Homecoming week is in full swing at Elkhart Independent School District with students and teachers sharing in the school spirit. The Elkhart Elks will take on the Huntington Red Devils this Friday night at Jerry Ives Memorial Stadium.
"Homecoming is always a special event during the school year,” Ray DeSpain, Elkhart superintendent, said. “With this year's successes by our team, band and cheerleaders, it should be an exciting Friday night. We hope graduates from all Elkhart High School classes will join us this weekend. Good luck to all of our homecoming court nominees, and thank you to all staff and students who have helped coordinate all the events."
Jason Ives will be celebrating Elkhart's homecoming for the first time as the high school principal, after four years working as the assistant principal for the campus.
“Schools spirit is always high when you're having success,” Ives said. “I've always believed that there's not a better way to start out the school year than having success. In athletics, our football team is three and one, and they've won some big games and that success and excitement carries over into the school and propels us forward.”
One of the visions that Ives has as principal is described in the acronym "ELKS" or Excellence, Leadership, Knowledge and Success which is the focus for the high school in the coming years.
“It includes the things that I think are important to have in the school and to educating our kids,” Ives said. “I kind of think number one you have to be committed to excellence in everything that you do, and I think as teachers and as leaders of the school we need to instill leadership skills in our kids so they can go on and be successful and give them the knowledge that they need to be successful in life after high school. That's the mission. I think if we do those things we've done our job.”
He went on to say that he enjoyed working with the students at the high school and appreciated the support shown by the community for the district.
“I've always said that I believe we have great kids at Elkhart High School,” Ives said. “They're very talented and we have great teachers here at Elkhart High School and we have great community support, support for our administration and our school board. It's just a great place for kids to get an education and I'm always amazed at how lucky and fortunate we are to have the kids that we have.”
Students district-wide will be able to celebrate alongside the community and teachers this Friday afternoon before the game. According to Ives, the high school will release at 1 p.m. on Friday afternoon to participate in a district-wide parade at 1:30 p.m. and then a pep rally at 2:15 p.m. at the stadium. The community is invited to get involved with the festivities and the classes of '79, '80 and 2000 will hold reunions at the game that night.
“The kids love homecoming week,” Ives said. “It's always a time of excitement around here and our kids get involved in many ways and our pep rally's are always fun and exciting. So we're excited and ready for the game to get started.”