Once again, administration has made changes to the morning intake system. Students are still required to stay in the gym or the cafeteria before 8 A.M. if they are not going to see a teacher, but if students plan to come into the main building, they must first sign in on one from a number of sheets laid out on the front desk. These sheets are specific to the teacher and date, as opposed to the master sign in list that was used earlier in the semester.
“In order for us to know that a teacher is here for a student to be able to go to tutorial, when the teacher signs in in the morning they leave a sheet with their name on it and the student can sign in,” said Assistant Principal Clifton Spears.
Students will then sign in at the front office and again with their teachers at tutorial. These sheets will be scanned and emailed to the teachers so they can cross-reference that their students actually showed up for the tutorial that they signed in for. The original sheets will be kept for record purposes.
As a surprise to the teachers, this decision was announced without much preamble.
“It was announced to teachers in the morning on Friday [9/14]. It was decided early on Thursday night at an extended leadership meeting, so no teachers had heard about this yet,” said math teacher Irvin Wardlow. “So we’re there in the morning, holding our tutorials already, and Mr. Spears makes an announcement on the speaker that we all need to go down and bring our sign in sheets. We were all like ‘What is going on?’ What I understood later was that it really wasn’t supposed to be announced until Monday.”
A source of frustration was lack of communication with the teachers about the change.
“When they throw something like that at us, not communicated with us through an email or a way in which a professional should to another professional, we were a bit surprised, shocked, and a little bit perturbed,” said Wardlow, “and I’d like to say that this is a continuation of a lack of communication — this is one incident out of many.”
According to Spears, however, the new changes came from teachers, not administration.
“The extended leadership team, which are teachers, decided that the [single] sheet that just has [all] students sign in was not working,” said Spears. “You had students going back to the old procedures and just sitting on the floor and not going to tutorial. It wasn’t an administrative decision, it was an extended leadership decision, which are teachers.”
Even so, teachers have questioned the necessity and effectiveness of the new sign in sheets.
“I always support our administration. I understand the need for security purposes and school safety. For us as adults we need to know where the students are in the building,” said social studies teacher Jennifer Tinnell. “However, I do not like the process of the sheets down at the front desk. I think it’s time-consuming. I think it’s tedious. It’s not efficient. There has to be another way.”
She echoed concerns about the lack of consultation.
“I don’t have the answer because teachers weren’t asked to provide suggestions. The change in morning procedure was not well thought out, therefore the implementation of this new process has not run smoothly,” said Tinnell. “So far I do like having the halls a little bit quieter in the morning, but honestly I miss some of the business and socialization, also hearing the kids and seeing the kids. [Students] being able to relax in the halls seems more like the high school experience.”
Both the overall implementation of a new morning policy and the updated sign in sheet procedure have frustrated students as well.
“I hate the process,” said senior Dylan Cruz. “It really doesn’t make sense to me, plus there’s always a long line, which takes forever. I’ve tried to avoid it, to be honest.”