By LILIAN MOHR
As the Redlands Unified School District decides to finish the 2019-2020 academic school year through distance learning and close its campus until the fall semester begins, the focus on making the best of the next school year becomes an issue of importance for almost every student and staff member.
As seniors are unfortunately deprived of many significant events of their last year in high school, it does have the positive impact of encouraging the underclassmen to realize the true importance of these events and the lasting memories that they can create.
Events like prom, pep rallies, spirit weeks, and graduation are planned by the schools Associated Student Body, or student government. They have the responsibility of making sure these events are memorable for all of their fellow classmates.
Leading the charge for the upcoming 2020-2021 school year is executive president Jack Tetrault. On May 9, 2020 Tetrault sat down for a virtual interview and answered questions about himself, his new position, his plans for the future, and addressed many of the issues that the student body may have during this time of uncertainty.
When asked what initially made him decide to continue particitating in ASB as he entered into high school, Tetrault stated that “I had previous ASB experience at my middle school and I loved being able to impact the lives of the student body in a positive way. I wanted to continue being a leader and an influential part of making my peers have the most enjoyable high school experience possible.”
Since Tetrault will be entering into his senior year of high school and has had many years of experience in ASB there are quite a few accomplishments that he, along with the rest of the ASB, have made already.
Tetrault stated that “ASB has held countless events and activities that have been incredible and an overall positive experience for the school.”
He stated that “the event that I am most proud of it would definitely be our Genesis dance. Being able to see all five RUSD high schools come together and bond over music and games was incredible. The feedback from the students was nothing but positive and it’s safe to say this will not be our last Genesis event.”
ASB is a program that has been a part of the high schools in the RUSD for years and therefore there are many leaders, teachers, and students that have come before the class of 2021 have worked to shape the program into what it is today.
When asked who has influenced him, he stated that “it would be impossible to name them all as I have been fortunate enough to be blessed with supportive people who always keep me focused on my goals and aspirations.”
“To name a few off the top of my head I would of course say my parents. They have stuck by me every step of the way and have always supported me in my decisions.”
“Another is our ASB advisor Mr. Fashempour. His dedication to the student body is so inspirational and has always been a big part of my views on improving student life at REV. Again these are just a few of the many people who helped shape the person I am.”
Tetrault has already had experience as class president for the class of 2021, but this new role as executive president of ASB is a significant shift in responsibilities that not all of the students are aware of.
Tetrault stated that “the main difference between an Executive Cabinet role and a Class Cabinet role is the focus of shifts from leading an individual class to leading the student body as a whole.”
“I have been so fortunate as to have been able to serve as the Class of 2021 president for the past three years, so I definitely think my experience there will carry over into my role as Executive President. Obviously, it will be a step up from my past responsibilities but I am definitely looking forward to the challenge.”
As far as the upcoming school year is considered, Tetrault said that “ASB’s top priority coming into this year is improving our schools spirit.”
He stated that “I personally envy schools that are constantly on social media being praised for their packed student sections and over the top spirit weeks. I feel that REV has all the qualities and resources to become the staple of high school spirit, it’s just a matter of bringing everyone together and uniting for a common goal.”
The class of 2021 had to unfortunately see the class of 2020 miss out on important high school events and the rest of the student body lose the entire end of their school year.
This is a situation that no executive president has had to deal with before and when questioned on how this experience has influenced him, Tetrault stated that “I think the most important thing I took away from this unfortunate situation is valuing the limited amount of time we all have with each other.”
He said “as with all high schools, there is sometimes arguments and distaste between students but I feel that if there’s one positive to take away here it’s that all this: school, friendships, sporting events, dances, rallies, could all be gone in the blink of an eye, so why not cherish the time we have left with each other, set aside our differences, and come together to make this next school year the year that 20 years from now you look back on as the time of your life.”