Students take the lead in fun and games

John Jay typically hosts a fun weekend of home sporting events each spring. This year, varsity and junior varsity athletes shared the spotlight with student artists, musicians and dancers as well as lawn game aficionados, pickleball players and more. 

“The students revamped and expanded JayFest in the name of inclusion,” said Kristin Spiros, one of the counselors at John Jay High School. While she, along with math teacher Tom Rizzotti, social studies teacher Kaitlyn McCarthy and health teacher/assistant athletic director Steve DelMoro, were the coordinators of JayFest, students took the lead in envisioning and execution.

AP Drawing students offer body paint tattoos

the result of a Year-long leadership initiative at JJHS

The celebration grew out of a year-long leadership initiative at John Jay High School. This spring, a team of teachers hosted an all-day leadership conference with club presidents, athletic captains, peer leaders and members of campus congress and student council. Key leadership traits were reviewed, and the students were challenged to plan and run a celebration that would bring the whole school community together.

Faculty vs seniors kickball

All new JayFest infused with inclusivity

The result? JayFest 2022 included live music from student bands, a performance from the spring musical, body paint tattoos from AP drawing students, chalk art graffiti, pickleball, lawn games like can jam and corn hole, competitive class wars with relay races, tug of war and a giant inflatable obstacle course and—by popular request—a faculty/senior kickball game.

Success was evident in increased participation across the student body as well as an abundance of camaraderie and smiles.