Student Government Reinvents Traditions

Despite being in a distance learning model, the Student Government class has sought to engage students in the Rio community and simulate normal traditions, like homecoming spirit week.


Photo By Rio Americano Student Government

Publicity for homecoming spirit week Oct 26-30 was posted on the @rioraiders Instagram account and all class accounts.

Emma Hutchinson, Mirada Staff

Every class at Rio has had to adapt to the challenges virtual learning brings. Some classes have faced additional challenges, though, especially when the core of the class revolves around creating a positive campus environment, without a campus.

Rio’s Student Government class, the engine behind dances, rallies, and spirit weeks has had to find ways to maintain a sense of campus community when rather than being condensed onto the physical campus, that community is spread all over the Sacramento area. 

ASB President Joe Fahn says that this year, Student Government has had to adjust its goals and reallocate time that would normally be spent planning large in-person school events. 

“Now, we are dedicating a lot of time towards the methods we can use to keep students engaged in Rio spirit despite distance learning, such as monthly speakers, spirit weeks, virtual rallies, and announcements led by our social commissioners,” Fahn said. “Our goal is to provide activities to our students to try and make this experience as normal as we can, and to keep students feeling a part of the Rio environment.”

Student Government has done its best to uphold traditions of the school year to the extent which it can in a distance learning model that prohibits school-sponsored student gatherings. Class advisor Carley Nava says that in an effort to stay connected, members of the class have turned to social media to build a presence and increase publicity to inform students about what is going on in the school community.

“We have monthly student and staff recognition awards that are voted on by Rio students,” Nava said. “We also invited a guest speaker, Kevin Bracy, to speak at lunch on the topics of overcoming adversity, building up others and motivation.”

A typical day in Student Government during other years would involve meeting to discuss upcoming events and activities, going into classrooms to give announcements and conduct elections, and creating decorations and plans for big events like dances and rallies. 

This year the class meets together at the beginning of each week, allowing students to share where they are with certain projects and brainstorm how to keep kids connected to the school. They also conduct virtual ASB meetings to where they approve the spending of funds for all groups under the ASB umbrella. 

The next event Student Government will be encouraging students to participate in is virtual homecoming spirit week and activities Oct. 26-30. Although there won’t be a homecoming dance this year due to health guidelines, Nava wants students to know that Student Government is working hard to reinvent the tradition to accommodate the circumstances. 

“We would love students to get involved with our themed dress-up days, our lunchtime events, and contests,” Nava said, suggesting that students follow Rio accounts on social media, download the Rio Americano App, and subscribe to the school bulletin for more information. 

This year’s homecoming theme is Disney with the freshmen choosing Monsters Inc., the sophomores choosing The Incredibles, juniors choosing Cars, and seniors choosing The Avengers. Each day of the week corresponds with a dress-up day for a certain class’ movie, a lunchtime activity, and there will be a virtual rally on Friday Oct. 30 which Fahn says that the class has worked extremely hard on.

“Our media coordinator Amelia York and assistant media coordinator Lindsay Policar, along with our social commissioners Ty McGlynn and Justin Valine have done an amazing job filming and producing the virtual rallies,” Fahn said. 

Sophomore Vice President Madi Rios says that in the age of online learning, connecting on multiple platforms is the best way to stay up-to-date on school information.

“I’ve found that downloading the Rio Americano app (which sends out blasts every week with new information) and following your class Instagram account is the best way to stay informed,” Rios said. “There are also emails sent to your student account so checking that is important during distance learning too.”

Student Government is helping students stay connected, involved and grounded in the Rio community and culture from the safety of their own homes.



Monday: Pajama Day – wear school appropriate pajamas to class

-Decorate your door and send pictures to @rioraiders

Tuesday: Incredibles Day – wear red

-Give a shoutout on social media to awesome people in your life

Wednesday: Racing stripes day – wear stripes

-Join a Zoom at lunch to play Disney-themed Kahoot

Thursday: Superhero Day – dress up like your favorite superhero, real or fictional

-Join a Zoom at lunch to listen to an inspiring guest speaker who survived breast cancer

Friday: Halloween Costume Day – wear a school appropriate costume to class

-Check out the virtual rally to feel the Raider spirit