The Local Lens: Make block lunch the norm

Aliya Zakir, Social Media Manager

Longer lunches allow students to have more time to eat, socialize, study, attend tutoring and more. The Sidekick social media manager Aliya Zakir thinks Coppell High School, like CHS9, should have an hour for lunch. (Meghna Kulkarni)

“Seriously? It’s already 1:50 p.m.? I just started eating.” 

As a student at Coppell High School with C lunch daily from 1:20-1:50 p.m., I get frustrated. Before heading out of the door, I eat breakfast around 7:30 a.m. That’s almost six hours of learning without any food. 

While lunch can often be overlooked during hours of learning, it is the one chance throughout the school day when students have the opportunity to eat, de-stress and enjoy time with their peers. 

So why is it only  30 minutes long?

Although most schools offer 30-minute lunches, CHS9 decided to stray from the norm at its inception. By offering an hour for lunch, divided into two blocks, A block and B block, each 30 minutes, students are offered the chance to enjoy their lunch without having to rush back to class. 

A longer lunch offers students to attend tutoring sessions, club meetings, finish make-up work and retake tests. In a study conducted by NPR/Harvard, researchers found that 33 percent of high school students’ highest stress source originates from school – me included. Having the chance to get help with schoolwork and finish missing assignments during school hours would be beneficial rather than having to arrive before or stay after school, when transportation to and from campus can be an issue for some. 

In addition to these benefits, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) suggests that longer lunches promote healthy eating and decreased food waste. Along with students’ mental health improving, their physical well being would improve as well with a block lunch.

When looking at CHS9’s bell schedule compared to CHS’s bell schedule, the implementation of slightly shorter passing periods and 3/7 period’s allow enough time for an hour lunch.

Because CHS has an increased volume of clubs, classes and students, the benefits of an hour lunch would outweigh the minor sacrifices of time elsewhere throughout the day. 

As CHS has more students, allowing students to eat in most areas of the school like CHS9 does during block lunch would accommodate the higher population and keep the cafeteria from overflowing. With a few small changes to CHS’s bell schedule, students and teachers alike would benefit immensely from a longer lunch. 

Follow Aliya (@aliyafza) and @CHSCampusNews on Twitter.