Announcements have always been an essential part of Concord Academy culture. Whether it is a message from a leader of our school, a faculty member, or even a random one-off from a student, this time has rendered itself a valuable tool for clear communication for those within our community. However, some are beginning to question whether or not this time is being used as efficiently or as practically as possible. Notably, the somewhat-controversial aura surrounding the status of club announcements has become a recurring topic of conversation.
Having upwards of seventy clubs, with more being created by the month, CA prides itself on its ability to create and host various interest groups and spaces. With so many clubs all competing for some level of attention from the community, it is easy to imagine why so many announcements are made regarding a club’s creation, meeting location, or other general information. In the last three weeks alone, out of a total of 60 all-school fyi’s, 34 of them contained information regarding a club.
It should be noted, though, that there is a clear difference between a club and affinity space. A club is based solely on a shared interest outside of the school curriculum and therefore is not necessarily essential to the community. An affinity space, on the other hand, is meant as a space solely for those who identify as members of a particular group. The critique of the over-broadcasting of club information at announcements should not be applied to affinity spaces, as the knowledge of their existence is an important part of our community. The knowledge and constant reminder of these spaces should not be withheld from CA students.
The overwhelming barrage of club information, at least in email form, is a bit more manageable when it comes to time, as it is possible to simply ignore an email, while, with announcements, there is no way to filter out these notices. The issue with this is that more critical information to the community is now finding itself being squished between, around, and behind club advertisements. Over the past months, announcement time has been cut off early due to us running out of time. An incident like this has the potential to push those more crucial announcements out of place for something that could have been shared just as effectively over email.
Many clubs are already familiar with and regularly send emails. With this, in addition to the now-public club calendar available to all those within the community, it has never been easier to see when and where your favorite clubs are meeting. Of course, there are exceptions, but in general, there is no definite reason as to why clubs need to make announcements.
Seeing so many community members excited about something they love and wanting to share it with the community around them is fantastic, but when that excitement takes over times when more necessary information could be shared, it becomes time to reconsider the usage of community time.