January 18


Dear Prosper High School,


Let me start off by introducing myself. I am Alex Wells a grade 12 student that currently attends our beautiful Prosper High School. It has caught my attention that there has been a huge controversy on the topic of having a four-day school week. Many students have been presenting this argument and I personally have reached out to tell you about the concerns of the high school as well as to know your opinion on this topic. Whether you will accept or reject this proposal. 


After examining various perspectives on this topic one statistics graph really stood out to me. The Prosper school budget is pretty high at the moment, especially when it is compared to a 4 day week. There is quite a difference for all three categories. If the school has more money left instead of spending more on transportation, operations and maintenance they have extra money left to make the school better. With that money they can help benefit the school in many ways. They can get new laptops so that students can have the best experience when working on class activities online, make the art program even better, these kind of things will encourage more student involvement. Plus having one less day can maybe motivate students to join extracurricular activities. 


Looking at the website fastpoll.com I came to a realization that parents seriously do not want to have a 4 day school week, this is due to the significant difference between the parents who say no compared to yes. But if we look down the poll website we see that 82% of teachers are in favour of a 4 day week. If we look at the next statistic it shows a close decision of students between yes and no. For the students that have voted there is a 2 percent difference between yes and no. Meaning this is a huge deal for kids. But for the parents, they are not the ones in school, it is the staff and students, it does not make too much sense for parents to have a say in this topic because they are not the ones teaching or studying inside the building. For teachers one less day can give them more time to mark and get refreshed to teach the following week to the best of their abilities. But for students it is also helpful because as @hoops79 said, it is a hard cycle to repeat day in and day out, so that cushion of having 3 days off really can help a student achieve better due to the reduction of the load from school.  Because as academic journal states, “sleep deprivation can also affect emotions and academic performance”.


One last thing I would like to touch on is the amount of content we are learning. Of course if we take one day out of the week that means one less day of learning a topic which can really affect the whole unit system. But what has been proposed is a new schedule. Regularly we have 65 minute periods but with the revised schedule breaks are shorter, lunch is also shorter and classes are 18 minutes longer. If we calculate class time increase we can do 18 multiplied by the 5 blocks. That means everyday we learn 90 minutes more which means content can still be covered. So class time should not be a problem.


First of all I would like to say that I appreciate the time you took out of your day to read my letter. I hope that after analyzing all the different perspectives and reasons on the four-day week we come to a consensus. Once again thank you very much. If you have any questions or concerns please don’t hesitate to contact me. My email is alexwells@hotmail.com or my phone number 403-123-4567.


Sincerely, Alex Wells.


January 18

Lit exploration A river runs through it

Throughout the course of our lifetime we get thrown into situations that leave a lasting impression on us whether they are positive or negative. For example if we have a negative experience about something that memory alters our present and future changing our lives forever. As well as having a bad influence on you. It leaves a lasting impact and sticks with you. It is like having a heart, it is with you forever until your time’s up to life on the earth. In the movie “A River Runs Through It” the director is depicting the idea that an individual’s life can be altered by a particular experience through the character Paul who was a very feisty and outgoing guy but really had no control over his anger.  When we are overtaken by a particular scenario from the past is it better to remember the wonderful past or leave it. Is it a fun memory for the ages or is it like a burden that stays with you and changes the way you act?


 Sometimes we can not apprehend what is going to happen in the future. Especially when it is a complete life changer. In this excerpt “from Rock and Roll Jihad” the author is portraying the main idea through the main character Salman Ahmed. He is just new to the country of America and is still trying to adapt to the culture. What better way to do that than go to a concert. Once the band started playing Salman felt alive he felt in the moment and absorbed all that energy. The concert was one of the best experiences of his life and making the arrival to America that much better. This very concert shaped Salman’s life forever. He fell in love with the music so much that he wanted to pursue a career in that industry and make that his life. I wanted to play music for the rest of my life”. This is saying that maybe some things are meant to be and you are put into situations that will shape your life. This is significant because it shows us how little things can really make a man’s life and in this case Salman Ahmed just went to a concert for fun, little did he know that he was going to like it so much that he decided to pursue a career. This shows us how certain life experiences can be altered by a particular experience. 


