Pembroke Academy

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PA administration cracks down on hall passes

Students+are+now+required+to+carry+hall+passes+issued+in+the+main+office+and+signed+by+classroom+teachers.
Hannah Pepper
Students are now required to carry hall passes issued in the main office and signed by classroom teachers.

Students wandering the halls or misusing bathroom privileges is about as old as the institution of the American high school.

However, PA administration is cracking down on hall passes. 

PA administration is now requiring that students leaving class carry a printed pass from the main office that is signed by the classroom teacher.

At the start of the school year, students attended an assembly to remind them of school rules. According to the PA Student/parent Handbook, “during class time, students are not to be in the hallways or common areas without a written pass from a staff member.” 

It also states that “students are expected to sign-out when leaving a class, and/or sign-in when returning to a class. Hall passes should not ever be used to go to the cafeteria.”

However, not all teachers follow these exact guidelines. 

For example, on the first day of class, life studies teacher Mrs. Grise gives her students a paper with four passes attached to it. Each time a student leaves class one of the passes is removed. 

By the end of the semester, if a student still has the four passes, it can be used to earn an extra summative or formative grade.

Mrs. Grise said that the policy giving students incentives to stay in class has proved to be helpful. I think, (hope) that the students feel it’s fair and works with them in a reasonable way, while also helping me do my job more effectively and efficiently,” she said.

The Life Studies department at Pembroke Academy has a competency called “Self-Management,” which allows the teachers to give grades on leaving class where other departments may not have the same leeway.

Some teachers said that they appreciate the policy, but don’t know how much it helps the problems. “I don’t think it has really helped the wandering issue,” said social studies teacher Mrs. Moher “I think it is good to have accountability for both teachers and students, but the kids who wandered without passes, now just wander with them.”

While students will always find a way to wander, the administration is trying slowing it. 

“Administration often stops students in the hallways, especially if we cannot see they have a pass. It’s a great chance for us to connect with students,” said dean of students Ms. Despres.

Overall, administration said that this school year has seen an improvement in the number of students carrying hall passes due to teachers being reminded to write them, and students being stopped to check for them. 

“Reinforcement and reminders are effective,” said Ms. Despres.

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