The sun sets on Marc Garneau's 80th semester.

The sun sets on Marc Garneau’s 80th semester.

Music streams from Marc Garneau’s PA system as students mill about, consulting dark green schedules on their way to class after eight days of exams. Whether it was your first roaming the halls of Garneau or one of your last, 31 January brought a long-anticipated conclusion of Marc Garneau’s 80th semester.

Marks entered, exams graded, and results returned, teachers and students alike are slowly settling into the spring semester. Even the washrooms seem quieter during class time as students settle into their new courses.

With empty binders, new seating arrangements and new course outlines to read, the new semester proved strangely nostalgic to some seniors. “It feels like September again”, comments Joshua T..

Granted, new beginnings are never without tribulation. Winter weather woes aside, Garneau students have dealt with frantic timetable adjustments, and waking up in time for their early period classes. Still, students seem up for the change. “I’m excited,” says a grade 11 student. “last semester didn’t end on as high a note as I hoped, so I’m happy to start anew”. “I feel great,” adds another. “I was and still am looking forward to it.”

Despite all the changes, some things seem here to stay. The 2013 Spring semester is the third semester with the new timetable. A year and a half after adopting a schedule with five periods and a spare for each student, students remain ambivalent on the matter. “What I don’t like is the day one, day two.” comments Stephen W., a grade 11 student. “It feels awkward doing a different thing every day. I want it to become more routine.” Others, like Jacqueline S., disagree: “I like the fact that we all have spares now—I have more time to do work.”

After a rocky first semester with labour situations interrupting extracurriculars and in-school events, students remain optimistic about the new beginning. “Both the TDSB and the Liberal Party of Ontario have found new leaders. I think there’ll be some change in the air” comments a student. Last semester, students volunteered to coordinate contests and searched for different ways to remain involved while clubs were cancelled. Many found their experiences extremely rewarding. In spite of setbacks, SAC organized a semi-formal dance, and several clubs continue to hold fundraisers and events. It’s safe to say that MGCI is not a school to simply give up. Whether the school’s 81st semester is your second or your last, it, like all others, promises to be an interesting one.