Junior parking petitions spark controversy

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Junior parking petitions spark controversy

Izzy Ullmann, Features Editor

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On Dec. 15., Matthew Reiser ’17 made an online petition to have the junior parking lot function as a first-come, first-served basis due to the alleged 40 open spaces he saw that were not being occupied.

“The junior parking lottery only gives out 25 stickers to students, but clearly that is not enough considering there are so many spots open,” Reiser said. “I have to park at Wakeman since I did not win the lottery, and now I’m constantly late to class.”

Reiser explained that after he made his petition, it spread rapidly and eventually reached over 200 signatures.  

Many of Reiser’s peers encouraged the petition, such as Lulu Busk ’17 who believes that the empty parking spots should be available for juniors. “It’s a long walk to get all the way to Wakeman, and it would be nice if, for the winter months, juniors were allowed to use as many spots present every day,” Busk said.

However, Reiser also said that he received backlash from many seniors who wrote comments on the petition such as “It’s 60 degrees out, you’ll live.”

On Dec. 16., Anna Bene ’16 made a new petition on change.org promoting the exact opposite of Reiser’s petition. The petition, “Don’t allow Staples High School junior student parking in swimming pool lot,” received over 100 signatures by the end of the school day.

“It’s a senior privilege. We had to wait for it, we had to walk, and now that we are seniors, we have the right to park where we want,” Bene said. “We shouldn’t have to fight juniors for parking.”

In terms of response from the administration, both assistant principal Karyn Morgan and Patrick Micinilio explained that this petition will not be accepted, and that at this time of year, there are limited spots for juniors.

“We have less than 440 parking spots for students on this campus and we have 480 seniors this year,” Micinilio said.

“This year is one of our largest senior classes ever,” Micinilio said. “ So, as our population has grown over the years, we simply do not have the parking space on campus anymore.”

Principal Mark Karagus had similar thoughts on the petition, and stated that parking for juniors on a first-come, first-served basis will never happen. “I know people drive around and see empty spots, but there are a lot of reasons that account for those empty spots,” Karagus said. “There are staff and students that are absent and students who carpool.”

Karagus said that if they had more spots for juniors, they would hand them out. “When seniors go on to internships in the spring, most juniors then can park at Staples; however until then, we will have limited spots.”

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