Woodgrove’s School Spirit Diminishes Over the Years


Photo by Lorallye Partlow

There was sparse attendance in the senior and junior stands at the Woodgrove High School Winter pep rally in 2017.

Written by Jordan Fiala, Maryam Khan, Ashleigh Moffett, and Kennedy Vacca

With Woodgrove High School approaching its tenth year, it seems to be approaching a loss in school spirit. In a poll of the student body, 10% of those polled on Instagram at Woodgrove High School said that Woodgrove did not have school spirit.

With the number of in-school pep rallies fading, and fewer students attending sporting and other school events, it has put a drain on the energy that’s been needed to keep Woodgrove’s school spirit alive.

Paradoxically, however, school spirit once raged with Wolverine pride. Alumnus Mikaela Vacca, a graduate of the class of 2016 at Woodgrove High School said, “When I first started my freshman year at Woodgrove in 2012, our school spirit was insane. Throughout my four years at Woodgrove everyone went to all the games, events and participated in the school spirit whenever they got the chance to.”

In just a few years, the atmosphere has drastically changed. Students now have an entirely different perspective on what school spirit is like.

Student-athletes who don’t play popular sports like football and basketball feel the struggle of getting student support at games, especially important rival games.

Woodgrove senior lacrosse player Tyler Madden says, “A couple years ago lacrosse used to pull a lot of students and local kids to the games and everyone had a lot of fun.” Student-athletes that don’t play popular sports like football and basketball have recently felt the struggle of getting student support at games, even when battling rival teams.

In attempt to counter the ongoing decline, Maddy Davis, Woodgrove’s Student Activity Director, and Lauren Sheehan, Woodgrove’s Marketing Director, have created an Instagram account dedicated to Woodgrove’s student section, ‘the wild’ (@wgrovewild).

Davis already sees a change in just the few weeks of the page’s creation, “We are planning on having more activities throughout the year, in hopes of increasing the school spirit.”

While this problem is becoming more prevalent at Woodgrove High School, rival high school, Loudoun Valley, seems to be the complete opposite when it comes to spirit within the high school environment. Senior at Loudoun Valley High School, Faith Crosser, states, “Valley has always been known for our school spirit, everyone gets really involved in school spirit weeks and participates in pep-rallies and games. Our environment at Valley is very outgoing, everyone enjoys participating and embraces all the different personalities that arise.”

Photo by Lorallye Partlow
Junior Sofia Thompson participates in the pep rally in front of a near vacant senior and junior stands at the Woodgrove High School Winter pep rally in 2017.

However sometimes, the problem of Woodgrove’s school spirit may not just be linked to the school, but the surrounding community, “I’ve been at five high schools…but those were community schools where everybody lived within two miles of the school…there was a little bit more community going on…Here, I think you got a couple of issues, you got kids that live 30 to 40 minutes away,” comments Woodgrove High School head football coach Michael Skinner.

Woodgrove High School’s district spans over 150 square miles, from kids coming from opposite sides of Loudoun County. The extra traveling distance may hinder a sense of community pride that in some cases is directly linked to school spirit.