Advisory time: effective or not?


Picture of the most recent advisory schedule on March 22, 2023

Nitya Kaza, Staff Writer

As I sit in advisory and try to concentrate on my assignment, I am surrounded by a number of students who are either working on their assignments like me or just talking to their friends. The advisory I’m in is relatively silent, but that doesn’t mean everyone uses the time for assignments.

Personally, I love advisory time because I can catch up on schoolwork and get ahead, but at the same time, I have lunch with my grade, so I can sit with my closest friends. Advisory is my time to talk and ask questions to teachers. However, a common theme that I have noticed among my peers is that most of them do not have much to do during advisory. Occasionally, I will see people working, but most of the time, they are usually on their phones. I think that for the majority of the freshman class, advisory time is not the most effective.

“I don’t think advisories have a real benefit,” freshman Simrah Azmi said. “I feel like most people are just doing nothing. But I really like it because it’s my time to unwind and not have to pay attention to a class or something like that.”

However, I can only speak for the freshman, and I know for upperclassmen, advisory can be super helpful since they tend to have more work than freshmen do. Advisories become less of a free block and more for class presentations about important topics in the college application process, such as job shadows and resume building, but also topics such as senior capstone projects. Therefore, advisories are still important to have, just not for the whole school.

“Advisory is nice to get time to get work done, and a lot of people in my grade usually do homework,” sophomore Priyanka Rajaram said. “It’s also nice because you can talk to people in your advisory even though you don’t have classes with them. In my advisory, most people just do homework.”

Advisory lasts from 10:20 – 12:04, which, excluding lunch, is over an hour of work time. When used effectively, that is a huge amount of time that could be utilized. As one might assume, most students would want to maximize that time, but a lot of freshmen just don’t have work or choose not to work on it.

However, even without utilizing the time to work on assignments, many find the advisory time to still be very valuable, as it is important for taking care of other priorities such as presentations and state-required surveys.

“I think that advisory is important,” said Dan Twomey, a dean at WA. “It offers opportunities for when we gave other types of things that we try to do in the school. Whether it’s guest speakers or just an opportunity for a group of students to get to know a teacher over their four-year period. Another face, another name they know in the building from fresh an year to senior year.”

The purpose for advisory changes for each grade, so no solution would completely satisfy everyone. If we were to shorten the advisories, the people who work during that time would have less time, but if we elongated or made advisories more frequent, then those who don’t make use of it would just be wasting their time. As someone who likes advisory, I think that making advisory more frequent but shorter would be better. That way, students still get time to work on assignments, but those who choose not to won’t be wasting as much time during the day.

Overall, I believe that advisory, as it is right now, is not effective for most freshmen. However, with some adjustments and changing how frequent and how long the advisories are, there could be a fine balance for those who use and those who do not use the advisory time. At times, it might also be effective for the underclassmen not to have advisory while the upperclassman have them.