The student news site of Collinsville Community Unit School District 10

The Kahoki

The student news site of Collinsville Community Unit School District 10

The Kahoki

The student news site of Collinsville Community Unit School District 10

The Kahoki

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Arts Take a Backseat Towards Acknowledgement

original+piece+by+CHS+student+Lorelei+Brown
original piece by CHS student Lorelei Brown

Collinsville High School offers a large number of programs for its students. They offer sports, several vocational classes to suit every student’s future, and numerous after-school clubs. One of the programs that often seems to fly under the radar is the school’s fine arts department. There are many branches of the CHS Fine Arts Department: Studio Arts (painting, drawing, and sculpting) and Performing Arts (band, drama, choir). The issue isn’t that students don’t know about the programs, it’s that the hard work and dedication of the arts students to their crafts doesn’t feel as acknowledged as that of some other clubs. You always hear about the outcomes of the big games, how they’ve been training all season, and how their hard work has really paid off this season, which is correct. Student athletes dedicate so much of their time to their craft, but so do art kids. Yet, you rarely hear anything about the hours upon hours of work art kids put into their work. Another issue is the amount of students who use art classes as a way to mess around and not do any real work.

I think this is unfair, however, I don’t think that anyone is necessarily to blame. I think it’s just one of those things that happens kind of naturally. I think part of the lack of recognition is that sports are more easily publicized than the arts. There’s also the energy difference, as some may think a football game is much more interactive with the student body and more energetic than a band concert. This could contribute to the turn-out differences and lack of recognition. We are working towards a solution as of late, The Kahoki, faculty, and even Dr. Skertich himself has been interviewing and acknowledging members of the performing arts and getting more input on what goes on in the time leading up to a performance. This still leaves a whole sector of the arts department untouched: the visual/studio arts like drawing, ceramics, and animation. For instance, there was one week where I had a couple friends in a drawing class and they each were spending several hours at home to work on a project despite all of the time they were utilizing at the school to complete it. Ceramics students work for several class periods on projects just to risk their assignment being destroyed in the kiln. It’s hard work. Then there’s the issue of students filling up arts classes because they’re “easy” or “pointless.” This may seem true to some, but to others, art classes do matter and can mean the future of someone’s career. For instance, I tried to sign up for the photography class this year because it’s what I plan to do for a career. Seniors went in and filled up the class thinking it would be a way to slack off during the day. For them it might’ve been, but for me it just added another year where I had to wait to develop skills that I will need when I’m off to art school.

So, what can be done about this lack of recognition? Well, it’s hard to say. I think non-art students just need to be more aware of the effort that art students put into their work. I think where we are is a good starting point. Administrators should continue talking to art students when they have big events coming up, students should attend more performances from the band, choir, and drama club, and getting photos of studio/visual arts students at work to put into the yearbook/newspaper might provide a slightly deeper level of awareness to the student body.

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About the Contributor
Naomi Hurst, Staff Writer
Naomi Hurst is a junior at Collinsville High School, and this is her first official year on The Kahoki staff. She spends most of her time working as the Stage Manager of the CHS Drama Club. She enjoys listening to music, watching TV and movies, playing D&D, hanging out with her friends, and taking photos. After high school, Naomi hopes to go to Columbia College in Chicago and get a BFA in photography. She’s an incredibly hard worker and is very dedicated to her work, both creatively and academically.

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