The online student newspaper of Palisades Charter High School

Tideline

The online student newspaper of Palisades Charter High School

Tideline

The online student newspaper of Palisades Charter High School

Tideline

Schedule Changes Leave Students Discombobulated

There was a high volume of student class schedule changes at the beginning of the spring semester, according to several Pali students.

Pali students initially plan their schedules for the following school year during February, receiving their finalized schedule the week leading up to the first day of school. Students have the opportunity to make adjustments to this schedule during the first few weeks of the fall semester. However, further schedule changes can occur between the fall and spring semesters. Students gain access to their updated schedules on the first day of the spring semester.

Pali’s Director of Guidance and Planning and Assistant Principal Dr. Chris Lee said that the large number of modifications in school schedules for this semester specifically are caused by a variety of factors.

“Many of these changes occur due to the number of students that may not pass a math class,” he said. “PCHS then needs to open new math classes to accommodate the needs of the students.”

Junior Sofia Mollica experienced three class changes at the start of the second semester, caused by two of her teachers dropping a class period.

“My fourth period class changed to an elective that I did not ask for,” she said. “Then my first and third period also switched, and my sixth period teacher switched too.”

Mollica said she felt bewildered by the number of changes in her schedule.

“I had been checking my Infinite Campus all of winter break to see what my fourth period was, to see if I could pick my electives, and our schedules didn’t come out until the first day of school,” she said. “It was very frantic and I went to the wrong class on the first day.”

Similarly, junior Logan Silver said four of his classes changed.

Silver was moved into first-period AP Calculus AB which had “around 40 kids,” and was then moved back to the period three class with “only 11 kids.” His physics classes were also adjusted when two periods were merged.

“In my physics class there were eight kids, but since the classes combined there are now [around] 50 kids in my class,” he said.

Silver said he felt frustrated by the changes in his schedule.

“I was not very happy and had a meeting with Dr. Lee,” he said. “It was very stressful because I was trying to start the semester off strong and it wasn’t helping that I was in new classes and I had to catch up on work.”

United States History and Virtual Academy teacher David Carini was one teacher whose classes changed over the break. He dropped an in-person class period, and now teaches two in-person and four virtual classes. The change was caused by an increase in students enrolling in Virtual Academy, creating a need for additional Virtual Academy classes.

Carini said he has an indifferent attitude towards the schedule changes.

“Obviously once you form a bond with students it’s sad to see them go, but it’s also sad to see them go in the Spring,” he said. “So, it doesn’t really affect me that much, but of course I miss those students.”

Mollica, who was in one of the classes previously taught by Carini, said she is extremely upset about this change.

“My favorite teacher, who I had sixth period, was Mr. Carini,” she said. “I unfortunately got switched to Ms. Schoellnast. She’s an amazing teacher, but I really loved Mr. Carini.”

While Pali’s counseling office works to reduce the number of changes made to student schedules, Lee said, sometimes they are unavoidable.

“During the semester, students leave classes for a variety of reasons, such as going to a different school, taking the course online or for medical/personal reasons,” he said. “In some cases, the number of students in the class is too low to keep the class open the following semester.”

Despite the efforts of administration, Mollica said that the schedule changes she experienced will be detrimental to her upcoming college application process.

“I now have to make a new connection with a new teacher,” she said. “This is really hard for me because I was really relying on my original history teacher to write my college recommendation, but now I have to make a new connection with another teacher, which is a whole other process.”

Mollica said that this feeling is common among her peers.

“This year so many more people have had their schedules changed, especially juniors,” she said. “The changes made to my schedule have caused me, and everyone else, extreme stress.”

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About the Contributor
Ella Kraynak, Staff Writer
Ella Kraynak, a junior, is thrilled to be embarking on her first year as a staff writer for Tideline. Her passion for writing stems from her youth, writing stories about stuffed animals, to now exploring her journalistic limits by working as an intern for the Palisadian-Post. Beyond the classroom, Ella spends her time playing Pali and club soccer, volunteering with National Charity League, and spending quality time with her family and friends. She is excited for a year of writing impactful stories and improving her storytelling skills.