e-hallpass at PCH



David Smith (12) fills out an e-hall pass.

Brooke Kraizer, Editor-in-Chief

E-hall passes are the newest innovation at Parkway Central. The passes were originally created during the 2019-2020 school year to help teachers keep track of students when leaving the classroom. Although they are about two years old they were originally introduced to the PCH community on Nov.15. This pass includes features and benefits such as; contact tracing, contactless hall pass, volume tracking and cleaning. Since this pass requires no contact, it can eliminate the spread of paper pass germs and keep as many people safe during the pandemic. It can also help the administration identify contact tracing if someone were to test positive for COVID-19. This pass can also help the destinations such as bathrooms, vending machines or offices get too crowded by putting a limit on the locations. If a location is already full it will indicate that a student needs to use a different restroom or wait until someone else has left. It can also show the most highly populated areas so they can be cleaned routinely. In order to use the pass, you have to enter your location, where you want to go and then your teacher has to approve it. Grade level principal, Sarah Power has invested a lot of time in implementing the e-hall pass into PCH. It is helpful for her because now when there is an outbreak she can identify who was around them and determine their next steps. Power can also look at how often certain students are leaving class and use the data to help improve things for the future.

Power never looked at the system as a way to track students but more of a way to improve students’ experiences while at school.

I think the pros outweigh the cons,” Power said.

 Most students weren’t too thrilled about this new system for leaving class. Parkway adopted the e-hallpass for a few different reasons. It felt like more of a tracking device than a safety feature.When Henry Miller (12) first found out about the pass, he was not very happy. As time has gone on he has realized that it could be a positive thing but there is still a lot of confusion that needs to be opened up by teachers or administration.

 “I think it would be good for the school to be clear that nobody is being tracked,” Miller said.    

 Like anything, there are definitely pros and cons to having this new system. For example, a pro is that they can contact trace and keep students accountable while a con is the interruption it causes during class.

As a freshman, Xavier Marshall was introduced to the E-hall pass in middle school. Since he has experience and has been able to work through the system the pass has not been a huge concern of his. Although he does have the extra year experience, he can get frustrated with how much time it can take for a pass to be approved.

“It does interrupt class and takes time since the teacher has to stop the lesson, go to the computer, approve it and then the person is able to go,” Marshall said.

This pass is still very new and there are definitely things to work on but one thing for sure is that it is not going away anytime soon. Over the past few weeks there have been less students roaming in the halls, more time spent in class and contact tracing has been made way easier.