Counties Sign-Ups Held Outside of School


This year, junior girls interested in signing up for Counties submitted their names and information outside of school. This change occurred because Counties is not a school-sponsored event.

Rachel Labarre, Features Editor

“Why does it cost so much to go to this dance?”

“Why is there so much pressure for my daughter to find a date?”

“What [are you] going to do about [the several students that got drunk at the dance]?”

In previous years, Principal John Dodig’s phone didn’t stop ringing with parents hounding him questioning his decisions regarding the Fairfield County Charity Ball for juniors, Counties.

This year, to avoid the conflicts that surround the dance, the administration decided to disconnect the school with the event. Junior girls had to go to the house of Sasha Kobylinski ’14 by Sept. 17 to sign up for the dance.

Cara McNiff ’14 expressed discontent that sign ups were so early.

According to Jennifer O’Brien, one of the PTA members in charge of Counties, official sign-ups are first come first serve by mid-December, and spots are limited. In order to give girls enough time to sign up, information forms had to be sent out by the beginning of October and invitations by the beginning of November.

Girls were required to fill out a slip of paper with contact information, but did not need to specify the name of their date. In previous years, this sign up was held at the school.

Dodig explained that when he first arrived at Staples, sign ups for the dance did not take place at the school. After receiving many complaints regarding the matter, he finally gave in and set up a table for sign ups at lunch. However, this decision caused him many problems.

“Each year something comes up either at the dance or before the dance that winds up being phone calls to the school,” Dodig said.

So Dodig decided to separate the two events once again.

The only way that girls knew to go to Kobylinski’s house was through Facebook, which not all teenagers have or regularly check.

O’Brien expressed frustration with the switch to signing up outside of school.

“The girls who don’t sign up won’t even get an invitation. Every girl should get an opportunity to go to the dance,” O’Brien said. She explained that since the PTA was not allowed to set up a table at the school, it “hindered their ability to reach every girl who might desire to go to the dance.”

Junior girls expressed confusion and frustration with this decision as well.

“It’s supposed to be a school sponsored event and we shouldn’t have to have it be through one person,” said McNiff. “[Sign-ups] should be done at the school.”

However, Dodig confirmed that the event is in fact not school sponsored, but many students believe it is because sign-ups used to be at the school.

Dodig said, “The old saying: “If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it is a duck.” holds for this event. If we promote it by facilitating sign ups, it must be a school event and […] it is not.”