By Rachel Barner, news editor
On Tuesday March 14, Saegertown rolled out its first extension period. The next one is scheduled for Monday, March 27 during an a.m. activity period. So far, this new addition has received mostly positive reviews from both staff and students, despite a few setbacks, such as not knowing what to expect. Freshman Zane Schlosser said, “I feel like it could be beneficial when it starts to get going. The first meeting was kind of awkward. Nobody really knew what to do at first.” He feels like he has a better connection with the students and his teacher because of this period.
Seventh grader Shyanne Anglin has similar thoughts to Schlosser. “I feel like I have a better connection with my classmates because if we didn’t do this then we wouldn’t know much about them. Mr. Wise [Anglin’s teacher] said that you may know them but not as well as you think.” Anglin feels like this program could be improved upon.
On the flip side, junior Alisa Blaylock said, “I feel like they definitely need to be tutorials instead of just talking. I mean talking is good, but I don’t want to spend all period talking, especially if I have a lot of homework.”
English teacher Mr. William Hetrick, member of the leadership team that is guiding the extension period initiative, said, “From my perspective, it [the first meeting] went extremely well, and for most of the teachers it went very well.” Mr. Hetrick also said that there are some kinks to be worked out, and there is room for improvement. In his class, he and his students worked on getting to know each other. “I want the people in my group to believe I see them as people, not just as students in my room, and for them to see me as a person, not just as a teacher in front of them.”
Science teacher Mrs. Melissa Statman teaches juniors and seniors. “We had an icebreaking activity. I took the time to look at how each student was doing and shared with them something about me. I want to find ways to help them and to get to know who they are,” Mrs. Statman said. She added, “With any new endeavor there will be growing pains, and we will need to figure out how to improve what we are doing.”
Many staff at the school are going into this with a positive outlook. “I wish everyone would take a step back to see this as a refreshing idea to create a positive culture in our school. Negative people will have a negative answer to everything. It brings negativity to the program. To have a positive change, you need to be open minded and have a positive outlook to bring a positive change,” Mr. Hetrick said.
Journalism Adviser, Saegertown Jr. Sr. High School