Underclassman formal planned for 2014-2015 school year

Lena Kogan, Staff Writer

Junior Prom and Gambol are fast approaching, but next year these events might be joined by their younger siblings: underclassmen formals.  Last year, the Student Council had the idea of organizing a formal as a school event for the freshmen and sophomores, but the idea was not fully considered until this year.  In fact, the formal was originally supposed to replace Spirit Week and the spring pep rally in 2014.

“Before we reserve a place we need at least 125 people to actually show up for us to put a deposit, so a couple weeks ago we had a sign-up sheet that freshmen and sophomores would sign if they were interested in going,” said junior Student Council Excecutive Officer Rana Ismail.

Unfortunately, planning was started later than expected, and it is necessary to verify all the details ahead of time with an event of this size.  The Underclassmen Formal is currently on the agenda for next year.

“Hopefully we will get everything planned in advance and all the details ready,” said Ismail.  “I feel like we are one of the only schools who doesn’t actually have a formal.  People should get excited to go to things like these and we don’t want it to be some kind of joke.”

The intention is to start a high school tradition, such as the one that already exists with Junior Prom and Gambol.  However, some students are worried that the formal be too similar to the already existing events for the upperclassmen.

“I like the idea of organizing more school dances, but I think what we really need are more informal gatherings and not a pseudo-prom for underclassmen,” said junior Elizabeth Muratore.

Many current upperclassmen have waited for three years to attend one of these events and believe that having an event in their earlier years of high school might take away from the excitement of upperclass dances.

“I think  that if there is an underclassmen formal, when they are seniors and it is time for Gambol, it will have lost the enchantment and it will be old news,” said  junior Laynie Calderwood.

Planning events like prom take a lot of organization financially as well, so others were concerned about costs associated with the idea.

“I feel like the money could be going to other places,” said junior Haley Sambursky.  “If the formals were an already established tradition then maybe, but our school already got rid of so many events because of the lack of support so I don’t see how this situation is any different.”

Change is never easy, and for many upperclassmen the idea of having prom in the higher grades is like a rite of passage, but the idea is to organize an event for the rest of the students that will last.

“From an upperclassmen perspective it sounds like a waste of resources, but I’m sure that the underclassmen would really enjoy a formal event,” said junior Sabina Unni.  “I know certain clubs are lacking in budget.  I can’t imagine what would be cut to add two more formals.”

Overall, there is a general concern about the finances associated with the organization of a formal as well as the formal’s close resemblance to upperclassmen proms, but despite these qualms, some still have hope that this event can be organized.

“Many people in the community were against the idea, but if it becomes a tradition it will raise school spirit and pride,” said senior and Student Council Executive Officer Samantha Crawley.