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BOARD WILL CONSIDER APPOINTING PANEL TO MONITOR NEW SCHEDULE

The Eden School Board has agreed to review a recommendation from Trustee Michael Busshart to establish a committee to monitor the new schedule at the junior-senior high school.

Busshart says he has a list of several parents who are interested in serving on a committee to oversee the new system, which involves four 80-minute classes during each 20-week semester.

The change from a traditional eight-period day of 40-minute classes for one year was implemented at the start of school.

"It's obvious there's a lot of concern out there," Busshart said last week at the School Board meeting.

Opponents unsuccessfully petitioned the School Board in July to prevent the change, but only a handful of parents complained at last week's School Board meeting.

Karen Scanio said the new schedule does not provide children with enough of a break during the school day. Her daughter, she noted, gets up for school at 5:30 a.m. and does not have lunch until 12:30 p.m.

"I think we're asking an awful lot of our kids," she said. "Some love semestering, and some hate it."

While some teachers are varying their teaching methods, others still spend too much time lecturing, she added.

Barbara Abraham, a board member, said she plans to observe various classes to see how they are going.

Patricia Fatta, another member, questioned whether a schedule monitoring committee could deal with individual complaints about the new schedule. She noted that the school already has a shared-decision-making team that could handle such issues.

"I'm not sure what the (schedule monitoring) committee would do other than talk to each other," Mrs. Fatta said.

A committee formed to put the new schedule into effect will hold its final meeting Oct. 16.

Superintendent Thomas Christopher praised the changes and said he had received few complaints so far. Aside from a few adjustment problems, he described the changes as "very impressive at this point."

Richard Castiglia, dean of students, said discipline problems have declined from last year because of fewer class changes.

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