Should Finals Be Before Winter Break?

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Libby Dunne and Amy Larsen, Staff Writers

Pro:

Every Miramonte student looks forward to winter break, only to jump right back into school two weeks later. Even worse, first semester finals are right around the corner, so students have to relearn a lot of information that was forgotten over the break. First semester finals should be before winter break.

Winter break is a time for students to forget about school, sleep in, and reconnect with family. A very small amount of students use that time to get ahead in their classes. With school totally off their minds, students tend to forget a lot of information, even things that were just taught. After forgetting the information, students have to partially relearn topics. When they are reteaching themselves, students may not do a great job, or just relearn the information for the test, and forget it soon after. Having finals before winter break would eliminate this relearning phase of studying, and students could devote more time to really absorbing and learning the information.

Everyone knows the feeling of going back to school after summer vacation, and feeling rusty on all things relating to learning, including studying. Students feel the same way after winter break as, they are just not back in the school mode. If finals were before break, students wouldn’t have to take time to get back into school mode, but just jump right into finals like they are no big deal.

Students would start studying earlier if finals were before winter break and would be more likely to start studying earlier. With the end of winter break just three weeks before the beginning of finals, students only study during that three week time, because no one wants to study for finals over their break! If finals were before break, students would start studying earlier, because they wouldn’t have that two week break time where studying feels like even more of a drag.

 

Con:

Its the week before break, and all you want to do is relax and get through it. You can worry about finals next year–literally. You have two full weeks to relax your mind and think about things other than school, or you could have two weeks to get a head start on that studying and/or catching up before school starts again. Whatever you end up doing, it is worth the wait for finals after break.

The reason for finals the third week after winter break is to make each semester the same length. If finals were any earlier than they are now, for instance the week before break, it would be necessary to start school earlier in August, or shorten any breaks throughout the first semester. August is a time when summer sports begin to end, families leave for their final vacation spots, and most people would prefer it to stay that way.

While it would be a relief to return to school after break without finals weighing over your head, you still have two weeks to get back into the swing of things. Winter Break is a great time to let all those lessons finally sink in, and/or start preparing for finals.

Some private schools who finish their finals before break are also the ones that have a three day break for Thanksgiving, compared to our nine days, like having College Preparatory School. Finals after break is only a slight setback to our extensive breaks and extra days off throughout the semester.