Potential change of implementing new static scheduling protocol to combat snow days at ELHS
By Sana Gupta
When school is canceled, most students wake up relieved and turn back over to get another few hours of shut eye. What students don’t realize, however, is the struggle for teachers and administrators to reschedule planned events and meetings. The administration is trying to fix this issue by proposing a “static” schedule to match that of other schools in the area, according to ELHS Principal Michael Susi, but not everyone is on board.
A static schedule is having a fixed schedule where snow days would not interfere with pushing back Day 1’s or Day 2’s. For example, if it is a Day 1 on Monday, and there was a snow day on Tuesday, instead of having a Day 2 on Wednesday, there would be a Day 1. The schedule would remain “static” for the year.
“If guest speakers or parents are coming, they don’t schedule their lives around the Day 1/Day 2 schedule, they schedule around whatever the date is. When our schedule changes, to try and reschedule those people is always a challenge,” said Mr. Susi.
It would also allow for more calculated planning of fire drills and school events such as the Extravaganza or testing days.
“It gives me a little more control over trying to be equitable across the the schedule for days. It comes down to the flexibility for events that we schedule. We can move around events so we’re not missing the same day the whole time,” said Mr. Susi.
On the other hand, some teachers are concerned about how the change would impact students and teachers.
“Our focus has to be on teaching and learning. You can’t prevent weather so you could end up with consistently having snow days on a Day 1 or a Day 2, and losing all that instructional time. That would be a big problem in a class like AP Literature where I have a lot of content and a lot of skills to cover [before the exam] and if I miss a lot of days, that can be incredibly disruptive,” said English teacher Ms. Buckley. “I try to keep my Day 1 and Day 2 classes as closely aligned as possible, but when you miss three or four of one of those days, they’re completely off-schedule from one another.”
Some students also feel that the system would negatively affect their learning.
“Certain classes would fall behind. For example, if we had snow days on [alternating days], we would lose several Day 1’s or Day 2’s, and that would be inconvenient near testing times,” said senior Quintin Sefton.
Regardless, the administration is confident that any decision made will only help students and staff.
“I don’t see this as harming us if we try it. I think it only makes us better. If it doesn’t make us better, we’ll go back,” said Mr. Susi.