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Marquette Messenger

The news site of Marquette High School

Marquette Messenger

The news site of Marquette High School

Marquette Messenger

Katelyn Heitert, senior, and a group of friends honor Rhegan Sajben each February by fundraising for different animal shelters. Sajben often volunteered at animal shelters with her family and adopted her dog Billie from a shelter she volunteered at. (Media by Laura Heitert)
PAWS for Rhegan Raises Money For Shelters
Samantha Perz, Staff Reporter • February 23, 2024

Katelyn Heitert, senior, has been raising money for animal shelters since 2022, but it’s not her love for animals that motivates her. It’s...

When students who have AT&T service tried to send text messages earlier today, they may have received a response saying AT&T is down due to a nation-wide outage.
Phone Outage Affects Students, Staff
Hailey Neuner and Zoey SroteFebruary 22, 2024

AT&T announced a nationwide cellular outage earlier today. The reason for the outage is still unknown. Carter DeVault, senior, first noticed...

The administration team surprised math teacher Matt Nienhaus during Ac Lab on Tuesday, Feb. 20, with the honor of being this years Teacher of the Year.
Matt Nienhaus Named Teacher of the Year
Elliott Jorgensen, Associate Producer • February 21, 2024

Cross Country Coach Matt Nienhaus is the 2023-2024 Teacher of the Year.  Administrators and those close to Nienhaus surprised him during...

Student audience members perform a short step routine. The routine was taught to them during the workshop. The participants engaged in a friendly competition against the Step team that was judged by the volume of the audience’s cheers.
MHS Celebrates Black History Month
Justin Small, Angel DiSalvo, and Jack FavazzaFebruary 21, 2024

When Gavin McDonnell, freshman, signed up to see an art display for Black History Month during Ac Lab on Wednesday, Feb. 7, he did not fully...

District Approves Decision to Move Finals Before Break for 24-25 School Year

Media by Annabelle Miller
Next year, students can put away their books over winter break. The Board of Education approved the 24-25 calendar on Dec. 7 which will end first semester before winter break. This means finals will also take place before break.

Students will no longer need to study over Winter Break because, next year, finals will be before break

The Board of Education finalized the 2024-25 calendar on Dec. 7 endorsing a notable change in scheduling – concluding the first semester before winter break.

Dr. Kelly Sollberger, head of the calendar committee and director of human resources, said the committee was planning to make this change for the 2025-26 school year but felt it was possible to implement it as early as next year. 

“We decided that it’s best for our students to be able to end their courses and take finals prior to leaving for winter break,” Dr. Sollberger said.

The first day of school will be Aug. 19 and the last day will be May 23. There will also be an early dismissal day before break begins on Dec. 19.

We decided that it’s best for our students to be able to end their courses and take finals prior to leaving for winter break,

— Dr. Kelly Sollberger

Because first semester will end before winter break, there will be an imbalance of days between the first and second semesters. First semester will have 83 and second semester will have 93. Dr. Sollberger said this happens often and will even out in the long run.

“What we find is that you end up losing more instructional days during second semester because of MAP testing and state EOC testing,” she said. 

For the past four school years, final exams were scheduled post-winter break due to complications arising from a Missouri Law. The law requires schools to start no earlier than 14 days before Labor Day. Dr. Sollberger said the law gives the calendar committee very few extra days to work with.

“If you want to get out before Memorial Day, there’s no way to do it unless you keep the schedule pretty tight,” Dr. Sollberger said.

Joshua Hyde, social studies teacher, supported the decision to shift the calendar back, emphasizing that concluding the semester before winter break is best for students.

It reduces students’ stress during winter break, and it just feels better, more complete,

— Ivy Wang

“It’s a little bit easier on the students to have [winter break] in line with how the semester ends versus having to come back after two weeks off and take finals,” Hyde said.

Hyde said a major difficulty of the current schedule is getting students to study and prepare for finals over break.

Ivy Wang, sophomore, said she appreciates not having to study over break in the future. 

“It reduces students’ stress during winter break, and it just feels better, more complete,” Wang said.

A struggle she said she had last year was forgetting information over break and having to study harder for finals.

“Information will just leave your brain if you don’t have finals right before Winter Break,” Wang said.

 Many of her classes have already moved their finals before break, so Wang said it won’t be a major transition next year. 

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About the Contributor
Annabelle Miller, Editor-In-Chief
Annabelle Miller, senior, is the editor-in-chief of the Messenger. She has been on staff for two years. Annabelle is an outfielder on the Varsity Softball team and plays french horn for the MHS Wind Ensemble. Outside of school she likes to bake and read.

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