Reaching for the sky…walk?

Compromise to eat on skywalk gives juniors freedom, ensures safety

High school can be considered by most, the best and worst years of your life. Filled with highs soaring above Mount Everest to lows deeper than the Mariana Trench, it is one of the biggest milestones hit throughout your teenage years. 

As you begin freshman year with a glint in your eye and dreams that cloud your mind daily, you’re filled with excitement and joy every day you attend school. The year changes and sophomore year begins, and your friend group starts to dwindle, the dreams you once have changed, and the glint in your eyes disappears. You want to drive to places,on your own; you want the freedom to become self-reliant.  

Then, you’re hit by a train called junior year. You’re pressured to reach new levels in your education. As your schedule get busier and busier with work, extracurriculars, and ACT prep classes, you have little to no room for fun. To top it off, you are stuck in the cafeteria eating the same food you’ve eaten since freshman year. 

Allowing open campus for juniors would have many benefits, but would be highly accident prone and cause anxiety with the administration and student body alike. High school is full of procrastination, and many students wait until the last minute to complete necessary activities. By allowing juniors to leave for lunch on an honor system, where they are allowed to leave as long as they return back on time for their next class, they would acquire the crucial skill of time management and be better off for college even though they risk their own personal safety and educational benefits.

This valid point does not mitigate the many cons of allowing juniors to go out. 

Consider the following. The parking lot is already hectic around lunchtime with most seniors leaving. Allowing 600 more teens to leave the parking lot may create a higher percentage of crashes. 

For instance, in the West Hemstead school district in Nassau, New York, two students were killed in a car accident during open campus hours causing the school to shut down its open campus privileges to 2,600 students in its school district. By allowing both juniors and seniors to leave, you are increasing the possibilities of crashes by tenfold. 

Furthermore, most restaurants located near high schools are fast-food-based failing to meet teens’ nutritional needs. According to a study published by the International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, “Students at schools with open campus policies during lunchtime were significantly more likely to eat lunch at a fast-food restaurant than students at schools with closed campus policies.” Allowing juniors to leave for open campus increases their chances to develop bad habits. 

With time being a factor that affects where students get lunch, crunching down the time forces teens to bring their newly bought lunch into the school. By allowing this to happen, we are at risk of decreasing our federal funds for school lunch, which affects the students who are on free and reduced lunch.

So what is the compromise that could give juniors more freedom with less risk? 

By allowing not only seniors to eat in the skywalk, but also juniors, MN would improve the life skills of many students. Through eating in the skywalk they would have a sense of freedom with the added benefit of being at less risk. By making this compromise, the administration would have less of a headache. They wouldn’t have to worry about where the juniors go, but would also have less argument about the disparity between the upperclassman. Overall, allowing for a winning situation for the administration, seniors, and juniors alike.