Davis Ushers in a New Club Schedule

In response to student outcry, Poly revises the club schedule to give students more independence

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On the day before winter break, Dean of Student Life Alexandra Davis and Student Government unveiled their new club schedule for the second semester. 

In this new schedule, clubs are able to meet on Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday afternoons as well as during the original flex period. This change is intended to add flexibility for clubs that have to meet more than once a week as well as ones that must meet after the end of the day.

In the email, Davis also announced that clubs will no longer be mandatory and that attendance will not be taken. She did, however, encourage students to join clubs if they are interested in doing so. 

Many students were excited that clubs are no longer mandatory. 

Junior Josh Spector said, “I like this new schedule better because when we were forced to join clubs, you had people who weren’t passionate about it doing it, so now you only have committed people which makes them more interesting.”

Junior Alexa Nanfro said, “I am happy that clubs are no longer mandatory because now I have time to do my homework during flex period so I’m not as stressed at night.”

For club leaders, however, taking away the mandatory component can negatively affect their club. Senior Alexandra Nava-Baltimore, Editor-in-Chief of the Polyglot,  said, “I think that it’s good to have students be involved in clubs that they’re interested in, not because it is mandatory, but unfortunately then clubs are losing many members because students aren’t going to clubs during the period anymore and they’re just using their free period to do homework or hang out so it is hurting the Polyglot or many clubs because we don’t have as many members as we did before.” 

Student Government has been discussing changing the club schedule since its introduction. However, as Davis explained, the main push was in the forum held by Student Government in November. During the forum, Barzdukas announced that “when we come back from winter break, there will be a new schedule.”

In the original club schedule, Davis indicated that “Thursday flex time was supposed to be a club period to replace the advisory system.” Through requiring students to partake in a club, Davis expected students to create “student-adult” relationships based on common interests. This expectation was not met. 

Sophomore Lulu Timoney said, “I’m glad that attendance isn’t there anymore because now I can go to multiple clubs at once and I don’t have to be worried about getting marked absent.”

Finally, this new schedule removes grade-level meetings for the 10th and 11th grades. Davis explained that “students were missing out on free time” and that she hoped to “give back time” with this change to the schedule. In her email to the school, Davis wrote that she expects students to “meet with teachers and to do individual work” during that free period.

Sophomore Uma Sorran said, “I’m happy that we have more flex periods free because now I can catch up on work and still be able to participate in clubs and afterschool activities.”

Davis expressed in an email that “we will be looking to incorporate an additional US gathering time for announcements/sharing of accomplishments and talents; rethinking advisory and cohort programming; and creating more time for academic and social-emotional support for next year.”