It’s time for JSB! What started over 60 years ago as an end-of-year banquet hosted by teachers has evolved into what we know today as the Junior Senior Banquet (JSB).
The first JSB included teachers honoring the senior class with a traditional gift of a large piece of cinnamon bark, but now this event is hosted by the juniors to celebrate the senior class. Several traditions have developed over time with this event, such as the creative themes not revealed until the night itself, skits performed by the juniors, words of encouragement, and the post-JSB thank-you dinner hosted by the seniors.
Other traditions connected to JSB have faded away, like the giving of cinnamon bark or ending the event by watching a movie. Although this event will be ever-developing, the impact on our students should never be underestimated.
I was able to gain more understanding of the depth of this event through my doctoral research. I was granted access to study Dalat’s school climate through the lens of Dalat alumni who served as staff.
Through this research, I identified that school experiences have a lasting impact on students and are a key component in understanding school climate.
The experience of JSB was a regular theme in my surveying and conversations with individuals. This event creates a level of team-building and community that rooted the students in the school. One respondent recalled,
“I definitely remember … working together as a [junior] class and putting on a big event. I think it was, in the end, more enjoyable than going to JSB, even though that was good. The next year as a senior, it was great to attend JSB, but I think the more impactful thing was actually putting on a JSB.”
Similarly, another respondent stated, “I have a lot of great memories of putting [school events] on and being part of different parts of planning them.”
In many school experiences, the value of the events connected back to developing relationships and working together with classmates. This aligns with our Student Outcome Statements for Dalat and this quarter’s focus on relationships. So when you see the high school students here on Friday night, know that this event is part of Education for Life. Get your cameras (or phones) ready!