Shhhould the Silent Study Hall Become Permanent?


Signs in the library tell students about the all day study hall

Talley Johnston , Editor in Chief

The stereotype of a high school library is dark, dusty, dead silent room staffed with librarians who are always “shhhhh”ing students if they even breathe. However, the library at Western is the opposite.  It has skylights, people are walking through, you can eat, and you do not have to be quiet.  I am a fan of walking through the library because it is a shortcut to most of my classes and I also appreciate that we can eat while we study, but what I don’t understand is the busy atmosphere of the library.  

During study hall I always go to the library to avoid the noisy cafeteria so I can be productive.  If I want to hang out with my friends and take a break from school, I stay downstairs.  Except now it has become common to hang out in the library and not actually study.  People chat and lounge on the couches, watch videos in the corners, and have full-on conversations.  

Don’t get me wrong, I am not a quiet person, but I would like to have a place in the school where I can be focused.  I had never experienced a silent library until exam week and I got a lot of work done.  There were no distractions of people’s conversations or looking up to see who is walking through.  It resembled the environment of what a library should be.  

 I think that the library should be allowed to be more strict about noise; if people really just want to socialize, they should go to the cafeteria. Obviously, asking someone a question or having a quiet conversation is no big deal, but for the most part, it should be a nice study environment for those who need to be focused.      

Even the librarians support the silent study hall and have received positive feedback from students about the new change.

The library is a nice social scene. People should still eat lunch in there and come to sit on the couches, but should always keep in mind that a library is a place where students should be able to study.   

I am glad to see that the library is becoming more like this ideal study space that I mentioned before, by making a silent lunch, but I feel as if it should be more focused on silent study hall periods.  

The students who eat lunch in the library now have nowhere to go, and because of the school wide lunch period there are no open tables in the cafeteria.  It is easier for the students who wish to study during lunch to find an empty classroom than an entire library to find a place to eat their lunch.  

To summarize, I think it would be the best of both worlds to make the library open for lunch and socialization, and to make study hall in the library more strict on noise and socialization.