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Pentucket Profile

The student news site of Pentucket Regional High School

Pentucket Profile

The student news site of Pentucket Regional High School

Pentucket Profile

Are The New School Additions Distracting?

Photo Source: Newburyport Daily News
Photo Source: Newburyport Daily News

We all know what I’m talking about; our brand-new school windows, smart boards, breakout rooms, lights, etc. Many have wondered if it’s too much, or why we have all these things. Well, now you get to hear the opinions of others to potentially make or break what you have previously thought on this topic.



The question they were asked along with the title: what are your thoughts on how the additions may affect learning?


Ms. Barlow- Math teacher: 


“I like the windows, although they are a distraction education-wise, especially when a student is trying to get a friend’s attention.” When asked about the smartboards potentially being finicky, she said, “I use it nearly every day, although I don’t use it how it’s intended. I connect a tablet to it and write on there with it appearing on the smartboard. I don’t like how when I have written on the board I have to bear down hard, and sometimes it even just goes out.”


Ms. Cromwell- English teacher:


She believes there are too many smart boards that are costly, and “are unused and all over the building.” She has mixed feelings about the breakout rooms, she says, “They could be better used as classrooms or other things, as there is a lot of space currently being unused.” Lastly, when asked how the additions affect learning, she said, “The smartboards can be a wonderful tool for learning, although it depends on if the teacher knows how to use them and if it works.” 


Ms. Erhardt- Principal


The question she was asked unique to her was: how do the additions contribute to day-to-day activities within the school or classroom?


Ms.Erhardt said that the biggest change in her opinion would be the dining commons, as “students can eat throughout many spots in the building”. She adds, “I love seeing all the students spread out and having more autonomy is a good thing. Its only issue from an administration standpoint would be having to manage all of the different areas, as it will take more staff to keep an eye on it while, in the old school, it was one big room.” She pointed out how this is similar to the breakout rooms “if they’re managed well (the students are collaborating and doing good work) they are quite effective.” Ms. Erhardt adds, “There are also times when I see kids just hanging out when they shouldn’t be there, which is more of a challenging management thing.” She loves the feel of how it’s similar to a college campus. She finds the windows quite beautiful.




The question they were asked: What do you like about the new things in school/ additions?


Alex Donovan- Senior: 


They say they like the breakout rooms, as “sometimes it can be hard to listen to just my group in class, and it’s nice to be able to move away and work on something specific without distractions.” They also talk about their distaste for the lights because they get a headache every day from them “I hate the lights so much.” The only thing they somewhat like about them is that they are pretty. On the other hand they “love the windows, as natural light is (in my opinion) great.”


Brooke Zaneski- Senior:


She doesn’t mind the school additions, saying it’s “nice to have them around”. She appreciates the TVs at the entrance and how they display useful information. She believes the breakout rooms are useful, she says, “if a class gets noisy I can go in there and get my work done in a more relaxed environment and it improves my overall focus.” She likes the lights, as they “add to the modern design of the school” and thinks it’s useful that you can modify the brightness to your liking. Lastly, her opinion on the new windows is that they’re “helpful because they bring in natural light and if it’s too much there are shades to block them.”


Overall, the thoughts of everyone are a mix of positive and negative, although most tend to like it. And so we come to the end, I would like you to think about how our lives could have been different, for better or worse, if these changes were unable to occur in our school.

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    CalebJan 23, 2024 at 1:01 pm

    I agree with all of the faculty and staff’s takes. I think the windows are pretty distracting, as kids’ friends can get their attention and can distract from their learning.