The Waste that is Three Hour Blocks


DHS Press Staff

The new SOL schedule leaves three hour blocks for SOLs.

Three weeks before school lets out, three hour blocks are implemented for two weeks, which gives students a opportunity to take SOLs in many of their classes. The schedule changes so that each day has one three hour block, a lunch block, and two 42 minute blocks, which gives students a chance to take SOLs in the class that those three hours take place. But for many students, especially upperclassmen, the three hour blocks are a time period in which students do little to no work, and in the end, is a waste of three hours, while also affecting the productivity of other classes.  

Freshman and sophomores are really the only students using that time to take many SOLs. For underclassmen, they have to take up to four SOLs in their core classes. The other half of school is very different in terms of use of that time, juniors are only taking one or two SOLs, and the majority of seniors are not taking any. While this shifted SOL schedule is convenient for the underclassman, it leaves the upperclassmen with days on days filled with boredom.

Not to mention, with culminating assessments and projects coming in some classes in the final week, many classes have much less time to work in the classroom to work on those projects and study for tests. These 45 minute classes do not leave students with enough time to get anything done and do not allow teachers enough time to actually get a lesson done. It is also unlikely that the majority of these SOLs take up to three hours, so even if the blocks were changed into two hour blocks instead of three. A two hour block schedule would give students the opportunity to get their SOLs done without making the blocks seem impossibly long and limiting the amount of time other classes have to get lessons and projects done.

For me, I am only taking the reading SOL as a junior, this leaves me with seven three hour blocks in which I will maybe use some of that time for learning, but most of that time I will be doing nothing. Not to mention, the 45 minute blocks do not teachers enough time to actually get a lesson done, with leds to many teachers to either put on a movie or give the students time to do whatever they want. Although considering that these three hours blocks give students many opportunities to get their work done, that free time often ends with students wasting time on their phones, as they just try to past the time.

These two weeks really seem to be a waste in terms of learning and getting things done for many students and teachers. Considering that this way of scheduling only is a benefit to half of Dominion students.