SHARE’s annual blood drive, benefitting patients in need through the American Red Cross, will experience changes from years past. According to Principal McKinney and SHARE Executive Kaleigh Frigon, the drive will no longer be a project solely hosted by East’s SHARE program, but will become a districtwide event.
Principal McKinney met with administrators from the other SMSD high schools and Associate Superintendent of Secondary Administrative Services, Dr. Gillian Chapman to talk about shared concerns over the individual blood drives.
About a week before winter break, Principal McKinney informed Frigon and the SHARE Executives of their plans to make the annual blood drive a districtwide competition.
“[The blood drive] will be hosted at a facility the distrcit decides to use, off-site,” McKinney said. “[The gym] is not really equipped to be a blood drive center, and we don’t have enough personnel for the number that we have volunteered. So, we thought [an outside facility] would be a safer location to do it to handle the volume of folks, while cutting down on the amount of time kids would be out of class.”
According to Frigon, all Shawnee Mission high schools would participate at one facility to give blood, and the “winner” would be figured by the school with the most donors that attended. Many of the details are still being decided about the new logistics of the drive, such as the date and location.
Frigon says she and other Executives are worried that fewer students will participate because they will have to travel to a location to give blood, outside of school hours, rather than giving it on-site at East, but Principal McKinney does not believe this will be an issue.
“We don’t think we will see a decline on the number of folks that will volunteer, in fact we think we might even see a greater number,” Principal McKinney said. “Now [a facility] will be able to handle a far greater amount of people than we could in our gym.”
However, the SHARE chairs of the project and the executives are working on speaking with the district planners of the event to see if the chairs originally signed up to lead the project can assist with the drive preparations.
“The chairs [of the blood drive] are kind of disappointed because now they don’t have a project to see through,” Frigon said. “But, they are going to try and talk to the superintendent to see if they can help with publicity and setting up and everything”