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Student Faculty Administration discusses two new proposals

by Jared Perlo
As the legislative year reaches its most crucial stage, members of the Student Faculty Administration have ramped up their discussions and debates to a new level of efficiency.
In recent weeks, the SFA has covered many topics, ranging from the ongoing construction of a student union in the cafeteria to the possible implementation of unlimited, full-year open campus for sophomores.
Perhaps the most noteworthy event within the past couple of meetings is the creation and passage of a bill that sets the homepage of all school computers except those in Library Learning Commons to this website.
The bill was proposed during the SFA meeting Wednesday, March 14; submitted by the paper’s three co-editors in chief juniors Hilary Brumberg, Jay Feinstein and Perrin Stein; and sponsored by SFA member senior Caleb Bromberg.
After 91 years of producing a print edition, editors and advisers made the decision earlier this school year to transform the publication to an online format. Ever since, the newspaper staff and its advisers have been looking for ways to boost readership and make the paper’s online presence more widely known, according to the proposal.
Among many other arguments for its passage, the authors charged that “without wide dissemination of the Newtonite, students will be less informed about school events, school-sponsored activities and students’ accomplishments,” the proposal reads.
After a brief discussion, the SFA postponed its decision to yesterday, when the bill was passed by a margin of 16-2. The bill’s passage was by far the quickest and most efficient so far this year, according to English teacher and librarian Kevin McGrath, SFA faculty co-chair.
In the meantime, SFA member sophomore Terry Altherr has been constantly trying to further his proposal to eliminate the restraints on sophomore’s open campus privileges. Currently, sophomores can only leave the school during their scheduled free blocks and must sign in and stay in the cafeteria during all canceled classes.
Altherr’s proposal would do away with the canceled-class restriction and instead give sophomores the same privileges as juniors and seniors, who can venture off campus during their canceled classes after signing in at the cafeteria.
Many members criticized the bill’s wording during the SFA’s previous meeting, so Altherr made some minor language tweaks and updated the bill for yesterday’s meeting.
One major part of Altherr’s plan to limit the influx of sophomores coming to the Library Learning Commons during their canceled classes is to institute a sign in and sign out policy. Sophomores would not only have to sign in at the beginning of a canceled class, but they would also have to sign out at the end of the block, according to the proposal.
“That way, teachers will be able to make sure that students get to their next class on time,” Altherr said.
Principal Jennifer Price summarized the current situation and the perhaps unnecessary extension of a sophomore’s open campus privileges by saying, “A sophomore who needs to go to the library can get a pass, and a sophomore who needs to see a teacher can get a pass from that teacher.”
Throughout all of this discussion, the SFA has also been slowly moving forward with its plans to create a student hangout area in part of the cafeteria’s alcove. Students and faculty on the subcommittee have begun the process of ordering six sets of tables and chairs to line the cafeteria windows overlooking the concourse and the multi-purpose field.

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