The Online Edition of the Annandale High School Newspaper.

The A-Blast

The Online Edition of the Annandale High School Newspaper.

The A-Blast

The Online Edition of the Annandale High School Newspaper.

The A-Blast

5 changes to improve student life

Since the return from online-school the administration has made many improvements around the school and continues to look for ways to make student life better. With 2024 fast approaching, here are a few suggestions of small changes that could help make students happier and more content with the environment at school in the coming year:


Hooks in the bathrooms for passes

The hooks on the inside of stalls are no place for a shared bathroom pass. Nobody should take a pass shared by their entire class and multiple other classes into the stall with them.

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 Wouldn’t it make more sense to have somewhere to hang passes outside of the stalls and away from all the contaminants and germs inside a stall? The bathroom is already gross enough and with the pass system we have, there’s no reason to be spreading all those germs around. 

Hanging passes outside of stalls upon entering the restroom prevents students from touching them before even washing their hands. A few intentionally-placed command hooks might just do the trick. 


More outdoor spaces (community garden)

AHS has a handful of outdoor spaces that could be used by students but for some reason, they’re never available. For 

whatever reason, unknown to students, going outside during passing periods and lunch is pretty much strictly prohibited. 

What’s the deal with the courtyard by the library? Why isn’t it open to students? Spaces like this have the potential to be used to benefit student life. 

Over the years, many schools have implemented community gardens. This idea gives students another chance to engage with their community and learn at the same time. It also gives the space a purpose and draws more students to spend time outdoors and get some fresh air throughout the school day.


Allowing students to leave campus during lunches

Freedom is all a young person wants and making it near illegal for students to leave campus for lunch seems a little harsh. It’s understood that precautions are put in place for safety reasons but there might be a compromise that can satisfy both sides. Depending on a student’s class schedule, attendance, whether they’re an upper or underclassman, or even on their grades, maybe some could be granted permission to escape for a quick off-campus lunch. Especially considering how many students do anyway.


More bulletin boards (places for students to get information and advertise)

Currently, there are a few places around the school where students and staff can put up flyers about clubs and activities…but why isn’t there more? One issue at AHS is that everyone always seems to be in the dark about what’s going on and who to talk to to find out.

There isn’t really a comprehensive place where students can access information about clubs, activities, and events. Places like Jock Lobby, the auditorium, and even the front lobby should have bulletin boards where students can advertise and reach out to their community. 

The difficult thing about this idea is that it takes an arm and a leg to get anything approved around here to be posted, which is its own issue.


Starting to refill pads and tampons

In 2020 the Virginia senate passed a bill requiring public schools to include free menstrual products in their

 restrooms. In our restrooms, there are boxes that dispense free feminine hygiene products but they never seem to be stocked. Whether it’s because they’re all being used or because they are seldom restocked, something should be done.

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About the Contributor
Aya Al-Ariqi
Aya Al-Ariqi, Editorials Editor
Senior, Aya Al-Ariqi is in her 3rd year on the A-Blast staff. Her current position is Editorials editor and previous positions include co-in-depth editor and staff writer. In her free time, she enjoys thrifting, hiking, and spending time with her friends and family. Next year Aya hopes to study communications with a concentration in media production at VCU.

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