High school going to six-period days
March 19, 2013 — Lassen High School will be going to a six period day to help teachers capture more instruction time in the classroom.
As a result, class times will change from 46 minutes to one hour.
According to Lassen Union High School District interim superintendent Roy Casey, the greatest benefit of a six-period day is providing more instructional time, but students will also have more practice time in class, creating less homework in the evening and teachers will also have one less class for which they need to prepare.
The change begins in the 2013-2014 school year and does include a zero period, which is scheduled before school, around 7 a.m., and a seventh period, after school is over.
During a Feb. 19 meeting of the Lassen Union High School District Board of Trustees Robbin Pedrett, principal at Lassen High, gave a presentation and showed a mock schedule of what a six-period day would look like.
According to Pedrett, teachers felt they didn’t have the amount of time to teach the content standards.
“So the suggestion from every core department was they needed more time. And 60 minutes is what they were hoping for, so the only way to snag that, was really to get rid of one period and to lengthen those times and period of days,” Pedrett said. “So we did what the teachers asked us to do and put the interventions in place the state told us to do.”
Going to a six-period day may also benefit students in Advanced Placement courses as it will not only increase instruction time, but a zero period could provide a lab option.
Those before and after school options will also provide students the opportunity to do online coursework so they can catch up, if need be, according to Casey.
According to Jim Ernaga, Lassen Teachers Association co-president, the unit had met several times and at its last meeting, members present unanimously voted to approve a six-period schedule with zero and seventh periods to offer electives.
He said, “The six-period schedule would support more instructional minutes for us to teach the standards so hopefully we can get out of this Program Improvement thing, because we have difficulty covering all those standards as it is right now.”
As freshmen, students would take English I, math as appropriate, science, health, driver’s education, computer operations and physical education, an elective or have an intervention course if the student needs it.
By the time students are juniors they would have three elective periods and four elective periods during their senior year.
Juniors and seniors can use elective periods to take Advanced Placement and honors classes if they wish, according to Casey.
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