Get Out of Jail Free Card

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Senior year comes with plenty of stress in the form of AP classes, senior expenses, college applications, and the inevitability of graduation. One perk that seniors have, after surviving three years of high school, is the option of a free sixth period. After fifth period ends, students without a sixth period can simply show their ID or schedule at any exit, indicating that they do not have a sixth period, and they are free to go.

Senior Guadalupe Toscano began the year without a full schedule. “I dropped Native Spanish III during registration. I was caught up with all my credits and I didn’t need the class. I was able to go home and come back for my sport. It gave me the opportunity to not carry a duffle bag all day around school.”

Seniors who are not behind on credits or who simply find themselves with an empty slot in their schedule can opt to go home after fifth period. All seniors must take English and Government/Economics, however, the remainder of their schedules is filled up with their choice of electives, ranging from traditional core classes to ceramics. Because of this, many seniors find themselves able to take the final period of the day off. It is also common for seniors to drop their sixth period with parent approval second semester, although it is incredibly important to alert potential colleges of this.

“I got rid of auto because I had to retake pre-calculus second semester as a class during fifth and no other classes interested me for sixth. I decided to be a free man,” said Rudy Salas concerning his decision to drop his two periods of auto second semester.

Not having a sixth period leaves seniors with a wide range of opportunities. Some students take advantage of this time to study, others go home to take an afternoon nap, and some get themselves jobs. A free sixth period gives seniors the freedom and extra time that senior year constantly lacks.

With the huge amount of senior expenses and impending college expenses, getting a job is a practical alternative to taking a class that is not incredibly relevant. The hour of free time gives seniors the opportunity to catch up on and complete their work, as deadlines upon deadlines approach.

“I dropped sixth period because I was getting more hours from work. I have to support myself and my girl,” commented Omar Munoz who has a steady job at McDonalds.

Everybody’s senior years are different, but it’s definitely a stressful year for everyone in the graduating class. The chance of having a free sixth is a relieving opportunity and, perhaps, even a source of motivation for underclassmen to not fall behind.

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