Superior Midterms Schedule


Amanda Brown

These six pages belong to midterm exam prep for one class. This is a semester class, meaning there is only one shot at this midterm since it counts as the final for the class. “[Midterms] wrap up everything we’ve learned,” said Brown.

Amanda Brown, Op-Ed Editor

As one of the most dreaded parts of the year looms ahead,  students are feeling the pressure. At Hollis Brookline, midterms occur in mid to late January and last for four days, two exams per day. However, local school Bishop Guertin (BG) runs their midterms a little differently. While the schedules share some similarities, which schedule is superior? 


At BG, midterms take place the week prior to Christmas break. They have four days of exams and a snow day prepared on that Friday, should an unexpected storm present itself. Students must prepare for eight classes’ worth of exams, unlike HB’s seven exams. “We have two [exams] a day and have 1 1/2 hours to complete [each exam],” said BG student Grace Kelly ‘21. Kelly mentioned that classes like art or gym typically have a project for their midterm, which can be completed before the date of the exam. If the student completes and submits the project before the exam date, the student is not required to show up for the duration of that day. 


At HB, beginning roughly two weeks prior, teachers start talking about midterm exams and what to expect. Many teachers provide a study guide or a list of topics to study to help guide students through the mounds of material that had been taught throughout the semester. As exam week nears, some teachers set aside class time to study for midterms, providing time for students to ask any last minute questions. Sam Messina ‘21 enjoys the extra time that is provided for students. “It gets us ready [for midterms] beforehand and prepares us for what will potentially be on the midterms,” said Messina.


This year, midterms are scheduled for the week of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, meaning students get that Monday to prepare for their exams, which begin the following day. Students have four days of exams, with two, two-hour exams a day. Each exam day is a half-day, except for the last day, where students are finished testing by 9:40am. Students also have a half-day on the first day of the second semester, allowing them to reacclimate to a normal school setting. For some students, this half-day is beneficial, allowing a fresh start to semester two. Abby Brown ‘21 feels like these half days allow for students to be able to reset and start the second half of the year as strong as possible. “Midterms feel like a [vacation] because you don’t have to go to school the whole day,” said Brown. 


The real question still remains: which school really has the superior midterm schedule? There are numerous pros to each schedule, but each has its downfalls. Kelly enjoys the freedom she has over her Christmas break: “I do prefer this schedule because it allows us to get all our work completed and to have a true break without worrying about midterms comping you in the next [few] weeks.” 


The majority of the student body at HB, as well as myself, enjoy having the time to review with teachers and having the extra time over Christmas break to look over everything to ask questions when we come back from break. We are still able to enjoy Christmas break, but also have the ability to prepare for midterm exams.