I don’t really care.” 

We put together a list of pros and cons–what do YOU think?

ProsCons
More effective Students lose continuity 
Increased instructional time Longer classes
Fewer classes Decreased learning
Less time during the dayEasily tired 
Easier transitionCover less information 
Less homework
Longer planning period
We put together a list of pros and cons–what do YOU think?

The Oracle is committed to bringing more details and views from those who experienced the practice schedule this week–you! Send your thoughts to nshighpublications.com and you may see your opinion in print!

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