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For a high school student, Spring semester is full of a lot of great and exciting events and prom can definitely be at the top of that list. People often ask me how online school is different from traditional brick-and-mortar schools. I could give you a list of how they are similar and how they are different, but one topic is consistent across both types of schools: the students.  Just like in brick-and-mortar schools, our online students cannot wait for prom.

Prom at Insight School of Kansas (ISKS) is a big deal. Every year, it is an event that both students and teachers look forward to. A lot of thought, time, and energy is put into planning, prepping, decorating, and attending prom.

Our Student Council representatives and sponsors work hard to help create a prom theme that our students vote on each year. This year’s theme was Behind the Mask and featured décor and an ambiance similar to that of a Masquerade Ball.  Nate Freitag, ISKS social studies teacher and Student Council co-sponsor, had nothing but praise for our Student Council and the effort they put in to create a memorable prom.

“Our Student Council was excited to take the lead planning Prom this year.  They really took a sense of ownership and enjoyed receiving feedback from fellow students, teachers, and administrators.  Planning prom is a great experience for them and they honed many skills: organization, communication, preparation, and how to handle constructive criticism.”

Thanks to the planning of our Student Council, the week of prom always starts off with a spirit week! Both students and staff really get a kick out of participating in this. An example of some of our spirit days are: favorite villain or superhero day, wacky hair day, favorite fictional character day, game day, and of course it always culminates in a school spirit day where students wear their Wolf Pack swag. Having students and staff participate during these days really helps to build a strong school culture. We want our students to feel pride for their school and a sense of community, which spirit week definitely supports.

Just like at a brick-and-mortar prom, there was a small fee to attend. Thankfully, our Student Council has also found a way to raise awareness and assistance for a local food pantry, Harvesters, by offering students who bring in two non-perishable items a half-price admittance to prom. Donations are then gathered and delivered thanks to our Vice Principal, Gloria Smith.

As students walked through the doors to enter prom this year, they were immersed into a Masquerade Ball. Decorations hang from the ceilings and walls, the live DJ was blasting some of the latest and greatest music, and the photographer was clicking away. Of course, snacks, treats, and drinks were also provided.  In fact, our very own Nate Freitag generously supplied fresh popcorn from his company Free Day Popcorn.  This popcorn is actually from a farm that’s been in his family for over 100 years and both students and staff look forward to snacking on it!

Students danced the night away while socializing with their peers and friends. There were smiles all around and the highlight of the evening was when Mr. and Mrs. Insight were announced. Mr. and Mrs. Insight is similar to a prom king and queen, but it awards and highlights character traits and qualities that exemplify the spirit of ISKS: positive attitude, encouraging others, and dedication to our school community.  This award was first introduced last school year and students and staff absolutely love it. Kathy Seitz, ISKS math teacher, organized this award.

“Having the opportunity to honor and acknowledge the spirit of some of our most encouraging and positive students has been amazing.  Each year, our six finalists have been several students that were withdrawn and uninvolved in their previous schools, but they have grown to shine at ISKS.  In fact, our first Miss Insight was in tears when the announcement was made and said she never could have imagined this happening to her.  She was BEAMING!  That is why we do what we do and what makes me love our school!”

As the night came to a close, one ISKS student reflected, “Prom is epic! Getting to see everyone in person and hang out is so awesome! I can’t wait for next year’s prom!” As teachers, we cannot wait either!

About The Author

Lauren Weber

Lauren Weber is a high school world history teacher and the social studies department chair at Insight School of Kansas (ISKS). She has been with ISKS since 2009. Lauren graduated from the University of Kansas with a bachelor’s degree in political science in 2006. In 2008 she received her graduate teacher certification in secondary education-social studies, and she is currently working on her master's in administration-building leadership. Lauren enjoys spending time with her family, playing sports with her kids, and baking.

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