Absence of parking spaces around the high school creates issues for students
March 8, 2017
Filed under News
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Imagine you just had an extremely stressful day at school. Your English teacher assigned a five-page essay and you failed a huge math test. All you want to do is go home and relax, but when you get in your car, you see a slip of paper with the word TICKET written in big red letters.
The lack of legal parking spaces around the high school is problematic for students who have no alternative way to get to school.
According to junior Fiona Lobon, the idea to file a petition to Headmaster Meyer for student parking permits came from many students receiving parking tickets on a regular basis.
“I’ve been driving since the end of last year, and my sister and I have gotten four tickets. That might not sound like a lot, but they’re $30 each,” Lobon said. “We’ve talked to our friends at other schools, and all of them have the option to get a parking pass or are able to park in a student parking lot. We were wondering if we could make that happen at this school as well.”
Junior Lena Harris, who drives to school, said that because she believes Meyer is a reasonable headmaster who has the best interests of the students at heart, she thinks he will work with students to come up with a solution to the parking problem.
“If we get enough people who need to drive to school together, we can build a case and he will consider it and listen,” Harris said.
Assistant Headmaster Hal Mason said that there is no space for student parking.
“The space that we have for parking was done after a long negotiation with the town when the high school was renovated in 1997,” Mason said. “At that time, there were certain streets that were designated as parking for the high school. All of those spaces are used by staff, so there is no space available for students.”
Junior Isabel Lobon, Fiona Lobon’s sister, said that many students who drive to the high school have no other way of getting to school.
“Both of my parents work and my twin sister and I both take Peer Leadership, so we have to drive to school early in the morning because we don’t have anyone else to drive us there,” Isabel Lobon said. “There’s a bus from South Brookline, but that doesn’t come until 7:30, so we would be late to our class if we didn’t drive.”
According to Mason, some students have dealt with the lack of parking by renting space in driveways near the high school.
“People have gone door to door and asked if they could lease space and pay someone to use their driveway to park,” Mason said. “Otherwise, there’s no straight solution.”
Fiona Lobon said that she and several other students have tried to talk to residents about parking in their driveways.
“We have run into some issues with that because of moving cars or people not being okay with letting strangers park in their driveways,” Fiona Lobon said.
According to Mason, creating more parking spaces will probably not be a priority in the high school’s upcoming expansion.
“At this point, there is no solution to the student parking issue. We just don’t have the space to provide parking for students,” Mason said. “It’s unlikely that parking will be included because it takes an enormous amount of space and money to do that, both of which are going to be directed toward the building itself.”