Students at Paly are notoriously overscheduled. The school offers more than 100 clubs, numerous sports teams and other extracurricular activities, such as theatre and journalism. College counselors, parents and peers alike stress the importance of these activities in the college application process, but as commitments pile up, students can begin to fall behind on sleep and schoolwork.
As students who participate in the prestigious journalism program at Paly, The Campanile is fully aware of the large time commitment these extracurriculars require.
Activities like production week for a publication and late-night robotics sessions may take up to nine hours after school each day.
Those who are involved with school plays have similar hours during tech week, meaning that a large population of Paly students may not leave campus until midnight on some days.
These extreme hours can be detrimental to students’ sleep cycles, negatively impacting their ability to complete homework on time and even negatively influencing their mental health.
And while many, if not most, students participate in some form of extracurricular activity, it is unfair to expect students with intense schedules to be able to function on the same level as students who have an adequate amount of time for sleep and homework.
It has come to our attention that teachers often refuse homework extensions to those participating in these activities.
The Campanile thinks teachers should reconsider their policies on homework extensions in regards to students with an overloaded agenda that include huge time commitments such as those mentioned above.
Students with demanding extracurriculars should be given an extra day or two to complete assignments, so they can participate in these activities without sacrificing sleep, while still being able to complete their assignments.
This would reduce stress and sleep deprivation, while allowing students to participate in the activities they love without fear of retribution.
Nonetheless, we know it is unrealistic for this policy to apply to every possible situation. Class-wide discussions, presentations, group projects and other activities cannot always be postponed to accommodate the needs of one or two students.
For circumstances like these, The Campanile thinks students should not be exempt from homework that may be required for said activities.
But for individual assignments, such as math homework or history readings, the deadlines should be relaxed.
With numerous activities available to the student body, it is only natural that the desire to participate in them arises in Paly students.
This is made unnecessarily difficult by the current homework policies established by teachers school-wide.
If students wish to partake in extracurricular activities that requires copious amounts of time, they should not be punished with burdensome deadlines.