The Morning Meeting dilemma

not enough time
The co-chairs are vital members of the community and one of their many jobs is leading Morning Meeting. Lucas Seguinot argues for more Morning Meeting time and better use of the ones we have.
The co-chairs are vital members of the community and one of their many jobs is leading Morning Meeting. Lucas Seguinot argues for more Morning Meeting time and better use of the ones we have.
Eunice Wang
Morning Meeting right now

Co-chairs Arjun Ratan ‘24 and Mahlet Messay ‘24 take the stage and say their usual introduction in a different language, “¡Konnichiwa!” They say as the student body parrots their words. But, their hello seems rather unfamiliar today. With all the days off from school, special schedules and more it seems like there are fewer and fewer morning meetings. Even though I pass by the co-chairs in the halls every day, Morning Meeting feels shorter and overall not as fruitful. This isn’t just a feeling though –the reality is that with snow days and late starts, we have missed more than usual.

Still, even without most of the missed Morning Meetings, I believe the community’s need for them exceeds the number that we have allotted. As a club leader of Model United Nations (MUN), we have experienced our fair share of Morning Meeting triumphs and shortcomings. 

Most recently we attempted to schedule time for March, but sadly were pushed back to April. I am not here to complain, though; I adore the Co-chairs and the tech team, whose job is essential and often unrecognized throughout the school community. Rather, I am here to ask the school to explore the option of more Morning Meeting time and for the community to reflect on their use of this crucial time.

Morning Meeting are one of the most intricate traditions in the Masters community. In an 8-day cycle, there are four Morning Meetings, two 1-1 days, one paired advisory, and one regular advisory. Each of those Morning Meetings is only 30 minutes each. Additionally, for large events such as Holocaust Remembrance day, their speaking time is extended. 

With these factors to consider, I hope it is clear that these are vital times for the community to gather and hear each other on a collective basis. 

Co-Chair Arjun Ratan recognizes how valuable this time is and agrees that there should be some thoughtful solution to the lack of time together.

“ I think we really do need more Morning Meeting time. I think it can be done,” he said. 

Senior Theo Knauss gives his senior speech on Dec. 14 in a Morning Meeting .
Tech Team and Seniors

Ratan brought up a key stakeholder in this conversation: the tech team from  Live Production class. Every Morning Meeting day, the team prepares for is responsible for preparation. They are also in charge of returning the Claudia Boettcher Theatre back to normalcy after presentations. Expanding the amount that we will place a huge burden on their already packed schedules. 

“ I think it’s hard, it puts a strain on the tech team, but I think if it’s spread out enough where we will feel the effects in a positive way of being able to have more time for student announcements and whatever it might be that needs that morning meeting time that it’ll be fantastic and I don’t think in that way it’ll put as much of a strain on the tech team.”

Four-year member of a tech team, senior Silas Rosenfeld recognizes the possible difficulties that may come along with adding more. 

“ I think that already it’s a bit of an ask to have us[the tech team] come in every other day at X-band. I think increasing that would probably not bode well.” 

Aside from clubs, I am also concerned about the senior grade. As of right now, there are 11 seniors on the waitlist to give a senior speech. This rare opportunity is one of the most unique Masters experiences ever. The thought that they might be deprived of this is horrifying. 

Senior Theo Knauss gives his senior speech on Dec. 14 in a Morning Meeting . (Eunice Wang )
Future Steps

Currently, I don’t think adding more Morning Meetings is feasible. Scheduling is an intense process that would require work over the summer. One possible solution is that the amount of advisory time in any form is reduced. However, advisory is valuable to some members of the community, especially students who are transitioning to the new culture of the school. Cutting back on that time might damage people’s experience here, but more damage is being done when we can’t unite as a community.

Furthermore, Rosenfeld identified the current sentiments around these gatherings in the school community. “ A lot of people think Morning Meetings are kind of unnecessary. And I think that actually kind of frustrates me because I think it’s like it’s a cool thing that we do.”

I wholeheartedly agree with this point but this is because we as a community aren’t supplying exciting presentations and speeches. When I think of my favorite experiences in school I recall a vibrant morning with unique Masters activities like senior speeches and laudations followed by engaging and relevant presentations. Additionally, presenters should be responsible and cancel in an amount of time that allows their slot to be filled. Let’s make the most of the morning meetings we have so that the remaining ones are full and lively.

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