Changing up the schedule

Hanna Suarez, Editor-in-Chief

The sophomore students at Downey High School were given a new testing schedule to follow for California High School Exit Exam week of March 12-15. The new itinerary not only switched Thursday’s block day to Tuesday but gave the freshmen, juniors, and seniors a late start for Tuesday and Wednesday morning. While the sophomore class arrived at normal time to get settled in their assigned testing rooms, the rest of the student population waited until 11 am to shuffle into their classrooms. Many kids spent the extra four hours of their morning sleeping in or enjoying a hearty meal.

Despite the sudden change of plans and temporary confusion amongst the school, the new schedule proved to work out for both teachers and students. With Friday off and shorter block days, teachers and students were given a less time to catch up to their usual plans. However, the adults and kids alike enjoyed the short break and complained only minimally about the already stressful testing procedures.

AP European history teacher Stephen Sanders explained how the shorter week and complicated testing agenda did not bother his own classroom plans.

“I worked it into my schedule so it was nice to take a break from the normal routine,” Sanders said. “I actually think students and teachers should get small breaks like these more often.”

English teacher Angela Curtis also shared the same gratitude for the small hiatus.

“It was not an inconvenience. I had more time to grade and plan so it worked out well,” Curtis said. “The only thing I noticed was that it seemed like students were not putting as much effort later in the day, as if the late start made them lethargic.”

The students seemed to thoroughly enjoy the extended morning, and most used their time wisely. Large groups were seen at various restaurants near Downey High School before it was time to show up to class.

The sophomores could not partake in the activities but checked off one of their graduation requirements in their designated testing classes. They skipped the usual mass testing procedures in the gym with the whole graduating class and were given room to relax in the comfort of a classroom.

Sophomore Lily Wehtje commented on the convenience that the testing layout provided for her and her classmates.

“It was less nerve-wracking with much less people in the classroom,” Wehtje said. “The test was far easier without having to experience the large cluster of people we otherwise would have.”

English teacher Zachary Zakour also felt that the new testing system was easier on the students and himself.

“The kids acted appropriately; nobody was absent and everything went smoothly,” Zakour said. “It was better for the students this way.”

Overall the new testing method went surprisingly easier than the usual one. Students and teachers took a break from the everyday stress and got through it.