6:50 to 7:05: Rationale and Implications
Mariah Gaines (Sophomore)
It goes without saying that this past year has been filled with constant changes and adjustments to school processes. One recent change was the shift in school door opening time. Up until just a few weeks ago, the doors to school opened at 6:50 am for both middle and high school students. Now, doors are kept closed and locked until 7:05 am.
Many students have expressed deep displeasure with this change as they now have to deal with new inconveniences. Security lines have become a greater hassle as all students have to arrive within a shorter span of time. Students who previously arrived at the school in time to make it to homeroom now find themselves habitually rolling in late to first period. Homeroom is also when morning announcements are read; they’ve become almost futile since fewer people are in the building to hear them. Two eleventh graders who were asked about their opinions on the change said, “it sucks,” and, “it’s messed up.” Others have said that they aren’t able to make changes to their morning commute plans since they depend on outside factors like parent availability or Port Authority bus schedules.
In a brief interview, Mrs. Colbert gave some insight on the topic. She said that students were never supposed to be allowed in the building before 7:05 anyway due to insurance risks and staffing schedules. She defined the previous earlier door opening time as a courtesy to students and stressed that this decision was indeed thought through despite student speculation to the contrary. She also said that in her mind this situation isn’t a big issue as she is willing to excuse any tardiness that comes as a result of lengthy security lines.
Mrs. Colbert also made it clear that she is seeing the same number of students cutting class or intentionally being tardy. In addition, various students have admitted they don’t or can’t routinely get to school on time, either.
This poses the question: With whom does the accountability lie to get students to class on time? If the goal is to get all students to their first period classes on time, further investigation into all contributing factors will be needed. Both the school administration and the student body will need to be invested in the problem-solving process.
When asked if there were any plans in the works to reverse the decision to open school doors later, Mrs. Colbert said there are none. Despite the general consensus of the student body that a 6:50 door opening time was preferred, it looks like the 7:05 door opening is here to stay.