ASG Investigation Week: ASG Reaches Some Students, Leaves Others Behind
February 3, 2021
In December of this year, the Irvington Voice conducted an ASG evaluation survey for students to share their opinions on ASG performance. In the final segment of the survey, the questions covered ASG’s outreach to the student body.
When asked about the effectiveness of their outreach, the majority of students, 39.5% (171 of 433) responded with 3 on a scale from 1-5. This suggests that the students were either neutral or were not informed enough to have an opinion on the matter, which may derive from the lack of impact ASG has on students’ lives.
ASG’s Public Relations Committee focuses on the connections between students and administrators, teachers, parents, and the district. This contrasts with Irvington’s Visualizations Team, which makes fliers, videos, and manages ASG’s social media. Additionally, the team has a YouTube channel where they have content ranging from alumni videos to the First Round Elections Debate to school rallies.
This school year, the PR Committee has held a public forum, maintained an alumni network, organized the “Ten Questions With Irvington” video, worked with Mr. Honerkamp on the Wellness Center, and is currently planning a second forum. They plan to hold small events in the future to boost school morale.
When asked about students’ neutrality, Executive Director of ASG’s Public Relations Committee, Enya Mistry (12), responded, “We haven’t really had any controversial things that have been good or bad [because of COVID]. […] [We] haven’t really had that school spirit.”
In the survey, 36.9% (160 students) agreed with the statement “I am well informed of ASG events because of their outreach,” and 23.6% (102 students) disagreed. Mistry claimed the disagreements stemmed from ASG’s limited ability to reach students, especially with distance learning.
“The disconnect was very evident this year and I never knew about events in advance,” an anonymous student said. “Maybe more interactive events and publicizing would help.”
However, Mistry explained why ASG publicizes events close to the date to the event, saying, “Now that we’re online, we’ve noticed how publicizing like 2 weeks before the spirit week doesn’t help as much because people usually just sign up when they hear about the event or see the link the first time. […] We also don’t need to publicize as much beforehand because it requires less effort to participate in spirit weeks now.”
Furthermore, ASG President Ethan Chen (12) reflected on their goals as a student government, and said, “We definitely want fours and fives [on the scale], people all aware of ASG, and keeping things transparent. It just means we need to find other ways to reach more Vikings. Although there are a huge majority of threes in most of these charts, I can’t forget to mention our media and visualizations team’s work.They’ve been working very hard to create regular public publicity plans for all of ASG.”
ASG Vice President Nosheen Ullah (11) addressed the extensive use of social media for publicity, stating, “Right now, we have to use social media for every single time we want to publicize anything or any kind of aspect. Hopefully next year, some of that will go back to in-person flyers.”
According to student responses, many wish ASG took student opinions into consideration. One anonymous senior stated that during rallies, ASG should “give announcements of future activities and projects and take feedback from the student audience.” The student also voiced their opinion on ASG’s forums, noting, “ASG currently does have forums, but whenever I go it seems like I am the only one there apart from students from ASG and the Voice.”
ASG Advisor Mr. Willer states that ASG is just part of the community that is currently struggling to reach out to students. Administration, counselors, and attendance clerks are all trying to push out information to students as well. In person, students would associate themselves with clubs and classes, and word would travel through these groups. With distance learning, the lack of a central information system has been a struggle, so ASG supports clubs that can reach niche groups of students that ASG cannot, in order to make club events stronger and attract new members.
If you have any questions or suggestions for ASG regarding outreach, email PR Director Enya Mistry at firstname.lastname@example.org.