ASB stands tall against homecoming hurdles from home

A+student%27s+planner+demonstrates+the+uncertainty+regarding+homecoming+and+its+activities.+

Marrisa Chow

A student’s planner demonstrates the uncertainty regarding homecoming and its activities.

Homecoming is known as a time of fun for Carlmont students, but the drawbacks COVID-19 has caused make it a tough event for the  Associated Student Body (ASB) to tackle. ASB has had to adjust to the change of pace and scenery, continuing to plan as best they can for possible homecoming alternatives. 

Typically, a week-long celebration of Carlmont High School marks the entirety of homecoming. It’s a favorite of many students and boosts morale and excitement levels, serving as a way for students to express their enthusiasm and spirit for their school.

In past years, togetherness was the central motivation of homecoming. ASB strived to liven things up through the hallway parade at the end of the week or the Screamin’ Scots section at the homecoming football game.

Activities like In-it-to-Win-it, a night full of food and fun games, or the float decorations for the football game were meant to foster a sense of friendly competition between all grade levels at Carlmont and enhance the school community. The powderpuff girl’s football games during lunch were a school-wide favorite and the Saturday night dance served as a way to celebrate after the Friday night football game. 

This year, however, things are looking very different for the event.  COVID-19 has resulted in a host of new safety precautions and regulations, making the traditional homecoming experience impossible.  

“Unfortunately, this year, due to COVID-19, we are unable to have any of these in-person events,” said Bridget Dirstine, a senior on ASB’s Dance Committee. “We’ve basically had to rethink all of homecoming this year to make sure each event is safe for the students.”

ASB has been serious about taking precautions to ensure that students’ health will not be compromised in the pursuit of fun. There had even been talk of following other schools’ leads and canceling homecoming altogether, but ASB eventually decided otherwise.

“We realized even if homecoming was going to be different from previous years, it’s still an important thing to put on because of all the challenges people have had to face this year,” said Sophia Boynton, another member of ASB’s Dance Committee. 

This year, the current plan is for homecoming to be a series of virtual events through Instagram and Snapchat, both of which are platforms frequently used by Carlmont students. Still, ASB is considering postponing the event until the spring when, hopefully, group gatherings will be possible.

“It’s still not set in stone that it will happen in the fall,” said Jim Kelly, the ASB advisor. 

Along with the hurdle of homecoming, ASB has had to face many other challenges regarding eliminating in-person activities. Being such a large group and keeping unity and cohesion is difficult when everyone is separated. To combat this, ASB has been implementing new practices and exercises to bring solidarity to the group. 

“To keep everyone on the same page, we often have full class discussions so that everyone has a clear vision,” said Katelyn Nightengale, a junior. “We’ve also tried out some new digital platforms, mainly to increase communication between everyone so that we all know what’s going on and what is being discussed.”

The entirety of ASB is feeling the effects of isolation and the lack of face to face contact. Previously, the group participated in many activities, many of which are now impossible to hold during the pandemic.  Aiding as a substitute in unprecedented times, bonding over Zoom and a giant Trello board facilitate communication.  

“It has been one of the most challenging aspects of my entire career,” Kelly said. “Currently, our Executive Board (ASB Presidents and VPs) are working on a virtual field trip similar to the annual one we take to Jones Gulch.” 

I’ve seen so many instances of resiliency from students that make me so proud to be associated with Carlmont students.”

— Jim Kelly

 

Despite the challenging circumstances the pandemic causes, ASB has managed to stay positive throughout the experience. They haven’t hesitated for one moment and instead have adjusted as best as possible and are pushing forward to do the most they can for Carlmont.

“No matter how bad it is, it’s important to accept it and then take action to make the most of it,” Kelly said. “I’ve seen so many instances of resiliency from students that make me so proud to be associated with Carlmont students.”

There’s no denying ASB has had a rough transition and will continue to have their work cut out for them. Though homecoming’s future is uncertain, ASB will continue to do the absolute best they can to boost morale and transition things from in-person to online as smoothly as possible.  

“It’s nice for people to know that no matter what happens with COVID-19, homecoming and events for school are only going to get better,” Boynton said.

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