What is the True Power of Student Assemblies?


On Thursday, October 29th, the juniors at Bethpage High School attended a rather intense assembly about driving while intoxicated and/or under the influence. The guest speakers took devastating real-world events and demonstrated how people our age, no different than we are, had their lives ruined by stupid decisions made by a teen behind the wheel of a car.

One of the stories described a teenage boy, Jason Beer, who had just gotten a brand-new car and wanted to take it for an “L-ride” (where kids get high and drive around). In short, they crashed, and only Jason survived; however, the story became quite bothersome to many BHS juniors when Jason told the father of one of his dead friends “YOLO” when asked what he had to say for himself.

Many students were greatly affected by this assembly, especially the heartbreaking stories. But, do student assemblies really change students?

Bethpage High School junior Mike Monteleone explained, “Obviously, many students were changed by that assembly, but of course that’s only because the assembly just happened. I know many people will remain changed by the assembly, but I also know it will probably wear off for some within a week.”

This is the case with many student assemblies, as most students are heartbroken and feel the need to change something right after the assembly. Although some students take the assembly and apply it to their life, most students forget about the assembly within a few weeks, and their lives return to the way they were before.

The assemblies are given at specific times in the students’ lives catered to what they will be dealing with in the future. When asked why he thought BHS holds this particular assembly, student Leo Karapetyan answered, “I think we were given this assembly because we will all be drivers soon and need to know the dangers and [consequences associated] with driving.”

Ultimately, the assembly shocked many students and hopefully prevented potential car accidents from occurring. Student assemblies always initially shock everyone, but only affect few in the long term.

If you have any suggestions about how this can change, please leave a comment.