Jacket Buzz (09/07/12)
The Jacket Buzz is the student newspaper of Starkville High School.
B J The Holloway likes tech 20 years 1992 - 2012 of The Jacket Buzz. Jacket Buzz SHS student count grows by 204 SHS got hit with 204 out of the district's 255 new students this year. Page 6. Starkville High School � 603 Yellow Jacket Dr. Starkville, MS, 39759 � shsjacketbuzz.com Volume XX, No. 1 � 09-07-12 Ames sees Boys Nation Senior Rex Ames went to Washington, D.C. to participate in the prestigious Boys Nation program. Page 3 Japanese heritage a part of Little Supt. Lewis Holloway shares his opinions on technology in schools and encourages its continued use at SHS. Page 2 Leaving Millsaps Director James Stidham retires, story on page 3. Senior Akane Little reflects on how her cultural roots affect her. Page 5 Page 2 � 09-07-12 News SHS SATP Passing Rate High &!!"!!#$ &!!"!!#$ %!"!!#$ %!"!!#$ !"!!#$ !"!!#$ '()*+,-$.$ /01(1)2$.$ 34)(056$..$ 78$ 905:1,2$ 78$ 905:1,2$ Holloway takes on technology It's (technology is) meant to make the teacher's job easier. shsjacketbuzz.com '()*+,-$.$ /01(1)2$.$ 34)(056$..$ '()*+,-$.$ /01(1)2$.$ 34)(056$..$ 78$905:1,2$ 8*,0*5&$ ;&"<!#$ =<">!#$ =>#$ ?!"<!#$ '()*+,-$.$ /01(1)2$.$ 34)(056$..$ 78$905:1,2$ These are the percentages passing the four state far, the school has met the QDI standards for all 8*,0*5&$ ;&"<!#$ =<">!#$ =>#$ ?!"<!#$ subjects except for Reading/Language Arts. 81.3% tests across Starkville High School. Compared to 2011 scores, there was a general decrease in the four of students taking math, 90.3 percent of students taking U.S. History, 73.2 percent of students taking subjects. "With the four-by-four, we anticipated a decline, Biology I, and 72 percent of students taking English but we hoped to maintain the successful QDI (qualII state tests at Starkville High School passed. But the students who did do well on state tests were ity distribution Index) that we had in previous years," principal Keith Fennell said. "We knew that once given incentives, thought up by Fennell, but these incentives seemed to have disappeared. in the transition of one schedule to the other that it would take a little bit of experience to maintain "The four-by-four brings about two test administrations each year, one in December and one in that success." The school's actual test results have not yet been May, and the results coming from the Department of Education are delayed," Fennell said. "It makes released to the public by the Mississippi Department of Education (MDE) but each individual it difficult to accurately, in a timely manner, review student's results have not been embargoed. So the data and get the incentives out." THANK YOU TEACHERS! THANK YOU TEACHERS! Our teachers have enthusiastically responded to Super- Holloway's invitation support the Starkville have intendent enthusiastically responded toto Superintendent Holloway's Foundation for Public Education with a $10 per month doStarkville Foundation for Public Education with a $10 per month donation nation through salary deduction. through salary deduction. Let's match their spirit in supporting SFPE and the "Well, as I was the one who unlocked YouTube, I would approve of its use in the classroom." The words that some Starkville High School students have been dying to hear have finally been said by none other than the new superintendent, Lewis Holloway. Holloway finds technology, such as YouTube, to be a valuable asset in the classroom. "In my previous school district, teachers would film classes," Holloway said. "Then, they would post it on YouTube, so that if a child missed class for whatever reason, they could just find that channel and watch class. One teacher had 6,000 hits." In Tupelo High School, each student has access to an iPad throughout school. Holloway feels that there is a place for iPads, but educators should look even deeper into the question. "We know that kids have internet in the pockets," Holloway said. "It's just a matter of bringing your own device at time." As to the concerns about YouTube, Holloway does see some misuse in the future. "With cell phone usage and YouTube as well, there shouldn't be a strict no tolerance rule," Holloway invitation to said. "On the flip side, how are you sup- -Lewis Holloway posed to judge what is a proper use of a device and what is not?" Meanwhile, Holloway mentioned a program at a specially called school board meeting on August 23 that would allow teachers to order laptops to be used in the classroom, then taken home and used to continue working on school related things, such as entering grades. "It wouldn't be for the teacher's personal usage," Holloway said. "It's meant to make the teacher's job easier." As to other policies that concern him, the dress code does not seem to leaving under Holloway. "I don't see it repealed," Holloway said. "To continue the argument [against the policy] distracts from the educational opportunities. "It's a no-win situation, and it causes controversy. " However, there is some openings with lenience in Starkville SFPE Schooland District! match