Not every experience in your life will be a good one to remember and some you want to forget but you really can not. In the film “A River Runs Through It” the author is showing us how Paul’s bad actions from when he was younger were the same habits that got him put into the ground. When Paul was a child he always used to misbehave and pick fights with people regardless of the size of the other person. But no one stopped him and those same experiences made him the naughty person he was and eventually led to his death. Paul once again got into a scuffle with other men and they did not want to hear it. Paul’s stupid actions got him beaten to death. If he had stayed quiet and analyzed the situation realizing that enough is enough maybe he would have been alive. This shows us how Paul from a young age was just the same rowdy kid and that those experiences shaped him to be the individual he was in the future. 


A time I can relate to this idea presented is when I travelled to India with my family a few years ago. We were supposed to go for 3 weeks to India. We planned on meeting with family since they have never seen me in real life(only through pictures). But I did not like the idea of going somewhere that is very hot and has no internet. Being away from social media was going to be a huge bum and I know wouldn’t fit in with the people from my village there as it was my first time going. I caved in and went to India. All I have to say is the best experience ever. Taking a break from social media and going back to my families home was awesome. I met new people and we shared the same interests in sports, we had an air conditioner so the warm air was not much of a problem. This is significant because this shows how some experiences can really shape you future. Me going to India resulted in me into becoming a nicer person. Donating to the people in need made me a better individual. Now I always try something first before denying it due to the wonderful experience I had with India. 


 When we are put into situations is it better to keep it with you or forget about it? Salman Ahmed decided to change his life due to a positive experience. Paul died due to having a negative experience. And for myself going to India was a positive experience. I believe we should not forget about the past and keep it with us in the future. Lettig things go is hard, but it will help your future if you fix them.


January 18


We all are born differently and we all have different ways of expressing and portraying ourselves in society. Those aspects shape who we are as a person, such as what we believe in or something we love. These different things make our identity and who we are recognized as and what we are. In the photograph the idea being represented is what ideas and impressions does the photograph suggest to you?


After analyzing the picture given something that stands out to me the most are the tattoos the female individual has all over her body. There are many kids around herself  and a famous cartoon character Hello Kitty. The expression of joy and happiness on her face shows how she feels about her and the way she is expressing herself. This gives me the impression of being whoever you want and not being worried about what society thinks about you. The picture is black and white which means it was taken quite some time ago. To me the idea I have is that she is happy with who she is and the kids can symbolize her love for children and the cartoon character as a love for animated shows. Her smile tells us the whole story behind this picture, she is clearly showing off all her tattoos because that represents who she is as a person. No one cares that she is a lady and it is odd to have so many children over her body, it shows how she is not judged by her identity. This is significant because it shows in that day and age that no one is afraid of judgment and people can freely express themselves without having to worry if someone else does not like it. Your identity is who you are as a person and no one can change it whether they like it or not. 


I have a very important relation to this topic. When I was a younger child around 12 years old I used to tie a turban. I had long hair and that represented my religion, because one of the most important parts of being a sikh was having long hair. Anyways, I used to go play basketball at my nearby recreational centre and went swimming there. It was a very diverse place but oddly enough I was the only turbaned guy amongst my friends. They used to tell me how they thought I was a girl at first and was weird for “wearing a turban” I was very devastated that the people around me thought of me like that, but deep down I knew that this was the representation of my religion and that no matter what I would not cut my hair. But the rude remarks kept on going and hurtful comments were made, this really started  to affect me because I was judged of my identity. I was a proud sikh and I loved being one. But when the remarks were made I started overthinking. For example, one thought came to me and it went like this, “I could cut my hair but people would still know I am a sikh because I wore a religious bracelet”. But the thoughts of my grandparents disappointment kept on eating me. But I was proud of my identity and after awhile I started ignoring those comments and was happy with who I was, I slowly started distancing those people and became even more happier with myself. So in the end I was happy with who I was and would not care of people thought I was a girl or that it looked odd. No. I am a proud sikh and no one can judge me.


