Governance Team Votes Against Late Start Wednesdays Next Year

Inigo Lintag, News Editor

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   After surveying the student body, staff and parents, and holding multiple meetings, the UC High Site Governance Team (SGT) has decided to shift the current weekly schedule to better suit the needs of the student body.

   According to Sophomore SGT Chairperson Elaina Martin “…after looking at a survey created by Mrs. Huzar, we decided that we wanted to reinstate early-out Wednesdays next year and a standard early-start time throughout the whole week because that is what stakeholders in the school looked like they wanted.”

   This change, however, does not seem to be permanent. “It’s only for one year; in the 2020-2021 school year, the School Board plans to switch all of the high schools in the District to a start time of 8:30 a.m. or later,” clarified Martin.

   The aforementioned survey was available on the school website, sandiegounified.org, and received over 1,500 responses from parents, students, and staff members, as well as other groups. According to the SGT School Start Time Survey, 1,243 or 79.4 percent of those responses came from students, 269 or 17.2 percent came from parents, and 48 or around three percent came from staff members.

   Of the responses, 802 or 51.4 percent lived within a five mile radius of the school, 356 or 22.8 percent lived within five to ten miles away, and 402 or 25.8 percent lived more than ten miles away.

  Predominantly, a larger majority of those who responded to the survey were involved in some sort of extra-curricular activity. 1,045 or 68.6 percent of those that responded to the survey participate or have children that participate in athletics or other after-school activities.

  This survey also shows that a large majority of those that responded were opposed to a “staggered” start time. 661 or 42.6 percent of those who responded were not in favor of this schedule, while 412 or 26.5 percent were in favor. The remaining 479 or 30.9 percent were undecided about the issue.

   Should UC High adopt this staggered schedule, students would have to choose between two different school day schedules. The first option would be to attend classes from period one to six, starting the school day at 7:24 a.m. and ending at 2:18 p.m. The other option would be to attend classes from periods two to seven, starting the school day at 8:29 a.m. and ending at 3:16 p.m..

   Overall, a late start schedule was not a very popular option. Based on the survey results, parents, students, and staff members all overwhelmingly preferred the period one through six schedule. The smaller majority seemed to either prefer a period two through seven schedule or have no preference at all, although there were fewer people who lacked a preference.

   If these changes were to become official, after school activities could be greatly impacted. 666 or 56.5 percent of those that responded thought that after-school activities should begin after period six, while 284 or 24.1 percent wanted after-school activities to start after period seven. The remaining 19.4 percent had no preference at all.

   According to Junior Serra Gaeta, “I would have kept the schedule the same way it has been in past years. There are a lot of cons against late start including traffic, rides, and sports schedules, and we were fine with the schedule before, getting out at around 1 p.m. on Wednesdays.”

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