Tuesday, May 16, 2006

There Goes The Neighborhood

Looks like some people are worried about the old continuation school, Zoe Barnum High, being moved into the old Worthington School. I don't blame them. I drive by Zoe Barnum fairly often and have seen all the students hanging out across the street. That's not something I'd want happening in my front yard.

It's always a drag to have to live near a church or school. The constant traffic being just one thing people living nearby must deal with. Here in Humboldt I was surprised to notice most schools, at least in Eureka, are open campuses, meaning kids can pretty much come and go as they please.

I guess that's changing. It looks like Eureka High closed their campus recently. You still have all the parking problems from students driving to school, but no longer are the kids hanging out in the neighborhood during school hours

Eureka High was open until fairly recently. Then, a year or so ago, I saw the school security guy ride by on his bike and confront three kids sitting on a curb on Huntoon Street smoking. "Put out the smokes and get back on campus." he said. They got up and went back to school.

I was working about a block away from Eureka High a couple months ago. A car drives up, picks up a kid and drives down K Street, but not quick enough. The school security guy races after the car on his bike waving at them. The car stops and the security guy rides up to the drivers window, says something, and the kid that just got in the car gets out and heads back to campus.

Just a couple weeks ago I was in the same area and saw a couple kids go out to the school parking lot, look around to see if anybody important was watching and hop into their cars to make a quick getaway. They made it. Many others don't.

The Eureka Reporter didn't mention it, but the Times- Standard noted that Zoe Barnum will soon be a closed campus as well. That should make it a little easier on the neigborhood since students will have to hang out on campus rather than out in front of people's houses. I wonder how well the old Zoe Barnum students will accept a closed campus?

Wonder what caused the shift in school policy? I think it's probably for the better, as far as neighbors of the school are concerned. When I went to high school, all the schools I attended were closed campuses and they all had dress codes.

I hated that. Finally, I managed to finagle my way into attending Hillview High School, in Tustin, which was the district's continuation school. That was cool. You could have long hair. The school day was only half as long as a regular school and the campus was open, although I'd never felt any desire to play hooky from that school.

So it's funny how around 35 years later I'd rather the local high schools be closed campuses and save the neighborhoods some grief. But, I still feel a bit of camradarie with those wanting to skip class now and then. I guess my age hasn't completely changed the rebel that was in me when I went to school.


At 9:49 AM, Anonymous mresquan said...

Closed campuses seem too institutionalized.I've seen those kids hangin' out across from Zoe Barnum,and that's all they seem to do is hang there.Yeah, sure some kids fuck around ,but probably not to the extent, or with the severity of which folks accuse them.And do closed campuses truly keep students in class?I would guess that the student who wanted to miss just one class,would simply just skip the whole day,and hang out elsewhere,to avoid having to sneak off campus.And I don't know how well the schools monitor this,other than calling the parents,which in theory should work,but generally does not,and takes up time which could be spent doing other things to improve campus life.

At 10:23 AM, Blogger Fred said...

I know it used to be you'd see students coming and going from Eureka High all the time. Now, it's like the Great Escape, at least from a spectator's viewpoint.

There are some that seem to come and go legitimately, though. Maybe they have some kind of "pass"? I don't know.

At 12:40 PM, Blogger Anon.R.mous said...

Having a closed campus doesn't mean 100% lock-down while they are there, it just means that you can't leave at lunchtime, or at any other time. Doesn't mean you are locked into a classroom.


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