Loss of privileges: Is Participation truly key?

The final football game of the 2023-2024 school year against Saugus High School is one many students may miss if theyre on the LOP list, photo taken on October 26, 2023 at Canyon High School.
The final football game of the 2023-2024 school year against Saugus High School is one many students may miss if they’re on the LOP list, photo taken on October 26, 2023 at Canyon High School.
Dylan Vo

Loss of Privileges: Participation or Behavior? Two Sides. Two Opinions.

Golden Valley High School has a policy called Loss of Privileges (LOP), and students are at a loss for words with what it takes away. Loss of Privileges is a policy that affects many students at Golden Valley. A policy that holds students accountable for actions like tardies, grades, and misbehavior. With some students being unhappy, and others not affected at all, is this the best policy to ensure students are kept up to the highest standards?

Background and Importance: Admins’ Take

Loss of Privileges is a policy that has lasted for about seven years at Golden Valley, and in recent years, there have been many changes “We took a backstep during the pandemic” expressed Mr. Frias, principal of Golden Valley.

LOP used to be enforced as soon as students had 10 or more absences and or tardies per quarter; now “students are given double the amount of absences and tardies,” Mr. Frias clarified. When students re-entered society following online learning, it “Took time to re-introduce everybody,” expressed Mr. Frias.

It is well known that Golden Valley is a school that has devotion towards its students’ participation. When placed on the LOP list, students’ privileges are taken away– meaning they can not attend games, dances, or rallies “To some degree there is a position saying that we are hurting the participation of students,” Mr. Frias states.

Participation is a big part of most students’ experience at school. It’s what motivates them to get through the year. However, some students forget that all it takes is a call, or even an email to get them off the list, “If [absences or tardies]are excused, it doesn’t count” Mr. Frias expressed.

Students who don’t have Loss of Privileges have the opportunity to attend school events like the football games, photo taken on October 26, 2023 at Canyon High School. (Dylan Vo)

“Pick your poison” voiced Mr. Frias. Students complain that they can’t enjoy events with friends, but if the groups of people who are on LOP are granted this privilege, it is argued that the joy of the event is no longer apparent.

In previous years, “There is also evidence that students that go to events aren’t taking care of (their) business on campus, (…)and don’t behave properly,” said Mr. Frias. Now that this policy is in effect, students can focus on responsible enjoyment of an event, instead of the same hassles administration deals with at school. “[The LOP system] is not perfect, but we are pleased,” Mr. Frias said.

So, why is it important? LOP holds students accountable for their actions. Students feel more obligated to get to school on time, or get their grades up because their privileges taken away have that much value. School in general is important, but high school prepares students for life ahead of them. If students aren’t showing up to school, they are missing out on valuable lessons that prepare them for their future. In other words, it “Keeps students grounded on the purpose of being a student,” stated Mr. Frias.

How it affects students: Students Take

Loss of Privileges has the potential to affect every student on campus at Golden Valley High School. The consequences that come with being tardy, absent, or bad behavior can have different effects on a student’s life and experiences. With the LOP policy present, some students feel school has lost its fun, “It makes it feel like a prison, an open air prison,” Golden Crockett, a senior here at Golden Valley, expressed.

Students’ experience on campus can be changed with the LOP policy’s effects. Being able to attend dances, rallies, games, or leaving campus early- a big part of the high school experience- is being removed with the LOP policy. Alyssa Estacio, another senior, has friends who are on the LOP list and has stated, “They feel really annoyed about it, they were excited about leaving campus [during lunch] this year but now they cannot.”

One way students can see if they’re on the LOP list is by scanning their ID card or their bar code on the Five Star app at the entrance to the school’s events, photo taken in the 2022-2023 school year by Samantha Sandoval. (Samantha Sandoval)

LOP was put in place to hold students accountable for their actions, and in some ways, that has been done. “I’ve been seeing less people late to class,” Alyssa Estacio voiced. Since this is a policy that has the power to change one’s highschool experience, some students take their attendance and behavior more seriously.

However, to excuse an unexcused attendance, it’s as easy as having a parent or guardian make a phone call. If it is excused, it doesn’t count- Mr Frias makes clear, which raises the question by Golden Crockett, “Why have LOP if you can have your parents call the school to get rid of it easily?” It is a pointless policy in the eyes of Golden Crockett and many others around campus.

In a conducted poll, 20 students were interviewed anonymously about their experiences with the LOP policy. 75% of students expressed they did not favor the policy, 60% of students found LOP to be ineffective, and 40% found it to be effective.

There are some students, however, who don’t necessarily care about the policy because it doesn’t directly affect them. Alyssa Estacio being one of those students; “I don’t mind it, because I know I can get to class on time,” she stated. Comparatively to other students, like Golden Crockett, the Loss of Privileges establishment hits home. It is challenging for her to get to school on time because of family obligations.

