Opinion story by Becca Spilka, Anna Maria Gardiner, Robin Hendricks and Michaela Baker
Failing to follow dress code, receiving over three tardies, acting out in class, violating tobacco rules, being involved in a gang-related activity, and skipping school all warrant receiving a detention.
Recently, the rules for wearing IDs have become increasingly severe.
The new rules include that IDs have to be properly displayed, cannot be defaced, must be worn around the neck, display the proper date (in terms of temporary IDs), and if forgotten, must be ordered before second block. If an administrator sees a student not following these rules, the student will immediately be given a two-hour detention without warning.
Forgetting to put on your ID at the start of the school day, however, should not warrant a two-hour detention.
Of course, having an ID while on campus and displaying it at all times is not only understandable but crucial for safety in a high school setting. The need for an identification system is unarguable, but making a minor mistake (such as forgetting to put it on), is not worthy of such a drastic punishment.
We’re human. We make mistakes.
For instance: in the winter months, students will throw on a jacket in class for warmth, doing so will cover their ID. When the student leaves the class and is seen in the hall by an administrator “without an ID” a two-hour will be given. Is it really fair to receive the same punishment as someone skipping school when your only fault was accidently covering your ID with a sweatshirt because you were chilly?
ID’s are definitely necessary in public schools. They prevent intruders, ensure that students remain safe at all times, and help facilitate daily activities such as buying lunch or checking out a library book.
But there must be more reasonable ways to enforce students to wear ID’s.
First, there need to be some minor changes to how the school handles this issue. Instead of assigning a two-hour right at the beginning of the day, students should receive a firm warning. After first block, when the bookroom no longer allows ID’s to be ordered, a one-hour detention would be reasonable. If a student has had three one-hours because of ID issues, a two-hour would be appropriate at that point, since a one-hour would obviously not be working.
The effort to encourage safety and proper identification by the administrators is much appreciated by students, but there is no doubt that we will make mistakes which more than often do not warrant a two-hour detention.