A Plea For Scheduling A Free

By Evangeline Giannopoulos
Lunch: a glorious 40-minute period every day in which students can escape from the craziness of the world – whether it’s eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich in peace, talking to friends on the benches in the main hall, or “studying” in the library.
Lunch: a pseudo-name for eating as much food as you can while trying to simultaneously listen to your teacher’s lecture and avoid staining your notes.
The latter description is a situation that applies to many students here at Great Neck South. Although it is state law for high school students to have a lunch period, our school allows for students to opt out of this requirement with a signed parental note.
Why would someone want to give up his or her precious lunch period? Well, the overachieving nature of many students can account for this, but the truth is that we don’t need to cram our schedules with every possible course. What we do need is that 40-minute break in our days. With guidance appointments for next year’s schedules quickly approaching, I warn you all: have a lunch period.
As someone who has gone two full semesters without a lunch period, I speak from brutal experience.
First comes the most obvious issue of food. Those who buy lunch from the cafeteria may not find the time in their busy schedules to actually get to the cafeteria; even if teachers do allow this, those students would miss part of class. Regardless of whether a student brings lunch or not, he or she then has to worry about when to eat as well. Some teachers do not allow eating in the classroom; if they do, it is difficult to avoid dropping food on your Physics notes.
The food itself is not the only impediment. Students without a lunch period are more likely to be overwhelmed and stressed out. Lunch is the only time when students can go to their lockers for however long they want to, go to the library to finish work or get ahead, and speak to friends without worrying about a bell ringing or a teacher watching. Without lunch, students are worn out class after class until finally, the ninth period bell rings–just to have to go home and do more work.
If you’re one of those people thinking, “I haven’t had a lunch period in all of high school and I’m fine,” think again. I didn’t have a lunch period my first semester here at Great Neck South, and I can truthfully say you do not know the glory of having a break period until you experience it.
It is not worth it to opt out of lunch. Although you may think it’s helping you, it’s actually damaging you in more ways than one. Just don’t do it!