Increasingly, teachers have decided not to show the morning announcements during their fourth-period classes — even though that choice technically is not theirs to make.
“Teachers are supposed to play the announcements, so it’s disheartening and disappointing when reports come in that they are not playing,” Principal Rick Fleming said.
Without announcements, important school information is withheld from students. The announcements serve as a common information base for students to know whether sports practices have been cancelled or if they have club meetings after school.
Students are left in confusion about school events when they are not given the opportunity to at least listen to them. As a result, fewer students join clubs or teams because they are unaware of mandatory meetings and practices they are required to attend.
The announcements also allow time every day for students to recite the Pledge of Allegiance. In fact, the state requires public school students to participate in saying the pledge or to at least respecting the time when it is said aloud by others. Students say the pledge as a sign of gratitude toward the nation and the opportunities it has provided. When the chance to recite the pledge is taken away, students are denied a basic right.
Teachers often base whether they show the announcements on their personal preferences. Some argue announcements take away from class time, but that is not the case. Fourth period is 10 minutes longer than other classes specifically to provide time for the announcements.
Other teachers argue that the announcements are too silly to be played for 10 minutes. But when the announcements are funnier than usual, students are drawn to actually pay attention to the school news, rather than ignore it and talk to their friends.
When it comes down to it, the announcements are an important way to inform all students and teachers across the campus about sports, clubs, and even valuable lessons such as fire safety.
Teachers refusing to show the announcements should be reminded that participation isn’t optional.