Empty Senior Parking- Fluke or Trend?

Zain Khan

Manhasset High School has recently had a confusing situation occur with its senior class, as many of the senior-allocated parking spots are empty at the start of the first semester. For senior parking, groups of 3-4 class D licensed drivers can apply for a spot as one group, and receive the spot for the whole semester. These spots are a rare and sought-after commodity for students who can drive, and it was expected that the class of 2020, being the largest ever at Manhasset, was expected to use up all 30 of the spots. Despite that, only 22 groups had applied for spots by the September 10th deadline. There were also delays on students with their parking forms. A week after the deadline, only four of the empty spots had already been filled. The assistant principal of Manhasset High School, Peter Vercessi, explains, “In the fall, half to more than half of seniors have gotten their full license. When they get their full license, they apply, and by October 1st, all the spots are usually filled.”

Although many seniors feared that they would not be able to get a spot, the smaller number of applicants is common for the fall semester, and people may also not apply for a spot during first semester for other reasons too. Vercessi adds, “Students wait for friends, since we ask for a minimum of three people and a maximum of four per carpool group. second semester, we expect 40 to 42 applicants for the 30 spots, and priority is given to new drivers.” Despite the rumors that there is a trend for less seniors to drive, the placement of birthdays and the advantages of having new members in a group adds to the reduced numbers in the fall. The class of 2020 will still be expected to have many new carpool groups in the spring, as smaller senior classes in the past have had 40-42 groups apply. Even though there has been a seemingly meager number of drivers this fall, the advantages of driving to school are recognized by the seniors, and when they are fully prepared, they will apply to receive their spots.