Shifting academic schedules reflect on students

Along with the upgraded buildings to Diamond Bar High School’s campus, the new bell schedules instituted by California Gov. Gavin Newson have come together to present new features to this school year.

The new bell schedule features an 8:30 a.m. start time to allow students to get more sleep. In addition, weekly Wednesday late starts at 9:15 a.m. have been introduced for the benefit of DBHS faculty and students alike, contrasting last year’s monthly late-start days. 

Brunch and lunch times have been shortened due to the later start time, a change that many students and staff found to be troublesome. In the midst of all these new modifications, however, the teachers in charge of zero, 1A and 6A period classes are affected the most by it.

“They [the bell schedules] are both good and bad. The nice part is I feel like I have more time in the morning so I’m not as rushed,” AP chemistry teacher Jose Marquez said. “What I don’t like about it is that the brunch is useless, and because 6A ends at 4:00 p.m., students who might have wanted to take AP bio are now put off by the 4:00 p.m. end time.”

With regards to the new bell schedule, AP literature teacher Colleen Logasa expressed her opinions on zero-period students not attending class on Wednesday. She said that those taking academic courses could face difficulties catching up as well as preparing for AP exams.

“From a teacher’s standpoint of planning, I have three periods of AP lit, and so my zero [period] is always off. It is a little challenging from the planning aspect,” Logasa said. “It’s hard to remember where I left in my zero period because with my other two periods, they’re always in the same spot. But with zero period, it takes more remembering where we left off.”

While planning has been difficult for teachers, the weekly staff meetings allow them to collaborate and share ideas on how to pace the students on their work and tests. Likewise, AP biology teacher Eric Sorensen believes that this new bell schedule has its benefits.

“I think the teachers are going to benefit a lot from being able to work together [on Wednesdays],” Sorensen said. “We didn’t get to do that a lot last year. It’s quite helpful for us, which should trickle down to the students.”

Sorensen expressed that 1A students are more awake during his classes, but his 6A period classes have become restless. Regardless, he said he still thinks it is still too early in the year to see whether or not this new bell schedule will have an overall positive impact on students and faculty.

“Like I said, it’s still very early in the year, but I think this new school schedule is going to bring some good changes for our students.”