by Ayannah Garcia
Scheduling is very important when starting a new school year, especially when considering changes in classes, pickup and drop off times, extracurricular activities, and more. These are some of the challenges that could come from the newly revised Peoria Public Schools District 150 (PSD150) academic schedule for 2022-23. The new schedule includes a shorter summer, where school starts on August 3 instead of August 15, but longer fall and spring breaks. Usually, summer would be around 99 days but now it will be around 60 days. Those extra days add to the 3-day fall break to be a break of October 10 to October 21 and adds another week to spring break to be a break from March 27 to April 10. With that in place, there are some mixed opinions, with some people who support the new schedule changes and others who do not.
Those who support the change seem to like the 2 weeks of fall and spring break, and the mental breather that comes with it, in addition to more vacation and laying around during the school year. Those on the other side, however, argue that the new schedule presents various challenges, such as earlier ends to summer vacations, fun, and other jobs or internships that high school kids might have.
Some students and families have the view that the breaks would be a beneficial aspect heading to a stressful school year. Utilizing the two-week breaks would provide a chance to go on vacations missed out on during summer, and just have free time to catch up on sleep and other homework. With school starting earlier, parents have had a difficult time trying to change their work schedule to pick up their high school kids who can’t drive themselves to and from school. Scheduling is very difficult for a parent to work out, and the school board didn’t make it any easier by voting on it with minimal time—voting happened in April—for parents to change their own work schedules.
I like the schedule and look forward to it, but I can see where people, myself included, are upset. This past summer, I was very busy and had barely any time off, but if we started school later, I would’ve been able to spend a lot more time with family and friends. It would have felt more like summer instead of continued “school” without the learning part, but I feel like the two-week break would have been a relaxing hiatus to refuel in the middle of the year. Instead of PSD150 having this shortened schedule start this year and rushing everyone, I strongly feel that the School Board of Education should have waited until the next school year when they voted in April. That way the school board would have allowed time for parents to make plans for their children and the board could make any necessary pre-planning before diving into this head-on. In all, there are notable differences between the previous schedule and the new one, and whether they are viewed positively or negatively depends on personal perspective.
About Ayannah Garcia
Ayannah Garcia is a freshman attending Richwoods High School, where she takes part in the Pre-IB program, the Royalettes dance team, and the drama club. Outside of school, she loves to dance, read, journal, travel with family, and play with her dog. In addition to these activities, she is currently a member of the Finale Group of the Greater Peoria Illinois Chapter of Jack and Jill, an organization for young African American individuals who want to serve the community, and a member of her church’s youth group.
Art by Qaasaani Little
Qaasaani Little is a freshman at Richwoods High School. Little is a member of Student Leadership Team and Student Council. She has loved art for as long as she can remember, including painting and drawing. Little’s artwork is for sale. She also loves animals, after school activities, and is inspired by her mom for always pushing her to do my best.