63% of the students here at Francis C. Hammond feel that we are being deprived of the freedom to socialize. We have to go to class with the same people every day and then we have to go to lunch with them. Not being able to eat in which lunchroom we want not only deprives us of a much wanted freedom, but it keeps us from socializing and getting to meet new friends, or get closer to the old ones. This issue probably also doesn’t help the stress students encounter with all of the work we have to do.
As we entered middle school, we were under the impression that we were going to get more freedom. We thought we were going to be able to sit where we wanted and with whom we wanted. That was the promise that we thought was being made to us. We were sadly mistaken. On the first day of school, we got to Hammond and lunch was just like elementary school except with round tables. We have to sit with the same people every day and we are not able to move. We were also informed that we would not be able to move to different cafeterias and see our friends from other teams. At first, we thought that sitting with our friends was going to be fun. But then, people started to get annoying and they talked to much or they ate with their mouths open. We wanted change.
Change never came, and it still hasn’t come. By being restricted to one cafeteria, we do not get to see all of our friends from the neighboring teams. We do not get to socialize with others and make new friends or get closer to the old ones. 72% of students have friends they do not get to see because they do not share a cafeteria. We have to see the same lunch ladies, janitors, and students everyday, but if we were given the opportunity to switch it up, I believe we could make new friends. I also believe that if we got to socialize with the other teams, the teams would not be so competitive and violent towards each other. About 7 out of 8 students feel that sitting where we want will help the teams get along better and help to better prevent violence.
Stress is a big issue with students these days. And how do most people relieve stress? Their friends help them of course! By not switching it up, we do not get to sit with people that we believe knows what we are going through and can help us. “Socializing during lunch is a desirable activity and should be included. Socializing allows time for students to relate to others, provides a break in routine and allows students to return to class refreshed." As you can see, even the professors at Penn State, who probably don’t even remember what’s it is like in school agree that socializing during lunch is a good idea.
This issue can be easily solved, let us eat where we want. A lot of the school staff may think we can’t handle being around so many other children, but that opportunity has never been given to us. We may never know if we can handle the pressure of the company of others if we aren’t given a chance to prove ourselves. Most kids sneak out anyways, 34% of students to be more exact, and there are no fights. The student body here at F.C.H needs to be given a chance. That’s all we ask, nothing more.