How Have New Policies Affected Titans?


Ella Ashby

Arabella Hernandez caught being tardy, punished accordingly.

Azriella McClearen, News Writer

From last year’s freshmen to this year’s seniors, students here at West have had a different experience than usual when it comes to discipline. The 2021-22 school year was one of the least restrictive years known for students all across the county, and has left a big question up in the air. How are students doing with more enforced rules back in place?
Statistics from Quarterly Discipline Review shows that these rules have impacted students of West Forsyth. With the average disciplinary issues being down by half in October, and the total number of disciplinary problems being 100 less than last year. It seems as if titans are starting out strong for the first quarter. And that at face value that these rules are working. But do people here at West think they’re helping?
“It has not helped, to be completely honest, I don’t think the teachers seem to care and are very inconsistent with who they punish. It just seems like a wag of the finger and it’s not going to actually change anything,” senior Arabella Hernandez said.
There is more to school than disciplinary issues, and one of the biggest policy changes taking place in this 2022-23 school year is the tardy policy. Many students are highly aware of the “tardy sweepers” for each building, but what many don’t see is how the same person giving them a tardy is helping West Forsyth’s tardy problem altogether.
“I think it is good, especially for 2nd, 3rd, and 4th period, you have six minutes to get to class so you should be there on time, but for 1st maybe not so much because of traffic,” sophomore Sean Cooper said.
By October of last year with no official tardy policy, the overall number of tardies had increased by 300 just within three months of being in school. Tardy numbers were still up in the thousands within the first three months of the current school year. However, with the new tardy policy in place there is a downward trend starting to form, and kids are slowly, but surely, starting to get to class on time. Many teachers emphasize the importance of being on time with more laid out rules for the good of the student and the betterment of their education.
“I believe that it creates a set of expectations for students, teachers, and administrators that can all be held accountable for. It’s important because these are basic life skills that all students need to have,” history teacher Eric Dunham said.
Here is the thing to remember, and anyone taking a statistics class can agree. Data does not mean everything. Last year, many teachers can attest to the outrageous disciplinary issues that can’t be shown on a graph. With this in mind, many students walked into the 2022-23 school year with pre-existing behavioral issues due to the fact they couldn’t be properly reported beforehand. However this year there are fewer students rebelling than last year, allowing teachers to do what is best for the students and not lose as much instructional time.
“Last year it was a push-pull scenario, and what many teachers found out is that the more we pulled, the more students pushed back. But this year as we return to more normalcy, when teachers are pulling students are moving with us more and not pushing back.” Principal Kevin Spainhour said.
As Benjamin Franklin said, “old habits die hard.” But every small step counts to make West the best again.