Take a PAWS!

The Story of an Underappreciated System

Nathaniel Caceres
Staff Writer
April 25, 2021 8:14 PM
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School
PAWS is a time where much work and learning can occur (Anthony Da Cruz/Unsplash)
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Note: This story was originally produced over a month ago. Information, dates, predictions, and other details may be outdated.

PAWS is something unique to Saint Cloud High School. It is a time during lunch where students can go to the classroom of a teacher of their choice and speak one-on-one with them. This is something that is often overlooked and underutilized by most of the students here at Saint Cloud High School.  

Schoolwork may feel like a burden and PAWS is a time when you can work to alleviate it (Siora Photography/Unsplash)

PAWS happens during lunch time every day. During a normal school year, students would be able to choose what class they want to go to. They would have a few minutes to get there after the first bell rings. This would last until halfway through lunch, when they would then have another chance to attend PAWS the second half of lunch. PAWS is completely optional, so it serves only to help students and does not need to create any stress. This is how it would work in a normal school year in SCHS. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, things work differently this school year. Instead of choosing what class to go to, we are now assigned that class and must attend it for either the first half or the second half of lunch. Although they cannot choose which PAWS that they must attend, students still can do everything that they would normally be able to do. They can still receive help from the teacher in question. Despite all these benefits, many students do not really care about PAWS.

There are many reasons as to why PAWS might not be taken seriously by the students. One such reason is that it is no longer optional. One of the greatest parts of the system is that it was not a requirement (for the most part, as it would occasionally be made mandatory for certain students at certain times). This made PAWS seem very lenient and made students feel like they had much more freedom. However, it is understandable why it is now necessary to attend PAWS, because of the need to split students up in order to follow social distancing guidelines. The lack of freedom, though, does severely hurt the system, as students may be forced to attend PAWS for a class they are not struggling in, or even a class they do not attend. This, sadly, has made PAWS feel much more like a way to take up time rather than an opportunity for students get the additional help that they may need.  

Despite how it may look, there are still ways to make PAWS better while we deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. The biggest problem with PAWS right now is the lack of choice we are given. It would be a huge improvement if students could choose what class to attend to during PAWS time, so that they can still get the help needed and not waste time. This way, it would become an opportunity again, rather than a chore.

In conclusion, although many students choose to ignore PAWS, it is still a great system that deserves more recognition, and, if handled well, could really make a difference in our students' academic careers.

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