Six-period schedule suggested for Bemidji High School

The Bemidji School Board may change the Bemidji High School daily schedule during their meeting Monday.

According to school board documents, Superintendent Tim Lutz is recommending a switch to a six-period daily schedule over the existing four-period block schedule.

“The block period schedule is very expensive. A change to a six-period day is projected to save the district $640,000,” said Lutz in the memo.

“Only a very small percentage of high schools in Minnesota remain on the block system due to the high expense of running a block schedule.”

Lutz says the district is facing a potential $1.5 million loss of revenue, and the large step would prevent the district from “statutory operating debt,” an undesirable status leaving much of the budget decision-making to the state.

A petition has already gathered over 2,000 signatures urging the district to find another way.

“The change from a 4-period to 6-period school day would offer Bemidji High School students two less credits per year (6 instead of 8), amounting to 8 less credits over the course of our high school education (24 instead of 32),” wrote the author of the online petition, Ayla Nimis-Ibrahim.

“This change would drastically decrease the amount of electives students can take.”

Last November, voters in the district voted “no” on a new operating referendum.

The meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. Monday, Jan. 25, and will be broadcasted on their YouTube Channel.


Larissa Donovan is the News Director for the stations of Paul Bunyan Broadcasting and has been, almost without interruption, since Election Day 2016. She covers all the beats in north-central Minnesota, such as local government, crime, education, environment and social issues. She studied communications at Bemidji State University. You can follow along with Larissa's live tweets of meetings and events on Twitter!

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