By Nick Valeri

As we grow older, we will encounter times that mark our going from teenage years to adulthood. Passing your driver’s test and receiving your license is on that list. Being able to drive yourself to school is the “dream thing” (coming from the kid who doesn’t have a car) but holding that responsibility to be on time is even more crucial. As seniors graduate, juniors begin to make the shift from Red Spring to a free-for-all, first-come first-serve battle in the senior lot for the last weeks of school.

As the juniors’ transition to seniors during the final weeks of school, there is no lottery to determine who parks where; it is a battle for the best spot. Ashley Richmond proclaims to be the queen of picking her spot, as she is the first person in the lot every day. She said she has a habit of waking up early: “Before, my sister and I had first bus so we were already up. We continued [getting to school] early, with the exception of a Starbucks run before we make it to the senior lot.”

As a junior that comes to school when she feels like waking up, Marisa Dellatto credited the AHS parking system, saying that “it works really well.” Dellatto sees no issues with the current lottery system or even the first-come first-serve method, and even appreciates the change from Red Spring, “I’m relieved I can park in the senior lot,” she said. “The walk from Red Spring is a killer. I get home a lot earlier now. I can’t wait for next year when I don’t have to hike from Red Spring during the winter.”

The kids that do not drive themselves to school still show love for the school bus. Junior Kevin Zhao rides the bus to and from school every day, and finds a positive way to appreciate it: “It gets me to and from where I need to be. What else do I have to worry about?”

Keying Incidents
Parking has become competitive these last few weeks. Because some sophomores are old enough to drive, there have been rumors of upperclassman keying sophomore cars. Damaging cars purposely is un-classy, disrespectful, and uncalled for, especially after one of AHS’s most school-spirited years to date.

Tim Yaghmoorian, junior, questioned the value people have towards being able to park. Yaghmoorian gets a ride every day from a neighbor so he doesn’t drive himself, but called parking “a luxury and privilege.” But Yaghmoorian feels that it is not the same view for everyone, especially since the news of keying broke: “I guess not many kids treat it [as a luxury] if they are doing stuff like that.”

In a voice of disappointment, Dr. Lord made an announcement on the matter two weeks ago. Shortly after, Twitter blew up; opinions flew all over the news feed about the announcement, calling it “sickening and unnecessary” … in the nicest terms. Since then, the incidents have stopped, or at least no reports have been made of keying happening again, but this is not something that the school should end the year on.

Dellatto summed up the incident pretty well, saying, “The kids who did it need to get lives. The incident is more than just parking. I just hope they don’t ruin the senior lot for all of us.”

The Lottery System
As for the system itself, Assistant Principal Jordan said getting a parking spot is not as complicated as most may think. “It is fair and square,” she said, explaining it is a complete lottery who wins each spot. First, the senior lot is dealt, then the trails, then West Middle, and if needed, the first row of Red Spring. According to Ms. Jordan, this system of deciding where seniors will park is the fair way of going about it.

With finals upon us and the keying leaving the trending topics, the school year ends with a fresh class of seniors set to call the lot their own on Aug. 28. Putting the keying incident aside, people may be able to realize how much of a convenience it actually is to park closer to the school, especially when the winter comes around.

The Senior Lot, shown during school hours, is close to its capacity of cars. West Middle, the trails, and Red Spring are expected to be full again come the beginning of next school year.  (Photo by Nick Valeri)
The Senior Lot, shown during school hours, is close to its capacity of cars. West Middle, the trails, and Red Spring are expected to be full again come the beginning of next school year. (Photo by Nick Valeri)