Respect absent from senior class

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Renata Poet Williams

Disappointing lack of focus creates bad reputation for seniors

The overwhelming last year of high school comes with a lot of essential information. In trying to help, RBHS holds senior class meetings to share such information about gearing up for graduation. In a recent meeting about caps and gowns and other graduation materials, my incredibly disrespectful peers left me dumbfounded.
nhs meetingInitially, all I could focus on was the incessant talking and laughing while people who were only there to help us seniors tried to share essential knowledge. Besides the continuous chatter, when I looked around, a majority of the crowd had their eyes stuck on their phones, as if one text message or tweet couldn’t wait until after the 30 minute meeting. At one point, David Bones, activities director, had to stop his speech to ask the oldest students in the school if they could stop talking, pay attention and be respectful.
When packets were handed out, the Jostens representative specifically asked everyone not to open them, but what does half the crowd do? Rustle around and pull out all the papers — exactly what Jostens was trying to avoid.
I found myself more worried about the shameful actions of my fellow classmates than the actual importance of the meeting. I would’ve thought that at 17 and 18 years old, we could stay focused for a mere 30 minutes.
I haven’t seen this kind of behavior, honestly, since junior high school.
Admittedly, it is easy to fall into this trap of inattentiveness. Everything in our generation comes to us instantly and there’s so much to do that it’s easy to get bored and move on to the next thing. It’s especially easy when it’s all at the touch of a finger on our phones.
But being attached to a phone doesn’t excuse the rudeness of my senior class. 

I found myself more worried about the shameful actions of my fellow classmates than the actual importance of the meeting.”

Seniors are supposed to be the leaders of the school. Every other grade should look up to us for how to act, and teachers and administrators, or any adult who comes to RBHS, shouldn’t have to worry about the seniors acting up because we know better than that; we’ve matured past those actions.
Although it may not be registering with us now, these are the last moments of our K-12 careers and these are our last impressions that we’re making.
Yes, it becomes a habit to never look up, or never stop talking, but being respectful should have been, and should always be, the first thing on everyone’s mind. Our senior year is already slipping away, and I don’t want to graduate having been seen as rude.
In the next senior meeting, on Jan. 15, I want to see the respect and courtesy that I have faith we all can give. Put down the phones, quit the talking and listen. First semester is finished and it’s time to grow up.
By Renata Williams
Photo by Madelyn Stewart
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