We all have different ways of expressing ourselves, we should know that the only person who can judge us is ourselves and slowly people need to start to realize that you become more happy about yourself when  you ignore what people think. No one can shape you to be what they want it is all up to us to determine what we want to be and how we want to live our lives. That was the idea represented to me in this photograph.


January 16


Shysha Dhillon

ELA 30-2

Ms. Hunnisett

Persuasive writing


Dear Prosper School Board,


My name is Alex Wells, a current student attending Prosper High School. I would like to thank you in advance for allowing me the opportunity to voice my concerns of the proposal to adopt a four-day school week. I would like to speak on behalf of the students, teachers, and parents who are against the proposal of adopting a four-day school week.


If the Board has chosen to accept the proposal, the school schedule would be one that starts 35 minutes earlier than regularly and ends about 35 minutes later. It was also said that the schedule would make the periods longer which would cause for having shorter breaks and shorter time to get to class on time. Casey Schram (hoops79) voices her opinion of the proposal on a poll saying “bball [basketball] practice starting at 4:15? How am I supposed 2 practice, get home, eat & do homework without being up till midnight & starting all over again at 6:00 am on the bus?”. As we can see from her comment, there would not be enough time for after school activities and homework, especially if they have to take the bus home. Kristina Oudet (workalot349), a concerned parent also voiced her opinion on the same source saying “I want my kid in school Mon to Fri when I’m at work, not in front of the TV all day. The thought of unsupervised Fridays off gives me nightmares”. The concerned mother does not support the proposal because of the probability that her child would not make good use of the Friday off, especially with her absence of being at work.


 Although some would say that they would have more time to work, volunteer, and attend cultural activities on the weekends, there is no guarantee that they would use the time they have to do those things. A concerned mother comments on a poll saying that her child would most likely watch TV all day instead of spending that time wisely. A source also shows their working hours presenting how they look with a regular schedule and how it may look if we adopted the proposed schedule. It shows that the amount they get paid a week in the proposed schedule is the same they get paid in the current schedule they have as of now. 


Another reason for rejecting the proposal would be because of the abnormal sleep patterns students would face. From Casey Schram’s comment it is evident that students have after school activities and would not be able to get the homework done on time. Students would have to stay up late finishing up homework and cramming for tests all in one night. This would cause lack of sleep and abnormal sleep routines. Researchers say that this has effects on student learning. The highlights of this article includes that teenagers need more time to sleep as they are still growing into adults and by cutting just one hour of sleep can drop their attention span by one third which could ultimately affect their growth towards maturity. Not maintaining a consistent sleep schedule could affect emotions and academic performances which could result in poor critical thinking. Students need their maximum strength in order to achieve the grades that they want and one of the most important ways in achieving that is if they get their full 8-10 hours of sleep.


In my opinion, as a student that currently attends Prosper High School, I believe that we should reject the proposal of adopting a four-day week schedule as it would greatly affect my peers and I. I believe that in adopting the proposal it would cause students to have less time for after school activities as we would end school and start practice at a later time. It would cause students to come home at a much later time as some would have to take the bus home. This would ultimately affect students marks because of the fact that they would be getting home at a much later time and would not have enough time to finish their homework and go to sleep on time. I urge the School Board to take my concerns, as well as those against the proposal, into consideration in rejecting the proposal. I would also like to thank the board for their time and consideration.


Sincerely, Alex Wells

January 16

ARRTI – Literary Exploration

Question: What is your opinion on the idea that an individual’s life can be altered by a particular experience?

Life Altering Experiences


          An individual’s life can be changed through a certain experience. This experience could be the one that we have never encountered before, which could affect your decisions or attitude. When individuals encounter first time experiences, they find it difficult to react, doing nothing to affect or change the experiences. This situation should be able to teach us lessons on what to do, as for the next time something similar happens, the individual will be prepared to face and deal with the situation properly. From learning specific experiences, the individuals will be able to properly commit a decision. In the story, “A River Runs Through It”, Robert Redford reveals a character that does not know how to react to a certain situation, causing him to commit an action that he can only think of that works in different situations. The same character as well also uses these actions which soon affect his behaviour towards others. This has also affected me in a way to commit similar actions towards specific people for specific reasons. An individual’s life is changed through experiences that they have never faced before, as these experiences teach lessons that people can possibly use in the future.


