By OLIVIA NOLAND, October, 2018
Deer Park High School is excited to introduce a new student-based program for the 2018 school year. Members of the new “Hope Squad” will work closely with their peers in the H3 room, in hopes of making issues such as stress and anxiety easier for teens to handle.
“Hope Squad is a group of students who are trained to help the intake process in the H3 room, specifically when students come down needing some sort of reset, simple counseling, or just a person to talk to,” explains Mr. Sparks, who works in the H3 room throughout the school day.
The group was created for the sole purpose of giving students someone to relate to as they are experiencing problems in their academic and social lives. Mr. Sparks explains, “I was once in high school, and I’ve once had that stress and anxiety. But for me, I haven’t had it in 18 years. The last time I was stressed about a test in high school was 18 years ago, the last time they were stressed about a test could’ve been yesterday.”
The Hope Squad also hopes to make students feel more comfortable when talking about their problems. “Most of the time kids just keep it in because they feel awkward about it. But now that there’s someone their age and they can be trusted because they were student voted, I think it will help them get a lot of things off of their chest that they would normally just keep inside,” explains senior Hope Squad member, Colin Colyer.
Junior Hope Squad member, Cara Finney furthers the idea, saying “I personally wouldn’t want to go to a counselor to talk about my issues, and if they gave me a fellow student to talk to instead I feel like I would feel a lot more comfortable.”
Mr. Sparks claims, “I think that if we can make everyone who comes in this building, whether they want to be here or not, feel safe and feel like the people in the building have their best interest in mind, I think that’s the ultimate goal.”