Lottery Style Parking Lot Leads to Mixed Emotions


Sandhya Ganesan

Student parking lots are jam packed, and many seniors have now been inconvenienced with spots formally given to juniors, adding 30 minutes to their wait time after school.

Emily Wale, Gabby Laurente, and Kate Meyers

With the beginning of a new year, seniors have already found themselves in mixed emotions over their received parking spots. The spots offered to seniors at registration were expanded by administration from 375 to 400. 

This expansion not only increased the chances for seniors to move down in the main lot, but  gave juniors the ability to potentially draw a spot in the double digits as any left over spots from the seniors were allotted to them.  

Darin Jindra, assistant principal of SJHHS, explained the process for deciding this number, saying he took into account the size of the senior class for 2020 (which is 528). Knowing that not all seniors were going to drive, he had to pick a range limit that would be considered safe. Therefore, if a senior were to come to registration that wasn’t accounted for, they too will be given the fair opportunity of selecting “a desirable” parking spot. 

He pointed out that there were still a handful of “senior” spots left over that needed to go, then offering those spots to the juniors in their parking raffle. Jindra decided not to allow seniors with lower parking spots to redraw. “That would put me as judge and jury again. Saying everyone from 250 on you get to redraw; but then 249 would ask, ‘What about me? I want a shot,’” said Jindra. 

In the spirit of wanting to keep the parking raffle as fair as possible, Jindra decided to draw the line at 400 for the seniors, and whatever one drew, that would be the spot they would get. He reminds all those who drive to school to be appreciative of the spot they did receive because there were the unfortunate 22 juniors who did not receive a spot at all. “It’s the best of a nasty situation,” said Jindra. 

It’s the best of a nasty situation

— Jindra

Seniors have always believed that they will receive the desired student parking spots, but the changes this year prove that false. This affects not only current but future generations of seniors who rely on getting a fair, reasonable parking spot due to after school activities (such as extracurriculars or jobs).  

“I know juniors that have spots in the double digits and really good spots that should have been reserved for seniors to have instead of juniors. I understand that it is a lottery but they cannot tell us that seniors get priority when I know at least 30 seniors with spots in the last row of senior parking (350-400). I’m very bummed to start off my senior year this way,” said Kylee Rogers, who received spot 392.

This parking arrangement has upset many, but not all. A large number of seniors feel as though their seniority treatment has been put in jeopardy, while some have taken a more positive outlook on the matter.

“Yes, a lot of other seniors are upset about how parking was chosen this year, a lot of people got worse spots than they got last year,” said Taylor Schwalbe, “I think everyone should just be happy they got spots even if it’s worse than some of the juniors.”    

Though many seniors are upset, the new parking system does benefit juniors. It allows for a fair chance at receiving a decent parking spot, where in previous years this was not the case. Lucky juniors will receive a desired spot in the senior parking section (for example Lilly Keeler, who received spot 67), not because seniority was mixed about, but because the spaces simply were not chosen.