          In “A River Runs Through It”, the character Norman Maclean reacts to his brother Paul Maclean, who acts rebellious in secret ways. For example, Paul and Norman had taken a boat and decided to “shoot the chutes” through a waterfall, and after that experience, it is seen that Norman separates from his friends and Paul. Later through the film, the audience can witness how Norman explodes with anger towards Paul about a sandwich, which is really not the reason for his anger. Although Norman decides to act as a brother’s keeper and rides with Paul down the waterfall, he has never experienced being in danger, which causes him to separate from his group of friends, as well as get in trouble with his parents.This experience had changed his mood, as Paul’s recklessness continues when nobody is watching except for his brother. This reaches a point that Norman had exploded in anger, which ends up in a fight scene. On this point onwards, Norman’s life is changed, and sometimes affected through Paul’s attitude. From this experience, he has no choice but to commit an action that is known to work towards others.


          Through the same film, Norman and Paul had decided to celebrate his success with winning over Jessie, and as Norman becomes drunk, Paul had taken him to a known illegal poker place called Lolo’s. From going inside, Norman later witnesses what happens to Paul and he attempts to play in a poker table, and sobers up. Through this experience, like other experiences he faced before, he knew that him and his brother were not welcome into the area, and causes him to leave, although his brother wanted to stay. Norman had decided to ignore Paul’s invitation to join him for poker, as his anger also caused him to drive Paul’s car back home. His reaction to this scenario shows how he used the exact same action to earlier situations as it is known to work with previous times. Considering their promises to never fight again, Norman had no other choice but to leave in anger towards Paul, who had kept his reckless behaviour towards maturing. Ever since the change in Paul’s behaviour, Norman has had some situations where he had to deal with it himself towards his own brother. Without being Paul’s brothers keeper, Norman would not learn how to deal with situations that have a negative outcome. I may not have a brother myself that I have a responsibility of, but I have a similar reaction to experiences such as Normans.


          When I was in Grade 9, only had I faced situations of bullying or fighting between others in the school, and that has affected my views towards others, as well as a bit of a change in attitude. I was in a class to which I barely knew anyone and overheard somebody judging me already to others. They have also attempted to made fun of me through their own languages, which I found it frustrating. From this experience though, it  taught me how to ignore sentences that I find disturbing when said verbally, and learned how to react to it. Another was nearby summer when I was hanging out with friends when all of the sudden two friends started fighting each other through an argument they had made. I reacted to this a bit in a fearful way, as this was the first time I ever found people that I know were physically hurting each other. All of these situations had forced me to commit actions similar to Norman’s, which is just to walk away and ignore any hurtful comments that may affect you. My life still consists of some bullying, whether its to me or others, but I am still able to commit actions that work, but has changed my lifestyle throughout highschool. If I haven’t faced these situations back then, I would find it hard to react to similar experiences in the future.


          Lessons that are learned from previous experiences, can help change an individual’s life in the future, as they would learn how to react. Norman first experienced dangerous acts through his brother and learned that his brother would still continue these acts. Norman had learned lessons from these experiences to just walk away from negative experiences that Paul had faced. This had always affected me when I first learned that life is not always perfect, as it made me more pessimistic than optimistic, although it has taught me lessons. Without these experiences, how would people react to new situations?

January 16

Lit Exploration

 The Idea that our Beliefs are Impacted by the Actions of Others.


What is your opinion of the idea that our beliefs are influenced by the actions of        others?


       Humans are a very impressionable species, once impacted by another individual then it maintains a long lasting stain on the individual. Like that of a mustard stain on a white shirt, it’s a fight to get rid of. In the novel Night, by Elie Wiesel we see this stain make its mark on a young boys life which happens to be Wiesel himself, we see how the torment and devastation of concentration camps change his life, and ultimately who he is. On the other side though through The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch the opposite is demonstrated for the reader as it’s a story about how individuals can shape you to model your inspiration after them.    


