Administration, students discuss prom date change

Sophia Lao

Sophia Lao

Isabella Albrecht, staff reporter

GBS Prom will be held on a Saturday this year, instead of a Friday as it has been in years past, according to Principal Dr. Lauren Fagel.

The reason the administration decided to change the day was to allow more students to attend prom, according to Julie Smith, head of the junior class board.

“The main [reason] for changing the date was due to conflicts with sports on that Friday evening,” Smith said. “In the past, girls soccer and boys track and field have been impacted because those are the days of conference playoffs or state tournaments, so students were arriving very, very late to the prom on Friday night.”

Emily Noone, a senior on the varsity girl’s track team, still feels that athletes on the girl’s track team were not carefully considered when choosing a date for prom, but still says that the date change would help athletes on her team miss as little as possible while still being able to participate at state.

“Prom used to land on the day after track sectionals so all track athletes were able to attend prom; now prom is on the same exact day as our state final meet,” Noone said. “Although, if the dance really was on a Friday this year, any girl’s track athletes that qualify for state would miss the dance completely. Having it on Saturday would mean that girls who don’t qualify for the finals would not miss prom at all, while girls who do qualify for finals on Saturday would, at the worst, be late for the dance.”

Senior Alex Economou says athletics is not a strong enough reason to change the day GBS prom is traditionally held on.

“I can see why they want to give more kids the opportunity to come, however, what must be understood is that athletes knew what they were getting themselves into,” Economou said. “They were provided a schedule with all of the games and all of the dates for those games… If they saw [there was a competition] during prom and they decided to still continue with that sport, that was completely their choice and they understood that they would have to miss prom and… other social events at South.”

According to a non-scientific survey of 66 seniors conducted by the Oracle, 53 percent of seniors said that moving prom from a Friday to a Saturday is not beneficial. According to senior Daisy Taylor, since many seniors used to go to lake houses after prom on Friday night, many seniors this year are spending less time at a lake house.

“[Prom] being on Saturday affects the ability to go to a lake house for more than two nights because a lot of people have to be [at school] on Monday,” Taylor said. “So instead of being there Friday, Saturday and Sunday, they are only going to be there Saturday and Sunday.”

Taylor says that her and many other seniors who want more time at their lake houses are planning on missing another day of school to compensate for the lost night.

“Now all my friends and I are going to ditch school Monday and Tuesday instead of ditching just that Monday,” Taylor said.

Economou mentioned that although, in years past, many students missed school the Friday of prom in addition to the Monday after, many students are still going to be missing more school this year.

“A majority of the people who missed school on Friday just missed it to get ready for prom …and they usually just missed part of Friday,” Economou said. “Now, many students are planning on missing two full days of school.”

According to Fagel, school attendance was not a factor in the decision to hold prom on a Saturday.

“I don’t worry too much about trying to control that because I think kids are going to make their decisions,” Fagel said. “Whether we have it on a Friday or Saturday night, it’s prom weekend and people are going to make their plans and do what they want. That wasn’t our motivation at all.”

Smith says that moving prom from a Friday to a Saturday should not impact the prom experience.

“One of the main goals of changing the date from a Friday to a Saturday is that students see no change or difference in what is being offered to them,” Smith said. “[There is] going to be a great band, a photo booth, a great meal; lots of fun things are going on that evening. So really, the experience shouldn’t change from it [moving] from a Friday to Saturday.”