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Student responsibility up to students

With much interest and curiosity I read the column titled 'Why is the junior high showing films?' featured in the Oct. 12 issue of the Review. After finishing I was very disappointed and stirred by the topic. As I said in my last piece that it was bad enough students were not trusted to recognize each other, but now adults complaining about what we watch in school makes me extremely frustrated. I respect the fact that adults and families have morals and rules about what is acceptable and what is not, but cannot quite grasp why (Lake Oswego Junior High) School is being blamed for not following these family's standards when they are unique to each adult, let alone child.

The complaint made was about how films rated PG-13 should not be acceptable on school grounds and students should be prohibited to watch them while in a classroom. Students could make the choice to watch these films during their lunch hour, hence not during academic time. What troubles me most is that watching these films are decisions made by students, not forced down their throats by administrators. Maybe the finger should not be pointed at the teachers or school, but instead considered a responsibility of the student. This responsibility I speak of is what we take on as teenagers and students of middle school. We are at the age where our parents cut the cord, so to speak, and are entrusting us to make more decisions. Decisions such as ones about whether or not viewing a PG-13 movie is acceptable to the morals and standards we have been taught and raised with. My view as a 13 year old is that our teachers are not there to hold our hands and make sure we make the choice that is acceptable to our parents. It is not their responsibility to know what is going to give specific students nightmares and what is not. It is our decision, our responsibility and our choice, and if anyone should be blamed for our nightmares or viewing habits it is ourselves, not the administration. As we mature into adults we cannot be sheltered from things such as a PG-13 movie, we should instead learn to make the correct decision.

The teacher who opened this up to the students was not trying to corrupt our innocent minds. In fact this was to help students. To make lunch enjoyable for kids who had problems socializing or were tired of sitting alone. He even sent out notification that the movies playing could be of a mature genre. The way I see it is that every day at school we are given choices, and the decisions we make are based on our morals. For instance, I could have an entire lunch of candy because the student store is open, but I instead make the choice to have a healthy lunch because of the nutrition standards I was raised with. If you aren't allowed to watch a PG-13 movies at your home, why would you expect to be allowed to see them at school?

In conclusion, the point I am trying to make clear is that we are in junior high school, and whether or not we make the responsible decision is not up to our teachers or parents, but instead up to us. If we fail at this, the blame is not upon the school but ourselves, and as we mature and learn everyday it is important that not only students understand this, but adults as well.

Sammy J. Saldivar is an eighth grader at Lake Oswego High School.