Actions with consequences

After the lunch patio closed for a week, it will reopen if students make sure to pick up after themselves.


hanna carberry-simmering

During all three lunch periods students must stay inside causing the cafeteria to be overcrowded.

Hanna Carberry-Simmering, staff reporter

The outside lunch patio closed for the week of Feb. 14 and the week of Feb. 21, after students stopped picking up their trash. The closure may become longer if students don’t start to change. Students can make sure the patio stays open by cleaning up after themselves and recycling. During lunch periods, Ms. Maria Virgilio (FAC) or other staff members stay in the lunchroom to make sure no one is using the patio.

“They have to clean up after themselves, that’s why they’re here. [If not] they’ll probably stay inside for the rest of the year,” Virgilio said.

If students return to the patio and continue to act like they used to there is a chance of everyone having to stay inside the lunchroom for the rest of the year. Leaving a mess after lunch also puts more work on the staff who has to clean it up and it could make preparing for the next lunch period more difficult.

Students like Sara Alderman (’23) have found it irritating being made to sit inside instead of where they normally would.

“Our school is so overcrowded that forcing everyone to sit inside the cafeteria makes everyone so close together. With COVID-19 it’s going to spread more because everyone is so confined,” Alderman said.

The cafeteria has become packed with students for the past week, making it hard to find seats and be comfortable during lunch. According to the World Health Organization, being confined in an crowded indoor area where you spend longer periods of time can cause the COVID-19 virus to spread easier.

“I feel like they should have given us a warning first, told us we need to pick up more and kind of warned us about having to do this before forcing everyone to sit inside,” Alderman said.

In the middle of the week of Feb. 14, an announcement was made stating that starting the next day everyone would be sitting inside the cafeteria for all lunch periods because of the lack of cleaning up. While making everyone sit inside may have been a necessity, there was no warning given to students to allow them to change before the consequences. This made sitting inside hard for some students, seeing as they had no clue of the problem or didn’t realize how big of a problem it was.

To ensure that the patio reopens and stays open for the rest of the school year, students need to pick up after themselves at lunch and possibly recycle. This will benefit not only students who get to sit where they would like to, but it will help the staff members who clean up the cafeteria and patio when preparing for the next lunch period.