The Student News Site of Ronald W. Reagan High School

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The Student News Site of Ronald W. Reagan High School

The Rooster

The Student News Site of Ronald W. Reagan High School

The Rooster


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Potential calendar changes propose new challenges, flaws for students



In a meeting held on Tuesday, Jan. 23, The Winston-Salem/Forsyth County School Board decided that for 2024-2025, the school year will start on Aug. 12 and end on May 20. In addition to the calendar, the board had also discussed different bell times for a more cohesive schedule.

In previous meetings, the board had discussed the problem with the bell schedule and even came up with a draft of what a new bell schedule could look like throughout the district. However, the board has consistently decided to put this issue on the back burner.

There are currently 17 bell schedules in the district built to accommodate each school. Currently, elementary schools vary between 7:55-8:45 a.m. for a starting time and end at 2:40 p.m., most middle schools start class at 7:25 a.m. and end at 2 p.m. and most high schools start at 8:55 a.m. and ending at 3:40 p.m. The proposed bell schedule would have elementary schools split between three different time structures, starting between 8-9:10 a.m. and ending between 2:45-3:55 p.m.. Middle schoolers would be in class from 7:25 a.m. to 2:10 p.m. and high schoolers from 9:10 a.m.-3:55p.m.. 

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When stakeholders and board members reviewed this plan, they felt that this could lead to many negative impacts and unforeseen complications. Middle schools might start school too early for students to efficiently learn, and three different instructional hours for elementary schools might be difficult to navigate. The new bell schedule would also be destructive to many students personal lives, especially us high schoolers.

The current bell schedule for high schoolers already has students at school later than what they want to be, and if students have after school involvements like clubs or sports, these new times might have students at school till the sun goes down. Students taking higher-level classes will also be impacted by this new arrangement since the amount of homework increases with the difficulty level of the class. These students, too, would be up late trying to complete it in time.

Students with parents who have full-time jobs would also be disrupted by this new start time. Since most parents have 8-5 work days, they would not be able to drop their kid off at school or pick them up, potentially causing an increase in the demand for transportation via bus. Additionally, Students with jobs would have trouble finding shifts to accommodate their school schedule.

This new timetable is only a draft currently and would not be implemented this school year, but there is a lot of commotion about this proposed change. Many students, employees, and stakeholders have voiced their criticisms about it.

When looking at the big picture, this new structure is great. It reduces the number of schedules within the district from 17 to four, it would allow for longer lunch transitions, and would lessen traffic. But when you zoom in, you can see the flaws it has and the challenges it would bring. Students might have to turn down jobs or a flow of income because of school hours, parents might be more challenged in bringing their children to school, and students may be too tired to learn effectively.

Changes made to the school day with the intention of making things more efficient can be very beneficial, but thinking about everyone who will be impacted and affected by them is a very important step that the board must take.

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Bella Shipek
Bella Shipek, Rooster Reporter

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