What is a Day X?
New this year, a Day X is a day in which students have all of their classes (periods A through G). Each class lasts 45 minutes, creating a special schedule that resembles the daily one DA used to have prior to the pandemic. Unlike the pre-Covid schedule, however, it is school policy that no homework is allowed to be due on a Day X, in addition to no quizzes or tests administered. Day X’s often fall on days right after a schoolwide holiday break.
What is the purpose of Day X?
First and foremost, the purpose of a Day X is to allow students to use their holiday breaks as a true break from school and all the work it entails. For example, students in the past have complained that Diwali is not really a day off from school for them because they have so much homework and tests the next day. Realistically, it wouldn’t be plausible for the administration to always give two days off of school for every holiday. Thus, the solution was to implement a day of school that requires less preparation.
Additionally, Day X’s serve as a break from the block scheduling that has been in use since Covid-19. Although the block scheduling has received mostly positive reviews, some students complain that they have trouble focusing for 75 minutes on a single subject. Problematically, it’s also difficult to improve foreign language proficiency when students are only practicing in-class approximately twice a week.
Foreign language teachers desire more time for their students to engage in conversations. More than any other class, spoken languages need daily practice to retain information. Adding Day X’s into the schedule incorporates more than a dozen more meeting times for foreign language teachers.
Ninth grader Anna Morris offers a positive review of the addition to the schedule, adding that her “favorite thing about Day X is the no homework policy.” It provides a rare break from DA’s seemingly constant academically rigorous schedule. Morris’s opinion is representative of most of her underclassmen peers, as Day X’s come with a “sigh of relief.”
Conversely, junior Sarah Muir explains that “Day X’s are not [her] favorite” because they do not have the effect they’re intended to have. In Muir’s experience, teachers “tend to put off assignments rather than reduce the burden of them, so it’s the same amount of stress.”
For the foreseeable future, administration plans on continuing to seek out feedback from both faculty and students on Day X’s. Whether it’s positive, negative, or somewhere in between, the admin team wants to know what community members are thinking. But for now, Day X’s are here to stay.