By Paul Jones
Fridays at Red Lion during the fall have always been filled with football and fanfare. Student sections are a big part of that given that they are the students cheering for their fellow students. However, some within the county have questioned how inclusive those sections actually are.
While this may sound like something out of a bad movie, this might be an actual problem. This issue was talked about at Student Forum, which schools from three different counties attended.
“There are two student representatives from each school in Franklin, Adams, and York county who go to those meetings,” Mrs. Dennish, head of Student Council, said. “At the meetings they talk about issues that are going on at school, and last year one of the issues was about school spirit and out of that came a conversation about all the different student sections.”
Student Council decided to ask the students of Red Lion Area Senior High School themselves. When the members came up to the TV studio and asked whether they thought that the student section was welcoming there was a resounding no.
“It seemed that it was not promoting school spirit but that it was promoting popularity or an exclusive type of club,” Mrs. Dennish said. “From that conversation, we said why don’t we ask Red Lion what they think and see if they agree with those statements or if that is not a problem at Red Lion.”
Students and administration are afraid that if the student section becomes more about popularity, it defeats the purpose of the student section. If it is not welcoming to all students, is it really even a true student section?
The student section is an integral part of the Friday night experience, especially for high school students. So making it inclusive is important so students feel comfortable in supporting their school.
But ideas are being thrown around so that the student section can become better.
“I liked how they asked about junior high kids possibly sitting in the section,” Senior Tristan Fuentes, head of the Rowdies, said. “For me, it’s no problem if they sit in the back and participate and pay attention to the game.”
“Also wanted to do something with the band,” Fuentes said. ‘If they could play a modern song or a good beat and the student section either sings or goes wild.”
Fuentes and the Rowdies seem open to change. “Change is cool, but only if it’s what the majority of the Rowdies are feeling,” Fuentes said.
The student section might not be like previous student sections before it. GametimePA said that Red Lion had the second best student section in the county, only 1 percent of the vote behind Northeastern, and the Rowdies want to come with even more spirit and inclusion.