Now that Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School is physically reopening to students, the School Board of Broward County decided to revert to the normal schedule used in school years before the COVID-19 pandemic. Schools must return to their normal school operating hours in order to provide bus transportation across the district to students who need it.
Before schools were closed, school began at 7:40 a.m. and ended at 2:40 p.m., with a 40-minute lunch break and an 8-minute break between classes. After converting to an online setting, the school start time was pushed back to 8:30 a.m., with an end time of 3:10 p.m. The lunch break was also changed to be only 30 minutes and breaks between classes were only 5 minutes.
With the reopening of Broward County Public Schools starting next week, students at MSD who opted to stay home questioned whether or not they would also be returning to the old schedule. It was announced that the old schedule was going to be enforced for all students, both those returning to school and those continuing to learn from home.
“I don’t like that we are going back to the old schedule from school,” sophomore Emily Drelick said. “Personally, I am not going to [physical] school, so I feel like switching back to the old schedule is an inconvenience.”
The biggest difference from the old schedule to the online schedule is the start of class time. Starting school 50 minutes earlier can potentially impact students. Students will no longer be able to sleep in as much and they will have less time before school starts to do anything for their classes.
“It’s kind of annoying because we already got used to the new [schedule],” junior Vladimir Lakshtanov said. “The old [schedule] is going to be harder to wake up to.”
A sudden change as simple as moving up the start time affects not only students, but teachers as well. Students will have to adapt quickly since schools reopen at the end of the week. Freshmen will go back to school on Tuesday, Oct. 13, while all other grade levels will go back to physical school on Thursday, Oct. 15th.
“I’m not too excited about going back to the old schedule because of the fact we have to start at 7:40 [a.m.] again, but also because we have to change our lunch periods,” sophomore Dani Tamim said. “A/B lunch is just going to create even more confusion.”
Returning to the old schedule will not only affect the time students and teachers start school, but it will also change their lunch times. A/B lunch means that there are two different lunch times. Students are assigned to one or the other based on the subject of their third and seventh period.
“I don’t really mind going back to the old schedule that much. We’ve done it for longer than this new [schedule], so I will be fine going back,” sophomore Emma Betancourt said.
Adapting to the old schedule will be something that takes time, especially since students have been on a different one for around two months now.
Ultimately, most students who are continuing online school from home are not very enthusiastic about returning to the old schedule since they will have to wake up earlier. Other students are not worried about what the time difference will do to the schedule they have created for themselves. Returning back to school will affect all students in various ways, whether it is good or bad.