“High school is a time of transition and change, and as a faculty we are committed to meeting the needs of our boys.”—St. Mary’s Faculty
Eight different classes a day. Eight different assignments a day. Every day, students suffer. Currently, we St. Mary’s students attend very brief 45 minute classes; this is too short to absorb any information. How are we supposed to reflect on our learnings? According to school districts in the United States, “scheduling with less classes per day is more effective than traditional scheduling because it offers students more instructional time” (2019, Owlcation). With fewer classes and less time during the school day devoted to moving between classes, students are able to focus and accomplish more. As there are too many different classes in which the students have to care about over the course of one day, St. Mary’s students cannot concentrate on their work, preventing them from reaching their full academic potential.
A survey of St. Mary’s students revealed that approximately 90% of the students voted for a daily double block schedule — many students believed that having a double block schedule would enable them to concentrate more on the specific subject they’re working on. In addition, the majority of the students believed that they could improve their grades by having a double block schedule instead. “Having eight different classes every day is just too demanding. Sometimes, my friends and I have five different tests a day. When I’m preparing for a test for one subject, I can’t focus because there are four other tests to study for. This stresses me out all the time. If we have double block schedules every day, I am sure that I can significantly improve my grades,” said sophomore Ryoichi George II Ariyoshi.
As well as students, many of our teachers advocate for the implementation of double block schedules into our school routine. Our Eastern Civilization teacher Mr. Pettit, who has seen many of his students doing other classwork in class, claims that an every day double block schedule would alleviate this situation: “To be honest, students are not focusing and putting enough effort into my assignments. This really frustrates and annoys me. I believe that a double block schedule would prevent this from happening because my students will have less classes to worry about per day. Also, having more class time would allow the students to focus more on their assignments.”
Let us not forget this quote by our High School principal Simon Faulkner, “[I] recognize that it is important to ensure that each student’s experience is unique and tailored to meet his individual needs.” Double block schedules are what St. Mary’s really needs. Let’s bring St.Mary’s to further academic excellence by introducing this popular scheduling plan.
“What Is High School Block Scheduling? Block vs Traditional Schedules.” Owlcation, Owlcation, owlcation.com/academia/What-Is-a-Block-Schedule-Facts-About-Block-Scheduling.
“St. Mary’s International School.” Top Boys School In Tokyo, Japan, www.smis.ac.jp/.
Article by Maekawa Maneko
Photo acquired from: https://www.smis.ac.jp/academics/high-school