The News of The Blake School Since 1916

The Spectrum

The News of The Blake School Since 1916

The Spectrum

The News of The Blake School Since 1916

The Spectrum

Minneapolis


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Staff Editorial

Norm-breaking culture needs change
Staff Editorial

Why do people break rules? How should these rules be enforced? How should privileges be awarded? Rules that seem simple, such as cleaning up your lunch table, not using the elevator and not leaving campus without off-campus privilege are often broken at the Upper School. The messy tables left behind from underclassmen could be blamed on COVID-19, which caused the disruption of a normal middle school experience. Students often didn’t face the responsibility of cleaning up and respecting shared spaces during remote school. The cleanup rules are enforced by a figure of authority, the lunch staff. The Spectrum staff believes that the breaking of lunch room rules show that people don’t respect certain authority figures the same way as teachers and deans. 

The Spectrum staff believes one way to shift the culture of breaking norms, is making privileges be something that is earned through action. One example of this could be staying after lunch to clean up tables and dishes for a certain amount of time to earn the privilege of leaving campus during the school day. These service requirements could be used as a right of passage for students to gain freedom and responsibility. This method can ensure that students better understand the consequences of abusing and losing the privileges that they put in time and effort into unlocking.

We believe that although having authority figures helps prevent rule breaking, it is ultimately up to the students themselves to respect the spaces they’re in. People don’t seem to be respecting authority figures as much as before, a lot of rule breaking could be for selfish reasons.

Recently, the freshmen gained a new privilege, having a free block instead of being proctored in a room for study hall. The Spectrum staff believes that having the freedom of a free block could allow freshmen to smoothly transition into the new freedoms sophomore year. However for some, the extra freedom of a free block negatively impacts their ability to keep themselves focused and do schoolwork. Ultimately, newly gained freedoms for Upper School students should be treated as a privilege, not a right.

Almost every time the elevator doors open, behind it stand uninjured students using the elevator against the rules. 

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