Lion days cause up-roar of opinions

Staff, students debate views on new eight-period days

After a year and a half of change and uncertainty, the school schedule has changed yet again. This improved block schedule includes longer classes and a new “Lion Day.” These implementations have made substantial changes to the way school days work at Saint Viator, for better or for worse. Many people have differing views on this new schedule due to its benefits and drawbacks for students and teachers alike. The new Lion Days allow students to see all their teachers, but the periods are shorter in order to make this possible. This makes for stressful Thursday nights with all the homework students have to do for both their navy and red classes. The day can also be stressful and chaotic for students and teachers as they have to switch from navy class to red class every period, which can be quite confusing.
“The day seems so much longer,” said sophomore Jack Whetstone. “The night before is annoying because I have Navy and Red homework.”
This opinion is fairly common amongst the student population, and is most extreme with upperclassmen who have experienced the eight-period days in the past.
“It’s a lot of the same from freshman year,” said senior Linnea Kobbs, “but going from a block schedule back to that eight-period day feels like you have 10-minute classes that you’re running to.”
However, even new members to the Saint Viator community have already formed their own beliefs on these full-schedule Fridays.
“Lion Days can definitely be stressful… especially with having to do homework for every class the night before,” said freshman Anna Vernoski.
While some teachers share these criticisms with their students, others recognize the positive aspects of these days, realizing the benefits of added class time to the chaotic week.
“I like the third touchpoint with students every week,” said math teacher Mr. Joseph Miller. “For me, that was the hardest part of the block schedule: trying to build a community in the classroom and relationships with students when you are only seeing them for a limited amount of time.”
Mr. Miller also said that the increased class time allows teachers to cover more material. Teachers do not have to worry about one class being ahead of another due to alternating numbers of Red and Navy days in a week.
On the negative side, however, there is some substantial dissent from the faculty.
“Even for a teacher, Lion Days are pretty confusing,” said Spanish teacher Ms. Elyse Slezak. “It’s difficult going from knowing two schedules separately for Navy/Red Days, to shuffling them together like a deck of cards and having different start and end times for all of them. The classes feel very short in comparison to the block schedule as well. It’s crazy to think we once taught 45 minutes and actually got things done in the past.”
Some students have proposed improvements for Lion Days. Kobbs mentioned that Red day teachers could push back the due dates of homework assigned Thursday, making these assignments due the following week. However, she recognized that teachers could be thrown off schedule by doing that.
We can all agree that there are positive and negative aspects to Lion Days. As Mrs. Slezak said, “It’s going to take a while to get used to.”