Stressful Scheduling

Routine turns into new routes as the new semester begins.


Graham Webb reviewing their new schedule sitting in the guidance office.

After taking many stressful finals tests, sophomore Parker Haberstroh had walked into her first-hour class hoping to sit by her friends. Throughout the last semester, she became comfortable with all of the students in her class, even the ones she didn’t previously know. However, the new semester instantly forces a reset where out of about 23 students, only two are recognizable.

The new semester started on Tuesday, Jan. 17, and this resulted in a multitude of changes as many students started new semester long classes, whereas many students who had year long classes had the same teachers, but moved to completely different hours.

Like many students, knowing little to no students in both their new subject classes and their shifted hours classes, Haberstroh had no idea who to talk to.

“Sometimes we have projects where we have to pick a partner or talk to your table or whatever, but if I don’t know them, I don’t just want to put myself out there. It’s kind of hard,” Haberstroh said.

However, even if students know some other people in the class, mandatory seating charts set by the teacher can rearrange students to where they’re in a group of unknown students. Additionally, right after students finally create a routine, when the semester switches their class hours around, it completely throws their directions off.

“I definitely don’t like it because I like setting myself in place knowing who to talk to and what I’m going to do and then this change is really messing me up,” Haberstroh said. “Especially with seating charts, you can’t choose to sit by your friends even if you do have someone you know in your class, we can’t mix it up.”

Students with semester-long classes switch subjects when the semester ends, and this makes a lot of students anxious, including freshman Emma LaRosa.

“Walking into a room where I don’t know people is nerve racking because they could ask questions and then, ask too many questions, and then you don’t know what to say,” LaRosa said. “I’m not good with crowds or just anybody looking at me ever; I’m kind of antisocial.”

To some students, not knowing the teacher can be another very stressful result of the schedule change.

“I don’t want my first impression of my new teachers to be bad. If it were the same teachers, they would already know who I am. Now it’s like I need to prove what type of student I am over again. I need to make sure I’m acquainted. They need to know that I can speak in a classroom, but I just don’t,” LaRosa said.

In the guidance office, Graham Webb considers the new classes they will have. (Kyly Jacobs)

On the other hand, freshman Cooper Schmidt says the new semester makes life easier. He enjoys making new friends and facing the challenges his new schedule proposes.

“The new semester helps me learn to talk to people and learn how to communicate and start conversations, which helps build social skills with other people,” Schmidt said. “It’s really just multitasking: I have these classes, these people I gotta figure out, these new homework assignments and stuff. It keeps my brain active, and really helps me a lot.”

Teachers especially enjoy the schedule change because year long classes contain the same students, so it only changes who is in which class. Mrs. Kathryn Mastorakos, having taught for 27-28 years, enjoys the social dynamic changes.

“Even though it’s the same kids, now you have different people interacting, and every teacher will tell you that every class has its own kind of personality and vibe. Now it’s a different mix of people, so you feel like, oh, I didn’t know these people were friends. You get to see how people interact with each other,” Mrs. Mastorakos said.

Mrs. Mastorakos also feels like the new semester is a fresh start. However, even with these new class personalities, she still sometimes misses her old hours.

“It’s always a good thing because then you don’t get tired of each other. Students get to have fun with new people. Maybe they didn’t have a friend, you know, in the first semester but now they’re in a class with their best friend or whatever; they need somebody new,” Mrs. Mastorakos said.

In the end, many students enjoy the new semester schedule changes, whereas many do not. But it’s important, as Haberstroh said, to go into it with an open mind.

“Don’t try to close yourself off from other people because you never know who you might be friends with and how that class might affect you in the long run,” Haberstroh said.

LaRosa says she didn’t like the schedule change initially, but it’s not that bad.

“You just gotta bear through it. It’s only 52 minutes,” LaRosa said.

However uncomfortable the schedule change might be, some students think of the fresh start as an amazing opportunity.

“Don’t be nervous about going to your classes and saying, oh no, I don’t have someone in my class anymore. What am I gonna do? Don’t be nervous. It’s a new opportunity to meet new people and have new life experiences. You could meet really interesting people that get you involved in clubs after school stuff,” Schmidt said.