Student, Teacher, and Administrator Weigh in on New Late Start Schedule

William Fisher, Online Editor-In-Chief

  Last year it was announced that for the 2022-2023 school year MHS would run on a new late start schedule, with school starting at 8:40 rather than 7:45. However periods are shorter and Thursdays are no longer a shorter start than the rest of the week.

  Guidance Department Chair Tom Buenik stated, “We came to learn through research that students starting later was of the most critical attributes to more success in schools and it’s all about brain research and sleep research for students your age.”

  While the school initially intended to implement this new schedule years ago, logistical problems such as bus contracts held it back, as MHS shares their buses with District 75. However, now that it’s finally here, has it worked?

  “I think it has helped, especially for people who are involved in athletics or other clubs at the school, having that late start every single day helps you if you need morning practices or morning meetings. I myself, I’m a varsity tennis player, so in the spring, when tennis is running on for the boys, we might have early morning practices every single day of the week, whereas last year that would have been a lot harder, because we would have had to get up a lot earlier.” said Junior Kurt Dumblauskas. 

  However, students are only half the story. Teachers still come in at 7:25 in the morning. “Just the idea of being able to walk in and know that I still have some time before first period starts if I do need to make copies, if I do need to meet with any students, [I have] that time available and I don’t feel as rushed as I used to,” stated math teacher Julie Ellingsen. 

  While last year every Thursday was a later start than the rest of the week, due to the new schedule there are only six late start Thursdays in the year. 

   “I like the consistent schedule. Sometimes the Thursday late start that we had last year would actually get me out of sync, but now with this new schedule, it’s consistent … I think it’s much better for a learning environment like Mundelein High School,” said Dumblauskas

  Class periods are also five minutes shorter this year due to the new late start. Ellingsen explains how that has affected her classes. “Just the five minutes shorter feels like I have to readjust all my lessons … but I do like the 45 minutes. I think it’s a good balance for the students and for us.”

  Finally, Dumblauskas describes the effect late start has had on his fellow students.

  “Yes I believe I can see it [whether or not the late start has helped his classmates] in my classmates’ demeanors, their eyes, I can see them feeling a little bit more lively because they have a little more sleep than what they’re used to.”