School participation is threatened with the policy in effect. Students aren’t able to experience activities in full effect under Loss of Privileges. To Golden Crockett, this is enraging as she feels like she is missing out on what high school has to offer. She disassociates herself from Golden Valley due to the policy, “It makes me want to participate in activities elsewhere, not at my school. I’d rather go to a different school.” Some may argue student participation is lower at GV compared to other schools around the Hart District, and that LOP has a big role in it.

Where does the policy go from here?

An alternative students have proposed to the LOP policy, is to remove the consequences of being tardy for the first period. Students have voiced a surplus of challenges when it comes to arriving on time to school-traffic, transportation, family obligations and so forth.

Alyssa Estacio believes that LOP being enlisted for first period isn’t fair to students, but she doesn’t support the entire elimination of the policy, “For second period and third period they have plenty of time to get to class, so I do not think LOP is out of line there” she voiced. With a modified Loss of Privileges policy, student participation on and off campus may increase. There is also a potential for school to feel better for all students at Golden Valley High School.

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About the Contributors
Janai Holland, Section Editor
Janai Holland, is currently a senior and a Section Editor on the Campus News Team for the Grizzly Gazette.  She is in two diffrent levels of theater. Theater two is children's theater which requires me to have a good personality and be very energetic and theater three is the main stage production, which is the play produced for the school. She is very passionate about storytelling, poetry, and music. She is a part of Golden valleys new clubs, Fables and Films. She is a current member of NSHSS. She is very excited to talk about the Golden Valley community in general, which may include details about new and upcoming clubs, our arts department, and give insight on some students and topics we as a community are unaware about. Writing about these topics will not only be compelling to write about but it will also captivate our audience and give them more information that is valuable to them. Being a student journalist allows her to gain a better understanding of where she goes everyday along with trying to give this same understanding if not a better one to the people in our community.
Akina Ma’at, Section Editor
Akina Ma'at, a senior at Golden Valley High School and the Section Editor of the Campus News Team from the DMV (Dc, Maryland, Virginia) area is a passionate writer who loves any opportunity to speak truth to power. She recently found passion in poetry, utilizing it as a tool for self expression and self freedom. Besides her love for poetry, Akina has been a dedicated basketball player for 9 years, while currently playing on the GV girls basketball team. She’s also been a part of the track team here at GV as well as the vice president of the Black Student Union. Outside of school Akina has participated in oratorical competitions, and she serves as the Teen President for the Jack and Jill Santa Clarita and Antelope Valley chapter. Akina is beyond excited to cover campus and community news. Being a student writer is important to Akina because she understands the power and importance of accurate news. She values perspective and promises to bring that into every piece she writes. She also finds it pretty exciting that the Grizzly Gazette is in its earlier years of getting established. To her that means that she can contribute to the foundation of the newspaper. She is ready to make her mark!
Dylan Vo, Photographer
Dylan Vo is the photographer for the Campus News Team of the Grizzly Gazette. He is currently a senior at Golden Valley High School and has been attending it since his freshman year. On top of his position in the Grizzly Gazette, he is also the Treasurer of both SkillsUSA and DFY in SCV, participates in clubs like Asian Student Union, CSF, and Bring Change to Mind, works for the school’s Front Office through his Student Service, is a CTE Pathway Completer, and has plenty of hours and experience in community service. He also possesses a Youtube channel with over 800 subscribers that documents various topics within video game communities. Some of his interests include editing and posting videos, playing video games, and using Photoshop to create new images and designs. The main reason he joined the Grizzly Gazette was to enhance his journalism skills not only for his channel, but also for the greater good of the school through its newsletter. A couple of topics he hopes to cover and mean the most to him are campus and online news because he feels the students and staff deserve to learn more about events that take place on school grounds and on the internet. Being a student journalist to him means being a part of something that can make a positive difference to the school and can expose writers to both new and old skills that can assist them throughout their lives.
Samantha Sandoval, Managing Editor, Photography
Samantha Jewel Sandoval is a staff writer for the Arts, Media, & Culture News Team for The Grizzly Gazette for their senior year. She was born and raised in Los Angeles, California. They have always enjoyed animation, drawing, and especially singing/music. Sam has been in show choir for all of their four years of high school being the vice president and joined theatre last year. They’re really excited and hopeful for their last year of high school and hoping to learn and write about so many different topics they believe light should be let on more in art and entertainment. She believes that without art, music, and stories there would be no joy in life. Samantha is passionate about anything art related and how the magic and beauty of art is created. Being a journalist, is something new to them, but, she is hoping to share more art and creativity things in our world educating people on art, culture, entertainment, and how all of it is created.