The Reset Room

The new initiative to decrease the number of school suspensions

Of the 49 million students enrolled in public schools, 3.5 million students were suspended in-school and 3.45 million students were suspended out-of-school in 2019 alone. White Station, despite only having 2,200 students, is no stranger to the same problem. Is it simply something that just “happens in high school,” or are there underlying conflicts?

According to the National Institutes of Health, nearly 1 in 3 of all adolescents ages 13 to 18 are affected by anxiety or other mental health issues every year. White Station has recently made strides to meet the needs of the inordinate amount of students, faculty, and administrators with mental health issues, which in some cases lead to anger management issues. 

Shelby County Schools in general, just as much as White Station, is starting to take into account social-emotional learning as something that is important,” Geoffe Kannady, the Reset Room Assistant, said. 

The Reset Room is meant to be an “interceptor” between the stressed student that is acting out and the potential suspension. Instead of having a student stay in class all day brooding over their issues at home or the tensions of school, they can go to the Reset Room for 30-60 minutes and do activities meant to “get [themselves] back in a frame of mind to learn.”

“I would rather someone be in a reset room with an adult than hiding out in a bathroom somewhere by themselves feeling lost and alone or…blowing up and saying something that can really get them in trouble,” school psychologist Julia Huckabee said.

The goal of raising awareness of these issues is to bring about change and to potentially decrease the number of students receiving suspensions by creating a caring environment where all students feel included and safe.

“I think everyone can be sympathetic towards other people, but I think empathy takes it another step,” Kannady said. “It’s hard as a teenager to be empathetic to the idea of people around you and really put yourself in their shoes.”