By Ben Rosenthal | Staff Writer
The Pearce lunch schedule has changed since last year, creating a longer lunch period with more students in each lunch. There is now a larger margin of time for students to eat their lunch and to socialize with their friends.
In previous years, Pearce has had three separate lunches periods—A, B and C. Each lunch was less than 30 minutes long, which made fourth period classes the longest of the day. Students who bought their lunch often had to wait in line so long there was no chance for them to eat.
This year there are two lunches that are separated into A and B. Both lunches are 37 minutes long, and the fourth-period classes are 47 minutes long. The fourth period is only one minute longer than the other classes. There is a regular five-minute passing period between lunch and fourth period.
Previous Pearce tradition was that the juniors and seniors ate in the Corral together. Because of the large number of freshmen in this year’s class, the juniors had to be moved into the cafeteria and the freshmen to the Corral to allow students enough seats. Many juniors are upset by this move.
“The hardest decision I’ve had to make is letting down my juniors and taking that away from them,” principal Philip Bates said.
“I meet with my vice principals every day, and one of the topics we discuss is about lunch,” Mr. Bates said. “It’s an ongoing conversation.”
In previous years, students were not allowed to eat in the courtyard. However, this rule has been overturned for this school year.
There is currently limited seating in the courtyard, and students want more seating options for the area.
“We need to start that conversation, and I think that is a great idea,” Mr. Bates said.
Years ago, a priority of Pearce was to make the courtyard a nice place to visit. It had trees and grass that were well cared for. Today, the courtyard has been left alone and has started to look neglected.
“Since I have been at Pearce the courtyard has always been a place where nobody went and was just a big waste of space,” junior Parker Self said. “I wish they would do something to clean it up.”
“I wish we could have off-campus lunches,” senior Ian Sellers said. “We have plenty of time to go and eat before fourth period starts.”
Although the off-campus lunch is far from becoming a reality, Mr. Bates expressed openness to the idea.
“At this point there isn’t a plan to have off campus lunches, but I’m not opposed to having conversations with folks about that,” Mr. Bates said.