CON: Disruptive to learning

After the passing of Senate Bill 328, which mandates California high schools must start after 8:30, Diamond Bar High School has been forced to come up with a new schedule that fits the needs of students and staff while complying with state laws.

The new schedule that the school has come up with this year has been an absolute disaster, to say the least. By cutting time from passing periods, brunch and lunch, the school administration has effectively reduced the amount of time for students to walk to classes and socialize with friends.

It’s true that the new senate bill isn’t something DBHS can change, but was this schedule really the best the administration could come up with? Rather than being a time to socialize and relax, brunch has become more of an extended passing period, and students are often unable to eat because waiting in line itself takes longer than the five minutes that students are allowed. 

In addition, the new lunch period doesn’t take into consideration club meetings and events due to the short thirty-five minutes that students are given for lunch, and the thirty minutes they’re allowed on Wednesdays. This forces students to choose between eating lunch or attending meetings, which is an unreasonable expectation for the administration to push onto students.

In terms of class time, 1A and 6A science classes have been condensed into regular class periods, and zero period has been removed entirely on Wednesdays to create weekly late starts. With 90-minute class periods, the schedule has increased the amount of time that students attend class by 10 minutes from last year’s schedule, which could potentially impact student performance by forcing them to stay attentive for longer periods of time.

Increasing class time has also resulted in less time for passing periods. Last year, the school had decided to give students nine minutes to get to classes due to the campus expansion to ‘Downtown DB.’ Yet, with the addition of the new science buildings and supposed music building coming later this semester, that time has now somehow shrunken to eight minutes. Logically, increasing the size of campus should be accompanied by longer passing periods, which is the opposite of what they’re currently doing.

Despite these pervasive issues, DBHS administration still has the chance to rectify these problems. As this bell schedule is a “pilot schedule,” the school can make adjustments in time for the spring semester. 

The solution to all of these issues is simple: to return to last year’s schedule and push back the time that school ends. Not only would this bring back the positive advantages associated with longer breaks, but school would also only end by 20-30 minutes later compared to the new schedule—not much considering how much students have been affected already.