Lunch changes at Schreiber create an inconvenience for students

Jessica Mark, Staff Writer

September is always an exciting month for all, filled with the changes the beginning of every school year brings: new school supplies, teachers, friends, clubs, and more.  While these changes are always anticipated, Schreiber has just implemented one unexpected change to our schedules.  In the past, all Schreiber students ate lunch during one of two periods – 4.1 or 4.2.  But now, as the size of our student body has increased, Schreiber has added an additional lunch period with the hopes of preventing the cafeteria and the hallways from overcrowding.

Instead of only offering two lunch periods, Schreiber now offers three lunch periods – 3.1, 4.1 and 4.2.  While this plan might sound logical when written on paper, this implementation has been both confusing and chaotic for both Schreiber students and faculty.  The lack of clarity surrounding the lunchtime changes has prevented this plan from being effective, and has instead led to many members of the Schreiber community viewing it as an inconvenience.

“Having the 3.1 lunch can be super tough.  It occurs at 10:20 in the morning and I’m usually not up to eating.  Most of the time I have to skip breakfast in order to be hungry enough to eat during the 3.1 lunch period.  And then, by the time I get home from school, I’m starving,” said senior Adam Jackman.

After a 3.1 lunch period at Schreiber, there are still four hours of school left.  This is a long period of time to have to abstain from eating, especially given that within those four hours many students are participating in physically demanding activities, such as gym class.

In addition, for students who have low blood pressure, it can be extremely difficult to have to go hours on end without eating.  When they have a 3.1 lunch period, they may feel light-headed and drowsy by the time sixth period occurs.  Being able to have lunch at a later period would resolve this problem these students.

Faculty members at Schreiber also understand the difficulty of this new lunch period.

“The concept of adding an additional lunch period sounds like an awesome idea and certainly like one that would benefit the students.  However, I understand how eating your entire lunchtime meal at such an early time in the day, like 10:30 AM, could be challenging for some students,” said Spanish teacher Ms. Kelly Delliliune.

Another difficulty with the lunchtime changes this school year is that students, after entering the cafeteria, are no longer allowed to leave it for the remainder of the period.  For example, if a student wanted to eat lunch in the cafeteria for half of their lunch period and then visit a teacher for extra help during the second half, he or she would be unable to do that.

“Although I understand why the school has tightened up their rules, it can be really frustrating when they refuse to let students leave the cafeteria during lunch,” says senior Julianna Marinelli.  “Sometimes I want to sit down in the cafeteria to eat lunch and then leave to go to the bathroom and freshen up before class next period.  But the new rules no longer allow me to do that.  The stricter policies are particularly tough in the beginning and the end of the year because it gets very hot and stuffy in the cafeteria.  In the past my friends and I have left the cafeteria during lunch to get a break from the heat, but now, with the staff not allowing us to leave, we will no longer be able to do that.”  

Even though this plan has the best objectives at heart, the lunchtime changes at Schreiber have left many students frustrated and have become viewed as an inconvenience.  Through discussions and the voices of the students in the Schreiber community, hopefully there will be a better course of action taken next school year.