Struggling students still need access time

Access Denied?

Access period, which used to be weekly, at LHS has had some noticeable changes since March 3. At first, Access was canceled altogether. Then, it was changed to keep students in their first-period classes, rather than transitioning to their Access classrooms, and students could not transition to any other classrooms. Some students have significantly struggled because of the inability to go to other classes during. It is bad enough that Access is canceled so frequently (for seemingly no good reason). Now, students are stuck in their first-period classes and have no chance to communicate with most of their teachers about schoolwork.
Access was created to serve as a regularly scheduled period for holding class elections and other activities without taking class time from the teachers. However, this spring it has reportedly been canceled for reasons such as class time lost with short school weeks, along with some students leaving class, and some students not using the time to get work done. Though changes need to be implemented to make Access more efficient, Access should not be canceled entirely. A couple of students causing problems should not warrant a complete shutdown of a helpful program for kids who need it. Instead, teachers should be cracking down on the students who cause these problems, individually.
Many teachers blame innocent students for the trouble caused by others because they do not have “enough respect for the school.” In reality, the students are not responsible for the administration’s lack of control over the school. Why would kids who have done nothing wrong want to stand up for a school that offers them little to no support? Access was one of the only supports that students could regularly count on. We could use the time talk to teachers if we did not understand something, or we could catch up on homework. Sure, there is Evening Academy twice a week, but some students who would find use in that program cannot drive, nor do they have someone to give them a ride back to school at night.
There may not be any perfectly sound solutions to the Access problem at LHS, but getting rid of the students’ chance to talk to teachers or catch up on homework is not the one to pick. There are plenty of changes to be made. Many students take advantage of the valuable work time, and making the entire student body suffer does no one any good.
Even some teachers agree with these concerns from students.
“It is like we come up with a solution, and it causes three more problems,” said Cynthia Yarno, who teaches at LHS. “We need to have Access because we need to have a built-in thing in our schedule, so events are not pulling kids out of classes. We need something for kids to make up work with teachers.”