By Addie Jenkins ’20 News Reporter
Mercersburg Academy is a preparatory boarding school meant to prepare students for life beyond high school and teach us how to think and make decisions for ourselves as functioning human beings. I cannot even count the times that a teacher has told me that they will not “baby” the students in their classes. Just last week, after my class did not complete something that was not posted on Veracross, my teacher sat us down and told us that because we’re seniors, we shouldn’t have to wait for something to be put on Veracross. We should know how to handle it and do it by ourselves; we are seniors, so we shouldn’t expect to be spoon-fed because that’s not how it works once we leave our little bubble of Mercersburg.
But if the senior class is supposed to be mature and ready for life beyond “the bubble,” why does the administration try so hard to organize everything for us? In the past, Paint the Numbers has been student-led, including their class’s design. This was preferable: it allowed artists who may not be the most visible in our community to share their talents and passions in an influential manner. But for two consecutive years, the seniors were not allowed to actually paint the numbers.
This year, we arrived to Davidson gate and found that the numbers had been pre-painted for us. To me, it’s not the fact that Paint the Numbers was opened up to all seniors this year, that we didn’t get to paint in front of Main Hall, but the fact that we do not get to paint our own numbers that bothers me the most. How can our teachers constantly remind us that we are young adults and should be acting as such but do not even trust us to design and paint four numbers by ourselves? I get it. Times and traditions change, so make the event fully inclusive to all seniors and move it back to the original place, but by not even allowing us to actually paint our own class’s numbers, what was left of the tradition has been buried? “Paint the Numbers” is no longer Paint the Numbers: it’s “gather around some numbers that a professional painted and sign your initials.”