Students seek more ‘hype’ Homecoming

No dance and scant participation during Spirit Week have students questioning the process


Marcell Brown

Roosevelt Homecoming King and Queen, Duke and Duchess, and Lordesses stand before their subjects on the field. Students thought they should be “honored with a dance.”

The first high school Homecoming Week that freshman and sophomore Roosevelt students ever experienced was not what they expected, according to students in Honors English II, who asked Assistant Principal Cory Carter on Wednesday of Spirit Week how decisions get made.

“We need more spirit! We need a marching band. We need students and staff participating. We need energy,” sophomore Lashae Hubbard said.

After explaining that Homecoming is planned and executed by a group of faculty and staff who volunteer, and with input from Student Government Association (SGA), Carter agreed that this year hasn’t been nearly hype enough.

“I agree. That is definitely something we we need to do a better job as a school, especially since we do have undefeated football team,” Carter said during third period. “I do think we got to do a better job at hyping up homecoming. I do agree.”

Clinical social worker Quinn Flowers (foreground) showed her spirit on Costume Day by scaring her fellow staff member Erica Cartledge (background).

Citing the all-staff Homecoming Committee, students said the selection of themes for each day were not interesting to students. While Twin Day and Retro-throwback were considered to be fun, there was not much interest in Jersey Day or Class Color Day.

“We need students on the Homecoming committee,” sophomore Jalynn Charity said to Carter. The students advocated for Gender Swap Day, Backpack Ban Day, and Senior Citizen Day.

There was much discussion about whether students would participate even if there were changes. “The school would be better for students, but students have to really want their school to be ‘hype,’” sophomore Tony Standard wrote.

Another disappointment was the dance. “I feel as though the Dukes and Dutchesses should get the real recognition that they deserve and be honored with a dance,” Hubbard said. “I understand the whole COVID guidelines and everything, but I believe the the dance can take place on the field on a day that y’all choose. It doesn’t have to be big and over the top.”

Principal Justin Ralston said he made the call not to have a Homecoming dance back in September, when planning needed to begin, because Covid cases were popping up around the building. Even though there has not been a new Covid case since Indigenous People’s Day, he said he did not regret the decision.

Ralston added that he and staff are committed to exploring how to safely conduct a dance within the Covid protocols. “I am committed to doing a Homecoming Part 2 (or Winter Coming, depending on what students want to call it) this winter to celebrate our students in winter sports, our band, and all of our students,” he wrote in an email.

Carter further explained that behaviors occurring in school put the nail in the coffin of a 2021 Homecoming dance. “We are in no place to be trying to have a dance where we can’t even get through a normal school day without any incidents occurring,” Carter told the class, emphasizing that most sophomores do not cause problems, but the actions of some are problematic. “So that’s something that I challenge you all to talk to your friends and classmates about their behavior so we can put on different events.”

Sophomore Janiyah Lozada could see his point: “It’s not everyone’s behavior, but I do feel like there may be a fight at the dance.”

Sophomore Shelby Taylor said that both students and staff should have more spirit. The sophomore English class said lack of participation all around caused the drought in spirits. Tamar Coon said ideas for Spirit Week could include the band playing at lunch, cool posters in the hall, and more advertising leading up to the big week.

“The cheerleaders could do a flash mob,” Lozada said.

Most of the students in the class did not realize there had been elections for SGA officers at the beginning of school. Sophomore Fernando Alvarez said that in the future maybe Homecoming week would be a better time for an SGA election.

“We didn’t even know about the vote,” Charity said.