Treaty

A lack of spirit

Parkway South students are losing school spirit.

The+sparsely-attended+Spirit+Night+at+Parkway+South+High.
The sparsely-attended Spirit Night at Parkway South High.

The sparsely-attended Spirit Night at Parkway South High.

Hannah Cronin

Hannah Cronin

The sparsely-attended Spirit Night at Parkway South High.

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We all say we have Patriot Pride, but in my opinion, this is just a lip-service. Over the past few years, South has seen a steady decrease in school spirit.

This is extremely evident in multiple areas, and especially on social media. There are upwards of 1700 students attending South, yet only 221 are following our school’s Twitter account, and 505 are following our Instagram.

From Mr. Patriot being canceled last year to a decrease in event attendance, the fact is irrefutable; kids just don’t care about school spirit anymore. There are a number of reasons I believe attribute to this claim, which I will outline below.  

The first reason I think there is an absence of spirit is that of a lack of structure. In the past, South had a definite power hierarchy. Each grade level looked up to the next, and there was never any question about who was in charge. Recently, however, that dynamic has become less pronounced. Freshmen are socializing at senior parties, juniors are heading clubs, and the list goes on. While this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, this complete spread of power has made it so that no one is really “popular” anymore; there’s no one to look up to.

Second, I think our administration has made it exceptionally difficult to display school spirit.  Additionally, the current Juuling problem at South has resulted in many suspensions, ultimately adding to the sense of students v. administration. These controversies have made it so that the student body can’t completely trust the leadership, and since many school spirit decisions go through the administration, there has been a disconnect.

Finally, I believe nearly every student at South was raised in an “everybody wins, participation trophy” society. Being normal is rewarded, and as a result, the growing majority of students prefer to stick to themselves. This directly relates to the school spirit problem; it shows that fewer kids want to join clubs or attend school events and that they would rather stay at home.

However, there are various student groups that combat this spirit problem, one of which being the Patriot Posse. Any student can be a part of the Posse, and at many sporting events, you can be sure to see them there, supporting our school.

But it stops there. The Patriot Posse doesn’t really support anything except sports, and with a school teeming with unique clubs and events, you’d think that the Posse’s enthusiasm should extend beyond just football and hockey. I feel that if we are going to fix our spirit problem, we need to start supporting the school in different ways than by merely going to a football game every once in a while. After all, does “Patriot Pride” only relate to athletics?

Increasing school spirit is up to the students. If we want to reacquire our long-lost spirit, all we need to do is start supporting each other. Join a club, see a play, check out the spring art show, go to the football games. Do whatever you can to help make South a better place. We’re only here for a short amount of time, so why don’t we make it fun?

 

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A lack of spirit