Jeff High’s Inclusive Clubs

for-the-culture-by-dezmond-boyd

buddy-up-by-dezmond-boyd.JPG

Our clubs display and celebrate the diverse student body here at Jeffersonville High School

Jeffersonville High School’s student body is very diverse and full of students from different cultural backgrounds, life situations and orientations. In response to the diversity of our student body Jeff High has clubs here that celebrate the diversity of our school.

For the Culture
For the Culture is a club here at Jeff High that is all about diversity and inclusiveness. During their meetings they do activities such as rap contests and discuss a variety of topics from the community’s relationship with police to more serious topics such as the death penalty.

The club meets every other Wednesday after school in C222. For the Culture also does community service, college visits, and field trips to places like the Muhammad Ali Center.

“Our main goal for the club is to provide an opportunity for association with other students of color that are focused on school and community service,” said club sponsor Suzanne Siebert.

Buddy Up
Buddy Up is a club in which students group up with special needs students or buddies. Each buddy works in a group with a few other students, the students meet with their buddies on Wednesdays during impact. The club also occasionally has after school parties.

“In Buddy Up we meet with our buddies and just hang out with them. We do games, food, parties, and sometimes work on school stuff,” said Freshman Aaliyah Adams.

LGBT Club
“We’re all human.” That’s the mission statement of the LGBT club at Jeffersonville High School. According to Andrew Weiss, who is president of the club, its purpose is simple: to form a support group for LGBT students and help them learn the history of their community. Weiss works hard to make each meeting a positive experience for the club’s members. That positivity comes through and it’s apparent that many students look forward to coming, such as freshman Jade Worrall.

“I love to surround myself with happy and accepting people,” said Worrall. “It’s a very positive and fun environment.”

Every Friday the group holds open meetings in the media center or cafeteria. Those who are not necessarily a part of the LGBT community are welcome as well, the group accepts all.

“We will be here to talk if you have questions or if you are feeling confused about your sexuality,” Weiss said. “No one should feel scared. They can come and talk to me or an adult about their problem and we’ll try to help.”

Weiss understands what it’s like to be harassed due to your sexuality or to not feel accepted as does freshman member Marni Scholl. “I feel like a lot of people don’t accept but I do have friends who do. I feel like it is 50/50 when it comes to people who accept or don’t accept,” Scholl said. The group provides a safe space for people to get together and be who they are. They want to make students aware that being yourself is absolutely okay and that individuality is encouraged.

“I want to help raise awareness about not only the club but about how sexuality is a completely normal thing,” freshman Amber Walker said.

Written by Haylee Hedrick and Meredith Shepherd

Photos by Dezmond Boyd

“Black, White, and Read All Over”

On Saturday, February 9, 2019 the Key Club and Dance Marathon hosted the “Battle of the Bowls” soup cook off. The cook off was to help raise funds for Riley’s Children Hospital. 28 teams entered the cook off, including a team by The Hyphen. The Hyphen team entered with a soup made by Ms. Moore dubbed, “Black, White, and Read All Over” Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup. Out 28 entries The Hyphen team ended up taking home the first place trophy and an empty crockpot. The cook off raised almost $1,000 and the next Dance Marathon event will be a bowling fundraiser at Strike and Spare on February 26 from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. It will be $15 for three games and shoes, there will also be a silent auction and a 50/50 raffle.

Written by Meredith Shepherd

 

Friends of Rachel: a chain of positivity

written by Emma Ellis & Haylee Hedrick
photos by Dylan Shupe-Logsdon

Loud pops rung throughout the halls of Columbine High School in Colorado on April 20, 1999.

At first, students thought the sounds were firecrackers being lit on the lawn outside.

The reality: shots were being fired from semi-automatic handguns at students outside eating lunch.

The shooting, which would later be known as the Columbine shooting massacre, lasted 49 minutes and spanned most of the school. Senior Rachel Scott, a 17-year-old who was known around the school for always spreading kindness, was the first victim shot and killed.

April 20 of this year will mark 19 years since the first mass school shooting occurred. Since Scott’s death, her legacy of positivity lives on within JHS through the Friends of Rachel club, which has been actively working to make sure that her and her legacy never fade.

“There’s a sense of unity that comes with the student body being against bullying, knowing that it’s a dangerous thing within any school environment.”

Friend’s of Rachel co-president Neh Thaker

“It’s definitely become more prevalent, as the presidents, to continue a positive movement throughout the school, ” Friend’s of Rachel co-president Keith Asplund said. “We need to use her story to prevent bullying and stop escalation of violent situations.”

On that fateful day, 13 lives were lost — 12 students and one teacher — and 21 more were injured. But through all of the despair, a legacy of gold was gained.

Following the shooting, Rachel’s father, Darrell, created the “Rachel’s Challenge” program to honor his late daughter. His hope was to carry out her goals by showing the impact that minimal acts of kindness can have in a high school setting.

Eventually, the club would reach millions of high school students nationwide every year, encouraging safety and positivity in schools.

“The club gives students an outlet to share and discuss things they might be embarrassed about or going through,” said one of the club sponsors, Taylor Troncin. “And (we) respond (with) something to combat the negativity going on.”

At the beginning of each school year, the JHS club encouraged members of the student body to sign an “anti-bullying banner” to pledge their agreeance to keep the school from being a place of violence, bullying and discrimination.  


IMG_6803

During lunches, students were encouraged to sign a “Say Boo to Bullying” banner, as well purchase wristbands that read ‘Band Against Bullying” to benefit the Friends of Rachel group.


“There’s a sense of unity that comes with the student body being against bullying, knowing that it’s a dangerous thing within any school environment,” said Friend’s of Rachel co-president Neh Thaker.

Scott paved the way for a positive movement that has grown to a larger scale and can continue to grow by each person affected.  

“It’s really a simple message that she (Scott) was trying to spread,” Asplund said. “It isn’t big — it just starts with some students in school, day-to-day, hour-to-hour, spreading positivity.”

Jeff High’s newest club is all about inclusion and acceptance

This time last year, junior Matthew Begin was talking to his friend Noah Fetter, who attends Silver Creek High School.

While their talk encapsulated many different topics, unity and acceptance of others was at the forefront.

As their conversation continued, they began discussing the possibility of creating a club to unite different LGBT friendships, and educating students on mental health that is not taught in the traditional system.

Begin asked assistant principal Marianne Fisher her thoughts on starting up a club at Jeff, and she helped him through the initial process. Sophomore Ryan Curry overheard Begin and Fisher talking about it one day, and thought the idea was great and wanted to contribute.

Thus, the team of students created the Jeffersonville High School Gay-Straight-Trans Alliance.

All the club had to do was find a sponsor, and space to have their meetings. Mrs. Virginia Herfel, a counselor, was glad to take the responsibility. The group had their first meeting in the AP conference room on Dec. 6.

The kick-off meeting was met with support, and the members discussed future goals and achievements.

“We are trying to get more sponsors so that we can do things like community service projects,” Begin said. “We also have recently been discussing the possibility of a dance.”

The clubs two main goals are to have fun, and educate the community on the differences of the LGBT and the challenges that they face everyday.

“We want to normalize queer people and not isolate them and make sure that they know it’s okay to be yourself,” Curry said.

Their motto is “providing education and advocation for equality and understanding.”

Begin says that all student are welcomed, even if you would just like to come and support , or attend a meeting to see what they are about. The members are very excited to have this opportunity, and are anxious to see where they go.