“Rumor Has It”: Why Rumors Spread So Quickly at MHS

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In small communities like Mariemont, word tends to spread fast. It seems everybody knows each other, and while this makes for a friendly environment, it leaves little room for privacy.

There are 523 students that attend Mariemont High School, so information–whether true or false–tends to get around pretty fast. These students have much to say about rumors that travel the halls faster than they can get to their first bell.

“Rumors are big here because everyone has known each other for most of their lives, so everyone gets into each other’s business,” says senior Bailey Murphy. “We aren’t exposed to a lot of drama, so when something interesting is going around, people blow it out of proportion.”

Murphy says she’s never heard a rumor spread about herself, but she has heard plenty about others.

“At the end of last year, there was a rumor that Mr. Commins was going to teach a Government class. That got a lot of seniors super excited,” Murphy said.  

Murphy isn’t the only one who feels passionately about rumors spreading through the school. Junior Sinclaire Dorsten believes rumors are so common at the school because of its size.

“With a small school like Mariemont, everyone knows everyone which makes people more interested to hear what’s going on in others’ lives. At bigger schools there are probably a lot more rumors, but they don’t get as much attention because unlike Mariemont, not everyone will know the person involved in the rumor,” says Dorsten.

Seniors Lindsay Kaminer (left) and Brooke Woellert (right) sharing a juicy secret in the commons. (PHOTO BY KROMER)

So why do people start them?

Chloe Reavill, an MHS Senior, has had rumors started about her and says they took less than a day to spread.

“Most rumors that go around are based off of facts but get twisted while being spread: kind of like playing telephone. A lot of times someone will overhear a conversation but only in pieces, and will tell people what they heard without knowing the full story,” says Reavill.

Contrary to most, junior Henry Rolander hasn’t had trouble with rumors being spread about himself and doesn’t think they are a big problem at high school.

Rolander thinks the reason they spread so quickly is because, “people are jealous of others and insecure about themselves.”

Rumors seem to be prevalent among most of the Mariemont student body, but with teachers, it’s a different story. History and Psychology teacher Mrs. Leatherwood gave insight on how the teachers feel about these fabrications.

“Rumors are a lot more prevalent at Mariemont than other schools because it is a small community in which a lot of people know each other’s business and feel compelled to share it whether it’s accurate or not,” she says.  

While the teachers themselves say they don’t start any rumors, they hear a lot of them, specifically the teachers who spend time with kids outside of the seven-hour school day.

Leatherwood explains, “It’s easier for coaches and teachers who run clubs to hear this information because it’s more openly talked about away from the classroom.”

She has yet to hear a rumor about herself, and hopes that if there are any, she won’t hear about them.

“I’m very out of the loop, so I wouldn’t know if the students were talking about me, but if they are I don’t even want to know!” she said.