With a new school year on the horizon for most, high school math teacher and scheduling assistant David Nezelek is seeking to encourage those interested in a later start time to request that option when filling out their course selection sheet in the coming weeks. Nezelek explained that if enough students wish to start later, the office can possibly provide desired classes at later times in the school day.
As scheduling for the 2020-2021 school year begins next week, students still have the option to choose their start time, due to elementary and middle school students, which is something very unique to Pine View. Although most high school students choose to begin first period and go through sixth period without a lunch period, students have always had and still have the option to begin second or third period, as well as take time for lunch opposed to having six courses back to back. Nezelek believes that more students should take advantage of these options in order to obtain a schedule that best suits them.
“What I’m hearing is, people that want to do this, but for whatever reason, they’re not making the official requests. So, we’re hoping that people will make those requests; and if they do, we can meet those needs,” Nezelek said.
Although there is flexibility present among high school students’ scheduling options, a majority of the extracurricular scene has created a norm for being finished with classes by 1 p.m. This has caused many clubs and extra help sessions to meet after sixth period opposed to later times, which has caused people to stray away from choosing later start times. Although there is no immediate solution, if enough students request later schedules, extracurriculars can naturally begin to adjust to new demand.
“One thing that we’re considering, and none of this is final yet, is not offering any classes seventh period, accounting for students who want to stay later,” Nezelek said in response to concerns of students with later schedules not being able to participate in clubs.
Many students, parents and teachers believe that starting later could be of great benefit to student health among rigorous course loads and busy after school schedules. According to the National Sleep Foundation, “Teens’ natural sleep cycle puts them in conflict with school start times…They are like zombies getting ready for school and find it hard to be alert and pay attention in class. Because they are sleep deprived, they are sleepy all day and cannot do their best. Schools that have set later bell times find that students do not go to bed later, but get one hour more of sleep per school night, which means five hours more per week.”
For those who are looking to start their days at a later time, it is possible to select that option on the course selection sheets. By choosing this option, students can benefit from a schedule that better caters to individual needs.
Video by Felicity Chang
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