Staff Editorial: Potential new club fees

Park discusses new fee policy


Jacob Perszyk

Senior Axel Abrahamson at a student council meeting on March 22. Park plans to make an enrollment fee for clubs in the upcoming year.

Recently, Park’s administration has been considering the idea of having a 25 dollar club fee. If this idea is approved, clubs will be charging a 25 dollar fee for students to join. Clubs that are considered service clubs, such as JSU and SOAR, will be exempt from this fee. 

The Echo Editorial Board sees a large number of problems with this possible fee. Beginning with the fact that some students simply won’t be able to afford it. 25 dollars alone isn’t cheap, but for students who are involved in multiple clubs the money will add up and become expensive quickly. Students who are in multiple clubs said that they will consider dropping at least some of them, because it’s just too expensive.

Another issue with the fee is that it’s the same amount for every club. Not all clubs meet the amount of times or do an equal amount of activities. For example, the Spanish club typically meets once a month, while the environmental club meets only once a week. Charging both of these clubs the same price doesn’t make sense. Additionally, having this fee will make clubs less accessible to students. Students might be curious about a club and come to it a few times before officially signing up. With this fee, there isn’t really a way to see if you like the club without wasting money. This will discourage students from trying out new things, because they will have to pay when they might not necessarily like it. The Board believes that a trial basis would be a good idea for each club to have set up — a way for students to come to a few meetings and then decide if they want to join and pay. This way no one has to waste money on a club they end up not enjoying.

The Echo Editorial Board believes that this fee would be more understandable if the money was going directly to the clubs, but as of right now, it isn’t. The money will be going to pay club advisors and keep the building up. While paying club advisors and building upkeep is extremely important, the Echo Editorial Board believes that there are other ways for the school to raise money for these things, for example a fundraiser. 

The Echo Editorial Board believes that the possible 25 dollar fee limits students in many ways. For one, Park often preaches about getting involved and the importance of participating in different clubs or sports. But the fee restricts students from being involved in too many activities simply because it’s too expensive. Also, being in clubs looks great for college. For the part of Parks student population that is looking to attend college after high school, being involved looks great. This fee will decrease the amount of students participating in clubs which could decrease students’ likelihood of getting into a better school. 

Another problem that the Board saw with the idea of the fee is that some clubs will most likely be shut down. With students who start new clubs, in order for it to be approved it must have a certain number of members. Oftentimes, people will just put their names down so the club can get started, even if they aren’t positive about being involved in the future. With the fee, people wouldn’t want to sign up for a new club that they couldn’t test out without paying for. This will definitely make it more challenging for student led clubs to begin. 

Lastly, due to the fees, lots of clubs will most likely lose a lot of members. Especially clubs that don’t meet that often, which would ultimately just lead to them having to be canceled. Another issue the Echo Editorial Board noticed was how much of a hassle this could be for PSEO students. Full-time PSEO students are rarely in the building, but many are still part of sports and clubs. If a full-time PSEO student was a part of a club that only met once a month, and since they were not regularly building, it wouldn’t make sense for them to be in a club they couldn’t attend often for a fee.

The Echo Editorial Board unanimously believes that Park should not charge students to participate in clubs.