Visitors at Nick Jeralds Middle School can hear lockers closing and students walking, but they will not hear students chatting between classes. Principal Terry Brown has come up with the notion to have silent hallways.
"We have to teach students how to behave the proper way. This policy will help in that regard," he said.
According to Brown, if it takes five minutes to settle a class down five days a week, that is 25 minutes. Multiply that by the 36 weeks in the school year and that is 900 minutes total. If you divide that by a 45-minute class, a student can miss up to 20 classes a year for disruptions.
Students who talk and walk can find themselves in detention if they do it over and over again. Brown said he started hushing the hallways at the beginning of the school year. He said it has cut down on discipline problems and students being late for class.
The kids do not like less social time, but most say they understand why it is that way.
"I think it's good because there's less conflict," said one student.
Chatila Lewis, an eighth-grader at the school, said there are ways around the silence.
"We are like, 'Meet me in the bathroom,' or the teachers will give us a five-minute break and we get as much gossip in as we can," she said.
Officials say another Cumberland County school has implemented the same policy and two more are thinking about it.
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