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The Tongva Times

The Tongva Times

The Tongva Times

E-hallpass expensive, worsens the hall pass problem


By Violet WangStaff Writer

   On Jan. 9, students were welcomed back to Gabrielino High School with smiling faces, a clean slate, and the impressive bureaucratic nonsense of e-hallpass. E-hallpass fails to get students to class on time and is instead cumbersome, complicated, and costly. The funds used for e-hallpass should be used to fix bathroom problems that the student body has been calling for.

   E-hallpass allows students to create a “Now Pass” or an “Appointment Pass” on using any device, and then choose where they are leaving from and going to. For the Appointment Pass, the student must also choose the date, period, and time. The teacher of the class from where the student is leaving must then approve that student’s pass and end it later, recording the amount of time the student is out.

   While a standardization of hall passes could be effective, the flaws in this standard have become glaringly obvious.

   Nothing stops students from strolling around, sitting outside on their computers, or talking with a friend without suspicion because passes are not periodically checked and some classes are known to go outside regularly. Some teachers do not even use e-hallpass, due to how nonexistent the enforcement of the system is.

   Recording how long a student is gone is useless too. If a student never goes to class, a pass does not record that they are absent– the attendance sheet does. Nothing has changed besides a clunky website being the middleman between the student and teacher.

   E-hallpass also has a bad reputation due to the rule that was announced right before it– no going to the bathroom in the first or last ten minutes of a period. The rule intends to reduce hallway traffic and stop students from skipping class by hanging out in the restroom. However, the rule ultimately increases both.

   During five-minute passing periods, restrooms become clogged with students that know they will not have the opportunity at the start of the next period, leading to discomfort and late arrivals. In addition to this, using the e-hallpass after the ten-minute requirement interrupts teachers once they have begun their lesson. Students are discouraged from attending to their bodily needs for fear of missing important information, and teachers are forced to stop instruction and take the unnecessary time to open their computer, sign in, open a tab, log in to e-hallpass, approve the pass, and end it minutes later.

   The worst part of the process is the cost. According to Eduspire Solutions, the creator of e-hallpass, the cost for the program is $3.50 per student annually, along with a first-time cost of $1000. For our roughly 1500-student school, that is $6250 this year and $5250 for every year following. 

   This high cost is especially revolting to the student body due to the notoriously terrible quality of Gabrielino’s restrooms. Graffiti, dirty stalls, and broken doors, locks, sinks, soap dispensers, and air dryers are all common complaints.

   Although e-hallpass has been giving admin useful information, it is a much too costly and consequential way to collect it. Admin should instead consider a cheaper, simpler system, like having teachers record when students leave on attendance sheets.

   The restrictive ten-minute bathroom rule should be removed, and instead of wasting funds on a fundamentally broken system, more money should go towards fixing restrooms, even if it has already been spent on e-hallpass for this year or future years. At worst, e-hallpass is disruptive for class, and at best, it is a flashy $5250 stopwatch.

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