Hereford High School students, teachers and parents protested a Baltimore County Public Schools decision to alter the school's class schedule from four classes a day for half a year to eight classes a day for an entire year.
"He refuses to listen to us. If he tried to sit down with some of us and talk to us then maybe we would be able to understand or comprehend why he thinks this is a great idea," Ashlyn Nozemack, a 10th grader at Hereford High School, said.
Nozemack and all the other protesters tried to get the attention of Baltimore County Public Schools Superintendent Dallas Dance. Most of them were from Hereford but they were all fired up over a mandated change to the class schedule. There are three schools in Baltimore County that have their school year split up into semesters.
"What we've asked them to do is to provide students with access and opportunity to take eight credits at a time in a non semesterised schedule," Assistant Superintendent Maria Lowry said.
There is some flexibility within this model, which is set to take effect next school year.
Each school will have three options.
"We have some schools that are going to go with an eight-period day, eight courses, same eight courses everyday. We have other schools that are looking at doing a blended model so they'll have Monday and Tuesday, Thursday and Friday will be on an A day/B day schedule and four classes a day and then Wednesday they're going to do all 8. We have other schools that are going to do the A day/B day straight across," Lowry said.
Wendy Flowers, a parent to two Hereford High students, wanted a fourth option added. She said she'd like Dance to delay his decision and do more research with stakeholders in the community on the impact the change would have.
"Our stance has always been that each school is so individualized that the choice should be left at the school level, where it has always been in Baltimore County, until this mandate," Flowers said.
School officials said the decision has been made.
"When we have issues with students needing to transfer within the school system, from one school to another, that when they make that transfer, that they're not behind," Lowry said.
Students said they understand the desire for uniformity but shoot back with reasoning of their own.
"We are the top performing school in the county and that's a fact so why not change the other schools to what works. What we're doing," Cat Monti, another 10th grader at Hereford High School, said.
"We've had it for 20 years, 20 years! There's a reason we've had it for 20 years. Because it works," Nozemack said.