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Comments sought on four-period day

"Have a question or comment about the four-period day at South Whidbey High School? Then you'd better hurry.The school district has embarked on a study of the four-period day. The first deadline is next Tuesday, April 3, for anyone who wants to ask that a specific issue be addressed in the study.Drop off comments at the district office in Langley next to the middle school, mail them to P.O. Box 346, Langley WA 98260, or send an e-mail to district secretary Susan Nerison at snerison@sw.wednet.edu.Dr. Martin Laster, district superintendent, said the study of the four-period day is being conducted by Northwest Regional Educational Labs. Questions from the public will be considered in preparing the study.The study will include a survey of all present high school students, their parents, all staff members, and students who have recently graduated. Six focus groups of various interests will begin meeting April 5.It's a very beneficial process, Laster told the school board at its meeting Monday. It's opening the whole process to anyone who feels there's an issue. Any changes resulting from the study would likely not take place until the school year after next.Laster estimates the study's cost at $20,000 to $25,000.Board Chairman Jim Adsley said Tuesday that the board commissioned the study after hearing numerous questions about the four-period day since its inception seven years ago. In his four years on the board, it's one of the issues he has dealt with most frequently, he said.There's been quite a bit of concern from different fronts, Adsley said. There's a lot of issues that concern me. One concern is financial, since teachers have fewer classes each day. Another is scheduling, with some students not able to take the classes they want.There's so much at stake for the kids, Adsley said. We want to make sure we're going down the right path. "

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