This year the school is offering Chemistry Honors, Spanish Lit AP and AP European History during zero period, which begins at 7:20 a.m., in order to allow more students to fit the classes they want to take into their schedules.
The classes are taught by Carl Babb, Kim Hanley and Robert Freeman.
Assistant Principal Cristy Dawson said that the decisions about which classes to offer during zero period are based on “the ability to load the class.”
Certain classes are only offered during one period. These “singletons” can block students from taking other courses that aren’t offered as frequently, so “zero is a place that you would have to go,” Dawson said.
Hanley said that the school is offering Spanish Literature AP during zero period because “they were trying to accommodate the students’ wishes.”
“They were trying to fit it into the schedule and at the end of last year they weren’t able to put it in one through seven,” Hanley said.
Carl Babb asked the administration to make Chemistry Honors a zero period.
“It gives people a nice option,” Babb said. “But the main reason we’re doing it is because we’re out of rooms.”
According to social studies teacher Robert Freeman, there are currently 21 students in his zero period class. He believes more students dropped than usual. But the students that remain are “committed” and “alert,” he said.
Students said that they’ve generally gotten used to waking up early and are grateful for the free time that they can use later in the day for homework and studying.
“I looked at my schedule and I was scared at first,” sophomore Steven Dittmer said. “But, I realized that I get out every day pretty much at two.”
Students in zero periods have been adjusting their sleeping schedules to compensate for waking up earlier.
“Before the school year started I was definitely dreading [having a zero period], but it hasn’t been too bad so far,” sophomore Julia Chmyz said.