Lenape Students’ Views on Last Day of School Date


Picture this: you walk into school on Friday, June 17th, excited for the school year to come to a close and to say goodbye to your teachers and friends. You sign yearbooks, play some games in the classes that are finished, and maybe do a little learning in the classes that are not. But it doesn’t matter if you have to learn just a little before school’s out because it’s a half-day, and once you walk out those doors, you’re off to summer vacation, or, if you’re a senior, graduation and a bright future ahead of you. However, this will not be the case for Lenape underclassmen. In order to meet the requirement for the number of school days we must attend and graduation to stay on June 17th, seniors must go to school the past Saturday (June 11), and the rest of the school will have their last day on Tuesday, June 21st, following the three day weekend due to the federal holiday, Juneteenth. So, this perfect picture of a final school day might not be as perfect as we imagined.

To get a sense of how other Lenape students are feeling, I asked a variety of students from different grades what they think of the differing last day of school dates.

Sophomore, Rachel Lawrence, thinks that “there’s no point in extending school for everyone but seniors” and that “it’s ridiculous that seniors have to go in on Saturday.” She believes that we should have taken a day off of spring break to make up for the last day we have to come in. The only good part about this situation, she says, “is that we get Juneteenth off.” It’s good to recognize the federal holiday commemorating the end of slavery in the United States with a day off of school, but it unfortunately pushes the underclassmen’s last day to Tuesday, not Monday.

Similar to Rachel’s opinion, Dan Baker also believes that “it does seem a little dumb to go back on a Tuesday…I would be surprised if more than half of the freshman, sophomores, and juniors would even go in.” A lack of attendance seems possible, as many students may be unmotivated to come back to school after a long weekend. Sophomore, Sawyer Lanni, adds on to that by saying, “They are giving us a sample of summer then interrupting it with one day of school. Half the faculty and students won’t want to be there, not creating that last day of school before summer environment that everyone loves.” While those who will attend school on that last Tuesday may physically be there, mentally they could be checked out. The picture we painted at the beginning of this piece may not hold true if people do not want to be here.

A student states, “If I was a senior, I would prefer to end my last year of school with the rest of Lenape. I believe that ending it a day early kind of takes away the final experience.” Similarly, Isabella Bordon, a senior, connects with that thought, saying “it was very nice of them to keep the graduation date, but a little odd since our final goodbye isn’t the same as everyone else’s.” There does feel like a sense of disunity within our school when students will not all end their school year on the same day. The seniors will be on their own on Saturday, June 11, while underclassmen will be on their own on Tuesday, June 21. The presence of seniors will be missing on the rest of the school’s last day, and it might almost dampen the mood.

Sawyer Lanni wonders “why couldn’t the district do a similar thing with the rest of the school on Saturday the 18th so then we can just be done for the year.” Junior, Sai Anirudh Dhanasiri, also thinks this, as he “personally wouldn’t have had a problem with going to school that Saturday.” He doesn’t feel “it’s even worth going to school that one day, because we really aren’t going to do much and we are only going to say goodbyes to each other.”

The last day of school on Tuesday (June 21) may also coincide with other students’ schedules. Sawyer says, “My early summer mornings for swim are starting on that Monday the 20th. Now I can’t start off on the right schedule going into summer because I won’t be able to go Tuesday morning since I have school.” It’s likely that Sawyer is not the only one facing these scheduling issues. Hopefully, the students will all be able to make adjustments if they had set plans that day. This may also mean that some underclassmen will not show up to school on Tuesday if their schedules were unable to be changed, making the last day even more empty, already taking into account that the seniors won’t be there.

On a more positive note, senior, Grace Boltz, sees “going to school on Saturday [as] worth it because it’s not really gonna be a work day. It should be pretty fun and I don’t want to come into school the next week.” Luckily, some seniors are happy with the fact that they can still graduate on Friday, June 17th, and are willing to come to school on the past Saturday to make that happen. At least this situation can benefit some amount of people, especially seniors who will be available on June 11th.

Now, although this whole “last day of school date conflict” may put a wrench in some of our final experiences of the school year, we can still get excited about the fact that we only have about 2 weeks left of school! So, let’s stay optimistic, make the most of our days, and say goodbye to our seniors before the year is over.