Longer lunch schedule pleases staff and students


Photo by Laura Mata

Freshmen Nikita Gonzalez and Ibtisam Ferried study while eating during lunch. Students take advantage of their hour-long lunches to eat and take care of their school work.

Students bust through the front and back doors of the building to take advantage of their hour-long lunch break. Sometimes students will go out to get their lunch and then come back to meet with teachers, giving both the teacher and student time to prepare their food before taking care of their priorities.

Over the summer, class schedules saw a major change. Instructional leadership teams (ILT) and administration held a meeting to decide what was going to be best for both staff and students. The meeting is held every summer to receive feedback from everyone in the building, including staff and students.

Research studies have shown that longer breaks result in many benefits, including cognitive function, improved student performance, better physical and mental health and even less food waste.

It was no surprise when staff and students gave input that they had enjoyed the hour-long lunches on Wildcat Wednesdays the year prior. It was an appreciated time for wellness as everyone had the opportunity to focus on priorities and have enough time to eat.

“I am happy with a longer lunch because it gives me more time to catch up on homework as well as have the opportunity to go out and get lunch, with still enough time to eat it when I get back because G-Square tends to have long lines in almost every food place,” sophomore Delina Palma said.

Teachers also enjoy having a longer lunch because they have more time to help their students and enjoy some time for themselves.

“A whole hour feels a lot better than having only half an hour. Especially with having a portable classroom outside, it takes more time to go back inside the building and then come back out to my portable,” English teacher Adam Zeitlin said.

Additionally, as a replacement of Wildcat Wednesdays, WJ has enforced a “free period” every Wednesday during a class of a specific subject. Meaning, if the week’s free period is in math, then the period that you have math will be treated as a free period.

“I love having free periods, who wouldn’t? Normally I’d avoid doing homework during my free period because I have a lot of time to do homework due to the fact that I leave school after lunch with my abbreviated schedule. I like to call it my ‘me time’ because I’ll usually listen to music or go window shopping… If not I’ll probably just be staring at the ceiling or have my head down,” senior Caleb Olaez said.