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Illini West Will Switch to Eight-Block Schedule

Illini West Supt. Kim Schilson

Illini West High School in Carthage will switch to an eight-block class schedule for the 2013-2014 school year.

Classes will meet five times every two weeks. Students will take four classes each day.

Teachers might have the most to learn during the transition.

Superintendent Kim Schilson said they will have to adapt to teaching 90-minute periods.

The district will offer teachers a great deal of professional development to ease the transition.

She said, “One of the things that they're going to do is visit different schools that have eight-block. Different teachers. So it's not just a one-shot;. they go one place and see one teacher one time and see how it's done. But to visit several different schools and see how it's being done.”

The district will also bring in a number of speakers who have helped implement transitions to eight-block schedules.

The school board considered implementing the schedule change for next year.  It decided to put the change off one more year.  Schilson is glad the district will have the extra time to prepare.

She said the change offers a number of advantages. Vocational students will have longer periods to work on their projects.  Students who take dual-credit classes at Carl Sandburg College will have an easier time scheduling classes.  Schilson said the high school will co-ordinate its schedule with the college's.  Students will no longer have to miss parts of high school classes to attend classes on the college campus.

Rich is TSPR's News Director.