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School Schedule

CPSD Block Scheduling

CARES Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request 21-127, 11/19/21 requested: Documents, surveys, emails, correspondence relating to the following: Genesis of "block scheduling" in District (what, when, where, whom and how), rationale behind adoption, source materials upon which based, periodic assessments academically since instituted, parental comments/complaints…homework requirements.


District response: “Historically: 1.The decision was made in 1996. 2. Block scheduling was implemented in the 1997-98 school year at both Lakes and Clover Park High schools. The District does not have parent comments/complaints, or periodic assessments academically since
instituted
.”


In essence CPSD instituted a radical class schedule plan 26 years ago and forgot about it since! Perhaps time to revisit that decision.

 

Block scheduling has 2 hour classes per subject on alternating days rather than the traditional 1 hour class per subject each day. There are several possible impacts upon academic performance.

  1. Students sitting 2 hours in a single class may tax their attention span.

  2. Often the 2nd hour is given to “independent study” which effectively cuts formal instruction in half.

  3. Students are more likely to forget what they learned two days earlier versus yesterday in a traditional schedule.

  4. “Independent study” often means students’ activities are not focused on learning.

  5. Often “homework” is done in the 2 nd hour of class. This separates parents from participation in their student’s school work.

  6. Certain classes may benefit when projects are not constrained to a single hour.

  7. Perhaps the prime beneficiaries are teachers who have time in the 2nd hour to attend to class administration.


CARES conducted an informal survey of about 100 teachers and found support for block scheduling split evenly. A comprehensive look at block scheduling is required to determine its impact on students, parents, teachers and their school’s academic performance.

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