High Schools: Confusing Schedules, Long Classes

A friend of the blog writes in about his observations subbing at different CPS high schools:

"This year I have subbed at 15 different CPS high schools and I am

amazed at how different they are. For one thing, there are many

different schedules. At one school the first class of the day is

different for different days of the week, probably to combat the

effects of low attendance for the first period of the day. Some have

some regular-size periods and some double-size periods in the same day,

which seems very confusing."

"I am not an expert, but it seems to me that

low income students need more consistency and repetition in their

lives, not more complications (such as not having math class every

day). I also think that 90 minute periods is not a match for their

attention spans. In general, recently constituted schools have more of

this strangeness than long-established schools, which suggests it may

be partly motivated by the desire to break with the past, or something

like that."

"Do teachers like long periods and

complicated schedules (A days and B days)? Do students? Do principals?

What are the effects of students having classes only on certain days

rather than every day?"

Good questions -- what do you think? Is there any consensus on block schedules and A/B scheduling, or is this just a matter of school-level preference? What's your preference as a teacher, parent, or student?

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