Flex-Mod: The Rise and Fall of the South High Library


Zachary Kaffine

With the dawn of change in South High’s scheduling format, problems have appeared, and cooperation and tolerance has been used to fix these problems. Whether it be changing Homeroom times and lunch times, downsizing conflicts, or addressing inconsistent attendance, the South High staff are trying to deem this year a successful transition for years to come. Though some stability has been in place, one aspect of Flex-Mod in constant flux is the state of the library. At the start of the school year, the library reflected the hectic nature of Flex-Mod. People would stream in and out, and it was quite chaotic. Food was strewn across the floor, tables and chairs were astray, and “shoes were thrown” according to Ms. Mariya Grabow, South High’s Librarian. After putting up with the complications of Flex-Mod for one semester, library went in limbo. New regulations have put in place to try to keep the library the way it was before this new schedule format. Grabow explained, “I want a place where students can work quietly, keeping it slow and quiet it really speaks about what we were all along.” Grabow has been the Librarian for the past five years, and has been the primary witness to the two faced nature of the library this year. Since Flex-Mod is a relatively new format, there are only three other schools in Wisconsin that have the same schedule: Pulaski, Merrill, and Wausau West- all of them have been in touch with Grabow. When she conversed with these schools there was one consensus, the library is a definite downside to Flex-Mod. With problems overflowing the stability of the library, it needed to refresh and start again. Thus, a new plan was implemented. No one can be in the library unless they: have a pass, have more than three Mods or more of study hall, and have a learning objective. This has caused not only a stoppage of students heading to the library, but a growing resentment of it as well. The library was an obvious convenience to students; it was close to classes and it was a comfortable place to relax, even for a Mod or so. Instead of making the trek to the commons, or being under the surveillance of one’s teacher in resource, the library allowed students freedom to be in an accessible learning environment. Yet, with freedom comes responsibility, and some of the students of South High exploited the freedoms that the library allowed. Instead of the quiet workplace the library allows, students would come in with no intention on working, and were very loud and obnoxious to people trying to work in the area. Students treated it as the commons rather than a library. Students were packed into tables with their friends, chattering until it was time for the great migration out into the school once more. Each Mod was its own little exodus, and it was given with great fanfare and buzz. All this craziness was too much for the library. So, with students not abiding to the rules on talking, or on how many people allowed at a table, the library decided to be an exclusive club, for people who wish to have a quiet workplace for more than three Mods. Though these may benefit students who wish to have a nice quiet workplace, there are students who don’t have the time for three Mods in a day. By closing the window for students with many awkward “One-Modders”, the library has truly lost its convenience and the decrease in occupants reflects that. Though the library has slipped into its pre-Flex-Mod ways, it has a protocol for the future. One part of this protocol is the permanent pass. This pass has been given to some already, and will be available to anyone who wishes for it. Instead of just releasing the hounds like at the beginning of the year, the library is instead making the smart move of initiating a gradual change throughout this semester.

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The new rules have resulted in much less students spending their open mods in the Library.

“The permanent pass will be revocable and there will be rules still set in place, and a limit to the amount of students in the library” clarified . With a new plan in place, the library can move on from its hectic past, and look forward to a more stable future. With the hope for some to migrate back to this oasis of knowledge and study, the library will become a place that always intended to be. It is certain that the library will change again in the future, but with each new year, semester, month, week, day, and hour, baby steps will be made in hope for a perfectly flexible future.