MCHS student council looking to change things for the better |

MCHS student council looking to change things for the better

The Moffat County High School student council is working to improve positive school spirit.
Courtesy MCHS student council

For student council members at Moffat County High School, it’s a building year.

In years past, student body president Tanner Zimmerman said, school spirit has not been a priority for students at MCHS, but he and his fellow members of the student council are hoping to change that. Through regular meetings with administrators, constant communication about event ideas and careful planning, the council has planned several events in order to bring positive experiences to the student section at MCHS sports.

“So far, we’ve had a lot of people say that they like that we’re trying to bring school spirit back, and that they haven’t seen it like this in years,” Zimmerman said. “And I think part of that is just getting people to take pride in their school and not be afraid to show school spirit.”

COVID-19 regulations put a damper on the student section last year; the number of students allowed in sections was limited, meaning that lower attendance and smaller crowds had to cheer on the Bulldogs. With those regulations far less strict this year, Zimmerman said that it opened up a lot of opportunity for growth in school spirit. He meets regularly with MCHS administrators to discuss plans and themes for upcoming games. With their support, the council gets to create a more fun experience for their fellow students that — hopefully — keeps them coming back to games.

“When I found out that we were coming back full force this year, I took that as a sign,” Zimmerman said. “We don’t want it to be like another COVID year. You need to be the change you want to see in the school. I just hated how everything was last year with having a division of students, so we only had half the students in the school at one time. Then also we were only having 30 kids come and watch the basketball games and stuff. I was like, ‘We need to make everything as eventful as possible.’”

Reina Steele, vice president of the student body, said that most of the executive team on the council are juniors and seniors, meaning oftentimes underclassmen can feel left out or are misrepresented. Her goal, however, is to get more freshmen and sophomores involved, since they are the future of good school spirit at MCHS.

“We try to put things on the school morning announcements and social media as much as possible,” Steele said. “But I feel like people listen more when you tell them, ‘We really need your help, and we really think that you should come to this sporting event.’ Spirit weeks are fun and you should dress up. You shouldn’t feel like it’s not cool to dress up, because it’s a lot of fun.”

Right now, the council has started planning for winter sports like basketball, but they’ve already laid the groundwork during the fall sports season. At football games, the student section often had themes like Hawaiian Night or had fun amenities like confetti cannons to get students excited about going to games. Steele and Zimmerman agreed that keeping school spirit positive benefits the overall culture of the school.

This year, the council also went out into the community to build school spirit beyond the walls of MCHS. Before Moffat County’s first-round playoff game, the council hosted a tailgate for Bulldog fans featuring yard games like cornhole and served tailgate food to community members.

A lot of communication goes into planning an event or theme, Zimmerman said. He gathers input from athletes to see what kinds of themes they want to see at games. Then, there are several group chats of various students involved in planning, and Zimmerman said that the council has become very independent when it comes to handling these large-scale events. Students on the council are often involved in other extracurricular activities and out-of-school jobs.

“​​For this year, I ask, what themes do you want to see?” Zimmerman said. “With that, I’m able to plan it because it’s a lot more in depth than it seems — rather than just saying, ‘Oh, hey, it’s a Hawaiian game.’ We’re planning a red carpet theme for their senior night since that’s a big game, like a formal event. There’s other times where, depending on the other team’s mascot, we’ll do something that involves them. It’s just kind of like, ‘what do you want to see? And how can we make that easy for people to follow?’”

Zimmerman’s and Steele’s hopes are that this year is just the beginning for more positive school spirit and culture at MCHS. Instead of tearing other teams down, they would rather hype up and get people excited about the Bulldogs.

“I want to be the change in the school that people are like, ‘Oh, do you remember that one year that everything started getting better?’” Zimmerman added. “And I just want people to remember the changes that we’re making as the start of something.”

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