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The Current

The Current

Editorial: Spirits frozen by holiday break change

Bruin cheerleaders wearing holiday apparel wait to perform before a rally. Bear River’s Winter Break falls later this year, affecting many students’ plans. Photo by McKenna Hisaw

Students aren’t so jolly about their holiday vacation being moved. We at The Current are also feeling Scrooge-like about the change.

In the past, holiday break has begun a week before Christmas, with students returning to school right after New Years, but this year’s schedule is different. Break begins only three days before Christmas and lasts until a week after New Years.

“I don’t get to see my family and do family traditions,” said freshman Madison Barrett. “We usually do fun stuff on the weeks that we have off, and most of my family has work off in December. So I won’t get to see them and I’ll be bored that week in January.”

Other students agreed that this change is affecting their time spent with family.

“Some people I know have to cancel or replan family times because it’s really near the holidays,” sophomore Catherine Desplancke said. “It sucks how the schedule is because that family time is lost.”

Students, like sophomore Grace McDaniel, are sad to be missing out on holiday traditions like baking, but see a positive side to the schedule change as well.

“I like to do a lot before Christmas, such as bake, and I won’t have time to do that when school is in session,” she said. “It will also be nice to have more time off after Christmas though, to get other stuff done.”
Some Bruins haven’t had time to think about their holiday family time; they’ve been too busy stressing out about finals coming up soon.

“I definitely think that finals will be a factor on our spirits this Christmas, having our last final only 3 days before Christmas itself,” McDaniel said. “We will have a lot a stuff on our minds on finals week, and not much of it will be about Christmas.”

Desplancke had similar sentiments.

“With finals around the corner, it kind of puts a strain on the holiday spirit because you’re so focused on trying to do well on finals,” she said. “I understand how important finals are …  but the holidays are so beautiful, and you can’t appreciate it when you’re in a classroom for two hours taking a test.”

Bear River’s Principal Dr. Amy Besler thinks that even though students will be busy with finals, the holidays will be in full swing.

“We’ll be in school until very close to Christmas, as one holiday example, which makes for a festive mood on campus,” said Dr. Besler. “I would imagine that students will be in the holiday spirit and excited about the upcoming holidays and break.”
Dr. Besler also touched on the fact that the movement of the break will give students more time to prepare for the upcoming finals.

“It gives more time for students to take care of their academic responsibilities before the end of the Fall semester, which is a good thing,” said Dr. Besler.

Bruins noticed this opportunity as well.

“Finals being pushed back a week is going to be really helpful, mostly because I procrastinate. It’s hard for me to study, and I feel like that’s going to be really good for a lot of students to get better grades,” said Barrett.

Dr. Besler explained why the district made this decision.

“Our school calendar is determined at the district level, in cooperation between the administration and teachers, who vote to ratify the calendar each year. The Winter Break is somewhat fluid, based on when the holidays fall. Had the break been moved up a week, we would have been slated to return on New Year’s Day, which is a holiday. My understanding is that the break was based on the ability to embed both Christmas and New Year’s within the two week period,” said Dr. Besler. “Additionally, our calendar is based, in part, around the Nevada County Fair, when it comes to when we begin the school year in August — when you play that tape forward, you see that we need to go to December 21st, in order to get the semester in before the break. As it is, our Fall semester is shorter than the Spring semester. We elected to take Friday, December 22nd as a part of the break so that it provides a little extra time before Christmas itself, particularly as we know some families travel for the holidays.”

We at The Current are irritated by the decision to push Winter vacation back a week, but understand why it needed to be done. Bah humbug.

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Editorial: Spirits frozen by holiday break change