There’s a Bunch in Lunch

As you probably know, lunch is overcrowded.  Whether you have first or second lunch, you have most likely realized how uncomfortably populated the lunchroom and courtyard are during that time.  If you need lunch, you need to get in the lunchline, but you are lucky to get through it with more than fifteen minutes left to eat it.   If standing in the lunchline takes up more than half of your lunch time, then it doesn’t seem very beneficial, does it? 

Not only is it hard to get lunch, but finding a place to sit, especially if you are with more than one person, is a big challenge.  There are people everywhere.  Navigating through groups of people just to find a place to sit and eat gets exhausting.  It also doesn’t help that most of the school is closed off, like the gym hallway and arts hallway.  The only place open to sit is the courtyard, the lunchroom, and the library, but food is not allowed in there.

Some students, like sophomore Abigail Kalika, agree with this as well and are frustrated with the overcrowding.  She said, “Personally I think lunch is very overcrowded, especially when going out into the courtyard.  There’s nowhere to even move and the tables are filled with people all around them without a single place to sit or walk.  The cafeteria is filled with way too many people quickly grabbing a seat at the tables and barely being able to get through.  It just gets annoying.”  Many other students I have talked to agree with this statement.

Another student who feels similarly about the lunch situation is freshman Caroline Sirhal.  She told me that “the whole point of lunch is to be able to sit with your friends and enjoy your food, but oftentimes I spend almost half my lunch waiting in the lunchline, and I’m barely able to eat my food before the bell rings. Another thing that can be hard is finding a seat with my friends.  Often tables are overcrowded, and it’s hard to find spaces that aren’t full. I think something that could help this would be adding another lunch.  This would make the lines shorter and provide more space for students to sit.”  

Finally, let’s talk about why this overcrowdedness started in the first place.  Each year, the incoming freshman class continues to get bigger, yet the school, and specifically the lunchroom and courtyard, hold the same amount of students.  Upperclassmen are allowed off campus for lunch, but with bigger freshman and sophomore class sizes, lunches still fill up.  

There are many potential solutions to fix this overcrowding problem.  As Caroline stated, we could make a third lunch to even out the amount of students and limit the amount of people in each lunch.  We could also open up more places to eat like the gym and arts hallways as well as some of the collaboration spaces.  There could be some potential problems with the latter solution, but instead of having teachers stand and block off areas, they could monitor the students to make sure they are following the rules.  The school could also consider letting sophomores off campus for lunch as well. 

Overcrowding is an issue Apex High School is beginning to struggle with, but there are potential solutions to this problem.  The Apex High administration will have to determine the viability of these solutions and determine what the next step should be taken to resolve this issue. Stay tuned for further updates.

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