Remote School Wednesdays are Beneficial

Wednesday schedule will change on January 13th

Remote School Wednesdays are Beneficial

Ethan Blanks, Staff Writer

In a year full of change, SHS is no exception. Over the summer, the return to school was one of the largest question marks due to the pandemic. SHS and Gates Middle School administrators created the plan to have two cohorts to minimize the number of people in their respective buildings at once. Cohort A students would be coming in on Mondays and Tuesdays for in-school instruction, and Cohort B students would be in the building on Thursdays and Fridays.

This left Wednesdays for teacher office hours, an opportunity for teachers to meet with students individually or in small groups, which is especially helpful for Cohort C (fully remote) students. Teachers also hold 30-minute home base (H-Block) check-ins to share information and build a sense of community. With a typical student’s official school responsibility being somewhat limited on Wednesdays, many people are curious about how students spend their mid-week time. 

In a poll with SHS students, 75% report not missing having H block. Many students even wake up around the same time they normally would, with 44% of students waking up between 8:00 and 9:00 AM. This shows that students are maintaining good sleep schedules through less structure, which was a worry for the Wednesday format. Some students need the extra time to catch up on much needed extra sleep; 29% reported they wake up from 9:00 to 10:00 AM. The flexibility of the schedule allows for students to use the time as needed: if students need to work on a project, they can, and if students need to relax to minimize stress and help motivate, they can. 

The majority of students polled had similar answers for a normal Wednesday schedule:

  • Wake up 
  • Attend Club or Class meeting(s)
  • Go to homeroom 
  • Work on homework 
  • Hang out with friends or work 

Wednesday is a good opportunity for students to finish up work for a smoother rest of the school week. SHS freshman Isabelle McKinnon commented, “I usually am able to get my work done for the rest of the week, which is nice.” She also emphasized how emailing her teachers with questions is a great tool for freshmen dealing with the transition into high school, as well as with COVID-19. 

Starting on Wednesday, January 13th, home base check-ins will begin at 9:15 AM, ushering in a new rendition of the schedule. This change is receiving mixed reviews, but it offers a more reasonable time for office hours for students who truly need the extra help. SHS junior Michael Lengen stated, “I’m not a huge fan of the change, as I really like being able to sleep in, but it’s not that bad.” This is a common theme among students, many of whom are just happy to keep Wednesdays open. 

This COVID schedule change comes with mixed reactions from students and parents. The continued effort of the administration to keep school safe is reassuring, and keeping students out of the building on Wednesdays will help students stay motivated.