Corona del Mar Today: School registration angers parents

August 28, 2010
  • Chef Susan Irby, author of “Substitute Yourself Skinny,” will be at the Central Library at 7 p.m. Sept. 21.
Chef Susan Irby, author of “Substitute Yourself… (CdM Today )

There's two weeks left of summer vacation, but some new students and their families are already fed up with Corona del Mar Middle School after spending hours in line for Monday's registration.

"This is terrible," said Nicci Araujo, who had waited more than two hours to register her son, Alex. "I work for a living. I think it is so inappropriate to be this inconsiderate. I'm just livid."

Parent Steve MacGilfrey, who was with his daughter Scarlet, said he also waited more than two hours. "I'm a single parent, so I can't leave her," he said. "Who is going to give me a half a day's pay to make up for my time?"

Parents had to bring their students with them for registration, along with packets they previously picked up at the school and took home to complete. After waiting in line at a table to register for the PTA and another where students received their schedules and locker numbers, parents and students then went to another line that snaked around several buildings toward a cashier's station, where two district employees took money to cover gym clothes, locks, lab fees and other items.


Rumors spread like wildfire as the noon hour approached and the line for the checkout grew longer. Would they close for an hour or more for lunch? Should people return in the afternoon or the next day? While parents and students said they were frustrated, they also spent the time catching up and visiting and comparing class schedules.

Some people opted to leave and return in the afternoon or early Tuesday to complete the process, but most of the group stuck it out. In the end, the lines didn't close but did go to one cashier at a time so employees could have a break after working nonstop all morning.

In the afternoon, a few older students cut in line and were being served ahead of those who waited for as long as four hours. Parents had to get involved to make them move, one witness said.

"I'm sure school will be fine — but what a way to start it off," said Alex Araujo, who was on crutches for most of the long wait.

Parent and PTA member Holly Schuman said that the lines were longer than she had experienced with her older daughter.

"This is just a nightmare," she said. "This is the worst I've seen it."

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