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Crowding in the Cafeteria

Full Tables, Full Lunchroom Indicates Growing District

Madalyn Slone, Staff Writer

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The bell rings, ending third period, and a third of the students in the 10-12 building begin their walk to the lunchroom. However, this year, the hustle towards the cafeteria is a bit quicker as there are many more students taking up the limited seats. The cafeteria is visibly more crowded this year compared to previous years, and people are feeling the effects.

The increase of students in each lunch has created issues for many students. Junior Evaline Byrd and her friends sit at a long table, but two people have to sit on the end of the table in order for them all to stay together. Along with the already crowded seating arrangement, their seats aren’t guaranteed.

“Every day we have our seats taken,” said Byrd.

Even the Sophomores, who have just began eating lunch in the 10-12 building, are noticing how crowded the cafeteria is. Sophomore Daniel Riecke usually looks forward to having time to relax during lunch, but the increase in students has created a more hectic environment, making it more difficult to just eat lunch and relax.

“The school day is stressful enough, so when you get to lunch you just want to relax,” said Riecke.

Jackson Bradley, a Sophomore sitting at the same crowded table as Riecke, proposed some short-term ideas to fix these issues. One possible solution he suggested was adding more tables and chairs to the cafeteria to try to add more space for students to sit.

With the increase of students comes not only the decrease in available seating, but also the longer lunch lines. Sophomore Cory Bussen values the 30 minutes that comes with lunch, but spends the majority of it waiting in line to get his food.

“By the time I actually get my food, I have to stuff my face in order to finish it all,” said Bussen.

However, this increase in students has its upsides. The cramped lunches are the cause of an increase in students in the NACS school district. Vice Principal Micah Lackland is looking at the situation in a more positive light and believes this problem is not all bad.

“This is a good problem to have,” said Lackland. The cramped cafeteria is an indicator of a growing school district.

The lunches this year have seen an increase of about 60 kids per lunch. The largest lunch session, C lunch, sits at about 587 kids when all the students attend lunch, compared to A lunch and B lunch which contain 573 and 582 kids, respectively.

With so many kids entering the NACS school district, administrators are looking towards some short-term plans in order to make the cafeteria a little more comfortable. Getting rid of the round tables and replacing them with more long tables is one solution Lackland mentioned.

“(The round tables) are just a lot less efficient,” said Lackland. Adding the longer tables won’t add a lot of extra seating, but it will allow for larger groups to sit with each other.

While the cramped cafeteria is a little uncomfortable for the students at the moment, it is a good sign for administrators. This increase of students is indicative of a growing school district.

“People are lining up to get into our school district,” said Lackland.

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