(1st Place MIPA Feature Story ) Courage for Change

January 30, 2017

This past fall, Hermann High School gained another student organization: The Gender Sexualities Alliance, also known as GSA. The GSA is a non curricular student group that stands for the different minorities in our school and is sponsored by Mrs. Leigh Rogers, an English teacher at Hermann High School. Founded by Sara Keiser (12), the group was put together during the heightening of the election to make kids feel like they are not alone in their beliefs.

 

Keiser had always wanted to form the club, but after the November election, Keiser worried some might feel empowered to vocalize a hateful tone.

 

“I wanted to immediately counter it,” Keiser said. “I’ve always wanted to do it [start the club]; the election was just the kicker.”

 

While the group is just now starting out, Keiser has big promises for its future.

 

“I want to make it bigger, definitely. I want it to be something that is there to console people of minorities, or to acknowledge their existence. When you make jokes, it affects the people you’re involved with,” Keiser adds.

 

The Hermann GSA was inspired by the National GSA, whose goals are to help students educate those in their schools and communities and to help advocate for the LGBTQ community.

 

While the student organization centers around creating a more positive environment for everyone, the group also acts as a safe, fun place for its members.

 

“We meet every week or so,” Keiser says for inquiring students. “It’s not a club. It’s just a gathering with food and we sit and talk about our feelings. It gives the school an environment for people to be themselves.”

 

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Hermann High School

Gasconade County R-1 School District

176 Bearcat Crossing

Hermann, MO 65041

Enrollment-330

hermann.k12.mo.us

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