New app brings hope of increased school pride

Ellie Prober, Lifestyle Editor

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Seniors Sam Heydt (left) and Cameron Glass, Down to the River Boys and Spartan Spirit Squad members, enter the Loyalty Day Assembly. The Spartan Spirit Squad plans to release a new app rewarding students for attending events.
(Photo by Richard Chu)

Before her swim meet, junior Ashlyn Remien walked into school wearing a bedsheet and sandals. The toga, tied at her waist, matched that of every team member. The girls swim team’s spirit can be seen throughout the halls of Glenbrook North on every dress-up day, including toga day, safari day and others for each time the team has a meet. The cheering in the stands during a swim meet can be heard clearly, but more often from the mouths of parents and siblings than from that of students.

According to Justin Weiner, co-sponsor of Spartan Spirit Squad, an app is being created to reward students for attending school events. The app is being made by SuperFan, an organization that has created similar platforms for colleges.

The app’s purpose is to improve school spirit, Paige Brooks, fundraising supervisor of the Band Parents Organization, said. Both athletic and fine arts events are to be highlighted in the app.

“You would check in at an event,” said Brooks. “Depending on what type of event it was, you would get a certain number of points for attending that event. As you accrue points, the app will keep track of your points, and when you reach certain milestones, you could trade in your points for a food or beverage item at a football game, or a T-shirt or even bigger prizes like that.”

An additional projected feature of the app is a leaderboard to add competition among students, Weiner said.

“Everyone loves competition,” said Weiner. “It doesn’t matter if it’s on the sports field, sitting in here on the bikes in the fitness center, whatever it is, you’re always trying to compete. … Now there’s a leaderboard, and you’re going, ‘Man, my best friend is 50 points ahead of me, I [have to] go to more events.’ So what does that do? Now we have more students at more events.”

According to Brooks, the app will help boost student attendance at a greater variety of events, including ones other than the sporting events they usually attend.

“Band kids might go to music events, but they might not [normally] go see a baseball game,” Brooks said.

Remien said she hopes the rewards of the app will help increase attendance at swim meets, but the check-in system may cause people to come for the points and then leave immediately afterwards.

“I think that swimming is pushed off, because football is one of the bigger sports, and that’s a bigger deal to … attend,” said Remien. “I think that swimming is equally as hard, so more people should attend.”

Weiner said there is no reason to not download the free app, which is scheduled to debut sometime in October.

“You’re investing your time to support your classmates, and to me, that’s the greatest investment you could make,” Weiner said.

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New app brings hope of increased school pride