 In the novel Night, a young boy-Wiesel- is taken away from his family, aside from his father and the family is distributed as if game pieces to concentration camps. However Wiesel is lucky enough to stay with his father, but that is the only way in which the poor boy could be considered lucky. Beaten, starved, and made to feel as if he was less than a speck of dirt on this planet the young man is left with the question of, where is God? Why is he letting us be treated in such a way? When the true question is what would make another human do that to someone else? Because of the actions of others the young man disregarded his religion for a long time, for example he chose not to fast when others were or when if things would have still been normal he would have, not because his father told him to do so. But because of the lack of trust he has acquired in God. The absence of trust comes from the actions of those around him who hurt him so terribly he wasn’t even sure if there was a God out there for Elie to even pray to or fast for. Like Elie not everyone is as lucky to have an action of another have a positive long lasting effect on themselves but when it happens, it’s special.  


   In the excerpt from The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch we see the other side of the influence individuals actions have on people, were a good snap decision has the power to impact another person to give them hope and re-inspire them. In the excerpt Pausch is watching the landing on the moon in summer camp and is sent to bed by the councilors because it was thought to be 

‘Too late” so they did not witness man first steps on the moon because of a bedtime. But his father at home however took a photo so the young boy once he got back home could see and relish in the moment for himself. That choice the father made left a long lasting influence on Pausch because of his obsession with space and how later on in life he would become a scientist. “Give yourself permission to dream. Fuel your kids dreams, too. Once in a while, that might even mean letting them stay up past their bedtimes.” this quote is important because it displays Pausch’s admiration for great work that it should be witnessed by everyone. So with the influence his father taking a photo had was significant to Randy because it allowed him to dream bigger even if he didn’t give to see the product in it’s debut.  


  Seeing a final product in its debut is one of the most satisfying things a person can witness, so when William Forrester gets to see what Jamal becomes he is elated. Forrester had mentored Jamal and to see Jamal be successful at his new school and pursue writing it is a big moment for the former shut in. Forrester’s influence on Jamal had pushed Jamal to trust himself more and be more confident in himself as opposed to belittling himself for the sake of others. And Jamal had pushed Forrester right back with his actions of growth influencing Forrester to seek out new opportunities all over again in his life. The two men growing together to become better versions of each other demonstrates the positive effect that the actions of another person can have on one individual is by far one of the most important things that can be offered. 


  Not every time an individual walks into a life is it for the betterment of someone, sometimes the push is to lose your faith, make you rethink your family, but also sometimes someone can walk into your life and they open new doors create a safer atmosphere. Sometimes that mustard stain lands right in the middle of your shirt and other times you’re wearing a yellow shirt and it’s gonna blend in and only you’re gonna know about and you will be grateful for it. 

January 16


Erika Carey

ELA 30-2 


Ms. Hunnisett 

Persuasive Letter 


Dear Prosper School Board, 


  I am currently writing you and the behalf of the idea of the betterment of my and many other children’s education. Something that, if you hear me out, you can spearhead this as a demonstration for other schools around the world. My name is Alex Wells and I’m currently enrolled in grade twelve at Prosper High School, it has come to my attention that a four day school week could be introduced, I think this could be a game changer because it would give children the chance that we need to maintain our studies, aid our sleep schedules, and keep up with homework among a multitude of other prospects involving the community. 


    Researchers have shown that children and teenagers need at least eight hours of sleep per night and teenagers specifically, need more sleep than most age groups because our bodies are growing. According to a Philips Study in 2016 cutting your sleep by even one hour will cut your body’s alertness by ⅓ leaving you in an unhappy state, along with the fact that catching up on sleep during the weekends disrupts our entire sleep cycle because of our body having problems with consistency. Highschoolers especially need that extra day to rejuvenate because of the workload of high school and how it can get a bit hectic at times and that can leave an individual to become riddled with anxiety and numerous other mental health issues. There is a highly regarded notion of the connection between sleeping and learning and sleep deprivation is a major problem because of balancing school, homework, and if you participate in an extracurricular activity. A busy schedule creates a busy body, and busy bodies don’t typically sleep nearly enough as they should and introducing the four day school week would certainly help. 


