Students and administrators should just hold hands

As this school year draws to a close, so comes my time of often sentimental reflection. It may sound sappy and unnecessary, but I cannot help but think over my nine months at Ames High when late May hits—what I’ve learned, how I’ve grown, and also what has happened around me. (Almost) in retrospect, this year our school has changed, more than memory tells me it ever has in previous years. We began class in August in a school under construction to the noise of drilling and construction works pounding away above us. We started eating in a new cafeteria, a change that brought with it new rules and an accompanying uproar from the student body. We’ve been stopped in the halls and kicked out of the media center. Our senior friends have dealt with miscalculations in time. We’ve been administered sometimes harsh, seemingly outrageous punishments. And through it all, we, as a student body, have been angry. But through it all, we’ve also been blind. Is getting stopped in the hallway during 5th period by a “hall Nazi” really comparable to a pounding on the door by an SS officer? Is our school truly equivalent to a concentration camp, with its sole purpose to rid the world of entire groups of innocent people? Can any of us honestly assert that our administrators find joy in punishment? Truth? Our beloved courtyard looks horrendous. I wish I could buy a carton of chocolate milk on my way to 5th period orchestra because I am probably lacking in calcium. And I know the seniors are restless—under the spell of senioritis, three days just might be a big deal. As a member of WEB staff, I have had my fair share of interviews with our administrators and teachers. As a student, I’ve exchanged numerous smiles with Mr. McGrory and hellos with Dr. Avise. I have also witness the plight of my fellow students and understood their frustrations. And in the end, I can’t help but believe that both sides are right. The administration does care—and the students often aren’t given justification for decisions that are made that directly affect them. I have no grand revolutionary fix for this fractured relationship. All I know is this: we must all be more understanding. The administration must not end at good intentions, it must work to make students understand those intentions, and therefore understand the rules and boundaries set for them. In turn, we students must keep our eyes open to these intentions. We have to forget all our skewed notions that our school is leaving us without freedom because it just doesn’t care. Three months of summer vacation lie before us. Though it may seem sappy and unnecessary, hopefully in this time we can think this issue over and come back in August with a renewed sense of understanding and willingness to cooperate. Nobody can deny that our world sure could use a little more of that.