Outside of the KHS bubble

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art by Emma Frizzell

KHS is viewed by many students as a figurative bubble.

It’s a Friday night football at KHS. In the stands there are hundreds of students and adults decked out in the night’s themed attire. The crowd cheers as the players take the field. This is one of many activities that a KHS student can participate in. Some students have compared KHS to a bubble, with everything in one place. But with the community being as condensed as it is, students may wonder what people think of KHS from outside the bubble.

KHS has a wide variety of activities for every student to find something that they are interested in. At the beginning of each year, students are highly encouraged by staff members like Principal Dr. Havener, to get involved in any way they can until graduation. KHS clubs, athletics and theater programs are just some of the ways students can join the community. 

Marni Knapp, sophomore, will be a familiar face at KHS after she transferred from Duchesne High School at the beginning of this school year. Around 300 students go to Duchesne.

 “It was kind of relieving because [KHS] doesn’t seem as big as you think it is,” Knapp said. “It was really easy to get adjusted, by the second day I felt like I had been going here for years.”

It was kind of relieving because [KHS] doesn’t seem as big as you think it is. It was really easy to get adjusted, by the second day I felt like I had been going here for years.”

— Marni Knapp

Other new members of Kirkwood have preconceived opinions as well about the community. Amy Bedenbaugh is the new secretary to sophomore class principal Mike Wade. For the previous 13 years, Bedenbaugh was a stay-at-home mom for her three kids. She said her transition back into the workforce was exciting with this change in lifestyles.

“I already knew a little bit about the district and all my kids love it. I also really enjoy the teachers and the community here,” Bedenbaugh said. “We live not far from KHS, so we always hear all of the sporting events going on and we walk over to watch the games. We really like the environment here.” 

KSD can leave a lasting impression on students even after they have left like Rebecca Hanser. Hanser is a sophomore at Marquette High School and used to be a part of KSD. She transferred from KSD after her 8th grade year at Nipher Middle School. She explained that KHS has more of an energy within the school compared to Marquette, like the annual Turkey Day hallway decorating, which she went to as a middle schooler.

“I feel like Kirkwood has more bonds than Marquette in terms of friendship and family,” Hanser said. “I feel like it also has more school spirit and focuses on the experience of high school.” 

A specific advocator of this tight community is Mike Wade, the sophomore principal. Has been working at KHS for 30 years. Wade originally worked in the athletics department and felt involved because of the success that the district has in that area.  He explains how he has noticed the patterns of KHS throughout these years.  

“[KHS] We’re a small community in a suburban setting,” Wade said. “I think that when you’re around all of the other widespread local districts and then you have a single high school district that’s this small, you can feel protected.” 

Wade explained that he has noticed a lot throughout the years he’s been at KHS. One of the most significant things is the differences he’s found between the positives and drawbacks that come with this small of a district.

“Our good thing is that everybody knows everybody, and our bad thing is that everybody knows everybody. So if you’re trying to escape sometimes and blend in, I think it would be hard,” Wade said. “Especially with kids who have been in it K-12 you go through so many different friends, if you want to be anonymous it’s hard. So, it’s a good thing and a bad thing.”