Open Letter: Unspoken Rules of Pres

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Dear Upperclassmen,

 

The unspoken rules of Pres: yes they do exist and are in fact more prevalent than ever. How is it that a school that preaches sisterhood and unity has such a distinct and rigid class hierarchy?

Let me share with you a traumatizing experience from my freshman year. It was a fine spring day, and I was sitting with my friends in the center during my free third. The lunch bell rang, and after a gruesome period of strict studying, I was feeling quite faint and in need of some rest. My friends and I, full of youthful innocence, decided to just remain at a table and enjoy our lunch. Little did we know of what was to come.

Soon we would come face to face with the burning wrath of the senior class, who stared us down. We continued to sit but then a senior actually came up and yelled at us for sitting at a table, and forced us to leave. Now that you know some background as to where I, a sophomore, am coming from, I can proceed to explain to all my vulnerable underclassmen out there, the implicit rules of Pres.

To just name a few, never stop to talk to your friend in the hallway unless you want to get punched by an angsty senior. Use the right doors when going in and leaving buildings. Just because the door is open doesn’t mean that you hold up everyone in line and cause major traffic and congestion.

In the mornings, don’t sit in front of a door unless you want to get whacked by it. Never ever sit in the center–or at a table, for that matter–during lunch or expect the outbreak of a full on riot.

And finally, seniors always win Pan Pan, so stop trying to fight the system.

Granted the upperclassmen have survived a lot of the trials and tribulations of Presentation High School, but in my opinion some of these rules are just plain unfair. The United States of America is governed by the Constitution to which a Bill of Rights was added to in order to protect our inherent civil liberties. It is my personal right to be able to sit wherever I want to whenever I want to. If I want to sit at a table, I should be able to do just that without the fear of an upperclassmen attack.

These rules only go to show how the upperclassmen dominate Pres society while only belittling the underclassmen. Seniors get free dress, juniors get chairs, sophomores get to be ignored, but the freshmen, they become the center of harsh judgement and ridicule. These unspoken rules tend to highlight the senior while crushing the freshman.

Yes, I agree that by the time one is a senior, they deserve a lot of the perks they get, but they should not come at the expense of underclassmen. Freshman year is also a huge growth period. They are thrown into a highly stressful environment and are told to survive. From my own experience, I can tell you that going from 8th grade to 9th grade was a huge step. I went from watching the Gangnam Style music video in my spare time to doing homework that was due the day before or cramming for a test. That being said, I agree senior year is hard, but so is freshman, sophomore, and junior year, so people need to just deal with it and stop resorting to these unfair and absurd rules.

 

Sincerely,

Anna Piskun ‘18

 

 

 

Dear Underclassman,

 

I am a senior. This means I have survived about eight CRPs, four years of Mag Drive, and multiple school pets. I am tired. Literally, my idea of sleep is just that–an idea.

Now that you know some background as to where I am coming from, I can now explain to all the upper and underclassmen the implicit rules of Pres. First of all, let’s get one thing straight. The question isn’t about equality, it’s about seniority. The fact is, the longer you stay with something, the more privileges you get and there’s nothing unfair about that.

Even the United States Senate awards its senior members with privileges for serving their time. I learned that in AP Gov–which I took as an upperclassman. So certain privileges, like sitting on a table during lunch, is something that I think is reasonable. After all, It’s not like you won’t get to experience this anyway. You just have to be patient. I was, and so were the many generations of Pres girls before me.

That being said if an underclassman were to sit in my spot, I’m not about to scream at them till they leave. I’m sure that all upperclassmen will agree with me when I say sorry that you experienced that. Obviously, that upperclassman had no chill.

As for Pan Pan, seniors won this year because the judges thought our dance was the best and we had the most participation. End of discussion. There have been many times where the seniors haven’t won Pan Pan. This year just wasn’t one of them.

Finally, the other issues you brought up, not being able to stop in the middle of the hallway, always using the right doors when leaving the hallway, and not being able to sit in front of doors, those are there because of common sense. Think of Pres hallways like a highway. You drive on the right side of the road and if you try swerving to the left, or try stopping in the middle of the road, people will honk and you will get hit. As underclassmen you should learn this since you will be driving soon.

Yes, upperclassmen have been through a lot but it’s not at the expense of the underclassmen. We are all survivors of Pres. Some are just farther along than others and they should be awarded for that.

 

Sincerely,

Kirsten Wigant ‘16