The senior lounge was revamped for this year, and as seniors settle in they are enjoying their new space. The biggest changes to the lounge come in the form of a window that looks out into the hallway and a camera mounted on the ceiling inside the room.
The other big change is its appearance. This year’s seniors created a committee of three students–Adira Kahn, Mery Kamhazi, and Ezriel Duchman– to decorate and maintain the lounge. Along with furniture donated by school families, the students were given a $150 budget to purchase amenities. The class raised an additional ten dollars from each senior to supplement their funds. Currently the lounge features a cozy, white L-shaped couch, a seven-foot table with six chairs, a mini-fridge, and a microwave. The seniors are also thinking of adding an Xbox.
The aesthetics of the lounge mark a big departure from last year’s lounge, which contained an old futon and two bean bag chairs.
“They had stuff that had been here for years, so it was kind of gross,” Kahn said. “They didn’t put so much effort into it.”
Kahn said this year’s seniors wanted the look of their lounge to reflect their excitement about being seniors.
“Everyone looked forward to having a senior lounge because they saw it as a refuge from all the hard work and where you can relax. It’s our place, so we wanted to make it as much our own as possible.”
Seniors have access to the lounge at all times. They can usually be found lounging during lunch and whenever they have a free period. Currently, the door remains unlocked at all times, but to prevent other students from entering the lounge, there will be a keypad installed to the door, to which only seniors will have the code.
Although many seniors are enthusiastic about the lounge, some expressed discomfort about the window and camera, saying they feel like they are in a fish bowl.
“There’s a certain feeling of comfortability when you have privacy,” said senior Alex Farkas. “Not when juniors and freshmen and sophomores can just walk across nonchalantly and see you.”
Others say they don’t mind being watched, but believe there’s too much monitoring.
“Only one is necessary because having both, it just feels that it is too open to everyone,” said Moshe Goldring. “I know there has to be at least one of those things because you have to monitor us, but I feel that both are unnecessary. Just pick one.”
According to Rabbi Assaraf, the purpose of the window is to add “natural light” and promote the school when new families tour. The camera was added to make sure no students other than seniors are in the lounge. In addition, last year’s lounge was vandalized, and the administration had to restrict the lounge to the whole class. This year, a camera will ensure that any student who breaks the rules in the lounge will be punished, instead of having to revoke privileges from the entire class.
Despite the camera and window, seniors consider the new and improved lounge an upgrade from last year.
“It’s a good place to sleep,” said senior Shuee Shaulson. “I’m not camera shy.”
By: Eliot De Paz and Samantha Ebner (11th Grade)