The student news site of Mountlake Terrace High School in Mountlake Terrace, Washington.

The Hawkeye

Better to buy spots early

By Ciara Laney, Hawkeye staff

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Every single school year students have filled all 287 parking spots at MTHS, according to Athletic Director and Activities Coordinator Kim Stewart. But the process behind these spots are a bit more complex than just a place to park in the morning.

The ASB collects the money for the parking spots, which sell at $50 per spot, until the second semester. During the second semester, the price decreases monthly by $5 until it gets to their lowest price of $30 a spot. Principal Greg Schwab decides where the parking revenue goes toward, but it is mostly set aside for sports funding.

Money doesn’t need to be spent for these spots. Custodians empty the trashcans in the parking lot daily, and the district will pay if the lines need to be repainted.

With a first come, first serve policy, parking spots become a bargain. At some high schools, such as Jackson High School in Mill Creek, Wash., parking spots are auctioned off. The spots closer to the school can mark up over $1000, as opposed to the ones in the back where they’re sold for less.

A spot cannot be bought by a student without a driver’s license and proof of insurance of the car that is trying to be registered. This means that the people who receive their license after school starts get the spots in the back row toward the exit of the campus.  

The contract that students sign when buying a parking spot is often ignored, along with the procedure that is expected when a spot is taken.

Some students may not fully read the contract when purchasing a parking spot. Because of this, students do not know the procedure of what to do if their parking spot is occupied by someone else’s vehicle.

This often happens to Running Start students who leave at some point during the day and come back at a different time.

To summarize the parking permit contract, which is available in Stewart’s office, if someone else parks in a student’s spot, they should not park in another. This can cause a “chain reaction.” For example, if person A parks in person B’s spot, then person B might end up parking in person C’s spot.  

All you need to do is “not freak out,” Stewart said. Move to the back of the schools near the fields and park there instead, which is most likely a better spot than available to students. It is in fact stated in the Mountlake Terrace High Vehicle Registration that “Students may not park in the faculty lot, visitor parking, fire lanes, behind the school (unless someone is parked in your space.”

Students whose parking spots are stolen also need to tell Jerry Myers, a paraeducator who is in charge of security and is stationed near the front entrance of campus. He will either ticket the car, tow it, or put a “boot” on it. Myers reported that boots can be issued at any time, sometimes three are issued in one week, others none are issued in a month.

At MTHS, there are two $450 boots. If you violate the parking rules once, you will receive a warning and have it taken off. On the second offense you will be fined $100 and be towed away, which would be approximately $200 in total. By following the rules, students will find the rest of the year easier.

Although there are many pros and cons, it would be more beneficial in the long run to pay for a parking spot in the beginning of the year. The fees may be a little expensive at the beginning, but the amount of walking and more funding towards sports will make up for it.

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The student news site of Mountlake Terrace High School in Mountlake Terrace, Washington.
Better to buy spots early