Seven period day brings new opportunities to South students

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This year’s new bell schedule makes room for one more period.

As South commences yet another school year, it’s definitely not the same as last year or the year before. This year, South has introduced a seven period schedule day to South students and staff, adding 20 more minutes to the day to fit in an extra class, which most Minneapolis Public High Schools had already installed.

“We [the district] are doing what we think is best. Every high school has a seven period day,” Principal Ray Aponte emphasized while talking about the new changes.

“It gives students more of an opportunity for choice,” said Aponte. With the seven period day, we’ve not only added an extra hour, but we’ve added more classes to South’s course list including astronomy, forensic science, and music theory. The additions also help students earn their credits much faster, a concept which other schools have already taken advantage of.

“It’s good. It’s allowing a lot of kids to fit in their gym and art credits before they graduate so it’s easier for them to do other things,” counselor Marie Hassel points out.

Students can enroll in PSEO, sign up for an open hour, or take more classes that suit their interests. This is a big advancement for us because so many other Minneapolis High Schools, like Patrick Henry and Roosevelt, already offered the extra class. The seven hour day had let their students earn credits faster and more efficiently than South, putting us at a disadvantage.

“I think it’s nice to have an open hour at the end of the day,” senior Mia Dusek said. “I can just do most of my homework then.” Finishing all your homework at school gives you more time to do after school activities or participates in sports, which is another reason why the seven period day is a good thing for South students. Now, we have more time during the day to get work done and go home with a smaller workload.

But the schedule does get a little inconsistent. “The hours are shorter, so it’s harder for teachers to go through everything they want to talk about,” Dusek continued. “It’s just complicated.”

“If I could change one thing, I would add an extra minute to every passing hour, even though it would add more time to school,” ASD teacher Fielder laughed, when asked how he would change the schedule. Netherless, both Dusek and Fielder can agree that the seven day period does benefit South.

“I don’t know if it’ll help or hurt South, but it gives us more uniformity and helps us catch up to the game. We just have to stay positive about it,” Aponte closed.

So, while South added twenty minutes to the day, and made a not so rounded bell schedule that’s irritating to memorize, there’s so much more you can do that wasn’t really possible before. If you like stars and the tv show Cosmos, take astronomy. If you like the thought of finishing your homework before school ends? Study hall. And if you’re a senior, have an open first hour and sleep until 8 o’clock. Instead of focusing on the negatives of the longer school day, we should be looking at all the opportunities this extra time is giving us.