Unique Hall Passes of NAI

We set out to find some of the wackiest hall passes in the school!


Nick Betler and Andrew McLaughlin

The many hall passes of NAI form a unique patchwork.

Buckets, boards, bowling pins, and coffee cups are all things you might see kids carrying in the halls, but what are the stories behind them? The common, flat dull hall pass used throughout NAI, while functional, also has its disadvantages. Given their small size and plain design, they may often get left in the restrooms by forgetful students. Due to this, as well as a desire to perhaps make a statement of his or her own personality, many teachers have adopted varieties of unique objects to give students passage around the school. 

Mr. Rylands, an Honors Algebra 2 teacher, features a bucket in his room as his pass, for instance. This possession was originally not his – instead, a custodian left the bucket in his room over the summer. He told NAEye, “The kids kept on losing my original pass.” Mr. Rylands tried to leave the bucket out to return to the custodian, but since it remained in his room, he decided to write his information on it and utilize it as a hall pass. He told said that it has some pros over the old pass, such as its size, as well as an even better reason: if someone gets sick walking to the bathroom, they can use the bucket, although such an occurrence would likely be unwelcome!

“A kid lost my original hall pass and I knew that the kids binge watched The Office over the summer, so that is what I came up with.” ”

— Mrs. Vescovi

Mr. Rak, a 9th grade Honors English teacher, currently has a bowling pin as his hall pass. Originally only used for decoration, the pin is now a fixture of Mr. Rak’s room. “I had a normal red, plastic hall pass like everyone else, but I was tired of tracking it down, so I switched to the bowling pin,” Mr. Rak said. Needless to say, an added bonus is that such a sizable pass will certainly never again get lost in the shuffle!

Mrs. Vescovi, an Academic English teacher, also has added some color to the halls. Her creativity has taken the form of a clipboard with a meme on it that functions as a hall pass. Although still unique, the story behind the hall pass is quite a simple one, as she told NAEye, “A kid lost my original hall pass and I knew that the kids binge-watched The Office over the summer, so that is what I came up with.” The meme the caption features the cheesey but classic English joke, “Can I go to the bathroom?” with the expected response as “I don’t know, can you?” 

Sometimes, a variation on the phrase “hall pass” has sparked a variation on the theme. Take Mr. Harsch, a Chemistry and Physics teacher’s, hall bass, for example – a piece of wood cut in the shape of a fish. “It goes back a ways,” Mr. Harsch told NAEye. So far, in fact, that he apparently has little recollection of how he originally started using the pass. “One day,” he said, “I just decided that I wanted a ‘hall bass’ instead of a ‘hall pass.’” Although there isn’t a whale of a tale behind this pass, it is still a wonderful touch of personality in the classroom and the hall.

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At least one room in the building has accumulated a somewhat eclectic collection of types of hall passes. Mr. Geibel’s room, which Mr. Hull uses for his journalism classes, uses coffee mugs and press passes in addition to the generic pass. The mugs are used for typical hall pass use, while the press pass functions to send students to interview students and teachers to gather information for their stories. In response to his coffee cup passes, Mr. Hull stated he believes “that a hall pass shows a teacher’s personality.” In his case, it tells people that he enjoys drinking coffee.

Mr. Hull also brought up the connection that is held between creative hall passes and the relationship that students hold with their teachers. Hall passes are just one way that a teacher can reveal his or her personality to students, which then lets their kids feel like they know a little more about the instructor’s persona. Although this is a small thing, such a splash of a teacher’s charisma can lead to a greater feeling of connectivity that students feel with their teachers. And although it may sound cliche, students connected to their teachers are happier – even if it’s just over the simple matter of a fun hall pass. “They create conversation pieces,” Mr. Hull said, showing that little details matter in the well-being of students.

Uncommon hall passes certainly add flair to both classrooms and are welcome spots of diversity amidst the halls. The rush one gets when he or she sees a student brandishing a 2×4 strolling through the halls is not only memorable, but it also forms an essential part of that classroom’s character. Unique hall passes are great ideas to decorate a classroom while also allowing the teacher to reveal a little of his or her own personality.