New this year at CVHS, freshmen and sophomores are offered the option of zero period academic classes, such as Modern World History for sophomores, or Integrated Math 1. This allows underclassmen with specific schedules like those with band, orchestra, and choir to still take all of their required classes, without dropping their performing arts or other electives.
“I’m kind of tired during the class, but honestly, it’s not that bad,” said sophomore Madison Stewart, taking zero period Modern World History taught by Kathleen Cassidy. “I can still learn, even if it’s early.”
The new academic classes offered for zero period to the underclassmen are Geometry, Modern World History, Integrated Math 1, Sophomore English, and Freshman English.
“Now we’re opening up a little bit more in terms of what can we take. Instead of just zero period P. E., we can now take ninth grade English and Modern World History, just to open up more flexibility in terms of what students can take, so they’re not sacrificing,” said Assistant Principal Sharon Baltazar.
While this seems to be a great opportunity for underclassmen to take more classes, zero period academic classes could have some issues with the students and teachers.
“Do I think they aren’t benefitting fully because of the early time? Absolutely,” said Cassidy. “Though none of them are struggling, they just aren’t doing as well as they would be if it were later in the day.”
Cassidy also took issue with the organizational aspect of teaching a zero period.“I would have to plan different class schedules for my zero period and my other classes, because zero period doesn’t have block schedules,” said Cassidy. “In that sense, they are different classes.”
Another problem is that these new zero period classes are not offered to upperclassmen.“That is dumb,” said junior Andrew Thomas. “Upperclassmen have more classes that we need to get done for college credits.”
Currently, CVHS only offers journalism, orchestra, yearbook, photography and marketing as zero periods to upperclassem.
Students in zero period classes say they are fine with the early time because it adds flexibility to students’ schedules.
“It’s nice that underclassmen have the opportunity to have flexibility in their schedule, but they should also do that with upperclassmen because it would allow us to not have our schedules to revolve around having specific classes, and not being able to take other classes because they only have them in specific periods,” said junior Matthew Tam.