The student news site of Westford Academy

WA Ghostwriter

The student news site of Westford Academy

WA Ghostwriter

The student news site of Westford Academy

WA Ghostwriter

DLTs need to be built into all students’ schedules

Students work together on schoolwork in a library.
depositphotos.com
Students work together on schoolwork in a library.

Students are struggling with anxiety now more than ever. Many of these cases stem from non-school related factors, while many do stem from schoolwork itself. Either way, with students currently struggling a great deal with anxiety, DLTs (Directed Learning Time) need to be fixed into students’ schedules to help offset some of the school-related stress. It should not fall on the students’ shoulders to find space for a DLT amidst trying to complete all elective requirements, take courses of interest, and fulfill all necessary credits to graduate.

It is preached by administration and counselors that students should have balanced and healthy schedules, but that is not necessarily supported in actuality. We are required to fulfill 117.5 credits in order to graduate, but are required 32.5 to 35 credits per year, resulting in most students completing at least 130 credits at the end of their four years at WA. This abundance of required credits does not help students create a balanced schedule. 

Among the 117.5 required credits, 22.5 credits are electives and 2.5 credits are visual/performing arts. Eliminating the visual/performing arts requirement and lowering the elective requirement down to 20 credits opens up two more slots for students to include a half-year DLT, while still leaving the door open for students to use those two open slots for classes if they so desire. Even without the visual/performing arts requirement, students are still able to take a visual/performing art class as a part of their 20 elective credits if that is an area of interest for them. This solution would allow for students to have an easier time finding room for a DLT each year.

It is easy to look at the current schedule and just point out that students already have space for a few half-year DLTs. The reason this system is flawed is because due to all of the other requirements, students feel the need to bypass an elective in order to get their requirements done. 

Furthermore, students have jam-packed schedules after school in addition to all of their homework. Between sports, clubs, and other extracurricular activities, students barely have enough time to get everything done, leading to poor sleep schedules and more stress. Having a DLT can be just enough to get a headstart on homework in an attempt to be less stressed after school and go to sleep earlier.

In addition, all WA teachers have at least one flex block, so why should students not get the same privilege? It makes complete sense that teachers have a flex block. It gives them time to plan and grade, just like students need time to complete the work given out by those teachers. The same reasoning behind giving every teacher a flex block can be applied to students having a mandatory DLT. 

Overall, there is enough space in our schedules as students to potentially fit in a couple half-year DLTs, but it still does not correlate with the amount of work we are required to complete amidst all other after school commitments. Each student having a DLT built into their schedule would contribute greatly to solving this problem. 

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributor
James McDermott, Sports Editor
Hey! My name is James McDermott, I am a senior at Westford Academy and this is my fourth year on the Ghostwriter staff. I joined the Ghostwriter because I have always loved writing and sports. In my free time I am almost always playing sports or hanging out with my family and friends. I am extremely excited to continue with the Ghostwriter and hopefully have another successful and fun year.

Comments (0)

All WA Ghostwriter Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *