Even before school moved online, students were complaining about the scheduling of community meeting and chapel. Many students have cited that they would rather take an extra hour of sleep over a few minutes of community meeting. David Nimura 21’ said, “it is nice for the community to get together but nothing ever gets planned so it kind of seems like a waste of time.”
This should alarm members of our community because even when the school is able to gather together, which is very rare, the students are still not getting involved and excited in the activities. The main problem with scheduling that students have brought forward is that community meeting often ends with a large portion of the period left over. Henry Pallesen 21’ expressed these concerns by stating, “sometimes we end with 20 or 30 minutes left… if you know that is going to happen just let us come in at 8:30.”
One step that the administration took to combat these issues was a Student-Faculty Council meeting about scheduling. Aaron Hessel ‘22 stated that “the SFC suggested to the administration about changing the starting times of community meeting.” Now during times of social distancing, the jobs of those in charge of chapel and community meetings have gotten drastically harder.
Just last week, however, Reverend Hummell and many others pulled off a beautiful chapel in a short time. Celebrating Asian Pacific Heritage Month, both students and teachers read work describing what life is like in America with Asian heritage. The administration plans to create more chapels like the one last week. On April 29, a chapel has been planned for Holocaust Remembrance Day. Those in charge of these meetings are planning to try to enhance the school community through celebration of its students. There is tremendous value in this because while we can’t all be together in person, we still have the opportunity to come together. Reverend Hummel stated, “Chapel was the first time we have felt like the community we actually are while in quarantine”.
Being able to still feel like the family we strive to create every day while physically in school is perhaps the most important thing for all of us during these tough times. Despite the student body’s fair concerns about scheduling and community meetings, maybe we should all take some more time to appreciate what we have during chapel and celebrate each other.