By Ethan Kopraski
SARATOGA SPRINGS – The high school administration is putting together a “Time and Space Committee” to address, in part, schedule changes that may reach Saratoga Springs High School within the next few school years.
There are no plans to change the schedule at this time. However, the committee will be researching different types of schedules, such as those with 60-minute blocks, 40-minute periods and a shorter lunch, but with an added free period for students to see teachers or work in the library.
“This schedule has been in effect since 2008, I believe. We need to ask: Does this schedule still work for us?” said Ms. Michelle Tsao, the new principal of Saratoga Springs High School. Tsao has called on the Time and Space Committee to look at the schedules of other schools and the efficiency of a different schedule. “A big part of any schedule change is how long the lunch is,” said Tsao, “There still needs to be time for seniors to leave campus for lunch, because we can’t fit that many students in the cafeteria.”
The hours of the school day will not be part of any plan to re-envision the schedule. Stacy Ralston, an assistant principal at Saratoga Springs High School said, “We won’t be able to change the time that school starts or ends because teachers have to be here at certain times based on their contract.”
These changes won’t come into effect very soon as they will require “One to two years of planning,” according to Ralston. The committee’s efforts focus primarily on the needs of students. The school wants to “get it right the first time, so you guys [the students] won’t have a bunch of different schedules each year,” said Ralston.
The students are not necessarily opposed to the changes. Tessa Carminucci, an SSHS junior, said, “I hate 80-minute blocks; I would prefer 60-minute classes, but 40 minutes is too many classes in one day.” A change to the schedule could either make the school day more efficient, or more stressful. As Jordyn Clarke said, “An 80-minute schedule is better than a 40-minute one because you wouldn’t have all your classes on one day.” Although a new schedule would not be put into effect for the next few years, it is still a big change that could affect many aspects of students’ experience. As Carminucci said, “I hope they do change the schedule, it would change things up a bit.”
This is a revision to the original story, posted October 29, 2018