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Finals Before Winter Break

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The Board of Education will discuss next year’s school calendar tonight during its policy committee meeting at 6:30.  
Should District 155 shift the school calendar earlier to complete first semester before winter break? A decision could happen this evening or at the February meeting, according to Shannon Mortimer, District 155’s Director of Communications.

Last week the Board of Education sought feedback from teachers on this issue via an email survey asking whether they would support changing the school year to an earlier start for the 2017-2018 school year.

Wolf Prints posed the question “Would you prefer to take final exams before winter break, even if it means starting school earlier?” to Prairie Ridge students. Here are some of their thoughts:

“Yeah, I would prefer that. Winter break is supposed to be a break from school, not a study fest.”- Eve Pollock, sr.

“Yes, because if you start it earlier, you end it sooner.”- Carlos Zavala, jr.

“Yes, I wouldn’t have to stress out during winter break.”-Samantha Kahoun, sr.

“Yes, because winter break would actually be a break and not a study session.”- Victoria Colthurst, sr.

“Yes. You won’t have to worry about studying over break, and you can have more free time.” – Taylor Kuhn, sr.

“No, because during break if you want to study, you can, or you can relax and just prepare yourself mentally.” -Hannah Switzer, fr.

“Yes, because then we don’t have to stress about anything over winter break.” -Sarah Hammerl, fr.

“No, because over winter break you get to study for finals.” -Grace Vanhyfte, fr.

“Yes, there would be more time to prepare for AP classes.”-Rachel Barnes, jr.

“Yeah, because we wouldn’t forget everything over break and have to learn it again.” -Hanna Stovall, jr.

“[Yes], before. It’s stupid that we do them after. Huntley does them before. D155 is stupid for not doing it.”-Carl Frasor, jr.

“Yes, I believe that final exams should be before winter break because our break would really be a break!”-Gina Wozny, jr.

“Winter break would be more of a break without the stress of finals hanging over our heads. Moving the school year earlier would be a benefit and allow them to have less stress.” -Nicolette Schlup, so.

Prairie Ridge students, what are your thoughts? Add your ideas to the comments below.

Would you prefer to take finals before winter break?

  • YES - starting earlier & getting out in May would be worth the change. (81%, 47 Votes)
  • NO - I like our school calendar the way it is now. (19%, 11 Votes)

Total Voters: 58

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8 Responses to “Finals Before Winter Break”

  1. Aidan O'Connor on January 19th, 2016 4:44 pm

    I know this is a dissenting opinion, but I think that the presence of winter break further emphasizes the purpose of finals. These exams are designed to measure how well students have mastered AND retained content during a course. When we have a 2 week break almost immediately before finals, then the test emphasizes long term retention at an even greater level. Thus, for this reason (and that two D155 schools do not have the luxury of air conditioning), I believe that final exams are justifiably suitable after Winter Break.


  2. Joshua Svehla on January 19th, 2016 5:26 pm

    I agree with Aidan, finals should not be moved. Others argue that they currently spend winter break stressing over finals, but that’s a choice, not a requirement. If one spends a sufficient amount of time during the fall/winter quarters reviewing old materials and then efficiently uses that last week before finals to study, there should be no real need to study over break. Like Aidan said, students need to retain material, and having finals after break further tests that and further enforces the idea that knowledge should truly be learned rather than crammed. Students can use break to study if they really want, but that’s a choice they make.


  3. Mrs. Bland on February 18th, 2016 4:17 pm

    The next two years’ school calendars are available now at the district website:


  4. Mya Parochelli on February 29th, 2016 2:03 pm

    Finals should not be moved before break. Others may disagree because they think their going to stress all break. It’s up to you on how much you study; however, you should be studying for finals. The students can choose to study of break, but the choice is up to them. Rather than studying all at once you have the break to spread out your work. Students, one of the most stressful people ever, need the time to look over their notes or activities.


  5. Anonymous on March 19th, 2016 4:45 pm

    While the point of finals is to see how students sustain and master knowledge, the point of high school is to prepare students for college and ultimately life as a full time worker. The high schools would be preparing students more by doing finals the same way colleges do, by having them take their exams before break.


  6. Sanjana Nath on March 19th, 2016 4:46 pm

    While the point of finals is to see how students sustain and master knowledge, the point of high school is to prepare students for college and ultimately life as a full time worker. The high schools would be preparing students more by doing finals the same way colleges do, by having them take their exams before break.


  7. Ian on May 19th, 2016 10:31 am

    *Finals before Break* Finals should certainly be before winter break. The reason for this is because, when you take a two week break from school you most likely are doing –absolutely nothing– during this time until maybe the last Saturday or Sunday. It is proven that after taking that long of time off of thinking you will certainly loose knowledge you previously had before break. If people are gonna forget things over break and we could potentially put finals before that period of time, which we could, then why wouldn’t we if its gonna greatly benefit the students, and most likely the school. There is no reason not to. However some people might like them after break; I would prefer them before break.


  8. Trevor Schwallie on May 19th, 2016 10:38 am

    Finals should not be moved before winter break. Winter break is a time to relax and finals can get in the way of that, but there is a week prior to finals. And if finals were moved and semester one were too, we would need to start school earlier! Two weeks into August– a time for relaxing– we would start school. The stress for studying for finals is hard; this helps students prepare for the real life. For working at their job. Preparing for college. It is a choice to study during winter break, the choice by the students, but the week before finals is a time to study too. Finals will help students with time and what choices to make. How they use their time will affect them on finals.


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Finals Before Winter Break