A look at discipline: a day in the life of a Dean

Photo by Alexis Burns’ 19 Deans Mrs.McGinley and Mr.McQuaid
Deans Mrs.McGinley and Mr.McQuaid Photo Alexis Berns

By Alexis Burns ‘19

Students sit impatiently in the waiting room, one might be out of dress code, another just wanting to talk. They nervously wait until their name is called to go into the office. The students may think that everyone is out to get them, but all the these deans really want is to help.

A dean’s day is always hectic. Mrs. McGinley commented, “My day is pretty crazy and there’s not a lot of control.”

While Mr.McQuaid, the newest dean for tenth and twelfth grade, said his schedule is “busier than I expected.”

Photo by Alexis Burns

The deans typically start their day by reviewing missed detentions and emails. They handle any log entries or write-ups that they receive. While this is going on, students are in and out of their offices for anything ranging from dress code to emotional support or to reschedule detentions.  Sometimes they are let off with a warning and other times they are given detentions. Mr. McQuaid said “I prefer that students serve detentions with teachers where their grades are suffering. That way they can get their grades up while serving detention.”

The day can go from being slow to extremely busy and challenging with no warning at all.

They have a lot on their plates with dealing with uncooperative students, monitoring lunches, and staying on schedule. Since there are so many students it can be difficult getting everyone to follow the rules. Mrs.Pena and Mrs. McGinley say that “dress code is the hardest to enforce because there are so many students and sometimes they can argue that they are in dress code.”

Most of the time kids that act out or are extremely difficult to deal with are asking for help. Some kids do not really know how to deal with what they are going through and they act out by cutting class, not listening, arguing with teachers, and more. The deans do the best they can to help them. “If we have to, we get the parents involved and try to find out what’s going on,” comments Mrs. McGinley. If necessary, they will hold an intervention with the student and then give the punishment they see fit.

Mrs.Pena, who was a dean for two years knows it is a hard job. “It’s hard to try to get all the sides to the story and try to come up with a consistent punishment.”

All the deans really want to do is help. “I had a student who was not coming to school and wasn’t applying himself. I got him in touch with the right people. He started volunteering and really turned himself around,” Mrs.McGinley recalls.

“The best part about being a dean is building a relationship with the students, ” said Mrs.Mcginley.

Mr.Mcquaid, and Vice Principal and former dean, Mrs.Pena, agree that making a difference in students’ lives is the best part of the job.


About Alexis Burns

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