Hallway Etiquette


Photo caption: Senior Reagan McMichen showed how it feels to be run into in the hallway when you are just trying to get to class on time and demonstrates how not to stop in the hallway (Photo by Sarah Treusch)

Chaos: that’s the best description of the halls of North Forsyth for the 42 minutes in total of class change. There is an extreme lack of organization and complete disregard for respect for others. It is almost as if the laws of the road don’t apply anymore. The punishment for four tardies is silent lunch, but in order to get from one end of the school to the other in the six allotted minutes, one must bob and weave throughout the battle zone. We must choke the problem from the root: the traffic and the terrible hallway etiquette. 


  1. The Right Side of the Hallway


The same way that we drive on the right side of the road, we should be walking on the right side of the hallway or stairs. It’s common sense. The flow of traffic is completely violated when you walk in the middle or the left side of the hallway. People have to change their directions when you penetrate the other side of the hallway. For most, walking on the right side of the hallway is natural; they are not the problem in this situation. It’s the people who break this pattern and decide that the left side of the hallway would be a good place to walk even though there is oncoming traffic of students. The absolute worst example of people not walking on the correct side is the stairs. For some reason, before or after Raider Time the stairs become absolutely wild. Both sides of the stairs will be completely dedicated to only going up or down, and for anyone who has to go the opposite direction, it’s like facing a herd of bulls head on.


  1. Stopping Locations


Listen, if you’re going to stop in the hallway during class change, do it intelligently. Really think about where you are stopping. How many people are you negatively affecting by stopping where you are? Some good locations are those mini hallways in the 400 and 500 halls or by the elevator in the 800 hall. Maybe it’s just me, but the middle of the main hallway is not the place to stop. On my way to second period everyday, I have to pass through the cafeteria on my way to the 200 hall–from the 500 hall might I add–and the area right before the cafeteria by the vending machine and the bathrooms becomes too congested. Side note, that had to be the worst place to relocate the vending machine. Administration has tried to aid this traffic point. I have even heard the quote “if you stop, we are going to pull you over, and you will get silent lunch” from an administrator, which administrator I could not pinpoint because I was more focused on getting to my second period.


  1. Merging


Merging into different hallways can be difficult because we don’t have blinkers, but it can be made easier if you don’t shove into people. Wait for a small gap. The world will not collapse if you wait 3 seconds. Don’t run into people, guys. It’s common sense. However, it is important to note that one should move over a little bit before pausing to change directions in the hallway because there will most likely be a person following closely behind, and straight up stopping right in front of them will lead to unnecessary collisions. There is a right and wrong way to merge in the hallway. 


  1. Texting and Walking


Unless you are a master texter that can text without looking at your phone, texting and walking can be extremely dangerous and lead to collisions. Also, without sole focus on the hallways and the people around you, it immensely slows down the speed of walk. Getting bumped into in the hallway is aggravating, and you never know if someone is having a bad day that you unintentionally made worse. It is understandable that most classes during the day now have a no phone policy, so the class change is notable for being one of the few periods of time during the school day that one can go on their phone. If its not that important though, it is simple to avoid it to benefit the mass. 


  1. Speed of Walk


My biggest pet peeve that I have found in my high school career is slow walkers. For me personally, my schedule leads me from one end of the school to the other, back and forth, so when I get stuck behind meandering students who don’t care if they are tardy or don’t have as long of a stretch to arrive to their next class, it can be incredibly frustrating because it is out of my control. Yet, if I get marked as tardy, I will be penalized since it is my responsibility to get to class on time. If slow walkers simply picked up the speed a little bit–not even to fast walking pace, just slightly quicker–or moved to one side of the hallway, everyone would benefit greatly. 


I’ve said it once, and I will say it again. The way that some people walk in the hallways makes me fear for the way that they drive or the day that they drive. For some of the 14-year-old freshmen, they have my slight understanding because they may not have even started studying for their learners permits, so the rules of the road are far beyond their life knowledge. Everyone else–especially the drivers–have little to no excuses for the poor hallway etiquette that is practiced every day. North Forsyth would be a more enjoyable environment if everyone could take a second and evaluate how their manners in the hallway affect other people. There is a total of 42 minutes of class change on a seven period day, which is more than enough to effectively ruin someone’s day.