  Financially it would also be beneficial, cutting back numbers on the budget by a few thousand. In the current five day week we spend around $63,000 on operations, $47,000 on maintenance and a staggering $80,000 on transportation. These numbers could be cut back by a noticeable few thousand without even damaging the school systems or taking money out of programs that exist at the school. With the four day school week we look at $58,000 in operations, $43,000 in maintenance, and an impressive drop to $65,000 for transportation. This gives us and extra $24,000 extra that no programs had to be cut in order to attain. 


  Another group who would enjoy the benefits of this cutback would be the community and the teachers, because of the extra time it would a lot for planning and being around the people you love and wish to surround yourself with. Teachers would be able to gain an extra day in order to get more time to prepare and prep for their classes, in fact 92% of the Prosper High School Staff voted in favour of the four day weeks more than likely with the idea behind them that it would gift them that extra couple hours to make their lessons so much better so that way the kids would learn better. Then give the teachers a sense of pride, because what better of a feeling is it than when you can put the work you into the world and feel proud of it? No teacher wants to rob a student of a good understanding of the material they are teaching them but if they feel rushed and students aren’t understanding the material because the teacher needs more time, that is unfair to everyone involved. The community would benefit because that would be access to a large space with supply of helpful resources, “We will be able to schedule more Friday activities and attract more volunteers,” Owner of Moms and Tots, Dorthy Miller has said. Their is so much potential good to be done in the idea of having a four day school week with advantages that we don’t even fully understand yet. 


 So keeping in mind the amount of people and different groups this would affect, please consider this because for a High School student, if I was given the gift of being able to study for a test for three days rather than two I would jump at the offer. And others would gain access to our space helping out the community, it would even free up a good chunk of money to put towards the school as well and the added bonus that programs wouldn’t have to be cut in order to get said money. So I ask you to consider these factors when making your decision and I thank you for hearing me out. 



Alex Wells 

January 16

Persuasive for a 4 Day School Week

Dear Prosper School Board,

          My name is Alex Wells and I am a current grade 12 student in Prosper High School. I have noticed that the board is considering a proposal to adopt a four-day school week from Monday to Thursday. From gathering information through various sources, I think that it would be a great idea to accept the proposal. Throughout the years of being in Prosper High School, I have heard from friends and other people that they are spending too much time on homework and projects to the point that they barely get any sleep. This causes them to be really tired in the mornings of school. I believe accepting this proposal would be great for students and staff, because it may help everyone if they focus better if they weren’t tired through the week days.


          As a senior, I have noticed that our technology in this school is starting to get outdated compared to other schools, and also understand about Prosper School’s current budget towards our maintenance, power and operations. If we were to adopt the four day school week, it would save more budgets of the school which we could use to get better technologies for students such as computers and supplies. From looking at the current graph and looking at the predicted values of the projected costs, we would save a total of 24 thousand dollars. This money could be used to further modernize this school, and will not cause any panic when it reaches a point that the school doesn’t have sufficient funds to continue. Students will also be able to participate more in outside school activities, such as the Prosper Youth Centre programs. These programs allow students to relax and have fun with others during the day, which can help them get back into focus on school days.


          Parents and some students find it troubling that kids may just stay home or how scheduling may affect certain activities. “I want my kid in school Mon to Fri when I’m at work, not in front of the TV all day. The thought of unsupervised Fridays off gives me nightmares!” Parents may also share the same opinion as this one, but remember that there are also activities that also happen outside of school that an individual can get interested, such as hanging out with friends, or joining the Prosper Youth Programs that is being offered in regards to a four-day school week. This also gives the individual an opportunity to volunteer towards other programs that can help improve our community. If parents also worry that their child may not like the idea of outside activities, they can also refer to the website www.costlinetravel.com, which provides information on three day vacations that can lure them away from distracting items such as television or gaming.


