McComb ’24: The last Friday before Halloween weekend included a special treat for well performing Design, Engineering, and Manufacturing (DEM) students. Those in the academy got to leave school fifteen minutes early if they met certain requirements.

Students received an email a few weeks before that Friday in order to prepare for the event and possibly bump up their grades. The email stated students with a 77% or above in all of their classes, no tardies, no unexcused absences, and no discipline contacts in the two weeks before October 29th get the chance to take part in the early dismissal. 

Julia Schneider ‘24 saw it as a great motivator, “I think the early dismissal was a fun and good idea to try to encourage students to get good grades and not be tardy,” Schneider said.

The hard working DEM students who left school at 2:00 p.m. rushed to their cars. They took advantage of their extra time and beat the traffic. The students got to precede the daily rush of the whole school clogging up the parking lot exits, easily the greatest gift of the early dismissal. However, some students in the DEM academy lost out on the opportunity to participate in this early dismissal because they lacked a ride home.

Schneider thinks the dismissal time needed to happen a little sooner than the scheduled fifteen minutes, “The 15 minutes is really only good if you can drive and beat the traffic of the parking lot. If you can’t drive or don’t have a ride you have to stay at school, so if it was like 30 minutes it would have been better” Schneider said.

The early dismissal served a great purpose – rewarding Romeo’s hard working future designers, engineers, and manufacturers. Not only did the brightest students with the highest grades benefit, but also those who stayed out of trouble. The opportunity incentivized students in the DEM academy to behave better, and to try harder in class. Both make the school a better place. The early dismissal provides such a great motivator that hopefully staff utilize it in the future, including in other academies.

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