Is ASB working for you?

ASB+vice+president%2C+Ana+Gonzalez%2C+and+her+colleagues+during+the+ASB+conference.
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Is ASB working for you?

ASB vice president, Ana Gonzalez, and her colleagues during the ASB conference.

ASB vice president, Ana Gonzalez, and her colleagues during the ASB conference.

Jessie Ortiz

ASB vice president, Ana Gonzalez, and her colleagues during the ASB conference.

Jessie Ortiz

Jessie Ortiz

ASB vice president, Ana Gonzalez, and her colleagues during the ASB conference.

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“ASB is corrupt.” Scroll through Instagram and you will spot the occasional selfie, advertisement, video, and meme. Möth memes, skeleton memes, baby shark memes, and in more recent news, ASB memes. These ASB memes are very popular here at MCHS and highlight many of ASB’s so-called “wrong doings.” However, this is not the only form of criticism ASB has been receiving. There have been students who openly discuss, criticize, and find faults within ASB and they have not been afraid to share their opinion concerning the Associated Student Body.

ASB’s main purpose is to serve and represent the students at school. They are in charge of planning dances and activities, promoting events such as football and soccer games, organizing and executing the assemblies held at school, and overall helping build the school spirit among the students.

Jessie Ortiz
Jordan Avila and other journalists question the ASB cabinet and other members.

To address and bring light to this issue, The Spellbinder hosted a press conference on Wednesday, October 8 and invited ASB representatives to discuss what was being said about them.  Members were given the chance to describe the duties that they carry out as a whole and also discussed the criticisms being made. Josselyn Orozco, ASB secretary, said “ASB’s goal is to make the school year as memorable and as fun as we can make it for the student body.”

ASB primarily builds school spirit and enthusiasm, and one of the ways they do it is by planning lunchtime games called “nooners.” These nooners are played by all grade levels and there is a point system for these lunchtime games. The winning class receives 100 points, second place receives 75 points, third place receives 50 points, and last place receives 25 points for participation. At the end of the school year, all these points are accumulated and a certain grade reigns victorious. However, many students have been vocal in claiming that these games have been rigged because seniors “always win.”

Senior Rosa Navarro described what she has seen circulating around school the most. One of the criticisms she addressed was on the school games organized by ASB. Navarro said that she’s heard students criticize ASB for rigging games. Although it may seem like that, ASB set the record straight during the press conference. Student Body President Ana-Teresa Mendoza said, “I feel like for example during the games, things will not go perfectly as planned. For example, like a rule might be ignored in the moment, but ASB doesn’t purposely do that because you have so many students watching during the assembly, and you have to check who’s winning, who’s losing. You’re basically multi-tasking and it’s hard to keep track of every single thing at once.” Perhaps in the long run, the events planned by ASB may have good intentions after all, but in the heat of the moment, things don’t always go as planned. “When we plan these games, we don’t go ‘Who’s gonna win this time?’ or ‘Let’s make the seniors win,'” Mendoza said.

ASB members are perceived as the leaders of the school, so should they be held accountable and viewed as role models towards the student body? Junior Bryan Granados said, “Yeah because in ASB, they do a lot of events and the way I see it is that they should be role models because they already have their own school work and other stuff. Plus, they have to do ASB things and like time management would be really good to show the students how to do because they procrastinate too much.” Granados believes that because ASB members have a lot of responsibilities and know how to manage their time, they should be seen as role models towards the rest of the student body because they can set an example on how things should be done in order to be successful. Junior Daniela Flores said, “Well yeah because ASB is kinda like in charge of all the student events and stuff and because of the title, I think people do look up to ASB.”

Jessie Ortiz
ASB President, Ana Mendoza addresses student’s concerns during the ASB press conference.

Both students interviewed believe that ASB should in fact be seen as the role models of the school because of the hard work they put into their duties as well as knowing how to manage their time. ASB President Ana-Teresa Mendoza also believes that ASB should be the role models of the school. She said, “I feel like people in ASB have either a really nice personality or are in a lot of extracurricular activities. And because GPA does matter in ASB, almost everyone has a good GPA.”  Mendoza feels as though ASB members are a good example to the student body because they have good GPAs and are involved in extracurriculars both inside and outside of school. Non-ASB members Granados and Flores also agreed that ASB should be looked at as role models because of how much they contribute to the school and the way they do it.

Also, at times it may seem as though ASB abuses its “power” to get away with things that any other students wouldn’t. These observations were noted by ASB as Mendoza said, “Well I mean, for example, if someone was missing class then I’m sure Voight would handle it. For that specifically, ASB doesn’t get a free pass for being late to class. We can’t skip, that’s for every student here. And again, I’m pretty sure if an ASB student is late to class, I’m pretty sure they’re not thinking, ‘I can get away with it because I’m in ASB.’ No one has that mindset.” Student Liaison Santiago Estrada added, “If they’re referring to the times when we’re allowed to leave early to do something, I mean, it’s to do something for you [the Student Body] and we always let the teachers know.” It would seem as though any issues regarding ASB’s performance aren’t necessarily excused or brushed off simply because of one’s position. Orozco said, “When we leave class or we’re late, it’s not because we want to, it’s because we have to do things like cleaning up or setting up. But also, the time that we miss is made up. We still have to do the same assignments as everyone else in class. We don’t get away with anything.”

When ASB was asked about their strengths and weaknesses, Mendoza said, “I think that the strengths we have as an ASB is that we are close. There’s a difference between criticism and rude comments. Whenever we get rude comments, since we’re so close, we know that we all did the best that we could and we all lift each other in a way.” As far as ASB’s weaknesses, senior Paola Fierro said, “I think a weakness we have as an ASB is that we do hear everything everybody says, but since it’s such a small comment, they don’t really elaborate on what exactly it is that they want us to do. So then we might interpret it in a different way than they wanted us to understand.”

The criticisms made towards ASB has seemed to only distance the communication between the student body and ASB. However, there’s a few things that ASB wants the student body to know. ASB Vice President Ana Gonzalez said that, “We do try to get the opinions of other people and the whole student body, and not just ASB.” Gonzalez feels as though the students don’t even bother to communicate with ASB, but she wants to let them know that ASB tries their best to get the opinions of the students into the decisions of ASB. Spirit & Prep Commissioner Karen Alegria said that, “Students have to be willing to hear what we have to say because we can say whatever we want, but they have to be willing to hear what we say and understand our point of view.” Alegria thinks that one of the problems between ASB and the student body is that student body doesn’t effectively listen to what ASB has to say because if they would, then they would see why certain things go the way they do.

One issue President Mendoza wanted to address was to clarify how students get into ASB, because she’s heard how many students believe that it’s all about popularity. She said, “How we take people in is also based on teacher recommendations, how spirited you are because you are an ASB member, so you should be school spirited, and your grades. There are so many factors, it’s not just if people like you. It’s never like that because I feel like if you also look at ASB members as individuals, everyone comes from different groups.” Mendoza believes there’s no such thing as popularity at MCHS because “It’s such a small school that everyone knows everyone.”  

At the end of the day, people will end up forming their own opinions on the subject because it’s something they come across every day, so it’s inevitable to not form an opinion. But hopefully now, the students are able to distinguish and form a more educated belief on ASB and the student body based on the criticisms discussed.