In the cafeteria students have time to set down their stuff and get in line for food, but if they need to use the bathroom, talk to a teacher after class, or take a test, they will not be able to receive a lunch. The sitting area of the cafeteria is open for the full 50-minute lunch period, but the area to get food is not. Multiple students miss lunch because of this. The area normally closes as soon as the awfully long line has ended or is almost at the end. Jessica Yassa (’24) was unable to get lunch because she was seeing her guidance counselor.
The lunch area should be open for the full lunch period, just like the cafeteria sitting area. There is a need to make sure the food is ready for the students in the next period but no one should be denied lunch as the lunch period is still going on. When observing the lunchroom on Oct. 5 Emma Diehl (’22) nearly missed lunch after the lunch period had only been going on for about 10 minutes. Eating is a crucial part of everyone’s day as it helps you get energy, be focused, and productive.
“If you’ve ever gotten ‘hangry,’ then you know what happens when you deprive your brain of glucose. You get irritable, moody, and sluggish, and it becomes difficult to concentrate. In addition, your brain has a much harder time storing new information and retrieving old information. For young people, that makes succeeding in school much more difficult,” Lonna Gordon, an adolescent medicine specialist at Mount Sinai Adolescent Health Center, stated in the article “This is What Happens to your body when you skip lunch”.
Students should not have to worry about whether they should go get help from a teacher with what they are struggling with or if they should eat lunch because they might miss it if they leave. Lunches are free so more students are able to get them if they would like to but the lunch area closing before the period ends keeps many from eating. When trying to contact the lunch staff and manager for a comment, we were unable to get one before publication.
No one should have the lunch area shut on them as they are trying to get lunch while the lunch period is ongoing. Not eating can cause a lot of problems for students while they are expected to learn for six plus hours a day. An easy solution for this problem would be keeping the doors open until the bell rings or choosing a certain time every day to close the doors and make that time known to students.