East student starts petition against block scheduling

A Columbus East High School student hopes to gather at least 1,000 signatures from students, parents and staff members on a petition protesting Bartholomew Consolidated School Corp.’s proposal to institute block scheduling in its three high schools.

Sophomore Emilee Whipker created the petition on March 6 via Change.org, a petition platform site. The petition, titled “End BCSC block scheduling proposition,” has already received more than 750 signatures from BCSC students, parents and staff.

“I created it because I really don’t believe (block scheduling) would be a good thing to help everyone out,” Whipker said.

BCSC presented its proposal for a block schedule to school board members during the board’s March 4 meeting. A block schedule means students would alternate different classes between two days with longer class periods. Teachers would also have a planning period built into the schedule each week.

Students in the three high schools, Columbus North, Columbus East and Columbus Signature Academy — New Tech are currently on a traditional schedule, with eight 45-minute sessions.

The proposal would implement a “block 8” schedule — different 85-minute classes on day one and different 85-minute classes on day two with an advisory time for one day and a student resource time on the other. The schedules then continue to alternate.

For more on this story, pick up a copy of Wednesday’s Republic.