Only 5 Minutes To Get To Class! What?

Why We Ned to Give Students More Time

Miah Duncan, Staff Writer


Have you ever felt that last-second adrenaline that hits you once the bell is about to ring for your next class and you are unsure if you are going to make it in time? 

I have, many times, and it feels so stressful. 

Students have always struggled with getting to class on time. So why has nothing really changed? The current schedule at Paint Branch High School starts at 7:45 a.m and there are about 46 minutes allotted for each class period and 45 minutes for lunch. This leaves students 5 minutes to get to each class on time or be marked tardy. To help students manage their time on the way to class, there is a warning bell when there is just 1 minute left to get to class. This moment – the ringing of the one minute bell – turns the halls into a runway with kids taking off because being late can be a big issue for students. After the bell rings to signal that class has started and you are not in class by that bell, you will automatically receive a tardy if you do not have a hall pass. In some cases, you can be caught in a hall sweep and assigned detention.

However, there is a better alternative for students, which is adding more time for them to get to class. There should be about 10 minutes to get to class instead of 5. Increasing the time will allow students to have more time to reboot their brain after their previous class, which will help them prepare themselves for the next class. The time would also help students with any drama that may have arisen, which can sometimes – if we are honest – affect them when they are in their next class.  Another positive to more passing time would be that it would allow students to have a chance to talk with their teachers or finish up a quiz or some class work that ran late for them without worrying about being late. Lastly, extra time would definitely help students leaving PE class as these students often don’t have enough time. The final, and perhaps most important change, is that students would not have to rush to use the bathroom in only 5 minutes. 

However, any change affects other aspects. there are also some minor setbacks when increasing the passing time. School days would be longer to accommodate the extra time, about  25 minutes. According to the Thurgood Marshall State Law Library, “Schools are required by law to be open for at least three hours each school day, for at least 180 days school days, and for at least 1,080 school hours during a 10-month period in each school year.” This means that our school days are very regimented timewise, so more passing time means a longer day. Another possible argument against adding more time is that some  students may forget or also slack off more and not pay attention to the time because they feel like they have so much. Students also may try and leave school because of this to get food before lunch. 

Even though there are some minor possible setbacks in increasing the passing time between classes,  it should be increased. Nobody in any job wants to have to rush from place to place, so why should students and teachers have to do so?  Rushing to class or worrying about being late all the time could really stress that person out and life is already stressful enough.