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Admins supervise freshman study halls

Sam Mwakasisi, Editor-in-Chief

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The freshmen of the 2018-19 school year have started their high school tenures under considerable changes. Alongside their automatic involvement in the new Chromebook initiative, another more direct change is in effect — having school administrators supervise their study halls.

According to James Edwards, principal, the plan was birthed when he held a meeting with Niles North’s directors about a week before the start of the year. What was perceived as a latent quality of providing an avenue for establishing connections between freshmen and administration led to the idea receiving ample support all the way up to its being put into effect.

The freshmen of this school may not converse with administrators every day, and without an established and easily usable path of communication, the same people that guide the momentum of the school can potentially seem unapproachable and almost distant.

This new change likely wants to foster connections that eradicate any air of elusiveness around the administration, and considering this change has been implemented on students just starting their time at NN, it makes space for these connections to expand and develop in future years.

“We thought it would be a great idea for directors to connect with kids — especially freshmen — [and] try to instill upon them the importance of working hard [and] monitoring their grades,” Edwards said.

Edwards further voiced hopes of the supervising administrators becoming “another set of adults who could show that they care about the academic and behavioral success of our kids.”

While he did not initially see the plan in a year-round greater scheme, he reports that administrators who have supervised exhibited great enthusiasm attributed to the interactions they’ve had and a change in their perspective.

“Many directors have not been in the classroom for a while,” Edwards said. “We also felt it was important to see some of the struggles that teachers have with getting kids motivated in grades and in behavior and in social/emotional issues.”

Most freshmen seem to be looking towards this change in supervision optimistically.

“It’s a good idea because if there’s no administration there then we’re just gonna be fooling around a lot,” Aaron Merakai, freshman, said. You have to remember that study halls are mostly about doing your homework and missing assignments.”

“I think the administration being in the study halls could be a positive thing because it can help students do their homework and do what they’re supposed to do in study hall,” Christopher Andersen, freshman, said.

However, skeptical sentiments are not uncommon, grounded on fears of overbearing administrative behavior.

“I think it’s a bad thing because there’s not a lot of time throughout the day to do what we want,” Izza Mollet said. “[The supervisors] always tell us to do work during study hall.”

Connecting with the student body is a driving force for the NN administration this year, as made evident with this new plan for freshmen alongside Edwards’ additional plan for seniors, which hope to be harbingers of an end to the relational inertia between students and administration. While doubts and hopes alike may persist around these plans, their value in the long run cannot be determined for sure right now — we just need to wait and see.

For a visual accompaniment to this story, check out the Oct. 1 broadcast of North Star News.

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Admins supervise freshman study halls