Sit, stay, fetch! Are we dogs?

I remember being promised independence and freedom, I remember being promised to be treated more like a grown-up rather than a child, I remember being promised an enjoyable time at Bay Middle School and I’m sure every other sixth-grade student can recall the same.

The reality is that liberty of the students has been taken down to zero. We now have to sit in our homeroom tables at lunchtime, or face a loss of BEP points (Best Effort Points). But the question that has been buzzing in my head for a while now is: What did we do?

We have been told that we did an astonishing job as fifth-graders, sitting in our blocks and tidying up after ourselves. But, is it assumed that we are now going to behave badly?

Last year, the sixth-graders went from sitting with whom they choose to homeroom tables. They apparently behaved horridly and were moved from good seating to bad seating. I understand the staff’s point of view on this problem. I would react the same; if the students couldn’t handle being the mature adults they are expected to be, then they should be punished. But why should my class be punished something we didn’t and haven’t done yet?

Lunch time is the only time you can see your friends and talk, but now that this dilemma has popped up I no longer get to see my best friends at school because they are in the other block. Being in another block means you do not get to have any academic classes with them. The lunch room seating is tearing friends apart and making it hard for some students, like myself, to survive the school year. 

In fifth grade we were taught to stand up for what we believe and not to accept as true something that is unjust and not right. Why are we helpless and suffering through having less power than adults and teachers and staff? Just because we are younger does NOT mean we do not have equal rights and we cannot stand up for what we believe in.

The snack bar rules have also changed. Like with seating, we have to go up with our homerooms. Last year we got to go up when we wanted. If these rules stay intact some kids will get angry and frustrated, because sometimes the snack bar is closed by the time your homeroom is called.

These rules are unfair, nasty, nauseating, offensive, mean and outrageous. Lunch is the only time students, like me, can see friends. We were taught to stand up for what we believe in. Don’t let the school staff walk all over us like we are their own personal door mat.

Come on and rise, sixth-graders, we always have Freedom of Speech and Freedom of The Press standing behind us. We want to get our freedom back and be treated like we matter. Because, ladies and gentlemen, lunch ladies and staff…WE DO MATTER!

Chloe Roberts, sixth-grader at Bay Middle School

I am a 6th grader from BMS (Bay Middle School).

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Volume 3, Issue 21, Posted 4:57 PM, 10.18.2011