Finals before Christmas: a much appreciated decision of most Upper Schoolers


As semester one comes to a close at Providence Academy, final exams quickly begin and backpacks are filled to the brim.

Previous to 2014, students had to study during their vacation with final exams after break. Many, not pleased with this arrangement, sought action. Student Council played an influential role in the time adjustment of the exams due to its specific request and compelling argument.

“Conversations between student council reps and deans began during 2012-2013,” Mr. Tiffany, PA Dean of Academics said. “During 2014-2015, the student council president took on the project in a formal fashion and got the approval in the spring of 2014.”

This change also took place through observance of other schools located in Minnesota.

“It’s my understanding that the student council (specifically members in 2013-14) were most influential in moving semester exams to before Christmas break,” explained Mrs. Catherine Berry, a student counselor at PA. “They made this proposal after researching other independent schools [St. Thomas Academy, Breck] that also hold exams before break.”

Along with being inspired by other schools, Student Council and other members of the student body at PA, have seemed to benefit from this request.

“I have heard from students that many prefer to have exams before break in order to have a stress-free Christmas break,” continued Berry.

Although the adjustment to the timing of finals has been met with much appreciation, a few aspects of the change are not happily looked upon by students.

“A negative is that some teachers are teaching up until the day that finals start,” stated Maddison Austin ’18.

Some teachers, in addition to students, deem some traits of the change as undesirable. But most at PA favor the change. On the whole, the adjustment to the time of final exams taken towards the end of semester one was prompted by Student Council beneficial and is beneficial to the student body.

Like most things, however, adjusting the exams’ timing can be viewed in a negative light by both teachers and students.