Veterans Day assembly removal: Yay or nay?


Andrew Hwang, Lead News Editor

Plenty of changes have occurred already this 2016-2017 school year here at Fremd High School: First semester ends before winter break, the final exam schedule has completely changed, and Domino’s pizza is now part of Fremd’s lunch menu on late-start Tuesdays. As Veterans Day nears, there is one more change that can be added on to this growing listthe removal of the annual Veterans Day assembly.  

In the past, Fremd students and faculty have come together at the end of the day on Nov. 11 to celebrate the United States’ war heroes. Veterans from the local area, some with relations to Fremd students and faculty, come to this assembly, and a number of speeches and presentations are given to honor both the men and women who currently serve and those who have served in the past. Celebration ensues, and students and faculty are reminded of the many sacrifices made by U.S soldiers.

The social studies department, however, has decided to change it up this year. The Veterans Day assembly Fremd would normally have will be completely eliminated due to scheduling and planning conflicts, and will instead be replaced by a week-long fundraising competition between second period classes that wish to participate.

Social studies teacher Courtney Billittier, who helps organize Veterans Day activities, explained some of the fundraising going on this week.

“We’re partnering with Photos Hot Dogs in Palatine on Wednesday, Nov. 9, when 25% of all sales will go towards Fremd’s donation to the Soldiers Project,” Billittier said. “The class competition and the Photos event will be raising money for the Soldiers Project, an organization geared toward helping veterans’ transition back to civilian life, especially those suffering with the hidden wounds of war like PTSD.”

With the removal of the traditional Veterans Day assembly, there have been a mix of reactions from students. Senior Tomoki Yasuda found the assembly to be an event that did not necessarily encompass the true meaning of the holiday.

“I don’t really find celebrating Veterans Day on one particular day for about fifty minutes to be truly appreciating the veterans in our country,” Yasuda said. “It should be a year-long thing where we always appreciate our veterans.”

On the opposite side of the spectrum, there are also plenty of students who are against the removal of the Veterans Day assembly, such as sophomore Sharon Lee.

“Veterans are what made our country the way it is today, and I think it’s pretty sad that we don’t have a Veterans Day assembly this year,” Lee said. “In my opinion, it’s pretty important that we are reminded about how much veterans fought and suffered for our country.”

There are no indications as of yet on whether this change will apply to future years.