School board unveils new SHS schedule

Published 12:00 am Sunday, July 2, 2006

The Selma Times-Journal

After one year of analysis and discussion by the Selma City School Board, it was decided Selma High School would reinstate a block-scheduling format during the 2006-2007 academic year – a wish granted at the request of SHS students and parents.

Previously operating on a seven-period class format, SHS students complained of the schedule’s lack of flexibility, especially for students who are dually enrolled at Wallace Community College Selma.

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In a previous report, SHS PTO President Amos Moore and vice-president Collins Pettway requested the board consider block scheduling during a May 18 meeting.

Pettway said the block scheduling would allow students to take more elective courses as well as allow those that were falling behind have an opportunity to catch up on class work.

“Right now with kids taking seven classes, they’re taking seven books to school,” Pettway said. “But carrying around three or four books, they’ll be able to concentrate more. The problems come when (the system) is not administrated right.”

Moore added he had reviewed statistics that show students who follow block scheduling perform better academically.

After listening to student and parent complaints, Superintendent Dr. James Carter studied both schedule formats, noting a considerable difference in class instruction time. There are 45 minutes of instruction during the seven period schedule and 90 minutes during block scheduling. While Carter doesn’t favor either schedule, he said his top concern is “quality instruction provided for all students.”

“As long as teachers are teaching the entire period, I do not have a problem with either schedule,” Carter said, emphasizing the importance of administration when the school returns to block scheduling Aug. 10.

Carter added, “My focus is on students achieving at a higher level, and a schedule has no significance in the teaching and learning process. The teachers and quality teaching are what make the difference.”