Assemblies Organized For Least Attended Days of the Year


Courtesy of DHS Yearbook

Students experience most assemblies and pep rallies on the least attended days of the year, such as the week before winter break.


Dominion hosts a number of assemblies throughout the school year. Whether it is an award ceremony, an educational speaker, or a showcase of the creative arts, the assembly schedule revisits the building every month. However, these assemblies are primarily organized on the least attended days of the year. 


To specifically focus on the administration organized assemblies, most of these presentations are scheduled on the last day before break or occasionally a friday, where most students may be leaving town for the weekend. Assistant Principal Jamie Braxton talked about the assembly hosted on the Monday before Thanksgiving break, “We knew that students, historically, have higher absenteeism and we do it on a day like that, because it won’t impact a day that’s well attended.”


The recurring problem that comes up with hosting assemblies before a break is that most students are packed up with work assigned by their teachers. Instead of scrambling to get their final assignments in, students miss class time to attend an assembly. However, there is a positive to that, as implementing fun into the school day is what makes up the high school experience.  


“I think any assembly does take away from classroom time. But there’s value in that. And you all are at school, and you all should enjoy yourself sometime,” Braxton added.


One of the most rigorous subjects that does happen to be most impacted by assembly bell schedules is math. With a more test-focused course, taking time away from math classes takes time away to prepare for assessments. Math department chair Cindy Sokol said, “The amount of time you have in the classroom where you can learn the content and practice that content in a supported environment is cut short, especially when it happens over repeated days.”


However, some teachers do not mind being flexible with lesson planning and preparing math students for assessment in a shorter window of time. “They don’t impact you that much, you know, just about 10 to 15 minutes that we lose class. And especially with the elective classes, I think there’s a lot of flexibility there,” math teacher Calin Lupas said. 


There are different views on the importance of school assemblies on an individual’s success in their education. Though whether it’s a busy week or one where students finish off with ease, there is a common agreement that without them, school would ultimately be boring. 


“What makes it worthwhile for us, the adults, how much you enjoy it, how much you get into it. So if we have this assembly, and you all say, that was awesome, we loved it. That was fun, that it’s worth it for us,” said Braxton.