their spirit in supporting the Starkville School District! Donate online at www.starkvillefoundation.org or by mail: Starkville Foundation for Public Education P.O. Box 2307 Starkville Foundation for Public Education Starkville, MS 39760 Donate online at www.starkvillefoundation.org or by mail: P.O. Box 2307 Starkville, MS 39760 Contact us: email@example.com " some of the standards. "We're willing to consider blue jean Fridays across the board," Holloway said. In 2014, school districts nationwide will be enforcing a new set of standards, known as Common Core, something that Holloway agrees with. However, he also feels it a little much on school districts. "We needed a common core," Holloway said. "But we don't need to reinvent the wheel with it, and that's what it's essentially doing. Here at Starkville High, we are looking into reducing the number of credits required to graduate, but nothing is set yet." Holloway finds that Starkville School District is similar to his old school district, and hopes to make an impact on it. He enjoys being a Yellow Jacket. "There are great opportunities here [in the Starkville School District]," Holloway said. "We're just trying to improve the school district every single day." Holloway plans to continue encouraging educational technology in the Starkville School District beyond just this year. By Kelley Mazzola News Editor " @shsjacketbuzz News Stidham retires By Kelley Mazzola News Editor Page 3 � 09-07-12 Senior Rex Ames greets with Mississippi govenor Phil Bryant during Boys' Nation. Photo contributed by Rex Ames. Ames attends Boys Nation By Kelley Mazzola News Editor Over the summer, most teenagers would be lying on the couch or be between vacations. However, senior Rex Ames channeled his energy into another direction. This summer, Ames attended the program Boy's State in Jackson and Boys Nation in Washington, D.C. For Ames, this was a dream come true. Boys State is a statewide program sponsored by the American Legion, which is a veteran's group promoting civil service and patriotism to all ages. Boys State brings high school male delegates from across the state to Jackson, where they participate and witness the inner workings of the state government. "You run around and do errands and odd jobs for people," Ames said. "All you ask is, `what do you need me to do,' and they tell you to do it. It's like being an intern." These delegates meet regularly to share their experiences among the politicians in the Mississippi Capitol building, as well as act as a legislature to pass "bills" according to the standards of the Mississippi Legislature. Later in the term, these delegates elect two of their own Rex Ames posing with MS rep. Greg Harper. Photo contributed by Rex Ames. to be governor and lieutenant governor of Boys State. At the end of the term, the high schoolers gather as a group once again to vote which two of their own will be elected to serve as "senators" to the Boys Nation group, which includes delegates from states such as Alaska and Montana. "It's been my dream to go to Washington D.C., so this was an opportunity I couldn't let fly by," Ames said. "I strongly urged the other delegates at Boy's State to let me go and represent Mississippi. It was my goal from the beginning of the program." Ames, through perseverance since the sixth grade, got his wish and was voted as one of the two Mississippi senators to Boys Nation. While there, the program took him across Washington D.C. to visit monuments and museums, and, of course, the Capitol building. "My favorite thing at Boys Nation was when we met the President," Ames said. "He shook each of our hands and then had to leave, but it was still very nice. My other favorite thing was watching the Senate and the House in session. "Just watching from the gallery was fantastic." As a self-described political person, Ames found the experience extremely rewarding both as a high school student and a citizen of the United States. "I would recommend Boys State and Boys Nation to juniors," Ames said. "It taught me a lot about our state government, since I met the Attorney General as well as Greg Harper. We [delegates] grew very close, since we sat down and ate meals together and talked about things. I made a lot of friends." As of last Friday, after 25 years as a director of Millsaps Career and Technical Center, James Stidham has retired to the simple life on his horse farm here in Oktibbeha County. "I've gotten old," Stidham said. "I know I signed a contract with the school district last year to stay for this year, but I just felt like it was my time." Before becoming an nearpermanent presence at Millsaps, he started as a teacher at Webster County, then rose to be a director at the career and technological center there and remained in that post for five years. After that, he became the principal for three years before arriving at Millsaps. One of the programs that he started in Millsaps is Career Technical Exploration, a program that allows students to rotate through the courses offered at Millsaps, such as Building Trades and