Network disruption challenges Homecoming preparation

By adapting to the effects of the network disruption, Student Council plans the Homecoming dance, annual Wing Bowl and pep rally. The network disruption put obstacles in place for Student Council, but they were able to overcome them.

Working toward the goal of making Homecoming successful, Student Council was forced to adjust to the effects of the district’s network disruption.
Student Council plans the Homecoming festivities every year; however, this year presented the organization with more of a challenge. A network disruption in the school caused all emails, Schoology accounts, and websites to be down, which challenged the planning of Homecoming.
According to junior Emily Manchester, students had to step up and work at home.
“We had Student Council members and officers make signs and flyers on their own accounts at home and print them out. We then hung them up around school during fifth block,” Manchester said. “Then, the Student Council Instagram page was used to get the word out there.”
The Student Council faced difficulties with communication and spreading the word due to the network disruption. According to Student Council President Kevin Connolly, the network disruption helped show Student Council different ways to advertise.
“Word of mouth became increasingly important because we could not just send a schoolwide Schoology message to get the word out. Also, this year our Instagram page became our main way to spread the word because many students have access to it,” Connolly said.
Additionally, Student Council struggled with Homecoming court and non-online methods of voting. According to Student Council Vice President Cole Derstein, the paper ballot was actually more beneficial than last year by increasing voting.
“In past years, the voting was done all online making it difficult for people who either don’t have technology at home, who weren’t aware of the voting, or who weren’t sure where to vote,” Derstein said. “With doing it paper ballot, we gave everyone in the entire school an opportunity to vote, which increased the overall amount of results.”
The Homecoming t-shirt design also proved to be a challenge, according to Student Council Officer Hannah Nguyen.
“We originally did them on our school accounts, but then those got compromised, obviously we can’t access that, so then we had to completely redo those designs on our home accounts,” Nguyen said. “Instead of having the teachers contact the t-shirt designers, we had to do that ourselves.”
There were some benefits to the technology disruption as well. According to junior Emily Pivnichny, the technology disruption increased social interactions between Student Council and students.
“Instead of just sending out a Google form, the Student Council reps had to go to each fifth block and introduce themselves. That increased social interactions and relationships with the students. It also brands our club more because people get to see those involved in Student Council,” Pivnichny said.
Student Council Co-advisor Jennifer Granito said that the increased social interaction helped the Student Council become a more connected group of individuals.
“We bonded more as a team because we spent more time communicating than just shooting each other emails back and forth, text messages or communicating via schoology. It was just a lot more back and forth discussion,” Granito said.
According to Student Council Co-advisor Amy Tarlo, in reality, the technology disruption did not have much of an effect on the planning of Homecoming.
“We started planning Homecoming in the summer which really helped us because we had bought a lot of stuff just to help us coming into the school year,” Tarlo said. “If it was in October, I probably wouldn’t have ordered it. Then, I would have been struggling a little bit, but it worked out. The odds were in our favor.”