Mornings Before School Cause Concern

By J1 Reporter Maddie Auman

Junior Mary Daly sits in her car before school starts. Photo by Maddie Auman

Junior Mary Daly arrives at school at 7 a.m. to get a good spot in the upper parking lot. While sitting in her car in mid-October, security guard Mr. Dave Turnquist comes to her car window and informs her that she cannot stay in her car in the mornings and should go into the building. 

This rule that was enforced by Turnquist is stated in the Marian Student/Parent handbook (page 6-8): “When students arrive on school campus in the morning they need to enter school upon arrival. Students are not allowed to loiter in cars in the parking lot. If students are found sitting in their cars, the security patrol will knock on their window and ask them to leave their car and enter the building.”

After witnessing students sitting in their cars before school and others sitting together in cars, Assistant Principal Ms. Rochelle Rohlfs directed Turnquist to remind people in the mornings to enter the school after parking their cars. 

“Most people understood, others didn’t know where to go once in the school,” Turnquist said. 

“I was confused and frustrated because I have always sat in my car before school and didn’t know it was an issue,” Daly said. She finds the time spent in her car before school safe and relaxing and, sometimes an extra time to study. 

Before coming to school full time on Oct. 12, Daly didn’t have to worry about getting to school early for a spot in the upper parking lot, so she was able to get to school, be in her car for just a few minutes, and then head into the school right before the bell. Now with everyone back in school, she likes to get to Marian much earlier to get a parking spot where she would like, especially for the cold days when winter comes. 

Another reason she has stayed in her car is because she feels that having everyone go inside before school starts affects Covid-19 precautions. “It’s not a good idea for everyone to have to go into the building because it’s more exposure to the virus,” she said. Daly wants to be able to be in school, but also have the least amount of exposure possible. She wants to remain safe and help keep her classmates safe, too.

According to Appendix C: Pandemic Policies and Procedures (updated 8-8-20) of the Student/Parent Handbook, when students enter the building at the beginning of the day, there are specific paths to follow. Freshmen and sophomores are to go down the quad steps and use the first floor to go to their lockers for their face shields and materials for the day. Juniors and seniors are to use the second floor corridor to go to their lockers.

Students are not allowed to loiter in the hallways, but are expected to find a seat in the quad, cafe, Student Services or the Haddix Academic Center. All spaces have a maximum capacity are are available on a first come first serve basis. If all those spaces are full, students are encouraged to go to their first period classroom.

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