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Everyone has noticed a change in the way the tables are arranged at lunch this year. Instead of rows the tables are arranged into zones. I think that zones are a good concept but the execution needs some work.

Last year, when our tables were placed in rows with two tables pushed together, but now there are a lot of single tables that can fit a lot less people. When our tables were still in rows all of my friends could fit at one table without anyone getting left out, but now that we have zones there are not enough places at the table for everyone and someone has to sit by themselves. If the zones had two tables pushed together the no one would have to be excluded.

With zones we also have to stand in the line to get our lunches longer. This gives less time to eat our food and socialize. The less time we have to eat our food the more of that food is thrown away which is very wasteful. Once again just switching the tables back to the way they were last year would eliminate this problem. Last year we were dismissed by table to stand in the lunch line which was very effective.

Zones also allow a larger group of kids to sit in the same area, which is good in some aspects but in others is not so good. When we are dismissed, kids who didn’t get to sit at the same table as their friends try to catch up with them. Often times this results in them forgetting to throw away their trash, which just makes more work for the cafeteria staff.

Overall, the way the lunch tables were laid out last year was more effective. I believe that the way we used to sit at lunch is better than the way we sit at lunch now. The old way made sure that no one could feel left out, and they cut down on the wait time in the lunch line while causing us to produce less waste at the same time. Also, the new table arrangement has us leaving more trash behind at our tables. Zones sound like a good idea on paper but in reality they have more flaws than bonuses.

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