Though it is only the fourth quarter of the school year, many students have taken a hiatus from their second-semester classes to start summer break early.
“We’re already in the fourth quarter, which means we’re almost at exams week which means we’re almost done with school, so why not start summer break,” said Emily Wiggins, a student from Leesville Road High School via phone call.
“When the fourth quarter started, all I could think about was leaving school and starting my summer vacation. Since I was home, enrolled in VA classes, I figured why not attend my lectures from the beach– quadratics are solved the same whether they are completed at a desk or in the sun,” she added.
Many other students are viewing the virtual academy style of classes in a similar manner, except instead of attending classes, the students are out having fun.
Take Jake for example, another student at LRHS. “All third quarter, the prospect of summer vacation was looming over my head,” he said via text. “When spring break ended, I just decided to skip the in-between part and move right into summer. Now I have a job at Goodberries and every afternoon is free because I have no homework.”
Students are not the only ones thrilled about the start of their self-proclaimed start to summer break. Teachers, too, like the thought of no school for the rest of the semester.
“After the year these students have had, they deserve an extra long summer vacation,” said Randal Donnely, principal of Independence High School via phone call. “Every year we start to see students slow down during the fourth quarter– apathy rates go up and blankly daydreaming while staring out the window skyrockets to the point where it is hard for students to hear any words from their teacher’s mouth other than, “no homework tonight,” By giving them an extra-long summer break we can avoid all of the symptoms that come with bored students and we can all come back more refreshed than any other year before.”
Other teachers agree, liking the idea of an early start to summer vacation for almost the same reasons as their students.
“Frankly, an early summer break is genius,” said Mrs. Covey, an English teacher at Independence High School. “Having fewer days in a school year means I have less lessons to plan and less papers to grade. I can also have a head start on my summer bucket list starting with a trip to the Grand Canyon and a socially distanced rock concert that in previous years would have fallen on a school night.”
“While a shorter school year might change how much kids can learn this year, that is an issue for our future selves,” said Mr. Donnely. “Right now we should make the most of it and enjoy this once-in-a-lifetime experience.”