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A Unique Promposal: CHS administration should work with students to enhance the prom experience

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Prom remains an integral part of the high school experience for the sake of aesthetic photos and adorable “promposals.” However, according to Cristen Cassler, prom coordinator and English teacher, there has been a recent downturn in prom attendance with 1,468 students attending in 2015 compared to only 1,014 students attending last year even though the student population has increased. For example, many students now simply take “prom pictures” with their friends, go out to dinner and then attend an unsanctioned after prom party, skipping the actual “prom” part. The dance itself has become obsolete for them. This is a worrying trend as the prom dance used to be an unforgettable moment for high school students.
There are a variety of ways to reestablish the prom dance as a premier portion of prom. A common complaint about the prom dance is the price tag. Last year, each ticket cost $35 which many consider to be too expensive. To be fair, the price is $35 because the administration provides students with a location for the dance as well as an after-party. However, according to Cassler, the administration only expects 200 students to attend the after-party. Thus, one suggestion to increase participation at the dance may be to allow people to buy separate tickets for the prom dance and the bowling party in an attempt to lower prices. This could make the prom dance more enticing for those who don’t want to spend money for the bowling alley.
Furthermore, another suggestion would be to have even more student involvement in the dance itself. The class officers play a significant role in prom planning and their hard work is admirable, but this is only a small portion of the student body. Including more students in prom planning could help increase excitement about the dance. This could be done by spreading out the responsibility to other students who are passionate about prom planning. This would even out the workload for class officers. Also, the theme of the dance could be decided by students through a poll. These tactics would allow for more students to be a part of the decision-making process. Thus, more students might be invested in prom and increase the likelihood of them attending along with their friends.
Moreover, while there is considerable prom promotion by the administration, students should also be involved in promotion. This could include making posters and disseminating information. Students can work closely with administration in a concentrated movement to increase awareness for prom.
The prom experience is certainly not broken, but it has been neglected by students in recent years. A concentrated effort by students and administration to improve the prom dance could be instrumental in prompting more enthusiasm for the event. Most CHS students still want to have the full prom experience; allowing them to have a more active role in the planning process may be just the thing to bring the prom dance back to prominence.

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