Sophomores: No more lecture halls

By Roxanne Glazier
Published: February 2009

Responding to complaints among sophomores, the South Senate passed a new policy on February 5 that will release sophomores from lecture hall studies during their second semester. The policy went into immediate effect after Principal Brian Salzer approved it later that day.

“The faculty supports it. The administration supports it. The students support it, Senate president Bill Humphrey said. “It’s a fairly basic policy. [Creating it] is our responsibility to the students.

Unlike last year’s sophomores, who gained free blocks after winter break, the class of 2011 sophomores were originally required to spend cancelled classes under faculty supervision in the lecture hall for the whole school year.

The Committee of Programming, a diverse group of people that discusses school policy and possible school improvements, had brought up various lecture-hall complaints during weekly meetings from both students and faculty. The lecture hall policy discussion also involved housemasters and department chairs.

Goodwin Housemaster Charlie Myette believes that South needs to find a more permanent solution to replace the substitute teacher program, which was removed last year due to budget cuts. The program had covered the majority of cancelled classes last year for underclassmen.

The administration would feel more comfortable releasing students from lecture halls if the “culture of the school catered more to this need and if there were more “student friendly areas, Myette said.

Some sophomores argued that free blocks should replace lecture halls just like they replaced directed studies.

“A lot of people don’t go to the lecture hall when there’s a cancelled class, sophomore Amit Yehuda said. “If I get a free block, I deserve the free block. I shouldn’t have to go to the lecture hall.

According to Department of Education (DOE) requirements, each student is required to have 990 hours of education every year, which includes directed studies and lecture hall. While the DOE does not keep track of each student’s personal record, the school might be audited if many students appear to be falling short of the 990 hour requirement.

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