On Thursday, January 13th, the Community High School Forum Council met in the photo room on the first floor. After representatives from each forum signed-in, co-chairs Garrett Wood and Josh Fendrick got the meeting started.
The first issue, brought up by Kevin Davis, was a suspected account of shoplifting from Kerrytown. This has been a constant issue in Forum Council; CHS has taken a lot of heat from stores in the surrounding area because of shoplifting. Davis then told the group that he had received complaints about excessive public displays of affection (PDA) between students in the hall during school. The representatives – a bit surprised at this complaint – agreed that the next time they saw a couple getting a little too close in the hall, they would politely ask them to stop. The council went on to talk about vandalism, respecting the school, and the lack of content on ‘the wall’ on the first floor, which lead to the topic that caused the most discussion.
Students that eat on the first floor at lunch have been leaving a mess almost every single day. In addition to the trash they leave scattered throughout the hall, these students spend the time that they aren’t eating goofing off and causing trouble.
These students have angered the upperclassmen, custodians, and teachers. “If you’re going to eat down [on the first floor], make sure to at least do something constructive afterwards,” said Fendrick of the situation. Steve Coron, the Forum Council Advisor, and Fendrick then went on to act out a scene in which a senior catches a freshman trashing the school in order to illustrate the right way that students should handle the situation. As the council thought of other strategies to fix the problem, an even bigger question was brought to light: Why is this happening in the first place?
As the new students come and seniors graduate each year, the culture of CHS is somehow getting lost. Older students are struggling with how to help the younger ones understand and maintain the responsible and friendly atmosphere that CHS is so well known for. “How do you do that in a respectful way?” asked junior Isaac Fink of how to make sure that the underclassmen keep the CHS flame alive without sounding condescending.
The council decided that it would be effective to give a stronger message on maintaining CHS’ culture when students are first introduced to the school. The upperclassmen also decided to start discussions within their own forums to get suggestions and reactions from students of each grade level, as well as the teachers.
Each issue brought to the attention of Forum Council was taken seriously and carefully discussed to find a solution. The Forum Council believes that it will take time and effort to solve these issues, but with the help and cooperation of CHS students and staff and members of the surrounding community, they can be solved.
If you have comments or suggestions, contact Garrett Wood, Josh Fendrick, any forum representative, or attend the next Forum Council meeting (date TBA).