New FLEX class offers variety of benefits for Bearden students


Millie Lovett

Mr. Logan Peterson leads a FLEX lesson in a sophomore class earlier this week. Those same students will have Mr. Peterson for FLEX the rest of the time they are at Bearden.

One of the first steps toward Bearden becoming an academy school was to implement Freshman Seminar for this year’s incoming freshmen.

The creation of that class opened up an opportunity for a 30-minute FLEX period for upperclassmen. 

FLEX, which gets its name from the flexibility that administrators have for the class’s curriculum, helps the school effectively communicate to students about events and issues in the school. 

FLEX functions in many ways as third block advisory has in previous years; however, one key difference is that students will receive credit for the course.

Students will not earn a letter grade for the class; instead, their overall grade will be based on a pass/fail system. If students do not participate in the scheduled assignments, they will not pass the class. 

Mrs. Watts, the Class of 2025 assistant principal, has become the head administrator of FLEX. Every week, she creates a schedule for the school week that explains what students will be doing in FLEX each day.

The schedule consists of different informational videos, helpful presentations, life skills, and BBN News on Fridays. This schedule is then put on Canvas for all students and teachers to see. 

FLEX gives students a chance to learn about what is happening around school without interfering with students’ educational courses. Additionally, it gives students time to catch up on school work or simply take a break. Students will not attend FLEX on half days or early release days, only full days of school.

“It gives a chance for students to find a check in point during the day where they can relax and also take care of things and get some questions answered,” Watts said. “I think it [has] a positive impact on our communication and ways we are able to communicate with students more effectively.”

It also offers a set time for BBN News to play each week.

“I have heard so many teachers showing [BBN in] FLEX,” BBN co-station director Cheyenne Sergent said. “So it really has helped a lot.”

Overall, FLEX has provided many new opportunities for all Bearden students, not just Bearden’s first class of academy students.

“Freshman seminar is a required course that freshmen take as a part of the academy structure,” Mrs. Watts said. “And we thought it would be great for our 10th through 12th graders to have some sort of structure like that as well.”

Students will have the same FLEX teacher for the rest of their time at Bearden. This will be beneficial for students because they will be able to build a strong relationship with a teacher. Teachers will also feel comfortable checking up on students. 

It is important for students to be able to have a teacher that they feel safe around, and FLEX will provide that for them.

“If a teacher wants to check up on your grades [or] talk to you about how things are going, they can do that,” Bearden principal Mrs. Debbie Sayers said. “That will be one consistent adult in a student’s life.”