Over the past couple of years principals and administrators have collectively become more concerned with the amount and type of participation of our student fan sections at local high school athletic contests. At some schools student attendance is down, and at others, participation is high but a positive sportsmanship culture is lacking. Negative cheering has replaced the fun of cheering positively in support of your own team. Participating in a fun and positive environment at athletic contests should be a staple of a student’s high school experience and should include a large, diverse group of students.
It is a well documented fact that a positive athletic experience for all students is a major factor in creating an overall positive school culture. To address these concerns, a new program called the Redwood Empire Battle of the Fans (BOTF) is being created! BOTF will highlight the best student cheering section in both the North Bay and Sonoma County leagues. This student driven program calls for each school to create student leaders with the support of their school administration. During the fall and early winter sports seasons each school will use the time to create their positive environment cheering sections, and prepare a creative video to submit for review. Ultimately, a winner will be selected from each league with a $1000 award presented to the student body.
We anticipate seeing more student participation and increased school spirit along with the creation of a safe environment for all students to participate in school sponsored activities. BOTF should be supported by parents and other community members that enjoy seeing the students having so much fun in a safe and positive environment. So, send us a video of your student section positively supporting your teams on game night. We are looking for videos that reflect enthusiasm and positive sportsmanship within the cheering sections. How creative can your student section be while supporting your team without disrespecting others, including the opposition and official? Financial and technical support for BOTF is being provided by our friends at Friedman’s Home Improvement and is much appreciated. Questions or comments regarding BOTF should be sent to admin [at] Battle-of-the-Fans.com.