Is an hour lunch a necessity?

October 27, 2022

Apart from going to school or work, no one does something for hours straight willingly. Usually when we do a task for a long time, we may take multiple breaks. Taking breaks helps you re-energize, which can improve your productivity in the long run. During school it’s important that students get the energy they need in order to be the best version of themselves.

Out of 6 hours of being at the iSchool, students only get a 45 minute lunch. School can be a very stressful environment at times, and a good lunch break may make a huge difference. The majority of iSchool students have requested a longer lunch, but it is not for the obvious reasons, such as socializing with friends. Many students have stated valid reasons as to why an hour lunch is helpful. 

Erica Lin, a junior at the iSchool, stated, “It honestly sucks having to rush every time I have lunch. Places are always crowded with people and by the time I get my lunch I have maybe 5 minutes to eat, but what sucks most is when I have club during lunch.”

Students at the iSchool are able to leave the school for lunch, but there are a limited number of options for students to choose from. Restaurants get flooded with customers easily. Our school is located in one of the busiest areas in Manhattan. While students have lunch, so do the workers in the area.

To make the situation worse, many students like Erica have clubs during their lunch time. Joining a club is very important in high school. Joining clubs can show colleges that you are a very productive student and are developing new skills outside of school. There are a variety of  clubs at the iSchool that many students have joined, but many students have felt as if they don’t have enough time for lunch during their club meetings. 

 Erica further explains her thoughts about lunch by stating, “I just recently joined a club, and I enjoyed our first meeting, but not being able to at least have lunch wasn’t fun. With an extra 15 minutes I could’ve gotten a coffee or sandwich.”

 Our lunch period should at least be as long as one regular period. Not only is this helpful to students, but to teachers as well. Teachers having a longer break are able to eat their lunch, prepare for the next class, and catch up on work. Both students and teachers will not have to feel as rushed when trying to be on time. 

 Mr.Whittaker, one of deans of the iSchool who monitors lunch, claims that he is content with how long lunch currently is. It would get too hectic if it were longer, and too rushed if it were shorter. It would be “wasted time” if lunch were an extra 15 minutes long. Students are more likely to become less productive during their next period. 

 Although some staff members may disagree and feel that an hour lunch would be beneficial, others, such as Mr.Whittaker, have valid reasons for why our current lunchtime is perfect the way it is.  As a lunch monitor, you may experience some students misbehaving, and having an even longer lunch would not help that situation. Also, having an extra 15 minutes of lunch would also make the school day longer.

 Instead of only interviewing one student and one teacher who face different opinions, I decided to get a general idea of how all iSchool students feel about a longer lunch. A survey was sent out to all iSchool students to see how they feel about our lunch time. 

This image shows the responses to one of the questions asked in the survey.

Overall, there were 63 responses in total. 62 percent of the responses felt as if they didn’t have enough time for lunch, 25 percent felt neutral, 11 percent felt as if it was the perfect amount of time, and one percent stated, “for just having lunch it’s fine but for clubs during lunch I wish it was longer.” In the survey I asked how long they believe lunch should be, 75 percent said an hour, 15 percent said 45 minutes (how long our lunch currently is), 6 percent said an hour and a half, and 3 percent said 2 hours plus. In the last question of the survey, I asked how many times they’ve been late. Only 37 out of 63 responded, but 65 percent said once, 27 percent said twice, 5 percent said three times, and  2 percent said four times plus.

It would be a dream to have a two hour lunch, but we all know that is not a realistic expectation. Getting an hour for lunch is definitely realistic and doable. Just having an extra 15 minutes during lunch can change the attitude of all students. It can also decrease the percentage of students being late coming back from lunch. 

Overall, having at least an hour of lunch can have positive effects on students and staff members in the iSchool. Everyone gets an extra couple of minutes to prepare themselves for their next period class, students who have clubs are able to get lunch, and students have more time to eat when places get crowded. Student’s already have to worry about being late to school in the morning. Students can swipe their card in at 9:00 am and still get their lunch privilege taken away for that day. Lunch is supposed to be relaxing and a re-energizing period in order for us to stay productive throughout the day. We shouldn’t have to worry during the period that’s supposed to be our break. 

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