School administration has recently begun to take action against the numerous amounts of students who run past the tardy table every morning.
Since the start of winter, the amount of students coming in after the morning bell has increased dramatically. According to the AHS tardy policy, students must be in their seats by 7:45, otherwise a late pass is required to enter class. To avoid receiving a tardy mark on their record, many students have begun to make the daring decision to pass over waiting in the tardy line, and run up to their class with no pass in hand. To prevent said phenomenon, Dr. Lord and other faculty members have begun to guard the steps from the lobby that lead into the second floor.
AHS hall monitor Ms. Desharnais has witnessed this occurrence many times. She stated, “It’s been an ongoing problem since last year. More so this year, but it started last year.” Deshairnais said that though the amount of tardy students have increased since the start of winter, “it’s the same kids from week to week”
One anonymous senior has been running for as long as they can remember, in fear of having their parking spot taken away, according to said source. Besides the occasional trouble waking up, the source blames their tardiness on weather conditions and traffic: “Sometimes the roads are really, really bad…There’s so much traffic, and they should take that into consideration when they give late passes.”
Tamra Rutfield, a senior who claimed traffic is the source of her tardiness, shared the anonymous source’s opinion. “Traffic is a huge part of it, especially if you park at Red Spring or West,” she said.
Walking from parking lots that are farther away from school takes up “a huge chunk of time,” according to Rutfield.
Many have begun to question the efficiency of the tardy table, and the tardy policy itself. “You get the same punishment for showing up at 7:46 that you do for showing up at 9:15,” stated Rutfield. According to other anonymous sources, many students who know they will be late have decided to get breakfast, and take their time getting to school, knowing they will receive no harsher penalty.
Many other arguments exist against the tardy policy. Students have protested that waiting in line only makes them later getting to class.
Students claim that the correlation between number of tardy days and the right to have and keep a parking spot should not exist. According to the student handbook, students are allowed up to three gold passes (six tardies total) in a single term until their spot is taken from them.
“I paid $200 for my parking space, and I think that people shouldn’t be punished for being late in a way that takes away their spot, because they paid for it,” stated Mary Mullins, senior.
AHS Principal Dr. Lord said this parking/tardy correlation exists to encourage students to arrive to school on time.
“There are three freebies for every student; there are no consequences with those blue tardies…That’s why they’re there,” he said. “We want to honor the hundreds and hundreds of students who do make it to class on time and are there ready to learn at 7:45. We’re trying to encourage everyone to come in, but we have to draw the line somewhere.”
Deshairnais “doesn’t see anyway else” for the tardy policy to change. “You need some kind of pass to give to the teachers,” she stated.
By Marisa Dellatto