School to extend passing periods

As some classes move to portables next school year, administration plans to adjust schedule.

Diamond Bar High School will have a new bell schedule starting next school year due to many classes moving down to the portables on the old JV baseball and softball fields.

All of the teachers in the 500 building will be relocating. The administration will extend the passing periods to nine minutes starting in August  after extensive data collection to determine how much time would be needed during passing periods.

According to Instructional Dean Gabriel Aguilar, some staff members timed how long it would take to travel from the portables to the 300 building.

They timed themselves during the regular six-minute passing periods students currently have. This allowed them to have more accurate data collection based on student traffic and popular student routes.

More time from fourth period is expected to go into the extended passing periods since fourth period is four minutes longer than other periods. There is no intention of taking minutes out of brunch or lunch, but the additional time allocated for passing periods would  increase the duration of lunchtime by three minutes.

Aguilar said that the time for lunch and brunch may change, however, due to the additional three minutes that students can take if their classes are not far away. He believes that students will start walking later, and they would not feel as rushed to go to class.

Even with the minutes taken out of class time, the amount of required instructional time, 1,080 hours per school year, will not change. The passing periods are included in the required time that schools set aside for classes.

There will be classes in the portables for about  five years because DBHS will start construction on the 400 building once the 500 building is completed. The new bell schedule is planned to stay in effect during this time.

During the next school year, the administration will observe how well the bell schedule works and will make adjustments if necessary. Aguilar said he is fairly confident the new bell schedule will give a sufficient amount of time for the students to travel from one side of the school to the other.