News From the Students, For the Students

The Griffin Gazette

News From the Students, For the Students

The Griffin Gazette

News From the Students, For the Students

The Griffin Gazette

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Los Al’s new late start schedule

What do students think about the new late start schedule for the 2023-2024 school year?
The new Monday late start bell schedule for the 2023-2024 school year.
The new Monday late start bell schedule for the 2023-2024 school year.

LOS ALAMITOS, CA – Waking up later in the morning. Eating breakfast and not running out the door. Shorter periods. For students at Los Alamitos High School, late start days are always better because they get to sleep in and the school day goes by faster.

Late starts quickly became a way for students to have a shorter work day, which increases focus and instructional productivity in classes. However, faculty on campus have meeting every Monday morning to discuss different topics with their entire department, prepare for activities or specific subjects, and collaborate with other teachers in a specific department, like English. Meanwhile, students come in for their zero period class at the normal 7:33 a.m. or their first period class at the later 9:07 a.m. 

In years past, late start had been in the middle of the week, on Wednesday, which had a positive impact on most students because it made them feel as though the week went by faster. The normal instructional periods are 55 minutes, and late start days have a shorter period of only 49 minutes. Despite the seven minute difference, the accumulated minutes also made some students feel more energetic during their day and feel like they have more time for other activities after school. 

However, for the 2023-2024 school year, late starts were moved to Mondays. This change was finalized unanimously around late May by a group of about 12 to 15 people, including Principal Kraus, teachers, counselors, and Los Al’s bell schedule committee team. But is it truly better to have late starts on Mondays rather than Wednesdays? 

“So far we’ve received rave reviews that it’s consistently every Monday from parents, students, and staff,” Principal Kraus said.

With this change, Principal Kraus and faculty at Los Al wanted to look for teachers to collaborate more in the morning and push more academic time for students. With the approximately 64,800 minutes of state-mandated instruction, Monday late starts provide a way to almost have a “longer weekend” because of the extra rest in the morning. 

Students who miss late start Wednesdays can agree that it was a nice break in the week from what could be added stress because of its irregularity and other outside influences, such as a heavy load of homework. Wednesdays, while inconsistent, provided a more positive outlook towards the second half of the school week. 

“I don’t like it because I miss being able to sleep in the middle of the week,” a Los Al junior said.

Despite mixed opinions, the main reason for this change was due to feedback from parents and students that it was hard to remember if it was a late start or not. Parents additionally wanted their kids to have a break, especially before finals week, which is mainly due to the fact that Los Al is a content and comprehensive high school. Los Al created this change to make sure that students receive a well-rounded and refined approach towards academic success. 

“[The change] needed to happen because people needed consistency. Mondays [also] seem natural because we have so many Mondays off,” Principal Kraus said. 

The biggest change this year with late start is that it is consistently every Monday, excluding holidays, which helps with access to our school activities. In years past, the middle of the week had been used for assembly days or longer fourth periods to show videos to students, but with the change, students get to keep late start and have a shorter school day in the same week. 

“I think it’s very nice that it’s every Monday and it’s easier to keep track of late start,” senior Misha Romo said. 

“I had to get accustomed to it. I think it’s nice because you get the weekend and get to sleep in a little bit more,” said Alana Vazquez, another senior. 

Many teachers who have zero period are unaffected by the change to the beginning of the week, while others have mixed opinions. Some believe that there are positive and negative aspects to the change. Those who miss Wednesday believe that it broke up the week and gave them more breathing room, but most feedback from students at Los Al shows that the campus is now happier and more relaxed.

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About the Contributor
Nandi Smith
Nandi Smith, Editor
Nandi Smith is a senior at Los Alamitos High School. This is her first year in Journalism, and she chose to be a staff writer because she has a passion for writing and trying new things. Nandi has a passion for drawing, traveling, and speaking other languages like Spanish and Arabic. Her favorite subject is English because through reading, she loves to learn about different time periods and eras. This year, she looks forward to writing, exploring her passions in design, photography, and other activities on campus. You can contact Nandi at [email protected].
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    Katie ArnoultSep 12, 2023 at 6:52 pm

    I love this article, great job Nandi!! Personally, I’m really enjoying the Monday late starts, but I think I also liked it on Wednesdays because it was like a break in the middle of the week.