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Student Reaction to the Academic Letter Ceremony

Lizzy Gunder, Blueprint Staff

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Last Wednesday, Blaine held an academic award ceremony for the students who earned an academic letter last year. This year’s ceremony was different from previous years in several ways, and the students were less than thrilled by the changes.

In past years, the ceremony has been held in the spring, but this year it was held the following fall. Rather than being held in the evening, it was held before school at 7:30 in the fieldhouse. However, these were not the changes the students found upsetting. Previously, every student was called onto the stage, shook hands with the principal, and was personally handed their certificate. That was not the case this year. Only the first year recipients were personally awarded their certificates. Second and third year students, as seen above, were herded onto a square of red carpet, congratulated, and told to, “keep up the good work.”

Many students felt like their achievements and hard work were not recognized. Calissa Boyce, a senior at Blaine and a third year recipient, had this to say about the ceremony: “I didn’t hardly feel like a person whose efforts were being acknowledged, I felt my academic achievements were being devalued. As a person, I felt belittled by the whole experience and I certainly did not get the impression that the school cares about me.” Calissa even talked to one of the administrators at our school about the ceremony.

Students were not the only ones unhappy with the changes to the academic letter ceremony. Some parents, my parents and their close friends included, also felt their child was not being recognized for their achievements. The parents did have one concern that students did not bring up. Many students were arriving to school as the parents were leaving the parking lot. The traffic was terrible as students tried to enter the parking lot while parents tried to leave. It took my parents 15 minutes to exit because of all the traffic. Some students who did not attend the ceremony were also upset about the parking situation. They didn’t understand why there was so much traffic and why it was so hard to find a parking spot. This was not an issue when the ceremony was held in the evening.

All in all, it seemed very few were impressed with the changes made to the academic letter ceremony. Students felt they were not recognized for their hard work; parents felt the same way and were also upset about the traffic leaving the ceremony. Blaine attempted to change things up a bit, but it was not well received.

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Student Reaction to the Academic Letter Ceremony