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“My bus broke down!” Is that my fault?

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“My bus broke down!” Is that my fault?

Printed copies senior contracts in which many students and teachers are not on the same page.

Printed copies senior contracts in which many students and teachers are not on the same page.

Printed copies senior contracts in which many students and teachers are not on the same page.

Printed copies senior contracts in which many students and teachers are not on the same page.

Riley Arnold, Entertainment Editor

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It’s finally nearing the end of senior year and unfortunately, things are beginning to get a little out of line. With prom, grad night and graduation right around the corner, seniors are a little on edge.

Administration at Da Vinci Communications High School has put the senior contract in effect towards seniors for excessive tardiness and absences. If students on the contract get a specific amount of tardies then individually their senior privileges will be revoked.  

The issue for many seniors is that the tardies given aren’t distributed fairly. If a student isn’t in their seat, but collecting their paperwork they are still considered tardy. This is unfair.

Seniors really shouldn’t be getting their privileges that they have worked steadily for the past four years taken away for situations in which they mostly have no control. Common factors that contribute to tardies can be congested traffic even if you leave promptly, unexpected car accidents, road construction or public transportation malfunctions.

From an outside perspective, Jennifer Johnson, a senior at DVC who isn’t burdened by the senior contract said, “You can’t control traffic, you can’t control other people’s driving, you can’t control your mother getting out of the house on time, you can’t control car accidents. So I mean it’s not really your fault.”

Johnson makes the valid argument that even if we wake up earlier than our standard wake up time, there isn’t much we can control once we leave our houses; it’s a huge factor that administration isn’t taking into account.

Adam Eynon, the Assistant Principal at DVC, states his point of view on the subject, “I have to be honest, a lot of the times I call home it’s parents who apologize to me because they say it’s their fault. But me putting the students on the contract puts pressure on their parents.”

As seniors, we work with much vigor in our classes, along with the consistent demands and requirements of college admissions, as well as the excessive amounts of projects. We are trying hard to stay focused and keep our grades up. But we are receiving these harsh consequences for something that our parents control.

To an extent senior contracts are reasonable; excessive tardiness without valid excuses is ill-mannered and the school has to take measures in order to maintain a high attendance in the mornings. The main issue, however, that many seniors seem to agree on is that graduation shouldn’t be taken away for a student missing less than ten minutes of a class.

“Some people would be like ‘You guys only care about attendance cause it’s for money’ that’s not the only reason why, but yeah. We need money to give you guys these nice things and so when students are here on time and students are here all together that means we have x amount of dollars,” Eynon noted.

Yes, punctuality is imperative and a skill we need to master, but comparing our attendance to the Chromebooks we receive isn’t practical. The fact that the seniors have been here the longest and are still being given the worst Chromebooks compared to the freshmen that just arrived who have better-unused Chromebooks is unsettling. Why should we be punished for tardiness that causes the state to give less funding if we aren’t even the ones receiving the better supplies?

Students overall are not as worried when receiving a detention as they are when losing their senior privileges. Which is one of the main reasons Da Vinci has put these contracts in place instead of using detention like other schools do.

Alejandro Silva, a senior at DVC who is currently on the contract, expressed, “I don’t think there is another way, I think the contract is the only way to do it because once you have a student’s signature on something they can’t back out of it.” This prompts students on contract to comply with the requirements even if they disagree because ultimately the contract is only there to help them.

Graduation is one of the biggest events in your young adult life coming right after your wedding day. Why should this big event that we have been working towards for the past four years be on a contract for tardies that are determined by missing more than a minute of class?

“I don’t think that prom and graduation should be taken away from you just because you were tardy. I think it’s dumb to say ‘Oh I didn’t go on stage to graduate because I was tardy.’ Even though the contract is made to benefit the students and help ready them for their future there are some parts of the contract that seems too obscure to be on there just for tardiness,” Silva went on to say.

 “Graduation is the last resort, it’s like if a kid gets 3 tardies am I really going to take graduation away, no. There has to be an excessive amount of tardies and an excessive amount of absences. And I have to be honest with you, I won’t have to take graduation away if someone is tardy and absent as much as it would take because you know they are going to fail their classes anyways with all those tardies and absences,” Eynon refutes.

Although administrators were justified in incentivizing seniors into getting to school on time, it shouldn’t be as serious as taking away some of the biggest events in our high school lives.

For future seniors, the best way to avoid this is to be prompt so you won’t carry the burden of senior contracts and other senior responsibilities. 

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3 Comments

3 Responses to ““My bus broke down!” Is that my fault?”

  1. Martina on March 23rd, 2018 10:11 am

    I think when it’s explained the way Eynon explained it, it doesn’t seem that absurd as it did when seniors first received the contracts.

  2. Sophia Szekely on March 23rd, 2018 10:26 am

    This article really informed me on what is happening with the senior contracts. Amazingly written and incredibly professional!

  3. Matthew Ujemov on March 23rd, 2018 11:47 am

    “Yes, punctuality is imperative and a skill we need to master, but comparing our attendance to the Chromebooks we receive isn’t practical. The fact that the seniors have been here the longest and are still being given the worst Chromebooks compared to the freshmen that just arrived who have better-unused Chromebooks is unsettling.” Is a very impactful quote. Great job!

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