To merge or not to merge: Hinsdale District 86 High School

Hinsdale Central and Hinsdale South currently play against each other, and it seems that it will stay this way
Photo courtesy of The Chicago Tribune
Hinsdale Central and Hinsdale South currently play against each other, which for the immediate future, will not change.

It has recently been rumored that Hinsdale Central and Hinsdale South could merge into one high school with two separate campuses, making one high school for District 86. In the theoretical plan, one campus would be used for underclassmen (freshmen and sophomore) and one would be used for upperclassmen (junior and senior). Although the merge is considered unlikely, most students at Central have strong opinions against it.

As it is the sole reason for attending school, academics are taken very seriously at both schools. Many underclassmen are in higher level courses originally designated for upperclassmen. With divided campuses, taking those classes would be challenging. 

“It [would be] difficult to maintain our high academic level,” said Charlie Gelman, junior.

On top of that, combining the sports teams would affect how many students can participate. For instance, with two football teams, more students can make the team compared to cutting potential athletes because of having only one team. Some may argue that this would actually improve the teams since it would be more competitive to make the team, but ultimately, it would take away playing time for students with athletic abilities.

“The competition for spots on a team would be too high, leaving many students with talent off of the team,” said Finn Voorhees, junior.

Aside from sports, most students do not feel that the hallways or classrooms are crowded or too big. The population of school for District 86 would come to a total of around 4,700 students if combined, divided between the two campuses. This would leave about 2,300 students per campus; while this reduces the amount on Central’s campus, currently 2,798 according to the Illinois Report Card, it would certainly put pressure on South since its student population is 1,666 according to the Illinois Report Card.

“They are good schools individually, but together [the atmosphere] would be an unpleasant learning experience,”said Eric Miscimarra, freshman.

Many students feel that there is just no need for change. All in all, a majority of students feel that the merge is unnecessary and a majority of the changes would be harmful to the student body of District 86.