Staying on track after cancellations

Photo by Casey Gomez

With several days off in the beginning of the semester due to inclement weather and a national holiday, several students have not had the chance to get into the routine of their classes.

With many professors only having had enough class time in the first few weeks to walk through the syllabi with their classes, it may seem like some courses are going to be lagging behind their schedules. Losing a day of lecture or lab can often be a significant setback, and may also explain Tech’s reluctance in giving students and staff a day off.

However, with extreme weather resulting in an increasing number of cancellations every semester, it seems reasonable for professors to have to plan ahead and set a policy if their classes get cancelled. Currently, many do not even e-mail their students about how they plan to proceed.

Compressing the material for the course into however many classes remain in the semester may result in rushed lectures and a stressful time for everyone involved, especially if the course allows for little flexibility. Courses that plan for core materials to be taught during every single lecture they are allowed in the semester may not be able to adapt well to unforeseen changes in their schedule, such as snow days or storms that force campus to shut down.

One way to make schedules more flexible would be for professors to do what many have already been doing: having a lecture in their class set aside for reviewing, learning optional material or simply having a day off during which students can work on their projects or assignments.

Having schedules restructured to include a class that does not cover crucial material would mean a less stressful situation if school is cancelled for a day or two. It could also, hopefully, result in Tech being less reluctant to give everybody the day off when conditions get icy.