#30 TRENDING IN Student Life 🔥

Starting a Club in High School: Your 5 Step Guide

Student Life

Sun, January 21

Clubs are a great way to get involved. Whether it's an intense competition team, such as mock trial and debate, or a fun activity to do after school, such as pickleball or chess, clubs are a central part of most high schoolers' lives. However, with the college application process becoming more competitive, many students strive to be in a ton of clubs or lead one of their own.

If you want to start a club at your high school and have no idea how to do it, this is the article for you. Here are five steps to starting a club in high school.

1. Brainstorm

I'm sure your high school already has many established clubs, which means you need to get creative. For example, maybe you want to join debate, but want to adjust to the workload before you join. You can create a mock debate club, which prepares your peers for the workload and requirements for debate.

You can even debate amongst yourselves and practice! Another way you can come up with an idea is to talk to your classmates. If there is a lot of interest in a certain topic, such as community service, you can create a club based on those interests. This will incorporate your classmates in the thought process and ensure that you will have a few sign ups. If your high school doesn't have a club that you want to join, such as a pre-med club, create one!

2. Reach Out to a Sponsor

Most high schools require a faculty sponsor for clubs and your school is probably one of them. When you pick out a sponsor for your club, you don't want to pick out a random faculty member. Here are some things to keep in mind when you are picking a sponsor:

  1. They are interested in the topic

It is important that the faculty sponsor you pick has an interest in the topic of your club. For example, let's say that you are starting a pre-med club. You want to get a science (more specifically biology) teacher because they have more advanced knowledge about the topic.

Another option would be to pick teachers with specific interests that align with your club. Maybe you're starting a dance club, and your school's guidance counselor was on her college's dance team, so she would be the perfect sponsor. Either way, you want to make sure that your sponsor is interested in the topic.

2. They have time to run the club/attend the meetings

You want to make sure that your sponsor has time to attend the club meetings. When you ask them about supporting your club, you want to specify your meeting times and see if they are available. Let's say that you're starting a mock trial team, and you want to practice Thursdays after school and Sunday afternoons.

A teacher with little kids or a parent to take care of might not be the best option because they have other obligations. Make sure that you're specific about how much of their time needs to be spent with the club.

3. They are someone that you can work with

Making sure that your sponsor is someone that you can work with is the most important criteria. If you have a teacher you don't get along with or are uncomfortable around, you're going to want to think of another teacher. You're going to have to spend extra time with this person, at club meetings or at one-on-one meetings about the club, and you want to be able to work productively with them.

Keep these criteria in mind when you go to pick a faculty sponsor for your club. Once you find the perfect sponsor, you can move on to step three.

woman and man sitting in front of monitor
Photo by Desola Lanre-Ologun from Unsplash.

3. Get Your Club Approved

Now that you have an idea and a sponsor, you have to make sure that your school approves of this club. You need to make sure that you get it approved within your school's guidelines. When I was starting a club at my school, you had to fill out a Google form that got submitted to the Dean's office.

You also want to make sure that you are clear on the school's policies for starting a club. If you don't know these, you should head to a Dean or principal's office for guidance. Trust me, you don't want to get your club shut down because you didn't get it approved correctly.

4. Market

After following these last three steps, you have a club that is school approved and ready to go. All you need to do now is get people to join. If your school has a club fair, you could set up a table and poster board there.

However, if you are starting a club in the middle of the year, it gets a bit more tricky. You could send out an email to the whole student body, you could put signs up on bulletin boards around your school, or you could set up a poster board at lunch for a few days. Whatever you choose to do, make sure that you're getting a few sign-ups to keep the club going.

people playing basketball
Photo by Steven Abraham from Unsplash.

5. Meet Regularly With Your Sponsor

By now, your club is up and running. In order to maintain a successful club, you need to meet with your club sponsor regularly. Depending on the club, you could meet with them once a week or once a month. Either way, you need to make sure that you are communicating with them so that your club can achieve its goals.

I started a club at my high school, and it was a good experience. I learned about how to present my ideas to different types of people and how to communicate with multiple groups. Both of these skills are going to be crucial later in your life.

So, if you're thinking about starting a club, I suggest that you go for it. You'll have a lot of fun collaborating with people interested in the same topics as you. Make sure that you remember these five steps when you start your club. Good luck!

Ava Jankowski
1,000+ pageviews

Writer since Aug, 2023 · 15 published articles

Ava Jankowski is a junior at Shady Side Academy in Pittsburgh, PA. She enjoys writing, traveling, shopping, mock trial, and playing tennis. She is excited for any learning opportunities possible. Ava will attend The School of the New York Times Summer Academy this July.