Let them have their pizza and eat it too

Long lines louse up lunch

By Patrick Gohl, Junior Features Editor

This poll has ended.

Which change would you prefer to solve long lines at lunch?


Sorry, there was an error loading this poll.

When one walks into the school cafeteria during a typical lunch period, one of the first things to strike an observer is the lengthy lunch lines extending nearly half way through the massive room. 

Lunch is one of the most critical points in a student’s day, especially at our school. Our students have the longest school days in the district, and our teachers pack each period with academic instruction and high-level content from beginning to end. By the time students reach lunch, they desperately need a break and are likely starving, given that breakfast had to be consumed in the early, dark hours of the morning. 

Be it for convenience, cost or simply because they didn’t have the time to pack lunch before the sun rose that morning, a good portion of students rely on the school cafeteria to provide them with this much-needed sustenance. However, with only half an hour to eat between classes, the decision to eat school lunch can come with a major sacrifice of time – one of the most valuable commodities for students.

Many students report waiting for more than half their lunch period before even receiving their food. This can leave them without much time to eat, causing them to eat in a rush, forcing them to forgo the moments of peace that lunch provides between stressful classes. In other words, students must choose to eat or actually have a break in the day. 

“I feel like we could have more (time),” freshman Khai Smith said. “It feels sort of tedious,“ 

Smith buys lunch on a regular basis. Students purchasing their lunch at our school have the choice of either pizza, which has its own dedicated line, or traditional school lunch. Students have reported making the decision on what to eat based entirely on the length of the line, not whether they will like what they are eating. 

Many students feel the current system should be reconsidered and reimagined to improve efficiency for students. Junior Leila Valbren asserted that it is not the pace at which the meals are made that is the problem. 

“They make it (at a fine speed),” she said. “It’s just that everyone is in one line.”

It is evident from the large number of students who choose to buy lunch each day that the school cafeteria staff works incredibly hard and is successful at providing nutritious and enjoyable food. But, if students could move through the lunch line more quickly, they would have a more fulfilling lunchtime experience – both literally and figuratively.  Though it seems like a minor issue, it can entirely change a student’s day. When a student is able to pause, eat, connect with friends and just decompress, they are often able to recharge sufficiently to carry out the busy schedule most students have.

The issues surrounding the lunch line are best summed up by Valbren.

“When we finish the interview, I’ll still be in the same place,” Valbren said.