By James Hunter
Currently, the Novato High School freshmen class is not allowed to leave campus during lunch. For many students, the reasoning behind the rule remains a mystery. The rule has been in place since 2014, with the intention of protecting freshman by keeping them under the watch of the administration.
Assistant Principal Jennifer Nickl provided some insight on the topic.
“It’s a recipe for disaster,” Nickl said. “Keeping the freshmen on campus allows them also to build community with each other, get used to the school, and it just makes life easier for them.”
Although many Freshmen disagree with the rule or ignore it, they still face punishments if they are caught leaving campus during lunch. The primary punishment for breaking this school rule is a detention but other types of consequences may be used. Nickl emphasized the importance of being honest in this situation.
“If a student is able to talk with me and be honest about it, sometimes freshman just sneak off campus, and if they get caught and say ‘you know Mrs. Nickl, I knew the rule,’ then I can work with that student,” Nickl said.
Aside from freshmen, all of the other classes at NHS are allowed to leave campus for lunch, and many freshmen find this to be unfair and even dividing.
“It’s unfair and it shouldn’t be a rule. Everyone is equal,” said Novato High School freshman Nico Herrera. “You shouldn’t profile because of age.”
Among the students, many agree with Herrera, believing that instead of bringing the freshman together with the rest of the school, it pushes them out as outcasts.
Sophomore Tyler Abreu discussed his opinion on the subject.
“I think it does isolate them a lot,” Abreu said. “One thousand plus kids all able to go off and enjoy lunch and excluding close to four hundred kids would for sure make me feel cut off. Imagine not being able to hang out with your best friend at lunch because they wanted to go out to eat but you couldn’t. We let almost all students leave for lunch, so why not just let everyone?”
This is a common argument among students at Novato High School. Many feel that the rule is unfair and should no longer apply. This feeling causes many freshman to ignore the rule and go out with friends or walk to Jesus Pizza every Wednesday.
This subject remains extremely controversial, with both points of view making valid arguments. It is likely that this will be consistent for years to come, as no rule change is in sight for Novato High School.