It’s Monday morning, and I am heading to my first class of the day. I walk all the way down to the side doors closest to the football field (to abide by COVID-19 student movement protocols), enter through the double doors, and head up the long staircase. In true Lexington High School fashion, there is already moderate hallway congestion—and remember, this is when less than half the student body is here! Like anybody else, I don’t appreciate obstructions in my walking path, whether it’s a wall of slow walkers or a taped-off area guarding someone’s spilled drink.. With COVID-19 restrictions, wouldn’t it be reasonable to assume that there are fewer obstacles when traveling between classes?
Well, yes and no. Yes: in terms of pure numbers, there are fewer people and the main-hallway no longer resembles I-93 during late-Friday afternoon commutes. However, there are still substantial traffic jams. Here’s the no: relative to the number of students that are in school, the congestion is still significant. Now, there already is a solution to all of this: those red arrows taped to the hallway floors. And it’s a great solution, except for the fact that it doesn’t work unless people actually follow the arrows.
In the main building, there are often school administrators and staff standing at entry and diversion points to ensure that students follow the arrows to reduce congestion and contact between students. However, in the math, science, and world language buildings, the absence of such supervision often results in students travelling in an “anarchic state”, milling around like chickens released from a coop.
So here are my suggestions: familiarize yourself with the student movement map, which Dr. Stephens sent out via email at the beginning of the year. This way, you know which doors to enter. Additionally, there are pieces of paper on the entry doors specifying which door you should enter depending on the location of your classroom. Next suggestion: follow the arrows on the hallway floor—it’s not that hard. Remember, this isn’t the school extending its authoritarian reach; it is simply a matter of public safety. If you happen to find any inconvenience in following arrows, just think about the inconvenience of getting infected with the coronavirus. And no, you are not “built different.”