By Dylan Tulett
On February 24th, 2016, Dave Fitzpatrick, Dean of Students at Royal St George’s College (RSGC), announced three of the school’s most recent anti-bullying policies that have been set in place in an attempt to maximize upperclassmen empathy and minimize underclassmen casualties.
One of the new policies states that “if any underclassman is out of uniform, the article of clothing that he is missing will be forfeited from the grade 12 with the lowest GPA in the room,” said Fitzpatrick.
“After a talk with the Board, the school has decided to go ahead with these policies. It’s a way to appease the nerds, and remedy the mistreatment that goes on in a lot of high schools,” said Stephen Beatty, Headmaster of RSGC. “It’s usually the dumb, arrogant, jock types from grade 12 that pick on the underclassmen. Not anymore.”
Although many, like Fitzpatrick and Beatty, see only blue skies in the future of this design, a number of students, teachers, and staff are voicing their concerns about what this system holds for the natural order of RSGC.
“Boy, I really miss the days when you could just open up a locker, pull a niner out, and stuff a new one back in,” said rugby coach Peter Sarellas.
Fitzpatrick added that “whenever Ketchum Hall runs out of dessert, meals from grade 12 plates will be collected and given out to grade 9s as dessert.” Fitzpatrick seems especially proud of this policy. “I’m a bit of a stickler for respect. This new policy really just cements into place the notion that the younger grades are just as important as the older ones… if not more so,” said Fitzpatrick.
“Of course, I’m worried about the new rules,” said grade 12 Kai Ellis. “I need to be concerned with university applications, not with whether or not I’m going to go hungry again today.”
“If it’s self confidence that the grade 9s are supposed to be getting, then Mr. Fitzpatrick is doing a marvelous job,” said Nathan Byrne, a grade 12 student who reports having seen “two niners get up in the middle of Chapel while Joey McMeans was making an announcement, and they literally just mugged him, pants and all. Nobody stopped them.” Apparently this is a common occurrence. “The same thing happened when Nicholas Ramsubick was announcing the dates for community service opportunities,” reported Byrne.
The next policy, widely viewed as the most liberal of the three, is that “any student under 5’10” is permitted to carry a paddle around for self protection if they so desire, and any student under 5’7” is permitted to carry a supplementary taser, as well as the paddle, of course,” said Beatty in a press release after Chapel, attended by concerned parents. “I just don’t know if these precautions are enough,” said Karen Jenkins, mother of two, who pulled both students out of RSGC because Roger, her oldest, was denied permission to have a taser after measuring in at an inch over the limit.
“Being a niner used to be an insult, but now when I say it, I get put in the garbage. These damn kids have forced me to come up with new insults. How does ‘twelver’ sound? No, it’s just not the same. Damn niners took everything from me. Oh no! Did they hear that?” asked Michael Ciomyk (grade 12), who is seriously concerned about his health as well as the school’s “eco-system,” which is a common theme among the graduating class.
Others, like young RJ (grade 9), have bought in completely to these new policies. “Everybody has to get hazed. It’s our duty to the Royal College to haze these grade 12s. I expect the same treatment when I’m in grade 12. But for now, I’m entitled to certain freedoms that others just aren’t,” said RJ as he shoved Ciomyk into the washroom and locked it.
Though things around RSGC have already changed greatly, many believe that this is just a sign of things to come. “Who know what’s going to happen in the future, especially if these niners get any more entitled,” said Ciomyk.
“Do I believe that things will change? Oh, sure. There’s always room for improvement,” reported Fitzpatrick.