New Scheduling Information

E-mail Print PDF

Frequently Asked Questions (Students/Parents/Guardians)


Q.        How does implementing the uniform schedule help the District gain class size compliance across high schools?

A. The uniform schedule allows the District to offer one additional class per day; which allows the school to offer more classes because teachers will now teach six of seven classes; thereby reducing the number of students in a class. Since all teachers (core and elective) will teach an additional class, all classes will have a positive impact towards meeting class size.

Q.        How many schools are impacted by this change?

A.         All high schools are impacted by this change, with the exception of a cadre of non-traditional high school programs (Career Technical, College Academy, Virtual and Intellectually Disabled).

Q.        Why are you implementing this high school schedule change at this point?

A.         Previous efforts to address class size have not had the systemic change needed to be in full compliance with the state mandate for class size reduction. In the past, the District received one-time funding sources that allowed it to meet class size. As these funding sources are no longer available, the District must look to long-term strategies and solutions.

Q.        When will students/parents/families receive the new schedules?

A.         New student schedules for the 2012/13 school will be generated over the summer (July 2012). This is the standard timeline for generating student schedules.

Q.        If I’m currently on a block schedule and I have to change my schedule, what will happen to my credits/schedule? Will I lose any credits?

A.         Students will not lose credits changing from the block to another uniform schedule option.

Q.        What is the difference between the uniform (straight 7), the rotator and A/B Block schedules?

A.         Please see below for additional details about the seven period schedules:

  1. Uniform straight 7 students take seven (7) classes for full year (9000 minutes per class) with students attending each class (50 minutes) every day
  1. Rotator students take seven (7) classes for full year (9000 minutes per class) with students attending six (6) classes (60 minutes) per day on a rotation.
  1. A/B block students take seven (7) classes for full year (9000 minutes per class) with alternating days of attending three (3) classes (100 minutes) with one constant class (50 minutes)

Q.        Why aren’t you offering the 4x4 block schedule as an option?

A.         The block schedule does not allow the District to offer the seven periods in the school day. The District is moving to a seven period schedule as a way to address class size compliance.

Q.        Will the District save money by implementing a uniform seven period schedule for high schools?

A.         Yes, the District will save money by implementing a seven period schedule, where teachers teach six of seven periods. The savings realized at the high school level will be reinvested towards class size reduction compliance.

Q.        Will the bell schedules at my school change with the implementation of the uniform seven period schedule?

A.         It is possible that the bell schedules may change. The school principal will work with the school community and will communicate any changes to the bell schedule.

Q.        How does this change impact me if I am enrolled in AP classes?

A.         Students will have more opportunities to take AP classes with the new schedule.  The uniform seven period schedule automatically provides for year-long instruction.  Therefore, there is not a need to pair the AP class with another class.  This will allow for more opportunities for students to take other AP/Dual Enrollment classes.

Q.        How does this change impact me if I currently have dual enrollment classes?

A.         The change should not have an impact on students taking dual enrollment classes.  Schools will still be able to adjust a student's schedule to allow them to take Dual Enrollment classes.

Q.        When my school moves from a block (4x4) schedule to the uniform seven period schedule, will I have an opportunity to take more electives?

A.         The change from a block to a non-block schedule may allow students to take more electives.

Q.        I will be a senior next year. Will my credits (from a block to a uniform seven period schedule) transfer correctly, so I can graduate on time?

A.         There is no need for the transfer of credits from one type of schedule to another.  Students in BCPS automatically maintain their credits earned once the credit is earned.

Q.        It seems like I will earn less credits on this new schedule (32 vs. 28).

A.         Yes, under the uniform seven period schedule a student can earn 28 credits during his/her high school career. Under the block (4x4) schedule, a student can earn 32 credits during his/her high school career.

However, students will no longer double up on classes just to allow for yearlong instruction.  This in will allow the student to take other classes of interest.

Q.        Will there be a sufficient amount of textbooks available with the change to the uniform high school schedule?

A.         Yes, the District has reserved funds from the savings from the schedule redesign to purchase textbooks. In addition, there will be a process to assess the textbooks in the high schools to shift textbooks from schools that have excess to other schools that may need them.