Pictured above is new parking lot supervisor Dana Kanupp checking the name of a leaving student. Kanupp has been hired to regulate students leaving campus. “My main responsibility is to keep everybody safe, which entails students not doing what they’re not supposed to be doing,” Kanupp said. (Credit: Angela Park)
Pictured above is new parking lot supervisor Dana Kanupp checking the name of a leaving student. Kanupp has been hired to regulate students leaving campus. “My main responsibility is to keep everybody safe, which entails students not doing what they’re not supposed to be doing,” Kanupp said.

Credit: Angela Park

Meet Dana Kanupp, the new parking lot advisor

October 9, 2015

It seems like the halls have been filled with talk of the new Wayland High School staff member. Chances are, you’ve already noticed him, whether it’s because you passed by his golf cart or because he fished you out of your friend’s trunk. Meet the new parking lot supervisor: Dana Kanupp.

Pictured above is Kanupp's golf cart.
Credit: Angela Park
Pictured above is Kanupp’s golf cart.

Kanupp has been hired to patrol the WHS parking lots, regulating students who leave campus. According to him, it’s all in the interest of student safety.

“My main responsibility is to keep everybody safe, which entails students not doing what they’re not supposed to be doing,” Kanupp said.

Conveniently, the school only has one entrance and exit. Kanupp and his golf cart are usually posted on this road, where he stops exiting vehicles. He possesses a list of students who have junior or senior privileges and are able to leave.

“People that try to leave who don’t have their privileges are the ones I have to stop,” Kanupp said. “Unfortunately, some students are a bit more rambunctious than others and try and find ways around the rules, and it’s my job to stop them.”

Presented with this new obstacle, underclassmen and students without privileges have been finding ways to sneak off campus. Kanupp has caught students hiding in trunks, using their friends’ names, attempting to speed out when they think he’s not watching or pretending not to know the campus boundaries.

“I’m sure there’ll be new ways of students trying to get away with stuff in the future, which is unfortunate, but that’s the nature of the beast. Hopefully we can prevent as much of that as possible,” Kanupp said.

According to Kanupp, lying is the worst strategy.

“I’m hoping over time I can gain some more respect and have students at least be honest about what they’re doing because there’s nothing worse than students that lie to me,” Kanupp said. “That puts their names etched in my brain, and from then on it’s hard to trust them.”

Kanupp explains he is more likely to forgive students who are polite or honest after being caught. He stresses that lying is the worst policy and that no one deserves to be deceived.

Kanupp verifies if students have privileges to leave.
Credit: Angela Park
Kanupp verifies if students have privileges to leave.

“The big thing is just people lying to me. That’s the worst because it shows your value as a person,” Kanupp said. “You clearly know you’re not doing what you’re supposed to be doing. It’s heartbreaking to me, knowing that someone is trying to get away with something when I know they’re lying.”

Students who are caught breaking the rules are given demerits or other forms of discipline. Kanupp simply reports the offenses. Principal Allyson Mizoguchi or assistant principals Scott Parseghian and Ethan Dolleman will dole out the punishments.

Although the restrictions for leaving campus have existed in previous years, this is the first time administration has taken a drastic step towards adhering to this regulation. As the new impediment, Kanupp is aware of students’ bitter feelings towards him.

“I have not been very popular I’m told,” Kanupp said. “I’m unpopular with the students and popular with the faculty and administration, so that’s where we’re at.”

He points out that he is just doing his job, and in the end, it is all for the safety and well-being of Wayland students. According to Kanupp, this added regulation is also a way for students to learn the duties of being an adult in real life.

“You’re at a transition stage in high school. I’ve been there. You guys are there, and it’s about learning the responsibilities of being an adult,” Kanupp said. “And one of those is if you have your privileges, then you get the reward of leaving and doing what you want off campus, and if you don’t have them, then you don’t.”

Previously Kanupp had a job in health care. He discovered the position opening here through guidance department coordinator Marybeth Sacramone. He also had previous connections with guidance counselor Benjamin Buffa, with whom he attended elementary, middle, and high school.

“I couldn’t find a job in education years ago, so I stayed with health care. Every year I was in health care in an office, I hated it more and more, and every year I was in health care, I was farther away from my dream of being a teacher,” Kanupp said. “This is sort of my stepping stone back into education, working with students.”

Kanupp went to undergraduate and graduate school for education, has done student teaching, has served as a substitute teacher and has multiple teaching licenses. Outside of his role here as the parking lot supervisor, Kanupp also runs the BASE program before and after school at the Loker, Claypit and Happy Hollow elementary schools. Ideally, he hopes to become an English teacher here at WHS.

“I love it here. This is a great school,” Kanupp said. “I’ve heard a lot of success stories of people starting off in one position then moving up, so ideally, I would like to be an English teacher here.”

Pictured above is the notice Kanupp has been posting on cars to remind students to register for a parking space.
Credit: Angela Park
Pictured above is the notice Kanupp has been posting on cars to remind students to register for a parking space.

For now, he remains the parking lot supervisor, and he takes his job seriously. Starting last week, he has been checking for tags on cars and verifying license plates in the parking lots to make sure vehicles are registered with the school for a parking space. Starting this week, students who have not parking without having purchased a spot are at risk of having their cars towed or booted.

“Now, we are giving people warnings: We’re going to boot your car. We’re going to tow your car. It’s going to be more expensive. It’s going to be a pain,” Kanupp said. “Might as well just pay the two hundred something bucks and get it over with. Especially since some of these cars are tens of thousands of dollars. They can afford the 220 dollars I would think.”

Kanupp is also starting to check names to faces on his iPad using school photos.

Areas off limits are the baseball field, the outdoor basketball court, the upper field and the pool. For now he is lenient with students going to the pool as long as they come back, but he does not guarantee it will continue to be accessible.

“This is high school. You’re going to go on from here,” Kanupp said. “You’re going to start careers and have a life, and hopefully, in some minor, minuscule way, I can help someone that needed a little bit of a push to get on the right path.”

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