Jam-packed assemblies


Brooke Burris

With over 586 juniors and 496 seniors, it is expected that most the upperclassmen cram into the little bleacher space that is available. During the first assembly, some students had to stand or sit on the gym floor in order to view the assembly.

Colt Beat, Memorial Co-Editor-in-Chief

As an annual tradition, Edmond Memorial High School held their annual back to school assembly on the first day of school Aug. 16. Students were greeted with loud band instrumental music, cheerleading and pom routines, a TikTok-inspired teacher welcoming video and limited seating in the student sections.

Made possible by Edmond Public School’s 2015 bond issue, the main gymnasium was renovated and completed by September 2018. The construction project included $40,000 worth of bleacher stands.

Even with the added seating, it still fails to hold the student body comfortably, with many students finding themselves sitting on the gym floor or standing.

Sophomore Garrett Crouch had a chaotic and stressful experience watching the assembly.

“I was worried that I would not be released in time in order to sit with my friends,” Crouch said. “All of the students ended up cramped and piled on top of one another, not being able to enjoy the assembly.”

With around 2,300 students enrolled at Memorial, it was clear that it would be a tight squeeze for students on both sides of the gym. Junior Erica Walker was one of those who could not find a spot.

“When I first walked into the gym, I noticed it was hot, loud and not packed,” Walker said. “I entered the gym with my friends and we had to stand the whole time, most likely blocking people’s view.

The chaperoning teachers told some students, like junior Amber Burris, that there was no more room available in the bleacher stands to view the assembly.

“When I entered the gymnasium, the teachers were making students sit on the already overcrowded floor due to the lack of space,” Burris said. “I decided I would rather miss the assembly than sit in an awkward and uncomfortable position without any space between myself and the next person.”

Head principal Anthony Rose says that there are some solutions to ease the crowdedness, but there is nothing within the near future that can be done to expand seating in the gym.

“In future assemblies, we will be more strategic with the floor space so students can actually be seated,” Rose said. “There is also an alternate location students can go to that is supervised by teachers for students who wish not to attend the assembly.”

For now, the seating issue cannot be eradicated, but it can be better managed for the next school year.


Contact Colt Beat at [email protected].