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Senior Tre-Shawn Jones carries the flag before a home football game

J'naya Thompson

A turning point in school participation

February 26, 2019

Senior Isaiah Cox has been leader of he Bleacher Creatures since sophomore year

Whether it’s performing in a school play, cheering on the teams, or even diving into the water, someone’s always there to represent RHS. Over the years, participation in schools has gone down, but it’s not just the average couple of people not attending.

“I do think that school participation has gone down, if you look back at years especially back in the 90’s early 2000’s you go to a basketball game you have to get there hours in advance to even be able to get a place to sit,” sophomore Brendan Evans said. “Now you really don’t have that many people going, granted it’s a 9,000 capacity gym, but you don’t have many people filling in those spots it’s just kind of disappointing to see how many people actually care about Richmond Athletics now.”

Certain clubs and sports cost a lot of money, and for most students, the only way they can pay the expense is through fundraising.

“It’s definitely hard for parents to pay for extracurricular activities,” senior Kelsey Mullins said. “I play travel softball and I play basketball, so it makes fundraising and everything really a key for me, and in doing that I have an opportunity to pay for my stuff like travel gear, basketball shoes, etc.”

In some sense, most students don’t participate or just are not interested in the clubs or sports offered.

“I think they should give a little more student interested clubs, because most of the people who don’t participate aren’t interested in the clubs that the school thinks they would like,” senior Owen Shaw said.

For others, their view on student clubs and sports are a bit different.

“I think the most important thing is to try and find ‘your people,’” junior Emma Socey said. “I’ve met and hung out with most of my friends through theater and speech. So I would say if you’re someone who doesn’t just ‘hang out’ easily, extracurriculars serve as a wonderful place to socialize, but I don’t think the activities themselves are terribly important.”

It’s also not just about getting involved and participating in your own sport or club, it’s being there for other teams as well.

I would go support our teams because I try to be as involved as I can”

— Brendan Evans

“I like to be able to help people out and I want to make this school a better place. This is where I was raised, and I want others to look at us and say wow they’re doing so why don’t we do something like this,” Evans said.

And not just being there for the sports, but being there for your own academic participation

Don’t impact your abilities to a bare minimum because you have to do a science project or something along those lines, because most of the time if you talk to your teachers they’ll give you more time if you need more time, and a lot of that stuff can be done outside of that,” Evans said.

People say that high school will be the best four years of your life, especially if you get involved in extracurricular activities or just go to the games/events for your school’s teams.

“It is so important and many people don’t realize that the most successful and accepted into college students are those who are involved and that cheering on other classmates helps build community and a good image for you and our school,” senior Isaiah Cox said.

Junior Hannah Trotter has been apart of the girls soccer and swim team for three years now

It’s not just good to participate in sports but also to support them while they’re playing/performing.

“I would go out and support our teams because I know how hard each of the teams worked and I know from experience the better the vibes from the audience/ teammates the better you’re going to perform,” junior Hannah Trotter said.

Whether playing the sport themselves or just watching, participation is always good for resumes and college opportunities in the future.

“Our school offers a flurry of clubs and activities,” Cox said. “Many students think that creating these things are easy when they are very difficult; those that want to participate will and those that don’t want to participate, don’t participate, and won’t participate, regardless.”

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