Parking Lot Bandits


The madness of the DHS parking lot, 2022

Mariam Azeez B, Staff Writer

As the population size of Danbury High School increases, parking spot theft has become a recurring problem. Students often arrive at school only to find their spot taken by someone else, and despite reporting it, many say that it happens again.

Most students claim that it’s not a one-time mistake. Kelsey Brownwell, a junior at DHS, has found her spot taken over ten times. In fact, multiple students have reported having their spots taken over five times. While some students decided to report it to safety advocates and administrators, many have begun giving up on the notion that ‘Justice Always Prevails.’ One anonymous student stated that their spot “…was still taken after [they] reported it, by the same cars.” Many students staked out the parking bandits, only to discover that some of them are actually teachers. Yet, when reported, many times nothing actually happens.

Feelings of frustration, sadness, and anger flood the minds of students when they see their spot taken. Pearl Chia, a junior at DHS and a member of Word Warriors, the club that hosts the annual WordFest, experienced this firsthand. On April 5th, Chia arrived at school extra early to help set up for the biggest during-school-hours event of the year. However, Chia reported that her spot was stolen, forcing her to drive all the way to the unmarked parking spot area near the Black Box. This not only made Chia late for setting up, but also made the day much more stressful. Other students have even stated that their tardies added up due to being late, resulting in detentions in some cases. In addition to tardiness, stress, and general upset, these stolen spots amplify feelings of hopelessness as well. “If I paid sixty dollars for my spot, why is it that others are just allowed to take it? It feels unfair,” says Brownwell.

However, not all hope is lost in the hearts of students for change. Valerie Ramos, Class President of 2024, believes this problem can be avoided if “…all people who drive to school have a designated spot, regardless of whether they are staff or students. That way, no one can claim they have nowhere to park.” Chia believes that if the existing rules, such as daily sticker checks, are enforced, problems regarding parking lot integrity would arise less often. One anonymous student suggests that real tickets should be given to students who steal spots that are already taken. Another student questions why the parking lot thieves don’t just claim unmarked spots near the Black Box, since those are almost always vacant and available.

At the end of the day, all students and staff should remember that taking someone else’s spot could affect their performance and feelings. Regardless, school codes exist to enforce this honor system in such a large school. However, when the codes aren’t enforced, everyone is hurt in the process. Students who have had their spots taken each have their own ideas about what they would like to see done, signifying that change is possible as long as the school listens to the suggestions and stories of its students.