          From a recent poll website fast poll, High School Staff seemed to want a four day school week, to relax or even plan for their next lessons on a Monday. Monica Pham, a math teacher, had displayed information that the idea of a four-day week allows them more time to plan and prepare for lessons, as well as the statistic that students attend their classes more on four-day weeks compared to five-day weeks.  This statistic benefits both the school and students, as it allows students more free time to hang around with friends and teachers some time to relax and plan carefully for their next lesson. According to the Academic Journal in 2016, it has stated that teens must have sufficient sleep in order to focus properly, and just by reducing sleep can cause them to drop mental alertness. Students normally have to wake up around 6-7 Am to get to school, and considering that some students sleep at around 10 Pm – 12Am, they only get around 6-9 hours of sleep. An extra day means they would be able to catch up on their sleep as they would receive an extra 2-3 hours, which could help them focus better on their studies.

          Prosper School should really accept the proposal of the four-day week, as it would really save school budgets which could be used to improve students learning through modern technology. This would also involve more student activities to outside programs, and increase their attendance in schools. Without this proposal, students would end up being tired in class, but reducing the days of school would give them one day to relax and spend more time with friends and family. Thank you for taking the time to read and consider my arguments in the letter and take these facts to make your final decision towards the proposal. If you want any more information or any questions, you may contact my email, Alex.W@gmail.com. I can’t wait to hear your decision whether to accept or reject the proposal.

January 16

Persuasive – Bring Your Own Device

Dear Prosper School Council, 


My name is Reggie Rivers and I am a recent graduate of Prosper High School.I would like to share my opinion towards whether or not a Bring Your Own Device proposal should be mandatory or not. I personally believe that this proposal should be rejected because what supporters don’t understand is that, ultimately, technology will not have a large positive impact on students’ learning abilities. 


The first and foremost reason I believe that BYOD should not be implemented is that, being a recent high school graduate, I understand that students will only use their devices as a form of distraction. Nowadays, cell phones make teenagers impatient, urging their minds to find out whether or not someone responded to their texts, or even who posted what on social media. Lending them the opportunity to do such activities within a space where they should be learning instead, will be only be harmful, not beneficial. A recent study states that for teenagers, specifically students, technology is a form of addiction. This, as the study indicates, develops a ripple effect of many other issues such as the inability to have social skills and maintain concentration on complex tasks, as well as the harm technology is producing on students’ cognitive skills. All of these combined, outweigh the benefits of technology and stand as a significant risk when deciding to implement BYOD. On a survey asking adults for their opinions, a teacher by the name of Calim Gamon stresses that her job is to educate students, not to monitor what they are doing on their phones. This is a strong effect of students easily becoming distracted. Teachers will continually be worrying as to whether or not their students are paying attention and understanding what is being taught. Teachers should not have this weight on their shoulders simply because their students are allowed to be distracted by their devices due to the BYOD proposal.


Another reason I believe that BYOD should not be implemented into Prosper High School is due to increasing bullying concerns. Students bully one another and this is just a fact. Allowing them, however, the opportunity to bring their devices to school will only increase the chances of bullying leading students to feel anxious about their situations. As sad as it is, bullying through technology is easier for many students who choose to bully because technology acts as a mask that they can hide behind. They don’t have to worry about teachers witnessing their behaviour towards others. Bullying through technology is more than sending rude comments. Sadly I know multiple peers who have gotten threats as well. It comes in many forms on devices. In classrooms students take photos of others as well as their teachers and send them around for fun. Students judge one another solely based on who has which phone. Cyber-bullying is so dangerous and can scar students. It will only make their anxiety and stress levels increase if they are able to access such hurtful comments and threats during class time when the only thing they should have to focus on is their education and what they are learning. A police officer by the name of Maxwell Ponte stated that he worries that through allowing technology in the high school, stress and anxiety for students will steadily increase.


