After School is a new social media app for smartphones that has really taken off with students in Seneca Valley and other school districts alike.
There are approximately 22,300 high school campuses with students using After School to anonymously post about themselves and their classmates.
The app does require you to link your Facebook account to verify your age and that you do in fact go to the school district you claim to, but after that everything you post is 100 percent nameless, similar to an app that was quite popular about two years ago called Yik Yak.
Yik Yak however, fostered a lot of negativity and bullying in our school, whereas After School seems much more appropriate and useful to students. I myself actually have the app and check what’s new on it multiple times a day, and in the last two weeks I have had it, I only saw one negative comment about someone.
This is thanks to the fact that nothing that a student writes and clicks “post” immediately is posted. It goes to the creators of the app, who review it and decide if it is appropriate to allow the post to go through and all rude or offensive posts are stopped in their tracks.
I myself have noticed the primary use of After School is as a place to let out your emotions. You only have to flick your thumb up once or twice to find multiple confessions of crushes, attraction, or admission of something a student is going through.
In some school districts, the students are figuring out how to get past the post screening process and bully others on the app, but at Seneca Valley that is not the case. After School is now becoming a safe, and anonymous place to get secrets off of your chest or ask for advice on something you aren’t comfortable asking someone in person. Which is something teenagers today need whether we will admit it or not.
Additionally, to foster even more good vibes among the students, while scrolling you may come across a picture of a random person from school (the app uses their Facebook profile picture) and it will have a space for students to type into that says “Say something nice!” and that is exactly what students do, sharing compliments and advice with each other to bring up one another and bring our school closer together.