Join Lanier’s step team!


Stepping is a complex, synchronized dance-like performance that blends African American folk traditions with popular culture. Lanier has had a complicated relationship with maintaining a step team. First, it was at Lanier for a while, then it ceased, and now it is in the works yet again.
I asked different teachers and students to explain, in there own words, what the step team is, and this is what I found out: “The step team is a community based group, [who] do a variety of different steps and dances, and performances,” according to Shania Smith, a senior here at Lanier High. She elaborated on her feelings about the step team, saying, “I would definitely encourage others to join only because it’s something different, and a lot of people don’t really know about step, so it’s a fun way to…learn new things.”
Following Shania’s response, Maranda Foreman, a former student of Lanier, said, “The step team…is an amazing way to create [a] family within the community.”Foreman continued, “I didn’t…think I knew how to do it…I hadn’t stepped a day in my life prior to joining the step team.” From both of them, it shows that neither of them had a dull moment, it was always fun.
Surprisingly, the step team wasn’t its own separate team. It was incorporated into the Black Student Association, or BSA for short, which “is a club where we get together and…talk about the issues [we notice in the world] and improvements we want to see in the black community,” according to Angelina Webb, who is a senior at Lanier High School.
I asked Mr. Layfield who said that, “There was a step team, previous to me being here, that worked with BSA, but we were never a separate entity or organization by itself.” Following that statement, I asked him why it ceased to exist, and to Layfield’s best guess, “[it was due to] lack of participation or interest.” I asked Layfield what role he played when it came to incorporating step into BSA, and according to him, “Right now, our current board and some of our members are interested in doing…step, so as we look towards being able to do a BSA show, or potential step during lunch…they are really interested in that, so I helped [set] that, so we can move forward.”
In order to fully establish a team, we need to find students who would be interested in joining and be willing to put in the time and energy needed to make it a success. According to Dr. Martin, principal of Lanier High School, “The main thing is just gonna be [getting] students that are committed…, [getting] an adult [that’s] part of that faculty [who is willing] to commit,…[getting] parents in… [and following] guidelines.” In detail, Dr. Martin provided some of the things that will be needed, like physicals, raising money, and setting up practices.
Following up on Dr. Martin’s previous response on finding students who are committed, there is one student in particular who is interested. Sinclair, a senior here at Lanier, is trying to build a step team due to her previous experience on the step team at her old school. She elaborated on why she desired to construct one, stating, “Stepping has always been something that I loved and cherished, and I feel like it’s just something that could bring a community together as one.” As she continues to build it, she hopes that at least 25 to 30 students would join her team.
Although there was some inconsistency amongst teachers and students about whether or not there was a step team in previous years, it’s never too late to bring one to Lanier. Personally, I would join the step team because it is something that I have never done before and would like to give it a try. Currently, Sinclair’s team is already in the works and are already learning the choreography. If you are interested in step, go talk to Sinclair for more information. One way you can contact her is through her Snapchat account: heyyitsmarleyy.
“Stepping.” Encyclopædia Britannica, Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc.