Why is it so often the case that the same people attend and participate in school clubs and activities? Involvement in your school community is an important and integral aspect of being a student. However, here at Collège Sturgeon Heights Collegiate, students have not, until recently at least, participated in many school clubs or other activities.
Throughout my academic years, I have been actively involved in various school clubs and extra curricular activities such as, Just Cause, Student Council, Musical, 30 Hour Famine and Dragon Boat, to name a few. Taking part in these activities has built a strong sense of community with my peers and teachers. Being part of a school with over 1200 students, I was expecting an overwhelming school spirit and level of involvement. Within the school there are over 50 different clubs and sports groups that students can join. The activities cover a wide range of interests, time commitments and skills and are offered before, after or during school hours. However, after attending various clubs and events it is apparent that the same ten to twenty faces are coming out to support the majority of these activities. Why are the numbers so low with such a large student body?
Questioning students at our school as to why they did not participate in school clubs and events produced common responses such as: “I don’t want to spend more time here than I have to”; “I am too busy with work after school”; “I just come to school for my classes”; or “I’m not interested in the commitment”. While these comments may initially seem reasonable, aren’t students who fail to participate in extra curricular activities missing out on the entire school experience? There is more to school than just the academics; there is a huge social aspect that is important not to ignore. When people look back on their school years, it is often the memories that were made at school events, in clubs and through sports that stand out as special.
In 2013-2014, the Student Council at Collège Sturgeon Heights Collegiate implemented Grade Wars as a way of promoting school spirit and bringing students together. So far, school spirit has grown at each grade level following activities such as scavenger hunts, bake sales and dodge ball games. The initial response has been promising, as each grade seems to be developing more of an identity and the student body as a whole appears to be more engaged. As just one example, in attending recent school events and acting as the school photographer, I have seen an increase in the number of people coming out to support “The Sturgeon Huskies”. It makes for a much more fun and exciting game atmosphere.
I feel the whole school experience is enriched when people come together in school clubs, sports teams and other activities. Overall, there is a stronger sense of community and spirit within the school when students participate and display passion for something at school beyond academics.