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The Spartan

The Student News Site of Thomas B. Doherty High School

The Spartan

The Student News Site of Thomas B. Doherty High School

The Spartan

Back to School Changes

Everything New at Doherty High School
Brooklyn Vanderkooy

With school back in full swing, it’s easy to see some of the changes that have been made by the district and administration. Whether it’s cosmetic changes like new tables in the courtyard, policies like making the school a closed campus during the day, or staff changes such as the new attendance dean, many things are now happening at Doherty High School.

Some of the first major changes are the cosmetic ones. An all-purpose track and turf field are being put in. According to Principal Mrs. Lana Flenniken, the project should be completely finished on September 18th.

The auditorium continues to get updated with the new chairs being put in last December, a new stage has been put in, and the whole room has been painted. They are also installing new lighting and moving the sound to behind the back row instead of up in the cage if they have enough remaining money to do so.

Because of the responses from surveys that were taken by both students and parents, Mrs. Flenniken saw that many people wanted to feel safer at school. So they put in some new protocols. One of which being the locked door during the day. People now have to buzz to get into the building so that the school is able to keep track of who’s coming and going. The staff also has put a new I.D system in place where students must show their I.Ds when entering the building. According to Mrs. Flenniken, “It’s working far better than I thought it would. Kids are really doing a great job.” With the school being closed during the day, there doesn’t have to be such a large security presence at the doors and there can be security guards throughout the whole building.

There have also been vape detectors added in the bathrooms. They felt it was needed because many students stated that they didn’t want to go in the restrooms because all people do is vape in there.  Mrs. Flenniken said that they are still fine tuning the system and trying to figure out the correct way to respond when the detectors go off.

Two new administrators that have been added to the building are Micheal Torrey and Vanessa Vatalaro the attendance deans. With this being a new position, many people wonder what role they play in the school. Mr. Torrey described it as “Helping kids overcome. . . barriers and get to class on time.” The barriers, as he put it, are simply challenges that can prevent students from making it to class on time.  Such as needing to adjust to a new schedule or having issues at home. His job is just helping to find solutions to these problems.

When we get tied up with behavior, incidents and things, attendance is typically what goes to the backburner.

— Principal Flenniken

Mrs. Flenniken believes that this will be a good added position for the school because attendance has always been handled by the behavioral deans so attendance policies have never been able to fully be enforced.  She saw the need for another staff member to take over the attendance related duties so that we could make sure all students make it to class, and be on time while doing it.

With any new year, schools can have many changes with cosmetic changes, policy changes, and staff changes. What is your favorite change here at Doherty this year?

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About the Contributors
Annika Norman, Editor in Chief
I'm a junior here at Doherty and am super excited to be the Editor in Chief this year. I like hockey, writing, photography, and being a CSPD cadet.
Brooklyn Vanderkooy, Multimedia Editor
Hello! I'm Brooklyn I'm a junior. I'm the head of Photography for The Spartan newspaper. I love reading, writing, and drawing.

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    Kay RodenSep 28, 2023 at 1:05 pm

    This is a great article!