Full Inbox, Empty Messages


If you’d have asked me as I entered my junior year if I wanted to receive even more emails to add to my already full inbox, I would have given you an adamant, passionate, resounding “NO” (something akin to that one Micheal Scott GIF… you know the one). Because 2,000+ emails from various colleges and corporations are already enough. 

And yet, there is an air of frustration among the student body about not receiving certain emails from school administration. 

Now, I know what you’re thinking. “That doesn’t make sense. Make that make sense.” 

After all, students shouldn’t want more administrative emails after complaining about getting 60 other emails a day. 

The Friday Updates sent out from the desk of Principal Nicole Carter communicate the likes of upcoming spirit days and sports games, as well as the occasional reminder of an upcoming event. But the reality is we live in an age of a global pandemic and school shootings. 

School administrators should prioritize sending email updates to high school students along with parents/guardians in order to better communicate information to the student body. By doing this, the consequences of missed opportunities and deadlines, and compromised safety can be avoided. 

The issue at hand is that parents are receiving emails containing information students should have, from important forms that need to be filled out, to serious concerns regarding school safety.

Here are just a few examples:


Parents were the first to receive their login information for PowerSchool, a platform that communicates student grades, schedules, teachers, attendance, and even locker combinations, despite the fact that it is the students who actually go to school, and who actually need this information. 

It is frustrating to have to log into the parent portal before being able to set up your own. 


Parents were the first to receive information about senior photo appointments and cap and gown order forms. Materials vital to a student’s graduation ceremony being sent out to parents instead of the actual seniors opens up the risk of missing deadlines and due dates. 

I remember some seniors were shocked to learn that cap and gown order forms were due in two days’ time. Their parents never told them, and students never got that initial email. 


Parents were the ones to receive the news from Superintendent Dr. Steve Matthews that, due to the national bus driver shortage, certain buses would not run on certain days of the week, leaving families to rely on alternative forms of transportation. 

While parents received this information, students were hearing it from teachers mentioning it off chance, and from peers who were lucky enough to be told this information from their parents. Students never got this email. 


Parents are the ones to receive email updates on COVID-19 case counts across the school district, including the high school, despite the fact that it is the students who actually go to school and may be exposed to the virus here. 

It is the students who need to know the case counts, so they can take the proper actions to protect themselves and their peers from the virus at school. Students never got, and still do not get, these emails. 


Parents were the ones to receive information about heightened security, threats of violence, and increased police presence in the district following the Oxford School shooting, which took place less than 30 miles away and left four students dead. 

It is the students who risk facing a gun when they enter the building, not the parents. They need the reassurance and updates that this email had. Although counselors ended up sending support resources to students in the following days, students never got that initial email. 


Some parents do not check their emails. As a result, some students do not directly get the information they need to make it through high school or to feel safe. 

Some parents do not inform their kids on every piece of information from every email. If they forget to share important pieces of information, then that’s something students cannot act on. 

“You are in high school now.” That is the message that runs through my head as I walk through the 10 Mile lot entrance. 

If we are old enough to vote, old enough to read graphic scenes of novels, old enough to drive, apply to colleges, and go to jail, then we are old enough to get emails.