Is E-hall passing inspection?

Nathaniel Jackson

A new addition to Rolla High School this year is a digital hall pass system. E-Hall Pass is a program used in every classroom implemented in order to replace the paper hall passes that the high school previously used. Rolla High School assistant principal Dr. Stephanie Grisham has assisted with implementing the new system.

“We weren’t really prompted [into integrating e-hall pass] until last year. We were having some issues with multiple kids in the hallways. We had the bathroom incidents last year, which spurred some changes that we had to make. So we really started looking over it in the later part of last year,” said Grisham.

Grisham was referring to last semester when the bathrooms were closed to only one location per floor. This was due to vandalism including stall doors being ripped off and multiple other incidents occurring both during class and through the passing periods. A similar situation is occurring with recent social media trends encouraging students to steal things such as soap dispensers from the school.

According to the official website for E-Hall pass, their main goal is to prevent abuse of paper hall passes. They also advertise their system’s ability to support social distancing, building security, and classroom management.

At Rolla High School, along with fewer students being in the hall at the same time, and less unsupervised hallway trips, one clear advantage of the system is that the school is using much less paper by using E-Hall passes instead of physical slips. For teachers, it is also much easier to arrange and view appointments with students during Pride.

On the opposing side, there are a lot of students that are not in favor of the new hall pass system. When Senior Lexi Gillman was asked on her opinion on E-Hall pass, she said,
“I think technology is really useful in a school setting. Like [Google] Classroom is amazing, but when it comes to using the bathroom or just going to the nurse, it seems like it’s really unnecessary.”

Other students agree.

“E- Hall pass is kind of useless. Most of my teachers don’t know how to use it or don’t use it at all,” noted senior Trevor Cox.

However, some students also acknowledged the problems of vandalism and student traffic between classes.

“I mean, last semester, on the last day of school, there were 50 girls in one bathroom at the same time,” said senior Asia Ellingsworth.

In spite of the underlying problems, Cox is skeptical that conditions will change.

“I don’t think it’s really changed much from last year, I see the same things happening as last year,” said Cox.

One goal of the E-hall Pass system is to monitor movement within the building.

“It’s basically an accountability system where it will track data of where students are. Not only does it track you, it tracks how many passes they’ve had that day,” said Grisham.

This feature allows teachers to know how many times students have already gone to the bathroom, a different teacher, or if they have used any other passes that day. For a lot of students who have spent time at the high school without E-Hall passes, this new system seems flawed.

Some students are also more worried about the path that may follow E-hall passes, fearing a more authoritative administration.

“Faculty that have problems controlling the students, because they have no respect for their students, create this kind of way to control the students,” said Gillman.

E-Hall pass is a new change to the high school that everyone is learning and, like everything new, will take a little time to get used to.

“We are all trying. We bought a license for a year to see how it works, and so far it’s been useful,” said Dr. Grisham.