Earlier Access to Junior Privilege 

(photo courtesy of Michelle Yu)

(photo courtesy of Michelle Yu)

Michelle Yu, News Co-Editor

Congratulations to NVD juniors, as they recently got the chance to leave school for lunch at the beginning of the year. Many juniors enjoy the earlier privilege to leave school for lunch and buy their choice of food from outside food chains and restaurants.

The way students fully take advantage of this new opportunity is to eat outside for lunch. Similar to other upperclassmen, Junior Heily Luna, spends her lunch time at a popular place close to NVD. 

“When I leave the building, I normally go to the Closter Plaza and eat lunch or go to a friend’s house,” said Luna. 

Similarly, many juniors and seniors eat at the different food chains and restaurants in Closter. Some popular places at the plaza are Starbucks, Rudy’s, Chipotle, Bareburger, and Poke Crew.

This change began during the 2020-2021 school year. 

“Due to the pandemic, juniors and seniors were allowed to leave the building during the school day,” Assistant Principal Mr. Johnson said. 

Juniors are appreciating and relishing in the newly given opportunity as they can experience a little more freedom earlier in the school year. 

“Based on feedback from students and parents, a decision was made to continue to offer off-campus privileges to juniors and seniors,” Johnson said. The change for juniors was kept because many upperclassmen benefited from being able to leave campus.

There are also reasons behind why administrators do not allow students to leave school until they reach a certain grade. 

“In the past the privilege was only open to seniors through the first semester. Juniors were on campus for the first half of the year for safety and attendance reasons. There are a lot of variables when a student leaves campus,” Johnson said.

The belief that all students should be able to leave is not a popular one, though. Many feel as though the privilege to leave the building during lunch and free periods should not apply to

(photo courtesy of top-rated.online)

underclassmen as well. Some believe it would be unfair for freshmen and sophomores as the privilege is not given to them by the school for a reason.  Current upperclassmen were not allowed to leave school campus when they were in younger grades.  

“I really don’t think it’s fair for freshman and sophomores to get privileges without going through freshman and sophomore year to prove that they are responsible enough,” Junior Patille Zoudarian said. 

Administrators feel as though underclassmen should not have these privileges. “We have to ensure the safety of all of our students. Allowing an underclassman to leave campus eliminates school based supervision,” Johnson said.

They also further believe that having a sense of community is essential for underclassmen.

 “Unit lunch allows our students and staff to be off at the same time. Many clubs use this time to meet. We want our students involved and present. Establishing this culture as an underclassmen is extremely valuable,” Johnson said.