Juniors and Seniors Can Drive Out and Drive-Thru

Lunchtime freedom is offered through newly-renovated hub and off-campus options for upperclassmen during the extended lunch period.


Anna Grace Likes

As we undergo this new change be sure to try out new things.

This summer, administration revealed that many aspects of Westminster life are changing in the 2021-22 school year. On top of the new enrichment and academy options offered in the previous advisory time, lunch was extended to 45 minutes on Monday, Tuesday, and Friday, with a slightly shorter 30 minutes on Wednesday and 40 minutes on Thursday. This open-ended reveal left students wondering what could be done in their lengthened lunchtime. Will they have to stay confined to the drab, beige walls of the cafe? 

The answer to this question is no. Many options will be available for students to spread out around the school, hang out with friends, meet with leadership groups, and even leave campus. Some of the goals were to “provide training for time management and responsible freedom,” and to give “enough time for students to interact with their peers and teachers to promote more social connection and engagement,” said Dr. Dani Butler, Head of Student Development. 

One of the most exciting aspects of this new reveal is that juniors and seniors can now leave during their lunch. Before, students have expressed their dislike for the lack of freedom at WCA, but this year promises some positive steps toward change. While they still have to wear uniforms and keep their phones out of sight on campus, being able to leave during lunchtime gives juniors and seniors a much-needed break to escape mentally and prepare for their final classes of the day. Just be sure to head back to campus by the time your next class starts!

For on-campus options, the sleek and modern newly-designed Hub can be used for all upper school students to gather and converse. Other locations include the Cafe, courtyard, plaza, both upper school commons, and classrooms, if teachers allow. All other locations in the building and outside will be off-limits (including the middle school commons and hallways). As long as you stay within these areas outlined by Dr. Butler, feel free to enjoy your extended eating time over the Hollyberry cookies that were missed so much over the summer. “Students have freedom to go places in the building to have lunch, BUT each student must clean up after they eat wherever they are,” said Dr. Butler. So, stay tidy and enjoy your new freedom, WCA!

Leadership groups such as Student Council, Student Ambassadors, and PC leaders will also be able to meet and discuss their development over lunch. “Before and after school are difficult times for students and teachers to meet, so leadership teams will definitely need to utilize the extended lunch times to get their work accomplished…I’m so impressed with our student leaders’ willingness to sacrifice such precious time each year to serve the community,” said Ashley Woodall, Assistant Director of Student Life and Director of Student Council. 

Whether you are a new 7th grader, a senior ready to head out, or somewhere in-between, you can start getting excited about all the new changes this school year! Being able to have some time to eat and either gather with friends or just take a break is certainly necessary in the busy days of hardworking Westminster students.