Give me a Break!

Currently, students will be taking their final exams two weeks following winter break. As a result, students feel the need to study at the expense of spending time with their families during the holidays. Finals should be given before winter break so that students can have time to relax during the holiday season.

For many students, winter break is a time to destress with their friends and families. However, winter break is now an alarming reminder that finals are only a few weeks away. A time meant for relaxation has now turned into crunch time for students as they keep up with their academic lives. Having finals before these two weeks will ensure that students are allowed actual time off.

“Of course I wish I could truly relax over break,” freshman Padma Iyengar said. “It would be nice to have some days where I do not need to spend a large amount of time on school”.

Having finals before break can have major benefits for students. The content is still new in their minds, so students will be more likely to remember the content of the class. By giving the final while they know the information well, students will be more confident going into the final. Students will also feel less stressed after finals and will have more time to spend with their loved ones.

According to Princeton Alumni Weekly, “Surveys found that students want to move finals before winter break to reduce stress. Eighty-one percent of undergraduates said that scheduling finals in January made them feel stressed over winter break, and 79 percent said it made them spend less time with family and friends over the break.”

Changing the schedule to having finals before the break would require schools to start earlier. This is a change that most students and teachers cannot even imagine being put in place. However, the negatives will overall outweigh the positives because by starting school earlier, as the semester will will be able to wrap up before winter break. High schools in Irvine such as Northwood High have already made this change starting this year. Although there are no results yet due to being the first year on the new calendar, the change is projected to give students a better educational experience.

“We want the students to have the best experience possible. When you’re weighing all things, we’d rather have the students have a better experience,” social studies department chair Jon Resendez said. “We’ve already declared winter break a no-homework zone, but that’s really hard to enforce when students know there’s a final coming, or they know they’re going to have a project they’re going to work on, so it’s not likely that students are going to not work during the winter break.”

While students have more time to study during winter break, many would rather use the time to destress and spend time with loved ones. For most students, winter break serves as a wakeup call to work hard in order to get the desired results. Therefore, it is crucial to adjust the schedule to accommodate giving finals before the break.