High school can seem like merely a joke to many adults; they see it as a time of no real importance aside from the cliché idea that “high school is where you find yourself.” But to teenagers, there is no time that is more important because this is our “now.” This means that many of us take high school seriously, and we genuinely care about what happens to the school that we are a part of. Taking that into consideration, I am often shocked with how little we are consulted when huge changes are made to Biddeford High School. Although I do understand that many decisions would be made extremely complicated by asking students their opinions, I think teachers, administration, and faculty fail to remember that we are the ones that are going to be most affected by the decisions they make. We are the students, and I think it’s frustrating to all of us that we never partake in major decisions.
Worse than that, we are often times expected (and in a way, forced) to participate and promote the changes even if we are not in favor, essentially telling us that we have no say and must deal with whatever we are asked of. In my opinion, the student body should never be forced into something that they either did not know was happening or was never asked how they felt about. I think that adults underestimate the value of students’ opinions because we know things that no faculty member would. We go to class every day and experience firsthand the new rules, schedule, and protocol that administration has set forth from a birdseye view. Not to say that administration is clueless, but they do not have the same insight that students have. Ironically, this insight would be extremely helpful when making monumental shifts within the school and would curb most complaints that would follow the big changes.
There are a few different ways administration could go about fixing the communication gap between them and the student body. They could consult student council officers, class officers, and representatives, all of whom were elected by their classmates to represent them. This way, the student body’s opinion would be considered and represented without surveying the 750 students that attend BHS. Another way is to introduce a proposal to the entire school and allow students to discuss it in advisory with their advisory teacher. The teacher could then report back to administration the general consensus of their advisory, and these reports could be considered. These are two very easy ideas that would help the progress of this school, because by asking the student body before any decision is made, the school can make a decision that works for everyone the first time. This would prevent the very long process of trial-and-error that can sometimes occur with changes by annihilating most negative comments before the change is even implemented. Overall, I think that administration would only benefit from allowing students to voice their valid opinions, and I hope that the last huge decision that is made at BHS without our consultation is the decision to acknowledge us in the huge decisions to come.