Locked media center leaves students, teachers piqued

The+media+center+being+closed+before+and+after+school+makes+tasks+difficult+for+students+and+teachers.
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Locked media center leaves students, teachers piqued

The media center being closed before and after school makes tasks difficult for students and teachers.

The media center being closed before and after school makes tasks difficult for students and teachers.

IMAGE / Jenna Robinson

The media center being closed before and after school makes tasks difficult for students and teachers.

IMAGE / Jenna Robinson

IMAGE / Jenna Robinson

The media center being closed before and after school makes tasks difficult for students and teachers.

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The media center is a place for students to do homework, print assignments, and have access to computers.

But in the last several weeks students who have been traveling to the media center to finish up work before school starts or after school ends have found the doors locked.

The unavailability of the media center before and after school left teachers and students with the same simple question—why?

According to Mr. Brian Wiskur, principal, too many students were misbehaving while in the media center.

“The reason I’m closing the media center before and after school is because our students are not respecting my furniture and leaving things a mess,” Wiskur said.

Wiskur has no intention of reopening the media center soon. Instead, his solution is locking the media center and offering a different classroom to use after school.

“I’ve opened the career center after school Monday through Thursday from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m,” Wiskur said. “I do not plan on opening the media center anytime soon.”

The reason I’m closing the media center before and after school is because our students are not respecting my furniture and leaving things a mess.”

— Mr. Brian Wiskur, principal

Although Wiskur offered a way for students to have access to computers after school, there is still no option to access computers before school.

Senior Nadia Calvert understands the idea behind closing the media center, but she still believes it is a detriment to students.

“I understand to an extent why they (the administration) closed it because of the noise problems,” Calvert said. “But not everyone has access to a computer or printer at home, so the extra 10 to 30 minutes to get work done really benefits kids. It’s really doing students a disservice now (that) it’s closed.”

Calvert said having security in the media center would be a better option rather than closing it completely.

“Just have security in there to keep everyone in check,” Calvert said. “That’s the better option (Mr.) Wiskur should be considering.”

Wiskur, however, said security is not the problem.

“It had nothing to do with not having security to supervise, really,” Wiskur said. “It’s about students hanging out when they should be going home.”

Senior Ariel Desjardins agrees with Calvert, saying that if the school has resources, it should not take them away from students who need them to be successful.

“I just think if it is there, we should get to use it,” Desjardins said. “Some kids don’t have any other way to use a computer or printer at home, so they should be able to use those resources at school to better themselves and their grades.”

Like Desjardins, senior Maddy Burroughs said that, as a public school, the administration shouldn’t take away student resources.

“We are a public school and the kids here are supposed to have access to resources they need to do their homework,” Burroughs said.

Along with students, some teachers are upset about the media center closure.

Mr. Brian Clark, desktop publishing and U.S. history teacher, said the administration took resources, and, therefore, opportunities away from his students.

“Students who do not have the resources, such as computers, correct programs, and internet, are unable to complete any work for any class at home,” Clark said. “Many students are willing to come before school or stay after to complete missing or late assignments because of suspension, sickness, school activities, and other various reasons. They simply don’t have the resources to finish the work that has been assigned.”

Clark has voiced his concerns to administration but doesn’t feel like the solution is enough.

Even though Room 107 is available after school for students, Clark said there is still no option for students to use a computer before school.

“Although this definitely helps the situation, it surely doesn’t allow for all students an opportunity to use school resources,” Clark said. “Many students cannot miss the bus or have practice right after school, so closing any option at 3:30 p.m. limits their opportunity.”

Clark said he pushes his students to make up missed work but added that when resources students need are not made available, it is a “huge slap in the face.”

I get that the library was misused after school. However, the notion to penalize students who are willing to put in the time and work because of a few bad apples doesn’t add up.”

— Mr. Brian Clark, U.S. history teacher

“For the parents who have called in (to me), I have advised them to contact administration with their concerns,” Clark said. “After all, it is their tax dollars that are paying for those needed resources.”

The unfairness of closing the media center astonishes Clark. He said good students are being punished for the misbehavior of others.

“I get that the library was misused after school. However, the notion to penalize students who are willing to put in the time and work because of a few bad apples doesn’t add up,” Clark said.

Although students and teachers understand the administration’s reasoning, some of them believe the solution was not the best plan.

Punishing everyone based on the actions of a few is “unfair” according to Stephen White, senior, and is “very inconvenient for a lot of people,” according to Niccos Patrick, senior.

Students who participate in after-school activities, have to catch the bus, or have other after-school responsibilities are at a disadvantage.

Opening the career center after school only benefits a select few students who need to use the facilities previously accessible in the media center.

Wiskur attributes the closing of the media center to the lack of supervision.

“We can no longer have the media center open before school because it is unsupervised,” Wiskur said. “I usually supervised it in the mornings. But, because my office has moved, it’s just not possible.”

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