Edficiency: Teachers and Students Reflect on New Flex System

Teachers and students rate their experiences with both Flextime Manager and Edficiency on a scale of one to five. (Graphic by Hadley Norris)

From abrupt yet brief cancellations of Flex last year to student-led protests fighting against the cancellations, hearing the term “Flex” certainly evokes a myriad of emotions in students. And now, with the implementation of Edficiency, a fresh wave of feelings has hit not just the students, but the faculty of Westwood.

The decision this year to utilize Edficiency instead of Flextime Manager, the previous Flex platform, was based on the need to track attendance more reliably. Edficiency is renowned in the realm of scheduling systems and is utilized in a considerable number of schools across the country.

So what does Westwood truly think about Flex and more so, this new method of flexing out? Does Edficiency live up to its name or is it simply a hassle? Westwood Student Press conducted surveys with both teachers and students regarding their perspectives on Flex to find out.

Many students regard the 40 minutes carved out of a day to handle any business as a blessing. Having the time to receive assistance from teachers, catch up on schoolwork, and attend clubs during the school day thoroughly benefitted many students.

“My extracurriculars severely limit the time I have to do school work outside of school hours, and [Flex] provides built-in time to my day for me to get it all done,” Joseph Clements ’24 said.

During the brief cancellation of Flex last year, students’ productivity and academics were severely affected. They were not receiving that extra time to catch up on work or retake tests, which resulted in a struggle to balance social and school lives.

“My grades dropped overall, and I felt more stress and pressure from school,” Dhiyaan Nirmal ’25 said. “It was one of the hardest times for me academically.”

The majority of the students responded that they had an exceptional experience with Flextime Manager due to its ease of usability. However, the same cannot be said for Edficiency, as an overwhelming mass of students reported subpar encounters with this new platform.

“I think the one good thing about FlexTime Manager is that it worked for the students and was simple to understand,” Tara Kurkal ’25 said. “Now with Edficency you have to request low or high priority and if you don’t, you get put into your catchall. The whole point is to be able to go to the class we want to and receive the help we need but sometimes we can’t even get into the class.”

On top of not always being able to Flex into certain classes when needed, a major downside students face is the complexity and appearance of the platform.

“[Edficiency’s] appearance is largely outdated and the user interface is lacking,” an anonymous student said. “The extra steps that are required are simply pointless and are really just a bother.”

While students truly believe that Flex is essential for their academic success, teachers often see students not taking advantage of the time they have to receive assistance from various teachers.

“I have a few students that have Flexed in to take [a] test or because they wanted to work in Edgenuity with me present,” Credit Plus teacher Mr. Clay Powers said. “As far as I can tell, most students are still attending their ‘default’ class during Flex.”

Contrary to students’ experiences with Flextime Manager, many teachers struggled to track attendance with it, believing it was quite an inconvenience.

“Students figured out pretty quickly there were no consequences for not showing up, [and] then it became a hang-out situation sometimes,” Astronomy and Biology teacher Ms. Melissa Rangel said. “There was no way for me to prevent them from signing up for my Flex.”

So, does Edficiency make teachers’ lives easier? While the attendance debacle has been resolved with this system and teachers believe it’s more user-friendly on their end, Edficiency has also been extremely inflexible for them.

“[It’s an] amazing platform [and] makes things way easier, but also doesn’t allow teachers to add all the sessions they want without contacting someone else,” Chemistry teacher Mr. Andrew Sauer said. “If there was a way for it to be more flexible, it would be a home run.”

In short, students and teachers don’t have the same experiences with Edficiency, with some viewing it as an excellent tool, and others viewing it in a less favorable light. As Flex has been seen to play such a vital role in student success academically, it’s now about students and teachers navigating this new system to ensure continued success.