West High set to implement new bell schedule

West High will implement a new bell schedule on Jan. 24. Here’s what the new schedule will look like and why this change has been made.


Wesal Haroun

Class times will change with the new West High bell schedule, which will be introduced on Jan. 24.

Monday, Jan. 24, West High will be getting a new weekly schedule, with a 37 minute AFT every day except Thursday. This will give more time for students to meet with teachers, retake tests and get a headstart on assignments. This will also create a more regular weekly schedule because there will only be two bell schedules instead of three.

“There was a general consensus that two days a week for AFT was not enough, especially since Fridays are not open for requesting students. In addition, consideration was given to the confusion of having three bell schedules, as well as having enough opportunities to meet with students throughout the week, given how many have been out due to the pandemic,” said Government and AP Government teacher Stacy Noble.

This extra time, on top of giving students a chance to be productive and get a headstart on assignments, will also provide an opportunity for students to have a break during the day and help them to build good work habits.

“I do believe students are so stretched in so many different directions with homework, and work, and outside of school obligations, and extracurricular and athletics and, and, and. I mean the list goes on and on and on. So, if we can carve out 37 minutes during the day where you can just have a moment to work on your homework or to ask a teacher a question or to retake a test, so you wouldn’t have to find time in your schedule to do that, I think that’s important, and my hope is that this alleviates some of the immense pressure that students feel with academics,” said Dean of Students Jenny Eustice. 


New Bell Schedule by West Side Story

Last year, AFT was every day, but only met for about 20 minutes. A survey was sent out to teachers at West, and many said they would like to have AFT four times a week instead of two. Because AFT meets more often, Eustice hopes that there will be a day where clubs will be able to meet during AFT. However, the details of the schedule change have not been finalized yet, so it is unknown what day this would be.

“[It] is really important to allow access to things like student government, our black student union, 1440, the clubs that meet early on before school or late after school, and kids don’t have transportation but they want to be involved. Hopefully, our goal is that we can carve out time for clubs to meet so that students can have more opportunities to be connected to West,” said Eustice.

However, this change will not give extra time to everyone. Sierra Keeney ’23 is enrolled in AP Research, which is not taught by a teacher at West.

“We have a teacher from City. The schedule at West is different from City, so she’s going to make us use AFT time on Mondays and Wednesdays for her class,” Keeney said.

Because the bell schedule at City and West are different, AP research meets at different times on different days. Her class only meets four times a week, with two in-person classes on Mondays and Wednesdays, and two online classes, on Thursdays and Fridays.

While Keeney is disappointed that she will not get extra time from the change to have AFT every day, she still appreciates the change to only having to bell schedules.

“I feel like the 45 minutes is good, but only having it two days is…inconsistent. We have three different schedules. That’s really hard on my brain sometimes. I definitely think having AFT every day except Thursday will be good,” Keeney said.