Chelsea High School student council announced they will be replacing the homecoming queen award with an excellence award based on academic, social and emotional attributes. In a Youtube video the student council, staff and multiple students made explained that due to the bullying they have decided to replace the award.
“A lot of people had been complaining about the joke votes in the past and how the homecoming queen award says that as a school we value people that are pretty or popular when infant we want to value other kinds of students,” said student council president Drew Vanderspool.
Principal Michael Kapolka said for years they have discussed changing the award.
“People would talk about how this doesn’t feel right,” Kapolka said. “We want to try and find a way to be more inclusive for all of our students. It doesn’t matter boy or girl. We want to find a way to be more inclusive.”
Students said the award pitted nominees against each other and caused students to be hurtful.
“A lot of people were being bullied, picked as joke votes,” said student council member Maddie Dunlap. “People in their grade would team up, and they would say vote for this person, and at some point, it would even be people who were special needs.”
The excellence award will be based on integrity, academics, creativity among other things. Kapolka said this will help reduce bullying.
“What we hope it does is it allows students to identify and honor their classmates that sometimes wouldn’t be honored with a homecoming queen or winter carnival king because they’re being voted on with the content of their character,” Kapolka said.
The winner will be announced at the homecoming game on Sept. 21.