Lunch Dilemma: Overcrowding Causes Chaos in Breadboard
By Hailey B.
Seniors are struggling to find seats in Breadboard because of a supposedly imbalanced number of students. After spending three years in the cafeteria, seniors can finally spend their mornings and lunches at the exclusive seating area. However, many are finding it hard to make themselves at home.
Senior Averey M. had to eat in the cafeteria once this year because of overcrowding. Averey said, “Breadboard doesn’t have enough seats- it’s not that much of an issue but there’s always two or three people standing.” Carter L., a senior is “happy to have this privilege,” but said, “I do think it’s kind of pointless to have our own spot if we can’t fit everyone in it.”
Most seniors would rather not sit in the cafeteria. Carter L. said, “No. I would just stand.” Senior Josh H., who is new to Duxbury this year, doesn’t mind standing, noting that he simply wants to eat and be with his friends.
Senior Alex F. said, “I think it’s a lot better than last year…I think fourth and second are a good size, but third and first definitely need some work.”
As Assistant Principal, Mr. Scozzaro is responsible for upkeep of the lunch schedule each year. He has to make sure each lunch has an equal number of students, all while keeping the cafeteria capacity under two hundred-fifty. Mr. Scozzaro also has to make sure Science and Music classes have either first or last lunch. “When I see that there’s an overcrowded lunch, I have to move some classes, and I can’t just move individual classes, I have to move the whole department.”
“I’m not aware of a single lunch period where Breadboard is that full.” Mr. Scozzaro said. But if students do have a problem, he said, “Get in touch with me, and I’ll look at my numbers. There might be a way to provide all seniors a spot by moving a class.” The schedule has some minor changes from last year to fit the population during each period. “I think it’s better than last year, because now we can eat before science,” sophomore Henry C said.
Furthermore, some seniors are pointing their fingers at underclassmen and juniors, while others do not mind. “If they’re sitting with their [upperclassmen] friends, it doesn’t really matter,” Alex F. said. “But last year Mr. Talbot would frequently tell underclassmen to leave.”
Freshman Jess M. does not sit in Breadboard at lunch or in the morning and agrees with some upperclassmen that underclassmen need to respect the rules. “I think underclassman shouldn’t go in Breadboard, because it’s kind of a right to upperclassmen- we’ll earn it some day.” Mr. Scozzaro said, “That’s a privilege for seniors.”
As a result of these complaints, Mr. Scozzaro has a couple ideas for solving the sensitive subject of removing underclassmen from Breadboard. “Public Humiliation? Peer Pressure?” he joked. Seriously, Mr. Scozzaro advises that seniors approach administrators or teachers on lunch duty rather than “feel the pressure to publicly shame…It’s a little bit more difficult- for me especially, not knowing exactly who’s a senior or who’s a junior.”
The patio aids the cafeteria in relieving close quarters. Mr. Kennedy, history teacher on first lunch duty every day of the week, said, “There are some days when the first lunch is overflowing and we’re fortunate that we can use the patio.” He believes teachers with second and third lunch sometimes send their students to first or last so they can take tests uninterrupted.
Ellie P., a junior, said, “We only have circle tables on our side, so not everyone can fit, and some people share a seat [in order to stay with their friend group].”
Said Mr. Kennedy, “Two on a lily pad is what I call it.”