LUBBOCK, Texas –The Heart of Frenship cheer squad still cheering after one year of their start.
The squad, made up of nine girls in the special education program, went through hardships due to starting after the pandemic hit, but one year later they have fulfilled their dream.
“We we just made it happen this year. And last year, it we kind of started it a little bit, we did a little small things here and there.” Kayci Smith, Cheer Coach and Special Education teacher at Frenship High School, said.
Smith said the whole program has been a blessing.
“It has been so inclusive. And even our [Special Education] girls have taken over the role of knowing all the girls in the hallway and starting to know more of the community and the more of the kids in the hallway,” said Smith.
Jessica Ward, life skills aide and Heart of Frenship helper, said she’d do anything for the kids and it brings joy to her when she sees their smiles.
“They get off the bus every morning and I like doing cheer today. ‘Do we have pep rally Friday?’ Like, they love it. They have been asking all week. ‘Is it Friday yet? Is it Friday?’ We got basketball. So they’re very excited. It gets a lot of the kids through and makes them feel included,” Ward said.
Smith said the school spirit has exceeded their expectations.
“I think my favorite thing at the first pep rally was as soon as hard a Frenship went out there to do a chant. The whole football team stood up. And I got so emotional. I couldn’t believe it,” Smith said.
The Frenship Tigers cheer squad work so closely with Heart of Frenship that the members say they could never be without each other.
“It makes me happy to like, we’re giving them a chance to do something that they haven’t ever done. I think it makes them happy to to be included with us. We get to partner up, give each of us they get to come to one of us and kind of like be their person that they go to, and we help teach them,” Madi Kuss, Freshmen cheerleader at Frenship, said.
Smith says she hopes that this is something that will continue on as it helps those in the special education program educationally and socially.
“I think our goal is to make it more inclusive, where we’re doing more, we’re actually getting out into the community, we’re getting to do stuff after school,” Smith said.
The coaches ask that if you have any ideas of how the heart of Frenship can get out in the community reach out to them.
“I also challenge other schools to do this. And I don’t I mean, that from the bottom of my heart. It’s not — this is not a Frenship thing [only],” Smith said. “I’d love to see the full community start doing the same thing because it has it has changed my girls and it’s changed my whole outlook on things. So I just think it’s really important.”
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