Last Friday Night : Why Katy Perry and CHS Pep Rallies Shouldn't Mix

Tuesday, September 27th, 2011

Last Friday’s pep rally was an event that our school should not be proud of. Both students and adults alike experienced frustrations that could have and should have been avoided. A pep rally is a gathering of students, designed to celebrate athletics, encourage school spirit, and support members of their school’s teams. However, the unruly behavior displayed by students last Friday night did not accomplish those goals.

Adults and administrators are understandably horrified and concerned by the student’s behavior at this year’s pep rally. Mr. Groh stated at a Board of Education meeting on Monday, September 19th that some seniors “did not follow the plan of action”, overwhelmed underclassmen, and targeted multiple derogatory comments at freshmen. The chaos at last Friday's pep rally escalated beyond anyone's imagination. "We've had the pep rally for six or seven years, and I will tell you that Friday night was the first time we've ever had the experience that we had," Mr. Groh said.

Nonetheless, the consequences of this event may make students realize how having a pep rally is a privilege, and how it should not have “ended up being a chaotic night," as Mr. Groh described it. Open campus is on its second week of suspension fom seniors, and as of last Monday, students were informed that the future of pep rallies is uncertain. Although Mr. Groh admits that not everyone was involved, he asserts that this punishment is necessary to ensure that the general student body, because each individual action reflects on Chatham's character as a whole. If a pep rally were to occur again, earlier times would probably be set to avoid a repeat of this year's unruliness. Some time right after school would be ideal; no class time would be wasted, more students could attend, and greater adult supervision would prevent risky behavior from occurring.

As a fellow Chatham High School Student, I hope we can all learn from this experience how pep rally's should happen in the future. The rebuilding of trust and responsibility between both parties involved - students and adults - is necessary not just for these types of events, but for the the well-being of the school atmosphere in general.