Late Start

Madelyn Valencia & Stefanos Aidonis

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The new school has brought a new schedule with it. Students and staff have gotten use to late starts on Thursday, but this year late start is on a Wednesday and it has been pushed back to 9:30.

Why the change? People may wonder. 

Teachers and staff still start early. In fact teachers actually start even earlier on Wednesdays. As professional development meetings start at 7:50 am.

The move  was designed to create more time for teacher meetings and the opportunity to collaborate. It also allows the district more flexibility.

“Resource hour is now the same in all three district 218 high schools,” said ABS associate principal Jen Pollack. “This provides all staff in the district the opportunity to collaborate with colleagues in the same department and across buildings. When teachers work together to learn new practices and problem solve, it ultimately benefits the students because they gain stronger learning experiences as a result of the efforts put in by the teachers. 

This change is seen as a benefit to both students and teachers. Principal Greg Waldner also feels the move will be beneficial to everyone.

“Teachers are able to communicate across the district with peers in other building,” said Walder. “Hopefully teachers will have more time to plan better lessons which would benefit the students.”

 There are of course other reasons for the move to Wednesday. Assistant principal Brian Roberts brought up the bus situation.

“If we started at 9 still, the bus company wouldn’t be able to get the students to all different schools on time,” said Roberts.

Also Elizabeth Palowski another assistant principal explained that if it’s starting at 9:30 the students get more time at home to get more sleep.

So what exactly is taking place during this teacher time?

“During this time teachers work collectively with each other to analyze student work to help improve instruction,” stated Walder.

“Most of the resource hour time is dedicated to teacher professional development and practices that will translate into the classroom,” Pollack added. 

Walder feels, that late start could possibly become a daily thing since it allows teachers extra time to work collaboratively to improve student learning.