The third reason I do not support the idea of BYOD is due to the financial debt it will cause, starting with the parents of students. Cindy, a mother of children who attend Prosper High School, emphasizes on her struggle with spending money on bills and upgrades for her children’s devices. She simply cannot afford to continue paying for all these costs especially if they will increase by BYOD. Cindy is one parent out of many, however, numerous numbers of parents will struggle with the financial costs following the implementation of BYOD. On FastPoll, a student argues that he uses his phone only for emergencies and having to use it in class permanently, will not be possible for him. He will not be able to pay for the bills and this struggle will fall on him. I remember being in class, and witnessing a number of students who did not have their own devices at all. Will the school expect them to buy it for hundreds of dollars along with data and bills to pay for? At a larger perspective, the financial issues will fall upon the school as well. Devices will get lost or stolen, they are bound to eventually. How will the school take responsibility for this and to what extent are they willing to go to assist students from preventing such situations? The costs will increase as the school will have to implement tools to help them solve these issues. Rather than going through all this financial debt, devices should simply not be mandatory to bring to school.

I understand that the idea of students bringing their own devices sounds beneficial because our society is progressly relying on technology, however, the harms are too vast to be ignored and affect, not only the students, but also their parents and teachers. Lending students the free will of accessing their phones in class will distract them, lead to increased amounts of bullying and anxiety because of it, and will frustrate parents with keeping up with their children’s phone bills. I truly hope that my opinion on this matter will assist you with deciding whether or not to implement BYOD and I greatly appreciate you taking the time to read my letter. If you have any questions, feel free to call me on 403-123-456 or email me at Reggierivers@gmail.com.  


Reggie Rivers

January 16

Persuasive Revised

My name is Alex Wells. I grade 12 student at Prosper High School. I am writing to inform and persuade you to pass on the four day school week. The reason I chose this is because of the fact that one day off for students would result in more rest, which in turn means more focus and mental alertness at school, teachers would get more time to plan test, grade students, book meetings, etc., and students would have more time to pursue their passion and interest which is proven to keep you happy.


One of the main reasons that an extra day off is essential is because it would result in more rest, thus better performance in school because it is proven that less rest lowers academic performance.  A lot of people can agree that grade 12 is not the easiest grade to get through. With tests, other activities(sports, extra curricular etc.) , and around eleven hours spent getting to school and back, how do teachers expect us to be mentally alert in class? Of course us students will be exhausted. Logically speaking, the only harm in having a four day school week would be the fact that do more work during school days because of how cramped they would be. Although this may be a problem, the extra day would allow for teachers and students to get work done, and that easily cancels out the harm in having a four-day school week. With more rest, there will be more more alertness, and more attendance according to Monica Pham in the Math Department at Prosper High School. The quality is more important than quantity and this is especially true for academics, ad things that require the mind. In order to achieve this, the four-day school week must be passed.


Teachers would also benefit from this because they would get  more time to do work and catch up on things they need to do. As I mentioned in the previous paragraph, teachers would have more work to do, and I agree. However, this is not necessarily a bad thing. Although teachers have more work to do during school hours, because they have to teach more content, they have an extra day to cover any meetings, gradings, etc. This makes covering just a little bit of extra content way easier because of the fact that the major work( grading, meetings, etc.) is done. A lot of times, teachers need a third day off too because they more likely than not have other things in their life. They have a family, a hobby maybe, or even just the desire to relax and step-back. The only way to give this to them consistently(unlike 2 months once a year) is to give them a third day off so they can get that sense of mental clarity, and peace, and happiness. 


The final reason is that having a third day off will make students happy, but not in the way you might think. Having a third day off would result in more rest, which would in turn improve mood. “Sleep deprivation can cause effects to emotion.” -as said in the Academic journal-which isn’t always a good thing. It is proven by science that a long term lack of sleep can lead to depression, and one day of sleep deprivation alone can cause more reactivity to negative stimuli. One of the main things that society is trying to prevent and raise awareness around is depression  It is no false thing that you can snap out of. It is a downward spiral, and is very hard to get out of. It would be a question of morality if the school board is willing to take risks with the mental health of students for academic purposes. The right thing to do is to give a four day school week so that children are less likely to fall into depression and other mental illnesses even if it does reduce academic performance(which it likely won’t-check paragraph one-), the mental health of students is more important than their grades.


My reasons for passing the four-week school week are so that children perform better in school due to more rest, teachers and students get more work done AND have more time to themselves, and most importantly the mental health of students remains stable and unshattered due to the release of academic pressure and sleep deprivation due to school.