Horticulture. However, in previous years the students participated in four courses that they may have requested or (as a new feature in the second semester of last year) six courses. This year, the freshmen class will rotate through all 10 of the courses, with nine days with each teacher. CTE came about when Stidham presented the idea to the education department of Mississippi, in order to introduce CTE statewide. The state department first implemented CTE in Millsaps, granting money to fund this expedition. However, with the recession hitting its hardest in 2008 and 2009, the funding was soon cut out of the education budget, making CTE a unique feature to Millsaps. However, at the beginning of this year, there was talk of CTE being cut as a required class to graduate, since it It's a great loss for the students of Millsaps, and the students of the school district. -Ray New is required not by the state, but by the Starkville School District. Stidham still holds faith in the program. "I'm very passionate about CTE," Stidham said. "For some kids, it's the only opportunity for them to see other options for their education. Some of them won't want to go to college, and these classes would give them a trade and a job to look forward to after high school. CTE helps them make an informed decision about life after high school." Despite having programs such as CTE dear to his heart, Stidham's favorite thing about Millsaps is the faculty and staff that he worked with. "The faculty and staff are outstanding," Stidham said. "We're called the Millsaps family, and there's a reason for that. When one of us is happy, all of us are happy. If one of us is hurting, we're all sad to see that." The faculty will miss him just as Stidham will miss them, even though it's still said that the Millsaps faculty " " end-of-the-year barbecue will still be on at Stidham's farm. "It was hard and tough," Rusty Coats, the Horticulture teacher at Millsaps, said. "It was a surprise, and we're going to miss him. He's done a lot help with funding for equipment and such." Patty Newsom feels similarly about Stidham. "He will be missed sorely," Newsom told the Starkville Daily News. "We were one of the first three Teacher Academy programs to open in Mississippi, and he supplied me with all the technology I needed to teach with, like SMART Boards and computers, so that I could teach my students how to become teachers. "On his behalf, we will always do what's right and best for the students because that was his motto. He (will leave) big boots to fill." Stidham plans to spend his retirment with his seven grandchildren, showing horses with them and helping them grow. "I've been showing horses for 40 years," Stidham said. "I show and judge Western competitions. It's hard to do both at the same horse show, but I've done it before." One thing he is excited about is the tractor that is waiting to be used for a long time after his retirement. "My wife bought me a new tractor," Stidham said. "I've never had a new tractor before, so that's going to be new." COME SEE US! Ferguson back at SHS By Jareth Murrell News Writer Page 4 � 09-07-12 News Sherre Ferguson's Accelerated English III classes have worked from the beginning of the school year as per the lesson plan. The only thing they lacked, however, was their teacher. "I had surgery, and as a result, there were complications from the surgery," said Ferguson. The complications have made Ferguson unfit for the stresses of teaching. In her absence, the Starkville High School administration and faculty have provided for her class. Retired teacher Dianne spiritual side of life. Being a devout Christian, she extends her thanks to God and prayer. "I must begin by giving God all the praise for the blessings he has bestowed upon me in the past, now in the present, and also for the future," said Ferguson. Ferguson feels that she also learned the valuable lesson about faith through this ordeal. "This process has and con- Charles Wright in mid lecture. Photo by Alisha Carter. Ferguson teaches back at SHS. Photo by Alisha Carter. tinues to teach me that prayer changes situations and that my faith has become even stronger as a result. What I would say to anyone who goes through any type of health problem is that: While the doctor may take the fee, God does the healing." JROTC plans moment of silence nMoment planned as 9/11 memorium By Kelley Mazzola News Editor John Dillan talking to his students. Photo by Alisha Carter. 