We all know the 2020-2021 school was an exceedingly difficult year for so many individuals. While being online for most of the year with the existence of getting introduced to a new class called “Advisory.” As the new school year begins, the Gresham Barlow School District has made a decision to keep the advisory period. With that being said, how is the new Advisory schedule making you feel?
Advisory is a safe space for all students and is a way for students to learn, understand, and get help when needed. Science Teacher, Neal Bridgnell, explains, “previous years in our district and at Barlow were different. These are much harder times for students, including home life, school climate, equity issues, and college and career expectations.” Several Barlow staff members want students to feel welcomed and appreciated during this period.
A group of Barlow students make an agreement, overall stating their opinion that the advisory period is in fact a “waste of time.” “I feel if the class was shorter it could be more helpful, especially if it was once a week. Right now the activities we are doing don’t seem very useful and I feel we aren’t using our school time wisely,” states Anonymous.
The staff and student opinions are very different from each other and Barlow staff are hopeful in getting more use out of advisory, than what it is now. “Advisory is an ideal learning space for Bruin Pride expectations, school protocol announcements, cultural awareness lessons, and for an opportunity to connect with an adult who is not their content teacher,” mentions Bridgnell.
In addition to student opinions, other individuals state, “we never had the class before COVID and we have been just fine without it.” “This takes time away from learning in core classes and missing out on opportunities to get work done,” explains Anonymous.
Although this year may look different with multiple schedules, it’s giving students the chance to learn more about the next steps we need to take to be more successful in the future.