Update on block scheduling and/or late start

OPRFHS families and students, 

This past fall, Oak Park and River Forest High School conducted a Thoughtexchange. Participants responded to the following question: “Based on your feedback last spring, OPRF High School is committed to exploring the potential for block scheduling/or a later start to the school day. Now that school is back in person, what are your thoughts about block scheduling and/or a later start?” There were 1,988 participants, with 2,376 thoughts shared.

The results of the Thoughtexchange helped guide our thinking as we considered the potential for block scheduling and/or a later start to the school day. Analysis of the results indicated the desire for block scheduling was not representative of most stakeholders. However, a later start time was not only a desire of many stakeholders, but research also supports a later start time for high school students.

Therefore, as the 2021/2022 school year comes to a close and we begin planning for the 2022/2023 school year, I wanted to provide an update on the potential for block scheduling and/or a later start to the school day, next steps, and the timeline as we move forward. Various administrative groups have met for several months to consider a bell schedule with a later start time that also ensures the school day does not go past 3:30 p.m.

While a few options were developed, we know this critical decision requires additional stakeholder conversations to consider the impact of such a change thoroughly. Therefore, we will take the first part of the 2022/2023 school year to gather feedback on a few bell schedule options and make a final decision in January 2023. By making the decision next January, we ensure all OPRFHS families and students have time to plan should any change to the current bell schedule happen.

We look forward to engaging in conversation with you around the potential for a later start to the school day. 

Laurie Fiorenza Ed.D

Assistant Superintendent for Student Learning