Is it Time for Bulldog Time?


Clay Stone, Managing Editor

We are just over a month into our new school year, and experiencing a large number of changes, but maybe the biggest change among them is the 30-minute period shared by every student in the school. This new period as you all know, has been named bulldog time. Some people hate it, some absolutely love it, but more people than you would think just don’t get it. “I just know I have that class for three more years, but I don’t really understand it,” said sophomore Landon Blank. This raises the question: is bulldog time really working? If not, what do students and teachers need to do to make it a better experience?

First, to the students, your teachers are working really hard to make this period work. “It’s a lot of work,” said Spanish teacher Tamina Hartman, “but it is going to be beneficial to students, so you should definitely take time to prep stuff for it.” History teacher Josh Bruck loves the idea of bulldog time, but he believes that building a teacher-student trust is not going to happen right away. “It won’t happen in a month, that’s why some of the teachers will get to have their kids for four years. It’s not about the 100 yard dash, it’s more about the marathon. Building those relationships and making sure the students feel listened to,” said Bruck. As far as I can tell, very few people are against this idea, but it does take a little bit of effort from everyone to make it happen. “It does feel a little like another plan period, but if the teachers are willing to make the investment, the kids will make the investment too,” said Spanish teacher Kelly Hanson. The teachers have concerns and questions too, but that’s just because it’s new territory. It doesn’t mean we should stop it and give up, teachers aren’t quitting on us.

Second, to the teachers and the staff, bulldog time will be a much more fun and beneficial time if the curriculum is adapted better for each grade. “Instead of maybe watching educational videos, we could get help with finding scholarships.” said senior Emily Schilmoeller. Maybe the school could consider making it easier for seniors to work towards scholarships in bulldog time. Freshman Xander Schroeder was hopeful that bulldog time would be a time to catch up on work, “I figured it would be more like team study, and we could get our stuff done if we hadn’t already,” Schroeder said. It seems as though freshman bulldog time should be more oriented on helping students adjust to the workload or class schedule in high school. “[Bulldog Time] feels a lot more like another class to me,” said sophomore Clare Everett, “I definitely wish it was a study hall, so we could relax a little and get work done.” One suggestion for sophomores would be to talk over dual credit opportunities or talking about what credits they should be working towards. Hanson works with her junior bulldog time class on ACT prep, which seems like a very practical use of bulldog time for juniors who are required to take the test in April.

And lastly, this might be a mindset that is somewhat shared between both teachers and students: bulldog time may be mandatory, but as math teacher Annie Seamann explains it, it is also very necessary. “There’s a reason that programs like this keep coming around because it’s important for students. With any new program you need to work out the kinks, but do I think that it will fail? No. Because of the importance it brings,” says Seamann. History teacher Danny Whitney has a very similar approach. “It’s not an easy thing. For students, the best way to go about it is to see that we are trying to do something really positive here,” said Whitney, “and if they are equal partners in this, it’ll end up being something really good, before the time they graduate.”