Opinion: Students Feel Lancer Time is Wasted

Maddie G., Zoe A-C., Logan S., Julia S. 

Photo by Maddie G., Zoe A-C., Logan S., Julia S. 

Some students use Lancer Time to get their homework done, others feel the time is wasted.


“I don’t like Lancer Time; I think it’s a waste of time,” said 8th grader Jolie K., echoing a refrain heard often in the halls.

According to Director of Student Services, Katie Madigan, the incorporation of Lancer Time (officially called Learning Seminar in SIS) as a full block was a decision made by the school board.  The idea was to include a block for social-emotional learning and a time for academic support. 

 While Lancer Time does provide a time to get things done, some students have issues with it. Lancer Time is an opportunity to complete work that needs to be finished, but for some who have done all of their work, Lancer Time can turn out to be a boring hour and a half. 

The question of how to spend the time can be frustrating. While some teachers let kids do other activities when finished with homework, others are stricter about which activities are allowed.  Some students felt this inhibited their ability to interact with others or be productive with their time.  

Students also voiced frustration with the social-emotional lessons. 

“You spend half the time just doing a random lesson and writing in journals that no one actually writes in,” said Jolie.  

The lessons provided in Lancer Time are supposed to help students with their mental health, character development, and educational achievements, but many students said the lessons are pointless and do not accomplish the goals teachers have in mind for them. Students recognize lessons from prior years and tune out.

The last issue that came up was with the hall passes.  Since one of the points of Lancer Time is to get academic help, students receive passes to see teachers during Flex Time. The problem arises when a student needs to see a teacher but didn’t ask for a pass first. They are often denied the ability to get the work done because administrators are trying to minimize students roaming in the hallways.

“Half the people don’t even fill out the hall pass, but even if you do, nobody checks it. People are going to roam the hallways no matter what,” says 8th grader Ziya B.

Students have told us that despite the hall passes, kids constantly skip class, and teachers have no way of knowing whether or not a student went where they were supposed to go. It is also a hassle to grab your computer out of your backpack before leaving the classroom to show your teacher the pass.

The Lancer Time passes, and a limited number of library passes are not letting all of the students who need help get it.  Sometimes last minute things pop up, and students need to get in touch with their teachers, which might not be possible due to the Lancer Time passes being needed to see another teacher.

At this point in the school year, there are many passes you have to fill out to leave your classroom, even if you’re just filling your water bottle. This frustrates many students, and it feels like there are too many restrictions on small things such as going to the bathroom. 

 The overall idea of Lancer Time is good, and it can be helpful for some students. Lancer time can be a very helpful period to complete work and redo assignments, as it’s basically a free period once the lesson is done. Students can have time to work with friends, talk with teachers or simply recharge and prepare for the rest of the day. 

 “Sometimes it can be fun and helpful because you can use it to get your homework done, so you don’t have to do a bunch of work at home,” said 8th grader Josie S.

Lancer time is an important class that allows students to study and work on homework, and most students can probably admit they have less homework outside of school due to Lancer Time. 

Maybe it’s the length of the block, or maybe it’s the mix of kids in each Lancer Time class, but despite the advantages, there are still many complaints.

“Lancer time is a good way to get work done and to be productive, but there could be some modifications,” 8th grader Louisa C. says.

There are a myriad of changes that could be made in order to reach a ‘perfect Lancer Time.’ Students often find lessons long and boring, and while students recognize that character skills are important, we aren’t learning any new ones that we haven’t learned in the past three years. Lancer Time would be a lot more effective if we had the full time to do work. It would also be more convenient if there were fewer hall passes. 

One of the positive aspects we heard about Lance Time was social.

“I like Lancer Time because I get to see my friends during the school day, maybe during flex-time, maybe work on homework with them,” says 8th grader Lauren S.

A focus on letting students be with their friends and engage in their learning in a more relaxed setting might go a long way to improving our social-emotional well-being.