Along with everything else this year, finals have changed drastically. District 87 has been trying to make the 2020-21 school year as normal as possible, despite COVID-19. Despite these efforts, teachers had to cut out curriculum and change how they would normally teach.
Glenbard South’s Assistant Principal of Instruction, Jessica Santee, has spoken about how finals will be held, and what students should expect.
“Students may encounter a variety of assessment experiences ranging from a final exam, a unit summative assessment or a culminating project. Teachers will communicate how first semester grades will be finalized.”
As a result, each department across the district has discussed how they would like to approach the end of the semester. Most departments have chosen to only partake in a unit summative or a final project. Very few departments have chosen to give a normal final exam.
One might wonder why the district has chosen to change the finals if it has been trying to keep the school year as normal as possible. According to Ms. Santee, “Due to our rapidly evolving circumstances during this pandemic, we have had to adjust instruction to better meet the needs of our students. Teachers across the district have been given the autonomy to make those instructional decisions, which may look different from course to course. This requires us to also be adaptive on how we assess student learning.”
Normally, during finals week, the school day would be structured differently to allow students enough time to complete each of their exams. This year, since many departments have chosen to forgo finals, the week’s schedule will remain the same. Students will meet with class periods 1-4 on Monday and Tuesday, all periods on Wednesday, and periods 5-8 on Thursday and Friday. The next week then commences Winter Break.
If one has any questions about which of his/her classes will have a traditional final, he/she should contact his/her teacher as soon as possible.