Lisa Ruge ‘14
Editor In Chief
At first I really didn’t like the idea of closed campus lunches. Especially as a stubborn senior. For the last two years I’ve had the option to leave campus on my lunch hour. I personally appreciated being able to do so because this gave me an opportunity to either eat something other than the usual cafeteria lunch, or to run a quick errand. With a strict 30 minute time limit, I found that the open campus lunch option was most beneficial to students who have a license, and those who didn’t either walked somewhere close or remained on campus.
After speaking with Assistant Principal Michael Fringer, it quickly became apparent that the removal of off campus lunch wasn’t meant to punish us as students. “We have decided to eliminate a procedure that created difficulty for many people.” he explained. “There was simply no way for us to insure everyone’s safety when they were not here with us in school. If we had some sort of an emergency with weather or local problems with criminal behavior, we would not be able to find everyone quickly.”
Coming from a student’s perspective, those few reasons are definitely not good enough to take away my Taco Bell privileges. Although coming from a parent’s or teacher’s, they most certainly are. The more fringer explained, the more I began to understand the administration’s safety concerns, and being the only school offering an open campus the administration was taking a huge safety risk allowing it to continue. Yet, in the 16 years it has been offered, there hasn’t been any significant accidents reported.
Recommendations for a closed campus ultimately came from the building level of administration, it wasn’t until the plan was completed that the recommendations were sent over, and confirmed by the board office. Its good to say that in the 16 years open campus was in place there were never any accidents reported and outside of the occasional smoking tickets, students didn’t have any run-ins with the law.
Its not a secret that students were somewhat bothersome to the local businesses surrounding the area. Often, the Taco Bell on 9 Mile between Gratiot and Kelly would be packed during both lunch hours with students who stuffed their cars full of their friends. The same thing happened with Burger King, McDonalds, and Dan Good Pizza as well. Although, the students that were able to leave brought in a lot of good revenue, the downfall for us was waiting in elongated lines and sprinting back to our cars. That didn’t always get us back to campus on time. By the end of the year, many of us had gathered up our fair share of fourth and fifth hour tardies, which doesn’t necessarily reflect good on us or the school. As Mr. Fringer pointed out during our earlier conversation; “Our lunch program now looks like 99% of all the other schools in America!”