Afterthoughts on After Parties

All students look forward to Homecoming and Prom — but some are more excited about the parties that happen after they end. Many students from public and private schools attend and host “after” parties, which seem to get more and more extravagant every year. It’s often difficult for the administration to encourage responsible celebration while discouraging the over-the-top, occasionally wild parties that grow.

This years homecoming afterparty was broken up soon after it began. “The police said it was too much because of students from Krop drinking outside…” said Mr. Oronoz. “It went wrong. It doesn’t matter if you have it all planned and have the place… When you have a large party, it’s hard to control. Police and security said it got out of control because students who weren’t from our school were doing inappropriate things in front of the venue.” Despite some students’ speculation that it had something to do with Mr. Oronoz’s speech at assembly the day before Homecoming, the school had nothing to do with it. Senior Jorge Garcia helped plan the Homecoming after party this year. “We also always notify Mr. Oronoz because we want to make sure that he is okay with us to host it,” he said. “We do not want to get in trouble with anyone and that is why we needed to plan everything carefully and with lots of anticipation and he wants us to notify him as we trust him and he trusts us… The police said that there was too much noise and too many people in the place and they asked us to kick all of them out including some people already inside, but we honestly couldn’t because it was all too hectic so we were forced to shut down the whole party.”

Many students remember freshman seminars from the Peer Counselors which discourage underclassmen afterparty attendance. Though he isn’t sure how effective they are, Mr. Oronoz believes that making younger students aware of the school policy toward these events is imperative. Miami Country Day School discourages all students from attending the large, alcohol-fueled get togethers that last late into the night in favor of smaller parties supervised by adults. “But it’s up to the parents,” Mr. Oronoz said. “If they allow them to go, there’s nothing we can do.”

To prevent being broken up by police, the larger parties usually ban drinking inside. “I think the biggest problem, though, is the time between ten and eleven thirty,” Mr. Oronoz said. Though the transportation form is in part meant to discourage “party buses,” and Mr. Oronoz often checks limos to make sure there’s no alcohol, he believes that a lot of the questionable activities occur in the hour and a half between the dance and the after party instead of during the actual events.

Though no student has ever been expelled due to events that occurred during an after party, some have faced the consequences in the form of alcohol poisoning.  Students must ask themselves whether the risks of attending one of these parties outweighs the fun. Junior Janna Sayfie chose to attend the after party. “They did not dissuade me. It was a party that almost everyone goes to and I wanted to have fun so I went.” While Jorge plans to try again with a prom afterparty and then pass the reigns to a new group of rising seniors for next year, there is always a chance – however slim – that one day the actual Homecoming dance or Prom will be the main event to which students look forward. On that day, Mr. Oronoz, fellow administrators and parents will finally be able to breathe a collective sigh of relief.