CHS school spirit reaches all-time low

Every year, CHS students are required to go to the fall pep rally. And every year, numerous students seem to be “missing “  from the event, and many of those who actually attend seem eager to leave early. Being in charge of school spirit can be quite a burden at CHS. At the end of this year, social studies teacher and SGA sponsor Justin Ostry will resign from his position, and media services technician and Class of 2013 sponsor Scott Selman will take over.

 

According to Principal Joan Benz, the Montgomery County Education Association teacher union contract stipulates that school officials must advertise the new position to teachers first. After the initial deadline, officials can then choose among staff in the building, and lastly they can choose among adults outside the school.

 
The hiring of Selman, technically a member of the support staff and not a teacher, suggests that no teacher was interested in the position of SGA sponsor.

 
The SGA often struggles to find support from the staff and student body alike. For example, in the most recent canned food drive, less than half of the classes in the school donated cans. Building enthusiasm for school events can be frustrating when members of the school are unappreciative of the workload involved in successful events like Mr. Churchill but are quick to jump on a minor mishap, such as when students and teachers reacted swiftly to a seemingly unpatriotic statement on CHS’s Daily Dose earlier this year. Although the misinterpreted statement was not meant to offend people, members of TV production were instantly criticized for their actions.

 
Certain staff members put forth a great deal of extra work to make high school engaging and memorable outside the classroom. According to Ostry, he resigned in part due to the heavy demands of the job, which was too much to manage without more volunteer support from other teachers.

 
Students need to be more spirited by supporting class fundraisers like t-shirt sales and more importantly, showing up to school events such as dances and games.

 

Without making that effort, we cannot expect to have a banquet, a breakfast, or even a Prom—events students assume we will automatically have. It may be cooler to not care about spirit, but it is selfish of us to complain about our school if we do not even attempt to improve things by getting involved.

 
Although students choose whether they want to go to school events, having the option to attend at all ultimately falls on the teachers. Whether or not we like to admit it, students do look up to most of their teachers. A teacher who is apathetic about school spirit, or who assigns massive amounts of work on the night of a school event or a test the next day, sends students the message that supporting the school community is not important.

 
Of course this is not all teachers’ fault. Working in a school as rigorous as CHS, teachers also face tremendous amounts of pressure to ensure that their students maintain a certain academic standard. But even the teachers of advanced classes could participate by helping the school community outside the classroom through volunteering for events or encouraging students to attend school functions.

 
CHS students are often portrayed by rivals as uninterested in our school, a stereotype that unfortunately is not far from the truth. Rival schools such as Wootton and Walter Johnson seem to have a much higher level of enthusiasm for supporting teams and events than our student body (even when their teams are worse than ours). Students at CHS are even members of a Facebook group dedicated to bashing CHS.  As their schools are so socioeconomically similar to CHS, one wonders what is making these communities more passionate than our own.

 

The high school memories we will remember for the rest of our lives will be the ones outside the classroom. There is no doubt that academic success and hard work are important, but it is just as important to be a part of the school environment outside the classroom, and to cherish our high school years.