Mountain Lion Fan Club plans to spread school spirit

Brayden Adams, Reporter

Junior high teachers and principals formed the Mountain Lion Fan Club this school year in order to spread school spirit.  Two individuals involved in the Mountain Lion Fan Club are Principal David Campbell and Guidance Counselor Michele Holton.

“The Mountain Lion Fan Club is a committee that was formed this year.  A group of teachers got together to promote a fan-base in the stands of either sports, drama performances or music concerts,” Holton said.

Holton said Campbell was the person who decided to form this committee.

“He [Campbell] has been to many sporting events and whenever he has been in there and doing crowd control or doing whatever he noticed a lack of student support in the crowds. He approached Mrs. Mangan at the end of last year and gave the suggestion, and that’s when the approval happened,” Holton said.

Holton and the rest of the committee plan to spread school spirit.

“We have a few ideas in mind with one being announcements that especially promote big games like if we are competing against each other.  We will be posting the schedules around the building and not just in the gymnasium area. We have a couple of ideas that we are going to try to highlight.  We’re essentially trying to mimic the Mountain Lion Maniacs over at the high school. We are trying to do that over here at the junior high. So, inviting friends and encouraging them to invite their friends to events such as basketball games would just get that base to promote more people coming,” Holton said.

Holton believes school spirit is a very important aspect of a school.

“School spirit is very important because it feels good to look up in the stands and see that people are behind you.  You are working your hardest as an athlete, day in and day out, practicing and practicing to do your best. Whether it is a team sport or an individual sport, to look up in the stands and see friends that are behind you and cheering you on and actually seeing the outcome of the hard work you put in is just an amazing feeling,” Holton said.

Campbell and the rest of the committee want to be able to spread school spirit throughout the junior high.

“What we want to do is develop ways that we can get more kids to those events so that there is a bigger sense of school pride and a calling of more attention to athletes and their performance, but also try to attract other kids to participate in sports or at least go to support their peers and therefore have more of an atmosphere of school spirit here,” Campbell said.

The Mountain Lion Fan Club wants students to come out and support their classmates at home games.

“We want to put more of a focus on specific home events so we can generate students who want to go to those games and make it possible for kids to go to those games.  I think one of the things holding kids back right now is the cost of admission and the fact that some kids just don’t have $2 or $3 to come to an event like that, so we are looking at ways to go outside of admission cost like giving tickets to students for free or having students earn tickets to go to the games.” Campbell said.

The program will begin with winter sports.

“One of the things we have in the works right now for some upcoming basketball games is to have cheerleaders on all four stairwells that give out free passes to students who are participating in a spirit day that is coming up for the holidays and, you know, if they see kids that are participating in a spirit day, they are going to hand out tickets for those students to go to the next basketball game after school, for example,” Campbell said.

Athletic teams will help promote school spirit.

“For example, if the white and maroon teams had a game next week, we would be looking at doing a high five greeting with those players in the lobbies at arrival with signs and banners telling students when the games are.  There are gonna be times where we talk about giving a free ticket to a student and the only requirement for it is to bring two friends with them, so three students will be getting in with one ticket and those types of things,” Campbell said.

The Mountain Lion Fan Club supports students coming to home games.

“If kids are not on a team and promoting a game here in the school, they can come to the game.  We want them to attend. Overall, it benefits everybody because there is more of a sense of pride and belonging in our school,” Campbell said.

This committee is organized in an orderly fashion.

“We have about ten groups of teachers and each group will be comprised of about three or four teachers.  They are responsible for selecting different activities and events to promote across the board like upcoming home basketball games and wrestling matches.  They have great ideas that they have in store, so I do believe this could create a change for taking down that barrier of cost for students to get into games and I really do honestly feel like that is what prohibits kids from entering games,” Campbell said.

Campbell believes school spirit is an important part of a school.

“It creates a sense of ownership and belonging within your school and we lack that at this point.  We do need kids to take more pride in their school. We need to create a better environment here for students who feel like they have pride in belonging to their school.  It is just a sense of pride in your school and community and it translates into better grades and better performance across the board academically. Plus, it will turn poor behavior around,” Campbell said.

One student that believes the junior high needs more school spirit is Logan Bartlebaugh. Bartlebaugh believes this committee will be successful in finding ways to spread school spirit.

“I’m sure they’ll find some way of having activities or some sort of thing involving students,” Bartlebaugh said. “Yeah, I believe our school could use some stuff to help out and make people happy. Everyone has school spirit and the school needs some itself to show off.”