Quiet week is a lie


Graphic by Ana Murguia

By Ana Murguia, Op/Ed Editor

This article was initially written in 2023.

It’s that time of the year again. 

Whispers of summer are on the horizon, and classwork is slowly winding down. Students are taking a breath of fresh air in anticipation of finals week, preparing to hunker down and study until everything falls into place. 

Just kidding.

Though Tamalpais High School promises a “quiet week” in the week before final exam week (June 5 through 9) for students to study, teachers are still piling on the work, and it doesn’t look as though it’s going to stop any time soon. 

For some teachers and unfortunate students, quiet week has even gone as far as to replace finals week.

“Honestly I think [putting finals during quiet week] is better than cramming everything in one week, so I like it. I don’t think it should be called quiet week because there was lots of work to do,” junior Mari Squiers said. 

But early final jumpscares aren’t the only issue plaguing the student body as the school year ramps up toward exams. 

Many Tam students have hardly been able to give thought to finals because their current classwork has so consumed them. How do teachers expect students to do well on final exams if students aren’t given time to study for these exams? 

I don’t think they should call it quiet week. I think that loud week, or stress week, or desperately-finishing-that-late-work-for Pre-calc-week would be a much more suitable name. It also wouldn’t mislead students into thinking they’re finally going to get actual study time. I mean, that would be ridiculous. 

But why do teachers choose to take time away from desperate studying students? Many teachers want to finish finals as quickly as possible so that students, especially current seniors, can spend the last week of school focusing on connecting with friends and making good memories before summer. 

A lot of Tam students feel as though this “push” to get through finals is more harmful than beneficial. 

“[Having finals during quiet week] wasn’t great. I mean I understand why they do it, so the seniors can have their finals taken care of that week, because the seniors don’t have school during finals week, but they should really separate it. It really does not make sense to be cramming for a final during [quiet week] when that should be a time to get missing assignments done,” junior Oliver Lucchese said. 

Some students, however, liked the idea of getting finals over during quiet week. 

“I hated [having finals] last week, but I’m happy I got it over with this week, so now I don’t have to think about anything. I think there should be a mix. Some classes should have [finals] during quiet week so we get the stress off during finals week, but other than that, you can’t have all your finals during quiet week,” junior Ida Toernqvist said. 

Still, the majority of students spoken to were unenthusiastic about having their study schedule crushed into one week. 

Shouldn’t finals exist to benefit students by helping them solidify their knowledge of the material? If this is the case, then why are so many teachers insisting on removing precious study time for the finals while pushing the tests earlier and earlier into the year?

Finals should exist to help students remember important concepts learned throughout the school year, not to impose a stressful and unnecessary time crunch. While earlier finals can help eradicate finals week stress, many students still need their time to study. 

The solution for the problem of Tam’s quiet week is to find a balance between finals week and quiet week, because nobody wants to do all of their finals two weeks before the end of the school year. More importantly, nobody wants to frantically cram for nine different classes on the night before school gets out.