Face-to-Face: Do rallies promote positive school spirit?

Kylie Kvam

Face-to-Face is a feature that allows two members of the Redwood community to grill each other, argue, or simply converse about a relevant issue or event. We provide the topic, and they do the rest. This month’s participants are senior Harry Levinson and junior Adelaide Shunk. The two discuss whether or not rallies positively promote school spirit.

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Are rallies worth missing class time?

Harry Levinson: I don’t think the rallies are worth the non-class time because they can just be done after school so that no school time is missed. It makes more sense for people to be able to focus on academics during school time so that people who care about academics can get the extra help that they need. That way it is more of a win-win for both sides.

Adelaide Shunk: Part of the problem with that is people who want to participate in rallies have other things outside of school. Time is cut out of the schedule for rallies. We aren’t taking away any academic time.

HL: But is it worth missing the instruction time to get help from teachers to scream loudly and make lots of noise?

AS: There is a big bonding factor in rallies. If you are in boring classes all the time, [rallies] give you a nice break that help you refocus on why you are at the school you’re at. Having an opportunity to do other things that aren’t academically oriented helps keep for a well-rounded school.


Should we have more rallies?

AS: I would say yes, purely because I know my freshman year we used to have like four rallies. As a member of Leadership, it was easier to include all the different groups on campus the more rallies we had. Now we only have like two or three; we can only really do the Homecoming rally and a spring rally. When we reduce the number of rallies, we reduce the number of students involved and the diversity of the things we can do at rallies.

HL: No, because they take away from valuable SMART periods.


Do you think rallies promote school spirit in a positive way, or do they create divides between the classes?

HL: I think rallies do both. On one hand, they get people extremely excited about the entire school being unified with school spirit, but at the same time they are divided by their grade level, which makes it extremely competitive. Personally, I just don’t think it’s the best way to promote school spirit. I think rallies should still exist, but maybe with more strict rules so that it’s less likely for people to feel as eager to put down other classes, like the upperclassmen that put down freshman.

AS: I almost agree that the divide between the classes can sometimes be an issue, but I think a lot of the times they try to not just do a class rally, and that ties into having more rallies. The more rallies we have the more we can do with them, like the boy-girl rally. [Divide between the classes] is definitely an issue for us as a Leadership class that we have been trying to address, and so I think yes, it is a problem, but the concept of a rally is to promote school spirit in a positive way, and if we can find themes for rallies that are more geared towards school spirit versus class versus class division, I think that would be a better alternative.


Are rallies inclusive to the whole student population?

HL: Yes and no. Everyone is there, but I don’t think they are inclusive to every type of student. They are inclusive to the types of students who enjoy loud noise and spirited students that want to bond with each other. Students that are more introverted or shy or reserved might not be able to express themselves as well as the spirited students do.

AS: I agree that not everyone is going to be happy with the rallies and some of the rallies are geared towards different portions of the student body, like the Homecoming rally could be considered geared toward the more spirited part of the school. But what I think we need to do is mix up the rallies so that anyone that wants to participate can participate. It is definitely hard to please everybody, but I think we are pretty mindful to be inclusive.