Fewer Barrington students show up late to school amid controversial protocol
BARRINGTON, R.I. (WJAR) —
Barrington school officials said there were fewer students who were late Friday following an NBC 10 News report.
Nearly 150 Barrington High School students had unexcused tardies on Thursday and were seen lining up by the dozens outside.
NBC 10 returned to the school the next morning and didn't see any students standing out in the cold.
School administrators said they lock the doors for safety reasons when school starts at 7:40 a.m.
But sudents and parents said the policy is a lengthy process that's making them even later.
“I am concerned that a policy that's meant to reduce tardiness is actually making them more late to their classes,” said Erika Sevetson. whose daughter attends the school.
Some students agree, including Luke Rudman, a senior at Barrington High School.
"So, now instead of being two minutes late to class, when you get here, you get in the building, with the doors unlocked, now you're 20 minutes late because you're standing in a line, in the cold,” said Rudman.
Sevetson told NBC 10 tardiness is a problem, but said the way it’s being handled is not effective.
“I think finding out what other schools do, how they can expedite it, would be a great idea,” Sevetson said. “The other concern, of course, is there's only a few roads that go to the high school. Traffic has gotten very, very tough and I'm starting to hear about student drivers who are taking risks because they're trying not to get there late.”
Yet, Principal Joseph D. Hurley said students have repeatedly been reminded to be on time to school. He added that tardiness procedures have also been cited in the Student/Parent Handbook 2017-2018.
"The Barrington High School tardy protocols are not new, however the enforcement of the protocols is something that was a concern to many faculty and staff," according to Hurley.
"In the past, exterior doors would be locked by the custodial staff after the majority of students arrived to school," Hurley continued. "Students were then directed to the front office to sign in, but instead many bypassed the office and went directly to their first period class. In addition to students being late to school and the disruption caused by students entering a class late, there was a legitimate security concern by not locking the doors promptly at the start of the school day."
Hurley advised parents and students to refer to the handbook or reach out to the high school administration via email or phone if they have any questions.