Two sides of pep rallies
October 31, 2018
Two staffers debate the effectiveness of pep rallies. Senior Gaby Garcia believes pep rallies lack spirit and take away from students’ education. She argues that the pep rallies should be canceled. Junior Lily Hager believes the pep rallies are what students make of them and enjoys each one, willing the pep rallies to continue as they are.
Lily Hager: You’ve got to sell it
My pep rally days have changed drastically over the years.
As a freshman, I watched eagerly in the band stands, soaking in every ounce of high school I saw. I gasped at the Majestics’ outfits, I screamed the heck out of the Leopard Rumble, and I played the fight song on my piccolo.
As a sophomore, I stayed behind as my class graduated to the home side of the gym. I grew used to the Majestics’ skirts. I still screamed my heart out for the spirit stick. And I still played my piccolo.
As a junior and a drum major, I leave my seat in the band stands and prop myself onto the barriers in front to conduct. I Leopard Rumble through my sleep deprivation, I do not play my piccolo, and I, like the rest of the school, miss Nick Smith and his drumline-playing, overall-wearing spirited self.
Each one of those pep rallies was worth going to.
It’s not about the activities. The school doesn’t owe it to you to entertain you. It’s a gift to all of us that we are allowed to leave class just to hear about our peers’ accomplishments and cheer them on as they compete in silly games. Pep rallies are the only time I can geek out and cheer on the bowling team. It’s the only time the school can dedicate a few focused minutes to the cheerleaders. Pep rallies are about supporting each other, and if I can get pulled out of class to cheer on some friends, I’m doing it.
At that, leaving class is a privilege, not a loss. Nobody can deny that our school delivers each student opportunities for their education through electives, competitions, advanced classes and more. Missing first period on an occasional Friday costs students nothing, especially in comparison to the many academic advantages Lovejoy offers each student.
A pep rally is what you make of it. You can always compare your school with movies or social media, but your reality is what is in front of you. Just because the pep rally in “Grease” had bonfires under the stars doesn’t justify sulking over our gym’s air-conditioned setting. Complaining about sitting on the visitors’ side or about the inaudible announcers aren’t going to earn me a pep-rally-do-over.
The problem isn’t in the pep rallies. Not wanting to be there and sulking your way through it is your own loss. You’ve got to sell it. Sell your hype for the bowling team. Sell your love for the school. And freaking sell the Leopard Rumble and win that spirit stick.
Gaby Garcia: Down with the rallies
When I think of school spirit, I think of the pom-poms, the pep, and the high kicks, but never from our school. Never our pep rallies.
Throughout my high school career, I’ve had three different perspectives on the supposed spirit-filled events ranging from outside, inside and none at all. During my freshman year I “participated” in school spirit-filled event from the stands, visually soaking in my surroundings. Sophomore year I was in every pep rally live as a Majestic.
Now, as a senior, I am proud to say I haven’t gone to a single pep rally all year and don’t plan on it.
We don’t need them. They have no real purpose or value. We are just conditioned to expect them because that’s what we are brought up seeing it in movies and on social media feeds. High school isn’t like the movies for everyone, and neither are pep rallies.
The event itself doesn’t cater to everyone in the school, only those that are more outgoing or thrive in social surroundings. But what about the quieter side of the student sections- the introverts, the anti-socials. What are we supposed to do?
Due to the fact that it’s mandatory, I’m forced to exit my comfort zone of quiet tranquility in the classroom to cater to other people’s expectations of the typical high school norm.
Pep rallies are just like other events the school offers such as football games, dances and fundraising events. But two things separate pep rallies from these events- pep rallies occur during school hours and are mandatory.
Instead of holding these events, we should put more focus on the football games. If you want your pep, take it to the student section where you are welcomed with open arms. Save school hours for what students are here for- education.
Just because other schools host pep rallies is no reason to keep them here. After all, Lovejoy has many things that separate us from other schools, so not having pep rallies can be another one of those things that separate us from what is considered to be a typical high school. Our main focus is on academics, so why even bother funding these events when the money can go to building up other programs in the school or giving us a nicer learning environment.
So instead of continuing to throw these spiritless gatherings at the expense of my education maybe consider revising your complaints of success rates with an actual solution. Take the pep to football games and quit the pep rallies.