Students that are too cool for school

Those with unscheduled periods find other things to do


Photo courtesy of Charlie Darlington

Senior Charlie Darlington spends his unassigned sixth period finding parts for his car at home after work. When not fixing up his car, Darlington works at Sports Basement.

Picture this: It’s a Thursday afternoon at Cal High and you’re eating the chicken tikka masala recently picked up from the cafeteria.
As you’re taking your last few bites the time hits 12:55 p.m. The chime of the school bell echoes across campus, as it marks the end of lunch for students and faculty.
As you sulk going to throw away the last few bits of your lunch, you see several students rushing toward the front entrance to leave school.
These students are among a minority of upper- and under- classmen who have unscheduled fifth or sixth periods, meaning they can leave right away or after lunch once their third or fourth periods ends.
Now at first, it may appear to those without an unscheduled period that these students are flaunting to the rest of us how they can leave school early. But most upperclassmen with an unscheduled period tend to have a good reason why they don’t have class.
“As someone who took seven classes during their freshman and sophomore years, I thought taking a little time for myself was the best choice,” junior Mazin Rahmani said. “With the extra free time I have, I generally use it to study and get ahead on work but it’s also a great time to nap.”
Honestly, after hearing such appealing bonuses that unscheduled periods give, I’m not surprised that students are more inclined to take one, especially upperclassmen. I for one would love a nap instead of going to my fifth period.
Senior Charlie Darlington uses his unassigned sixth period to the best of his ability.
“With the extra time I have, I’m able to get to my job earlier and sometimes can end my shift ahead of schedule,” he said. “However, the reason I have an unscheduled sixth is that I have no other required courses that I need to be taking.”
Darlington gives a unique insight into people with an unscheduled period. It should also be noted for underclassmen, Darlington highlights how he was able to have an unscheduled period because he does not need any more A-G requirements.
The only hope underclassmen have to achieve an unscheduled period in their later years at Cal, is to bury themselves in piles of work right now.
Sounds enticing, right?
Similar to Darlington, this is precisely why junior Daniel Jung has an unscheduled fifth period. But he actually advises against taking an unscheduled period.
“Unscheduled periods only benefit those who have something else to do to fill the gap, whether that be hobbies, extra circulars, or classes,” Jung said.
He noted that at the beginning of the school year he was taking Spanish 4, but dropped the course when he learned he could take an online Korean class instead.
Personally, as someone who is able to have an unscheduled period next year, I still don’t see the appeal. I recommend to those of you, who initially desired an unscheduled period in your later years here at Cal, to make sure you take your time while deciding whether you should or not.
Or, you could ignore my whole advice and choose to take an unscheduled period to make your school life better, but only slightly.
In the end, you throw away what’s left of your stale chicken tikka masala and head off to take your stats test that you forgot to study for. That’s what most of us do anyway.