Pacer Zone Coming Soon

Addie Knell and Julia Adams

LAKERIDGE HIGH– Implementing the Pacer Zone will help to address student’s patterns of misbehavior, administrators hope.

‘Pacer Zone’ should begin sometime in October. The idea for this came from Assistant Principal Doc Willis.

“It is a way to allow students to talk about how they have offended, why they have offended, what they can do to keep from offending in the future, set goals, and be successful in the future,” Willis said.

Pacer Zone will be a small group of students and trusted adults in the Lakeridge community. It will meet before school in a conference room in order to have productive and relationship-building conversations. 

“Students might request an administrator to sit in, that would be fine. It’s another way to have a student build a relationship with the administrator,” Willis said.

The idea is to create a more welcoming and comfortable environment for students to speak about possible wrongdoings.

In order to be a part of the ‘Pacer Zone,’ a student could be referred by any adult in the school. It is not just for serious offenses, and a routinely misbehaving student could be referred for anything.

Many people are still in the dark about ‘Pacer Zone’ and when explaining it to science teacher Mr. Patrick Connolly, he shared his opinion.

“It can be beneficial,” Connolly said. “As long as it’s done right, but student accountability still needs to matter.”

This is not a punishment, nor a reward. Pacer Zone is a space for students to take responsibility and understand their actions. Overall it is believed that by not being immediately sent to an administrator, students have the opportunity to relax and grow from poor behavior.

“There is another mechanism in place where the student doesn’t feel like they are in trouble,” said Willis.

Rather than ‘Pacer Zone’ being teacher lead, it seems Mr. Colby Neal, engagement specialist, and counselors will be leading, and students will be able to have an open discussion with them about their offenses. 

Willis said, “It will be good to build a relationship with Mr. Neil, maybe a counselor.”

This system has yet to begin due to busy schedules, but should be seen around the school very shortly.