The Power Of ICU


Parker Shinn, Staff

As of August 14th, the start of the new school year, the ICU list took root in FHS to monitor students and their homework load. This list watches for a specific category of students: those who have missing homework assignments. The online system notifies parents and students when said assignments initially go missing. Not everyone is in favor of this new system, however. Certain students, and even parents, have aired their grievances concerning the system. While some students believe it is a helpful tool to stay one step ahead of homework, others feel the system is incredibly redundant and a general nuisance to everyday school life.

Number one, we want the students to be successful academically,

Dr. Melissa Hampton, an Assistant Principal at FHS, explained the main goal of the ICU list. “Number one, we want the students to be successful academically,” said Dr. Hampton. “We want to make sure you’re learning the material,” meaning the list primarily helps students who are struggling to complete certain assignments or understand certain topics. “Grades are important, but did you learn the material? That’s what’s important to us.” Dr. Hampton went on to explain the list has also been put in place to make sure students complete all assignments, rather than skipping homework and only managing good grades on tests. “Before you could not complete the assignment and just take assessments to pass the class.” FHS has even gone to extensive lengths to provide students with help for missing or incomplete work. “We have every morning ICU tutoring, we have working lunches, we even have Blitz days so specific teachers are available to help get work done.” Regardless of opinion, it is clear to see that the school has gone out of its way to provide help to students who need it.

While Assistant Principal Dr. Hampton has sound logic backing up the ICU list, not everyone holds her stance on the topic. Some students, such as Reese Pinkley, are less than thrilled about it. “I think it’s a shameful way to scare kids into doing their work, and it doesn’t even scare them into wanting to get off [the list].” “I’ve never been on it, but personally I think I dislike it the most.” The FHS freshman continued, “In a perfect world, it would be worth all the effort. But because no one wants to do their work, it really isn’t worth it.” Other students, such as sophomore Jayda Michelle Allen, actually find the system to be extremely useful. “I actually like it, and if it can be used properly it’s a good idea and can be helpful to a lot of students.” She did, however, have her own constructive criticism to give. “A lot of times, a teacher won’t take you off the ICU list and for me, at least, it took a couple of weeks.” But overall she had only positive things to say about it. “I hear student complaints about it [the list] a lot, but I think it’s just them trying to find the negative.” A small group of students have even taken a neutral stance on the matter. “A lot of kids and even parents see it as a punishment,” said Katie Orr. “They haven’t really been educated on what it is and isn’t,” the junior went on to say. “ I think the idea of the ICU list is very progressive, but when it’s carried out it has a lot of flaws that can’t be fixed.”

The verdict is still out on the ICU system. Only time will tell the true power of ICU as it evolves throughout the school year.