The introduction of Patriot Time has left students divisive about whether or not the switch from homeroom teachers to second period teachers will enhance the value of the lessons about students’ well-being.
Patriot Time was introduced as a way to tackle tough topics that students could be facing. After Principal Kimberly Boldon and her leadership team noticed that students did not have the same connection to their homeroom teachers as their daily teachers, it was decided that students would now go to their second period classrooms for Patriot Time. “We wanted to do it in a more organic way where students already know their teachers… to make sure students felt comfortable in some of the topics that we would be discussing,” Boldon said.
With this year’s first presentation based on different types of abuse and how to spot it, the switch to teachers who know their students well is welcomed by freshman Vanshika Garg. “I think that’s it’s a good thing because then we can get information about the stuff happening in the community,” Garg said. “And also we get time to practice important drills.”
Not everyone agrees with homeroom being reserved for administrative work. Sophomore Ari Glaizer expressed his disapproval of the change. “I wish they didn’t change it because I like my homeroom class more than my second period class,” Glaizer said. “Now I don’t get to be in my homeroom class as much.”
While the move from homeroom to second period can make a difference in the effectiveness of a lesson, senior Eric Quam is questioning the significance of such changes. “I think it makes sense that [Patriot Time lessons] should be with teachers that students know well, but I don’t think every student’s second period teacher is better than their homeroom,” Quam said. “For me, I could go with either one.”
Despite the controversy between homeroom and second period teachers, the Patriot Time lessons themselves have garnered student approval. “I think Patriot Time is good for the school, because [the lessons] are usually about things that people wouldn’t talk about in school,” junior Scotty Collinson said. “It has probably helped a lot of people.”
Even if students are reluctant to welcome the change, Boldon is listening to students’ opinions, and willing to adapt Patriot Time is evidence of that. “I hope that [Patriot Time] will also allow students to know we are here to support, because school and life can be challenging,” Boldon said. “[We want] to give some really practical resources that students can go to.”