The disturbance in the hallways of NC at freshman lunch

The new school schedule has caused several hallway disruptions for teachers and students.

Maddy Frazier, Editor

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     The 2018-19 NC schedule has changed a lot from what it used to be. Last year Freshman lunch was during upper-class Mustang Connection whereas this year freshmen now have lunch while the other three grade levels are in their C block classes. The bell that ends freshman lunch and tells freshman to transition to their C blocks rings at 12:25, which is in the middle of upper-class C blocks. This change has been a bother to many teachers because teachers are forced to try to talk over the sounds coming from the hallways or stop and wait for the sounds to end to continue talking. Teachers have been forced to stop what they are doing to shut their classroom doors in the middle of teaching because of the disturbance. Many of the freshmen wander the halls, stalling, instead of heading to class which creates greater distractions. Not many teachers show they are bothered by the noise. However, they do not say anything about it.

     What would happen if a teacher complained?  Would there be a potential for the schedule to change? What would the schedule look like if it did change? Heather Beebout, a financial literacy teacher for sophomores, juniors and seniors said, “Students have time in the morning with teachers that get at the school at 7:30, there should be a way to change that, so students use that time.”

Upperclassmen have their lunch during the freshman C block, making another commotion. In spite of the fact that more grade levels are transitioning at this time, this transition isn’t as big of a disturbance as when the freshmen make their way to their C blocks because freshman can’t leave campus for lunch so naturally there are more students making an interference with others’ learning. Also, freshman classes are mostly held on the third floor; therefore, in general, sophomore, juniors, and seniors have no need to be there during their lunch.

     The burst of sounds coming from the halls during class isn’t helping the students learn what’s being taught. So what is the biggest disruption in C block? Beebout said, “The only distraction would be the stragglers in the east side stairwell.”  Contrary to Beebout’s stance, Stetson Niehoff, a student at NC  said, “The freshmen,” are the biggest disruption in the halls during C block. NC students and teachers have different points of view on what the major interruption in the hallways is, it could be another reason it would be difficult to change the schedule.

     Even though teachers and students know that sounds are about to fill the hallways after the bells that end freshman lunch and begin upperclassmen lunch, many classes do not close their doors. Is there really a way to stop the noise or will it always continue throughout the school year? How many times on average does a teacher have to tell students in the hallway to quiet down? Beebout said, “At least once a week.” If students are being yelled at once a week by teachers, shouldn’t they have realized to not be disruptive again?

     There are ways to be respectful in the halls and manage the noise. Niehoff said, “Just listening to music,” is how he keeps himself from adding to the noise in the hallway. Students using quiet ways to occupy themselves could be helpful. It could help students from getting distracted by others who are talking and yelling. Distractions like music, and phones, may also slim down the socializing in the halls, which can be good and bad; it helps the noise reduce, but it also lowers students chance to meet new people, help others, and socialize a bit after working in class for over an hour.

     Some people do have ways to filter out unwanted noises by making their own little distractions, blocking out the clamor rising in the hallways. A problem with many ways of occupying oneself, such as listening to music or watching TV, is the background noise they create tends to make people want to talk louder. One student talking can make everything else louder. When one student speaks and is louder than another student trying to talk to someone else it is the other student’s immediate reaction to raise their voice. This chain of reactions causes all voices in the room, or hallways, to get louder.

     When it comes to TV, the immediate reaction is to turn up the volume to cover background noise. This is because people naturally try to filter out the sound of what they are not paying attention to. Therefore people turn up what is being watched to make it easier for them to listen to what they are trying to pay attention to. This is how it happens in class because of the new schedule, some students and teachers try to shut out the noise. However, once students realize that the other noises are actually there they lose focus on their task at hand. Students in the halls are a distraction to the other students trying to learn, but there may be no simple way to get the noise in the halls to decline without a schedule change.

     Ms. Gray, located in room 1070 close to the commons and the southeast stairwell, encounters noise on a daily basis. “When the freshmen head up to the third floor after lunch, they pass the hallway banging on the walls, screaming at each other, yelling and generally disrupting the classrooms around them. I’ve asked them to quiet down several times, but it seems to be a losing battle. I would just like them to keep in mind to be respectful in the hallways as some people are still conducting classes.”