Column: Academic asset or waste of time?

Lauren Hoogeveen, Story Editor

Sitting in the fieldhouse during lunch freshman year, I made my final decision to switch to online classes. Finishing all my homework and still having time to finish an entire episode of Criminal Minds, I thought, “why am I wasting so much time here?” With half of the students were online and the other half were in person, there was a lot of free time to work at school. Although the extra work time is a major benefit, especially for students who are in sports and extracurriculars, I can picture how it would change in the future now that covid isn’t a factor. 

One of the largest issues with block scheduling during the 2020-2021 school year was unpreparedness. Most of my peers who prefer block scheduling have not taken into consideration the fact that teachers would have activities planned for the entire block, not just the same length of a normal schedule’s period. The amount of freetime was unique to the covid school years, not block schedule. Teachers will have material planned for the full 90 minutes instead of working with their plans from the 8-period schedule that they were used to. Although this does not make block schedule inherently ineffective, it means next year we will have a very different experience with it in comparison to the laid-back version during covid. 

Despite being a major asset to classes that require a lot of hands-on activities and group work, like music and art classes, the thought of spending 90 minutes in any other class seems completely unfavorable. Not only is it great to get up, walk around the school and see your friends in between classes, but core classes like math and science may struggle. If I only had math lessons three times a week, I wouldn’t have the same understanding that I do from having math class every day. 

As someone who is involved in many extracurricular activities, I can definitely see block schedule being a benefit workload-wise. Only seeing a particular class every other day means that you get an additional day to get that class’ work done. Although everyone is unaware of how block schedule will be run post-covid, I can imagine a lot of teachers would assign more work since students have more time. The workload will increase in respect to the time given. Overall, I feel that not seeing all classes everyday will have a negative impact on learning as a whole, despite the time increase.