Students unite over ID policy

Oct. 10, 2006, midnight | By Pia Nargundkar | 17 years, 7 months ago

Blazers' comments shown to principal

Since the administration's new ID policy was unveiled over a week ago on Silver Chips Online, 178 comments have been made on the story and over 350 people have voted on the ID policy-related poll.

This mass outpouring of student opinion on the newly implemented ID policy has shown surprising unity among Blazers who normally use the comment section of SCO to disagree. In a recent article concerning the removal of early action/early decision, two commenters brought up the questionable newsworthiness of the piece. This prompted several rebuttals from other students, with valid points being raised by both sides. However, in the ID policy, Blazers have found something they all disagree about together. The common theme? The students are upset about the new policy and want it changed.

After witnessing five weeks of no IDs and relatively few problems, students question the need for and effectiveness of the ID system. They mention the inconvenience and impracticality of Saturday detentions and administrator conferences for busy working parents.

One sophomore wrote, "My aunt works over twelve hours a day, five days a week and the last thing she wants to do on her weekend off is to drive seven miles from up-county to Blair High School just because of my absent-mindedness in regards to IDs."

Most agree that suspensions and the other forms of punitive action outlined by the administration are too harsh for a simple offense. In an informal survey of 181 students conducted during 5A and 5B lunch during the week of Oct. 3, 88 percent of students thought the disciplinary actions outlined in the new policy are unfair. The students also agree, in varying degrees, that the SGA has stood up for student's rights and that SGA President Eric Hysen should be commended for his efforts.

Several of the students who combined their voices on this issue are usually at each other's throats on others. Under their adopted "handles," Libertarian, Anarchist, Republican and more, have become constant presences in the forums over the years. These students with starkly different political leanings and opinions use the forums to argue about everything ranging from the war in the Middle East to Homecoming themes. Yet, the ID policy issue saw no debate among these regulars.

Libertarian acknowledges this, commenting, "Wow, when Jon Brookstone, Republican, Anarchist, and myself all agree on something, you know it has nothing to do with politics, but is simply a horrible policy."

Numerous students also suggested methods of protest, such as a mass boycott of IDs and Saturday sit-ins in hopes to catch the administration's attention. Multiple people cited the Student Right and Responsibilities handbook for information regarding petitions.

Although a consensus has not been reached between the administration and the student body, this united front of Blazers has certainly had an effect. SGA President Eric Hysen showed the comments, a near record-breaking number, to principal Phillip Gainous in order to alert him to student opinion.

No matter how this issue is resolved, these differing students will inevitably part their ways and once again fall to bitter disagreement. For the time being however, they stand united.

Please click here for coverage of the ID policy and its history.

Pia Nargundkar. Pia Nargundkar was Editor-in-Chief of Silver Chips Online during the 2007-2008 school year. More »

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