Parking Lot Problems


Alyssa Gibbs, Staff Writer

With a new school year comes new privileges, and with those privileges come restrictions that students need to learn and respect. One of these new privileges, for juniors, is parking on campus and, for seniors, is parking in the upper lot. Some of the restrictions of this privilege concern who can park, where students can park, and how fast they can drive in the lots.

Although students usually follow the rules of the parking lot, occasionally they are broken at the expense of other students. At the beginning and end of the year, students sometimes accidentally park in other classmate’s spots. This is usually due to the fact that the lines and numbers painted on the pavement are faded and hard to read.

Senior Olivia Henriques said that a student once parked in her spot,“because you can’t see the lines or numbers on the spots. She moved right away but its still really hard see sometimes. They need to be repainted, especially before the weather starts getting bad.”

On the issue of students parking in the wrong spot, Steven Clarke, one of the Deans of Students, said that when it does happen, it’s “[not] intentional, just some students that either didn’t look at the map or had trouble reading the numbers: as you know the numbers out there are faded and its impossible to tell 66 from 60 sometimes.”

It is clear to both students and administration that the real problem here isn’t with the students, but rather the fading parking lot. “The junior lot actually did get new numbers so they’re brighter and easier to see,” Mr. Clarke said. But as for the senior lot, “The request was put in and they did the staff lot,” he said.

Mr. Clarke did not know the reason that the senior lot was not repainted, but Donna Sweet, the assistant principal, did. “Projects are planned out a year in advance and are submitted to the Director of Grounds and Maintenance for prioritizing,” she said. “The equipment needed to paint the lines belongs to the town and the school department needs to borrow it to paint our lots (district lots). It was a last minute opportunity for us to have the equipment but there was only a small window of time for us to have the machine.  Since the faculty lot is smaller, I opted to have the faculty lot painted this year and the student lot will be next year.”

As for other issues with students in the parking lot, such as speeding and driving over the grass, Mr. Clarke says these behaviors don’t happen very often, and when they do, it is quickly and easily dealt with. “Usually if there is an issue or concern it is addressed quickly,” he said. “We get the parents involved even though the kid is driving so that the parents know that we could have their parking spot pulled. We don’t want that to happen to kids so we try to make sure we’re on top of it and talking to kids. Plus we have a lot of cameras down there.”


Although students occasionally cause problems related to parking, the majority of the time, students are not the ones who are breaking these rules. This year, it seems that more parents than students are causing problems in the parking lot.

Before the year started, Mrs. Sweet sent all parents and students an email including videos and pictures of where students and parents can and cannot park and drive. The below image was attached. The red area represents where students and parents are not allowed to drive or park, and the blue areas represent where parents are supposed to drop off their kids.

Despite Mrs. Sweet’s efforts, according to a survey sent out to the entire school, about half of the 141 students who responded noticed parents dropping off students or parking somewhere other than the blue areas on the map. Of those students, more than half of them claimed that this inconvenienced them in some way.  

According to Jillian Ceceri, a senior, “Parents park in some of the senior spots to pick up their kids and they also park behind the senior cars so they can’t get out at the end of the day.” As well as parking behind parked cars so they can’t get out at the end of the day and parking in senior’s spots in the morning, “Parents are parking in the back part of the upper lot,” according to senior Reagan Sanchez, and “on the road leaving the senior lot,” according to senior Nicole Wilson, creating more traffic than necessary.

Students are angry about parents disrupting the flow of the parking lot, but, according to Mr. Clarke, not much can be done to change this. “I don’t know the best solution,” he said.  “I think the limit is based with 190 spots plus probably another 50 parents picking up, so it’s a challenge. And now we even have busses back there because our school has grown so much. So, unless we get some more acreage, so to speak, and spaces, we’ve got to do what we can.”