by Kanishka R. ’20
Two years after the schedule was changed back from the block ABC schedule, the administration has decided on minor additional changes. Acknowledging student support for a longer advisory block, which was tested with the ABC schedule, the administration will increase the length of each advisory from 10 to 15 minutes starting in the fall. Start time, class time, and passing period length will remain the same. Classes after advisory will begin and end five minutes later and end time will be 3:05 to accommodate for the extended advisory time.
According to Upper School Assistant Director Mr. de Grys, students “almost universally” favored the ABC schedule’s 20-minute advisory period over the current 10-minute period because a longer block encourages and allows for more relaxation and bonding. A 10-minute extension could not be accommodated without altering more fundamental aspects of the schedule, so the 5-minute addition was introduced instead. A majority of Tatler poll surveyees approved of the change.
This change was made by the schedule committee, comprised primarily of administrators and faculty. The committee compared schedules with national and international peer schools. The committee also contacted schedule experts that advised on how to optimize learning and student health. During the process, student government representatives were consulted and responded positively to potential changes.
This minor schedule change comes during a major re-envisioning process for the school. According to Mr. de Grys, Lakeside is reflecting on its core values and evaluating how aspects of student life and culture define the community. He expects that there might be more significant changes to the schedule after this process is complete. Mr. de Grys also notes that fundamental changes to the schedule will require student “buy-in” to be successful: “Something we learned from the last schedule change is that you really need buy-in. If some people are on board, but some people aren’t, it’s a difficult thing. It’s really important that everyone sort of jumps in before we make a change.”