‘I think [this change] is really needed:’ Students share perspectives on new schedule for 2021-2022 school year


Photo credit: Chloe Fidler

​​Freshman Addie Myers and Natalie Huang study together in the student lounge during US-FLX block. Farley hopes students use this time to “connect with each other,” which Myers and Huang said they appreciate following a long year of online learning.

By Rose Sarner, Culture Editor

The redevelopment of the Archer schedule for the 2021-2022 school year gives students more free time and opportunity to explore new interests, while also extending their sleep schedule. Dean of Student Life, Equity and Inclusion Samantha Hazell-O’Brien and Upper School Director Reed Farley announced, via virtual assembly, the new schedule for the 2021-2022 school year to the student body on Monday, August 31. 

We went through a pretty exhaustive process where we were collecting feedback from student groups, faculty, administrators and families,” Farley said. “We wanted to meet everyone’s needs and desires and crafted a schedule that we hope supports everyone’s learning and well being.”

After a year of virtual learning, the new schedule was put in place to adapt back to on-campus learning. Junior Presley Wernick said that she already notices a difference in her overall mood and attention span after the late start has been implemented for two days. School now begins at 8:20 a.m. as opposed to 7:50 a.m start time before the COVID-19 outbreak. 

“I really like the later start time because I feel like it gives me a longer night and I can sleep longer, which benefits my attention span and readiness to learn at school,” Wernick said.

According to Farley, many students are in favor of the new US-FLX period, where upper school students either attend meetings, optional electives or have time to themselves because it gives students another class period where they have a choice.

“I really enjoy the US-FLX period because I feel like in school, I have a lot more time, to do my work,” sophomore Layla Tehranchi said. “Especially if I have commitments outside of school, I know that I’ll be able to finish all my work.”

Tehranchi echoed Wernick’s sentiment about how extra time will improve her overall performance this coming year. 

“It [US-FLX] feels more freeing, and it gives students time to do what they’re passionate about,” Wernick said. “Of course, studying during US-FLX is always helpful when you’re a junior in high school.” 

Farley hopes students and faculty will explore new interests, absorb new information and gain more downtime with the new schedule. 

“It’s a fresh start for all of us,” Farley said. “Hopefully our student body sees that we’re really trying to put our students’ happiness and well-being first.”