by The Milton Measure on Friday, December 9th, 2011
This Monday, head monitors Tom Schnoor and Molly Gilmore announced the return of Gotcha, which had been terminated abruptly to the dismay of the student body.
On Monday, November 14th Mr. Ball made an announcement to end Gotcha, citing serious safety violations as well as the constant disruption of classes as his primary concerns.Almost immediately after the email was sent, students began speculating as to the reason for the cancellation and later postponement. A commonly held theory was that a specific incident involving a freshman girl suffering a concussion while chasing a sophomore boy was the principle reason for the email. However, Ball admits that he “didn’t hear about that story until the day after” the email was sent. The complaints of several teachers had a far more direct effect on his decision, noted Mr. Ball. Gotcha, with all of its panic, pandemonium and paranoia, made it difficult to conduct classes with students’ full attention, especially at the beginning and end of class when students were busy planning escape routes and avoiding taggers.
Ball cites issues about safety, specifically regarding Centre Street, as his principle concern and “an important factor in his thinking.” This year, a new rule was instituted that disallowed tagging on or around Centre Street. “The reason for the rule concerning Centre Street was because of last year,” said Ball. “We were trying to address concerns that we had detected…and the margin for error is not really one we want to test.”
In his second email to students titled “Gotcha, revisited,” Ball cited “concerns about respect for the rules of the game, respect for the spirit of the game, and respect for [the] academic mission of the school.” All three factors, he says, contributed to the games postponement. Ball said that even if “only 100 students, approximately 15% of the school, don’t follow the spirit of the game, they can ruin it for everyone.”
Gotcha returns this week with one caveat: if Gotcha fails once again, it will forever be eliminated from Milton Academy. This round of gotcha will serve as an experiment that both the deans and the students hope will prove that Gotcha can be enjoyed in a safe and nondisruptive manner.
Some students expressed dismay that only those still in from the original Gotcha game will be receiving targets this week. However Mr. Ball points out that with “fewer students there’s less potential for something to go wrong.”
Short URL: http://miltonmeasure.org/?p=2408