Features

Schedule changes cause mix-ups and conflict

From Aug. 22 to Sept. 6, students changed their schedules for numerous reasons. Compared to the 2018-19 school year, the number of schedule change requests has increased by about 20%, with approximately 250 requests last year and approximately 300 this
year.

Enrollment through the years has increased due to the S.T.E.M. and Biotechnology programs. Acceptances for these classes have increased, drawing students from outside the district and even from
other cities. Other reasons for requests have been students not receiving a first period, being placed in the wrong class, or appealing for a teacher adjustment.


The class that has been requesting the most schedule changes is the senior class. “Seniors have the most challenging schedules because they take the most AP classes, and they conflict,” Counseling Department Chair Laura
Triantafyllos said.

Sophomores are the class with the second most schedule change requests. A complication for them this year has been struggling to balance out the classroom numbers, since they are the largest class. This year, the school opened up an additional World History class, lessening the number of students in other history classes. With the overcrowding of students, some students have also had their schedules changed without requesting it.

“We’re looking at who could have a swap with their classes, such as switching a first and second period,” counselor Caroline Hoj said. “They’ve
been chosen completely random[ly] to reduce class size.”

With several students coming in to change their schedules, it leaves some to
wonder if students should be allowed to request a schedule change.

“In a perfect world, sure. But in reality that’s not the case, you can’t pick who you work with,” Hoj said.

One example would be the students requesting to switch teachers. The counselors usually end up rejecting the change.

“In a request for teachers, it becomes a popularity contest,” Triantafyllos said. “Rumors about teachers: this one’s hard, this one’s easy. It’s not their
learning style, but you have to learn to adapt and overcome
obstacles.”

From a student’s perspective, there are mixed feelings, but most agree that
students should have the ability to request schedule changes.

“To a certain point, I think the classes should be equal, sophomore Jack Manville said. “There shouldn’t be 10 students in one class and 40 in another.”

“Sometimes schedules don’t fit your learning cap [so students should be able to change classes],” sophomore Daniel Reyes said. “Sometimes
you’re not so motivated in certain classes compared to others.”

San Marin is one of the last high schools in Marin County to require periods 1-5, 1-6 and 2-7 due to the gradual increase of students each year. This means that the students do not need to have a fixed number of periods per year. The school is now only funded to offer six classes and cannot guarantee that every freshman who requests seven classes can
acquire them.

Categories: Features

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