Kickstarting the K-8 school year

Elementary school in session after two weeks since high school classes began


Lower Form students walk to their next class after lunch. Elementary school students have staggered lunch times, meant to provide more space to the high schoolers during lunch.

Sofia Kozlova and Fiona Kenny

Elementary school students started their 2023 school year today on the Broadway campus, though high schoolers have been in session since August 15.

“It’s really nice to have the lower school back but lunchtime can remind us of the scale of our school,” said history teacher Lauren O’Donnell. “That being said, the administration is trying to find ways to use new spaces and make it work with so many people.”

During lunch, elementary’s lower formers take up the seating in the cafeteria so high school students retire to spaces around the Flood mansion, according to O’Donnell. While the lower form lunch time slot is spread out between grades, the high schoolers’ lunch period is meant to take place from 11:30 a.m to 12:15 p.m.

“A benefit of having both high schoolers and younger kids on campus is that the little kids have somebody older that they can look up to,” said elementary school counselor Leandra Peloquin. “Having other people who support them and can act as role models is really beneficial.”

While having the whole school together supports the Sacred Heart Schools’ Goal 4 — community building — campus may become more hectic with additional students.

“I’m excited to have more people and have the whole school community back on campus together,” Freshman Alisa Houts said. “But it will be hard because the campus gets really crowded.”

The addition of elementary students affects more than just lunch lines, according to junior Sofia Tobiason. The longer carpool lines can also benefit students, because high schoolers can acquire service hours in the mornings by working as car escorts.

“I think one positive aspect of having the whole school community here is that the school atmosphere feels happier,” Tobiason said. “But some drawbacks to the atmosphere are longer lunch lines, less space to eat lunch, and more traffic around school”

This initial disorder should subside as the school year goes on, but having all the grades together in the cafeteria broadens perspectives of the community because there is so much range between the grades, ages, and new students, according to O’Donnell.

“The first few days of school are bound to be chaotic as people are getting into the rhythm of lunch dismissals and places to go,” O’Donnell said. “I am optimistic because I think most of the time things settle down after a couple of weeks.”