Letter to Salpointe Families - January 18, 2023

Dear Salpointe Families,

Happy New Year! We hope your Christmas vacation was filled with the love of family and friends.

As part of our ongoing efforts to prioritize student wellness and advance our signature holistic, college-preparatory education, Salpointe will move to a full block class schedule beginning in August 2023. It is our goal to create an environment that enhances the richness of our curriculum and lessens the stress on our students. We have spent two years exploring, researching and evaluating different schedules to create this new model that includes fewer classes of longer duration each day, as well as regular “community periods” to accommodate a variety of academic, spiritual, wellness and enrichment opportunities. 

Fewer classes each day will make the accelerated rigors of 21st-century learning more manageable and less stressful for students. Rather than seven different possible schedules with varying class lengths, the new schedule has only one primary schedule with 80 minute class periods (A/B days) and an occasional schedule with 45 minute class periods(C days). Students will benefit from a deeper focus on fewer subjects each day, as well as a much more predictable schedule. While the new schedule retains our current instructional hours in each course, it also allows for community periods, longer passing periods and daily dismissal at 2:30 p.m. Please see a sample block schedule here.

Community periods will enhance Salpointe’s holistic education. The community period included in the new 2023-2024 schedule will become a consistent part of student life and will allow the school to expand the enrichment activities we offer. Community periods will be used for existing activities such as all-school Masses, college fairs, spirit assemblies and class counseling meetings. They will also allow us to expand opportunities to include wellness programming, club meetings, intramural sports, personal interest classes, motivational speakers and other activities that allow students to pursue their passions and bring fun to the school day. 

Twice per month, students will have a 9:40 a.m. start time to allow for faculty and staff to participate in department meetings and professional development. Campus will be open at the regular time of 6:00 a.m. and breakfast will be served on late start days. Please take advantage of this opportunity for your student to schedule necessary medical and other off-campus appointments without missing class time.

The last time Salpointe adjusted the daily class schedule was twenty years ago, when we first adopted a block schedule on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Since then, the rate of change in education and life has accelerated dramatically. Our students now have chromebooks, smartphones and constant connectivity through email, text and social media. These changes have created opportunities, but also introduced new challenges for the pace of learning and the wellness of our students. We are very excited to adopt a schedule that will simplify the school day and help us meet our mission of holistic student development and college readiness. 

Salpointe continues to prioritize our partnership with parents and we’re confident that we will all benefit from these positive changes! Please review the FAQs below and contact Principal Ardemis Martin at amartin@salpointe.org if you have questions. We are excited to launch our new schedule in August 2023! Please see the Calendar-at-a-Glance for first day of school, vacation and graduation dates. 


Kay Sullivan      Ardemis Martin
President           Principal

Frequently Asked Questions

What was the process for making this schedule change?
During the pandemic, Salpointe had to make major changes to adapt to distance learning. This was incredibly challenging, but also revealed the possible benefits of different class schedule models. In May 2021, a Schedule Committee, including members of student services, faculty representing all departments and Lancer students, began exploring and evaluating different class schedule models that might better meet the needs of our community.  Based on this committee’s recommendations, school leaders began gathering feedback from several Carmelite and other Catholic schools that had already shifted to full block schedules. Site visits, including faculty observations in the fall of 2022, continued to affirm that a full block class schedule would improve student learning and wellness.

Does this affect student course choices, course progressions or requirements for graduation? 
No. Students will continue to take seven courses each semester and progress through the curriculum normally. Salpointe’s graduation requirements remain the same.

How will faculty adapt to teaching a full block class schedule?
Faculty members currently teach weekly block classes so they are familiar with this kind of schedule. They will make adjustments to the organization of their curriculum as necessary. The new schedule will allow teachers to incorporate more diverse methods of instruction and deepen the exploration of curricular topics.

How will the community period work? 
Students will report to their homeroom for attendance and then proceed to scheduled programs or their selected activities. 

Please contact Principal Ardemis Martin at amartin@salpointe.org with any questions.

Salpointe Catholic High School

1545 E. Copper St.,
Tucson, AZ 85719
(520) 327-6581
Attendance: (520) 327-1990
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