United Black Knights?; The Truth About School Unity


Charlottesville High School student section during a 2020 Basketball Game

Kiran Matthews, Entertainment Editor

Following the last few weeks here at CHS., K.T.R. has circled back to an initial question sparked at the beginning of the year; do we feel combined as a student body? With spirit week and the homecoming dance coming to a close, school spirit should be at an all-time high. However, with no proof of unlimited Black Knight pride, we wanted to take a closer look into the logistics of this essence as a whole.


In a recent survey, 67.9% of students reported that they believed Charlottesville High School felt fragmented. Following current school events, including theme days and game pep rallies, this percentage is a surprise. School bonding events such as these planned events primarily promote student connection and involvement within the school community. While attendance and participation at these events have spiked following a year coming back from an online school, the question is continued on to why this percentage stands. In conversation with students during lunch periods or during specific interviews on the subject, a couple ideas on why have come to the surface.


“Even during school events, my friends and I really only stick to ourselves since we never really get the chance to talk to other grades,” said an anonymous Freshman student. Possibilities for this fragmentation may come from the fact that online-school prevented underclassmen from coming into the school when they would meet older students. In past years, freshman students have been welcomed by groups such as LinkCrew, which automatically create a bridge between comprehensive grade ranges and promote a warm connection between those of different ages.  


Without the crucial upperclassmen and underclassmen introduction, further communication is only facilitated through certain sporting events, club meetings, or possible school activities. While these events have been going on throughout the year, it seems as if no interconnection has been facilitated. 


In conversation with older students, many felt like they walked around the halls seeing no familiar faces. “As a senior, I feel that I don’t know the underclassmen or administrators at my school very well,” said Senior Jadie Bastiaan-Beatley. Even though most of these students have attended CHS. for almost 4 years now, strong relationships have never been cultivated. Possibly this year more than ever, due to the restart of in-person meetings altogether, student groups are left feeling somewhat alone. 


While these facts remain ingrained without the history of our school year, change can still be made. Sophomore Meredith Hendricks adds, “I know assemblies and in school pep rallies aren’t possible because of Covid, but some kind of whole school meeting could really help with school spirit. Maybe the announcements could acknowledge J.V. as well as Varsity or promote the blacknightnation Instagram. It’s hard to get people to have school spirit and collaborate outside of regular school so activities that occur in school would have more lasting effects’ ‘. With the re-activation of groups such as Link Crew and stronger advocation for getting upper and underclassmen involved in the same activities, school spirit can be saved. It is important to consider student input when collaborating with the administration to create a more collective whole. 


School spirit and the continued support for the Black Knight Nation are crucial for the success of our student body as a whole. In many ways, school spirit can be tied to student achievement. Social engagement will remain a closely watched factor by all through the next few weeks, in hope that we can pave the way for ultimate Black Knight Pride.