Principal Suggests School Event Ticketing System
The principal of a high school in Indiana has suggested that large crowds at school events are a safety concern and that the district should adopt a ticketing system. The nearby college is also seeing a surge in attendance and is already selling tickets online. Watching the video of a stampede of parents (below) may be all that's needed for educators and faculty to adopt a school event ticketing system sooner, rather than later.
Goshen Gets It
School events are truly a challenge. Unlike a commercial venue like a nightclub, schools cannot focus full-time on event management. Educators are busy teaching students, as they should be, and don't have time for the intricate nuances of venue gate control and patron ingress/egress times. Yet schools are host to some of the most meaningful and emotional events, like graduations and school plays. Adding to the burden on school officials is the ever increasing size and population of suburban neighborhoods. More and more students means more and more parents at every school event.
Big crowds at school events, that are often managed by teachers and unpaid volunteers, became the subject of a discussion recently at a high school in Goshen Indiana. While speaking at the Goshen board of trustees meeting, Goshen High School principal Barry Younghans suggested that a ticketing system be put into place for future events, specifically, class graduation in June.
Younghans brought up the possibility of issuing a certain amount of tickets to seniors for their family and friends, citing growing class sizes and crowding concerns:
So this is more about trying to do things officially, and effectively, and safely. We've had huge, huge turnouts. You've all been there. You remember last year we had the lady who passed out and we couldn't get to her. It just took a long time. So I've been talking with the assistant principals, the secretaries and some of the senior class sponsors, and what I’m kicking around is having tickets available to seniors.
After emphasizing safety, Younghans goes on to suggest the using a ticketing system will also widen the accessibility of events to more people, including the extended family of students who only attend milestone events.
In my mind I’m thinking about things that we can’t plan for, like a grandparent showing up at the last minute, weave got to have a way to get those people in. So what I’m thinking is we’ll tell people if they need more tickets up to that Thursday before graduation, people could come and get tickets up until that Thursday afternoon or Friday. Then what I’m thinking is we’d basically have a roll call, and have 150 extra tickets at Door M, and then say at 10 minutes until 2 p.m graduation day, you can come and get tickets if there are any remaining.
Younghans did not call for immediate action by the trustees but his intention is clear - adopt a school event ticketing system now, before graduation season begins in a few months. The Goshen board of trustees are yet to issue a formal statement, but the issue may be given high priority in the coming weeks. Nearby Goshen community college is also experiencing a surge in attendance at events.
You Never Can Tell
Less than two miles from Goshen High School is Goshen College’s Umble Center. The center is home for the performing arts and a student program of performances that include symphony orchestra, dance and theater. As of this writing, the theater department's season is in full swing and attendance levels are up compared to year’s past.
The Umble Center, as well as the adjacent venues on the Goshen College campus, already make use of a third party ticketing system for most, but not all, events. The college has more resources and staff than Goshen High School, but has not prevented challenges at some recent events.
When 12-time Grammy Award winner Emmylou Harris performed at Goshen College, the show sold out quickly, necessitating a waiting list that left some out in the cold.
School events that sell out quickly are an indicator that proactive measures need to be taken to address demand. Waiting until the point of crisis is not in the best interest of anyone - students, parents, teachers or faculty...
Avoid the Stampede of Parents
The video above shows what should be considered the worst case scenario for a school event, in this case a class registration. The overcrowded registration event was in Greenville South Carolina and, as reported by the local NBC affiliate, ended badly.
Parents are willing to endure hardships for their children, including a dangerous footrace to the head of the line. But the specter of injuries (and the associated liability) that may result from an event being in such high demand, as seen in the video, should give school official pause.
Selling tickets in advance is not only a smart safety procedure it can decrease the time spent in organizing and managing the event overall - alleviating educators from the burden of being"concert promoters."
ThunderTix can help schools avoid the stampede of parents with easy to use tools for selling ticketing online. With our plan for schools parents and families can buy tickets from their home computer instead of having to make an extra trip to buy them in person. Not only that, but since they bought them in advance using our reserved seating, they won’t have to get to your performance early and wait in line to get a good seat.
Also, school officials get all the power and utility of ThunderTix's years of experience with rock concerts and outdoor festivals, but at a price that is tailored for school budgets. If you want to sell tickets to your events online, be sure to take a look at all the features we have to offer and sign up for a free trial today!