Courtesy of Ava Freeman
Five days, 35 hours or 2,100 minutes is typically how long WCHS students spend within the walls of school each week. With the exception of seniors, students are not permitted to leave school grounds during lunch even if they are able to drive or receive a ride from someone else.
Some may think that it is best for students to be confined within their school for all seven hours of the day because it is the safest option, providing students easy access to getting help from teachers. However, it may be most beneficial for students to have the ability to leave WCHS grounds for lunch as long as they are back in time for sixth period.
Between taking tests and quizzes, completing homework, studying, reading textbooks and learning new material, it often feels as if high schoolers never have a break. That is why many WCHS students look forward to the hour long lunch as a break from such a high stress environment. However, while it is nice having such a long lunch break, sitting in the hallway or in a classroom for lunch does not necessarily act as a total break from the school that students spend such a large portion of their days in.
Leaving WCHS for lunch allows students to catch a breather from their normal routine and have a change of scenery. By being in a different environment during lunch, students can clear their head, so they can be in the best frame of mind to continue learning come sixth period.
Even for students who do not wish to spend money on going out for lunch, leaving for lunch could allow for them to go to their house or a friend’s house during lunch if they live close to the school. This gives students a wide variety of places to eat for lunch, such as in school, a restaurant or someone’s house.
The Cabin John Shopping Center is a great and convenient location for students to go to for lunch. Shake Shack, Cava and California Tortilla are all popular restaurants amongst WCHS students. The food is made fast and can be ordered on apps, providing convenience so students can maximize their time for lunch.
Additionally, the Westfield Montgomery Mall gives plenty of great options for students who may be looking for a quick place to get their lunch. The food court is located by the entrance of the parking garage where students have tons of dining options at their fingertips.
Even though not all students are able to drive, many parents may be willing to drive students to lunch. This allows for multiple students to carpool and be driven by a responsible adult who is likely to get the students back in time for sixth period.
In addition to seniors, many juniors and some sophomores also have their license and drive to school daily. Therefore, they are able to transport themselves to go out for lunch as well.
On the other hand, some people believe that us students are not responsible enough to be able to go out for lunch and be back for sixth period. These individuals have a valid argument, but this does not need to be the case.
Thankfully, the hour long lunch period gives students more than enough time to leave school and eat out. It is very reasonable for students to be able to leave school, have lunch and be back for sixth period all in an hour time frame.
Not only is this a way for students to clear their heads and get some fresh air, it is also a great way for students to change up their daily schedule. High school can often feel like a repetitive loop of waking up at the same time everyday, going to the same seven classes, getting home at the same time, doing homework and so forth. This is why it would be nice for students to be able to switch up their routine to make school feel a little less repetitive.
Giving students the option to leave school during lunch has many benefits that can improve their overall day, providing more options and freedom to break free of same old routine they are used to.