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Bomb Threat Protocol: A voice of reason amidst the chaos

In a school flipped upside down from the turmoil of bomb threats and newly instated rules, there is but one universal law upon which every student and faculty member alike can find common ground: And that is that everyone loves Ms. Charbonneau. So, I decided to interview her on her outlook on the current situation and it is my hope that you take away at least some of her words of wisdom and insight:

I started off asking if she has had to compensate as a teacher for the havoc that these threats have caused and how the New Rules affected her schedule and responsibilities. She replied that “to a certain extent teachers are used to getting their schedules disrupted, due to snowstorms or something; you really just have to roll with the punches so you adjust your schedules. If you had other plans you accommodate for that. You figure out a way to make it work. In terms of the way my classes run now with the new regulations, I don’t think that’s changed at all. Like literally students write down something on a piece of paper and then they can go – I’m not interviewing them before they leave the room. So it’s just an extra step in between when they want to leave and when they actually leave.” In other words, the New Rules are not that difficult of a system to maneuver around and don’t really disrupt life at BHS to the extent some students may claim them to. She also has to check bathrooms which, despite being cumbersome, is necessary in her opinion. She says,“I know that for Mr. Hagen this is not what he wants us to be spending our time doing, but it is a necessity.”

A major problem the students have with these new rules is that they feel that because the threats aren’t credible they shouldn’t be making such a big deal out of them. Even as a teacher who agrees that the threats aren’t real and must undergo the shift in regulations, Ms. Charbonneau recognizes the need for action: “I think if you have someone who is clearly comfortable continuing to make these threats, they always have to be taken seriously even if you do not believe they’re credible. You have to identify the person who is making these threats and of course do your due diligence and make sure these is nothing behind them. But also we have to show that we’re not a school that tolerates claims or statements or threats like that whether or not we actually believe something is going on.”

Many teachers have claimed that the school was very laid-back before the new rules and that the tighter handle on students’ whereabouts is closer to the norm in most schools today. Ms Charbonneau responded, “One of the reasons I wanted to work here was the culture Bedford High School has; ninety-nine percent of the student population rises to the occasion and you guys are great with the more open and relaxed rules that we have and I really enjoy the fact that students can move from place to place and it’s not something we need to police. But, I think these New Rules align a lot more with my own high school experience, and are even freer than some high school policies today. So whether or not people realize it, maybe it’s a reality check for how lucky we are to have the school that we do have.” And lastly, if you, inquisitive reader, are to take anything from this interview, it would be Ms. Charbonneau’s closing remarks directed at the entirety of the BHS student body: “I would just say, you know, everything that happens at this school whether it feels like students are being unfairly punished or not, everyone in this school wants the best for our students, so any decision that is made is made in the spirit of helping and supporting you. Sometimes that feels like it is restrictive and I understand that but it is all for the sake of making a better school where everyone is safe and everyone is happy and everyone is doing all of the things they should be doing. Also people don’t know what a quarantine or a prison actually is and should not be using those words *laughs*. As an english teacher the literal definition would not agree that Bedford High School is a prison. It’s ridiculous.”