Advisory periods: staff, faculty see potential

Aidan Koch, News/Tech Editor

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Last year, OPRF elected to add advisory periods to class schedules. Advisory is a 15-minute period in which teachers read the announcements and students can bond with their peers, as well as a non-academic adult figure. This new addition shortened class periods by one minute and lengthened the school day by 7 minutes to end at 3:11. 

Advisory periods have the same group of students in the same grade and the same teacher all four years. This is to give students a familiar space through their four years in high school. Sophomores, juniors, and seniors will need to adjust to the new schedule, which will be a part of the remainder of their high school career. 

Director of student services Lynda Parker says  “it’s a period where you get to interact with other people that you probably wouldn’t throughout the day, have another trusted adult in your presence who you know is there for you and can be a resource for you for different things.”

Students are grouped based on their counselors and grades to make communication between counselors and students easier. 

Counselor Meghan Cahill says “I always have the best intentions of pushing information out to specific students or to all my students if it’s something for all grade levels and it speeds up that process so while I can still email them, this is a second touch and I know that kid’s don’t always read emails so it’s a reinforcement.”

With regard to the announcements read in advisory, Parker says “I hear more announcements are actually being heard than when they were read over the intercoms so people are actually showing up to things where they weren’t before.” 

In each announcement there is information about clubs, fundraisers, and school/community events.

Advisory is more than just a time for teachers to read announcements. These are spaces for students to confide in a trusted adult. 

Jonathan Silver, dean of students, says “Obviously, with the ridiculous stuff we had going on last year, with the racial incidence, to me advisory is, you know it’s only 15 minutes, teachers can adjust students and see what their needs are and I think advisories a great place for that to happen.”

According to Parker, “It was purposefully designed this year to not have a plan, meaning teachers weren’t given a specific thing that they to do on a specific day with the students.” Without a set schedule, teachers plan accordingly to use the time to better fit their students.

Advisory periods will continue as the year goes on, the only exception being on late-arrival days.