Combined, But Don’t Mix

Just a little bit over a year ago, St. Genevieve Parish Schools was born. Prior to that, there were two separate campuses, the elementary school and the high school.  Although they shared the same pastor, they had separate administration and separate activities. Now that these two campuses have combined, some view it as a blessing while some view it as an affliction.

Every school year, the high school celebrates, homecoming, musicals, band competitions, and other activities. Not until recently with the combination of both campuses, elementary students can also be seen joining in on these activities.

The musicals that were only featuring high school students are now featuring elementary students as well. Homecoming is no different in this situation either. With the enthusiasm the whole week, the competition between classes goes on; along with the elementary students.

“It’s okay, I guess,” said Freshman Adriana Cruz. “There’s a lot of unity and it gets them a taste of high school, it gets them prepared.”

The gym during homecoming week is louder as it is filled with students from K-12. Musicals have little children added in their cast list that adds a little more spice to the show, drawing more of an audience. Band has more students that enhances their sound to the fullest and exposes younger students more to playing instruments. Many students in the elementary have thought that the outcomes of the activities with both campuses had great turn outs. The elementary has also changed their mascot from Spartans to Valiants as well.

“I felt like everyone was shouting and enthusiasm fills the room during homecoming,” said 6th grader Mark Pascua. “Joining high school activities [also] gives us more activities and it is fun, and fun is good for children.”

However, not everyone thinks this is so. While elementary school students see the combination as a good thing, some high school students tend to have a more negative mindset.

“For certain things, like masses and for speakers, I felt like there’s something that benefit from it,” said Senior Noah Weise. “But for Homecoming and things like that where it’s traditionally high school experiences or like the musicals or marching band, they shouldn’t join because now they have this experience and they’re not even in high school yet. So when they get to high school, it’s not anything new.”

Though many think that it was an arbitrary decision, combining the two schools together has been Father Alden’s long time dream. The St. Genevieve pastor worked on it throughout the years to finally achieve his goal.

While it makes elementary students feel special for doing what the “big” kids do, it takes away something from the high schoolers that have actually waited until high school to experience these things. Guest speakers that have come to speak at night schools have emphasized to high schoolers  make the most of their days because it is a big highlight in everyone’s lives. But being with elementary students will make it harder to make the most of high school.

“We’re not allowed to be high schoolers because during assemblies we’re not allowed to talk about things that actually matter because there are younger people in the room and I understand that. But they are essentially talking to us like we’re fourth graders or second graders,” said Junior CJ Smith. “Before, we were freshmen, and we could still be talking with the speakers in a high school level instead of an elementary school level.”

With the growing conflict, many students have expressed their emotions towards the situation, but teachers keep a neutral feeling about it. They have also kept a positive outlook.

“It just brings the school as one you know and it is fun watching,” said Ms. Brush. “[Throughout time], they’ll enjoy it even more and elementary will be better as the years go by like the floats. [It] will just become better and better.”

St. Genevieve is known for its students’ good character and being a school unlike others. However, that might change over time if the conflict between students in each campus continue.

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