9/11 Moment of Silence Across the school, the clamor of classes will quiet to a moment of silence as an officer of the Junior Reserve Officer Training Corp will come over the intercom, asking for a moment of silence on Sept. 11. This moment of silence is to remember 9/11, in which terrorists flew planes into the two World Trade Centers in New York, and yet another plane into the Pentegon in Washington D.C. This moment of silence is to also remember the heroic passengers of Flight 93, who forced the hijackers of Tusday, Starkville High School wanna do something to help.'" Last year, it was the tenth anniversary of 9/11, and, with that in mind, JROTC had a video played over the Channel One televisions across the school, as well as announcements at the times of the terrorist attacks. However, since this is only the eleventh anniversary, the leaders of JROTC deemed a moment of silence appropriate. "It's just a moment of silence," Lt. Colonel Charlese Webb said. "It's just a moment to remember that day." Allen Calhoun explains automotive mechanics to his students. Photo by Alisha Carter. " their flight to crash in a field in Pennsylvannia. However, to assistant principal Sean McDonnall, it's a little more than just that. "It helps put it [9/11] into perspective," McDonnall said. "We lost a lot of American lives that day, so I think a moment of silence is good to just remember them, and let them know that we'll never forget." To Stacie Young, a cadet in JROTC, it's a way to express her patriotism. "JROTC teaches you the importance of being a citizen, so it teaches you to take pride of being an American," Young said. "You take that and you think about it, this was an attack on our country. As a whole, you feel, like, sad that it happened, but you just learn from that situation that, `hey, I want to protect my country, I p However, Young believes that there should be more to this anniversary of the tragedy. "We've done color guard at so many different ceremonies that they have," Young said. "But just a moment of silence? There could be a lot more done." However appropriate it would be to some, McDonnall believes that a moment of silence is going to become a tradition, instead of a large ceremony. "I don't know where you would draw the line," McDonnall said. "If we start digging back far enough I'm sure there's tragedies have happened throughout our history that deserve that. I think a moment of silence is appropriate, and I don't have a problem with it." " As a new teacher I am really enjoying it, this facility is better than anything we had even at EMCC. I came to Starkville for an opportunity as an automotive instructor. I really like Millsaps. " The doctor may take the fee, God does the healing. -Sherre Ferguson " nTeacher finds strength in herself and deals with illness. Freeze worked as a substitute in her class to keep the students up-to-date with class lessons and procedures to facilitate a smooth return for Ferguson. The rest of the faculty and administration has also worked to aid Ferguson in her recovery. "A lot of my colleagues (past and present) as well as my principal have been very nice to me during the recovery process," Ferguson said. "Whether it was through prayer, thoughts, food, phone calls, etc., many of my colleagues were very pleasant in assisting me during the process. I want to thank those who did those things." Ferguson's recovery has been going well so far though not as quickly as originally thought. However, she came back to teaching on Sept. 4, and is loving every minute of it. Meanwhile, this series of events that have unfolded have caused Ferguson to see a more " Millsaps' New Teachers Speak Up I've been really shsjacketbuzz.com " " impressed with students here. I try to implant a little of the real world so it's not just a teaching scenario. Little's cultural identity split By Cullom McCormick Editor-in-Chief @shsjacketbuzz News Page 5 � 09-07-12 Little working her way through calculus classwork. Photo by Alisha Carter. like being in a group, they like to dress and talk like each other. All that stems from the island being small and not wanting to be unlike each other for fear of getting ostracized. "America is much more individual-conscious. Our economic system is even set up around it: the more successful you are as an individual, the more successful you are in society." Watching Japanese television and spending summers in Japan used to have her switching gears and mixing her mannerisms together, she says, and she sees this as the reason she felt so weird when she was young. Now, she just appreciates both halves of her heritage for what they are and just tries to act like herself. "I feel bad for the multicultural kids who are never exposed to the non-American side of their culture," Little said. "My mom exposed me to Japanese things, and I'm really grateful . . . But I don't like something just because would just let go of that and be themselves. And I don't feel bad for them, I just get annoyed with them. I wish I could just pull them aside and explain to them why they should stop doing it. But it's not my place." Little's social life has changed to show such an attitude. For instance, whereas she used to hold out for "a half-Japanese guy who had curly hair and rode bikes everywhere," now she has no problem dating whoever she gets to know and like best, regardless of skin color or culture. Jackson drops chemistry, takes up physcial science By Jareth Murrell News Writer For the past couple of years, Brenda Jackson has been teaching chemistry as one of her three classes during the day. However, there seems to be a change in schedule. "Assigning classes would be just a qualification thing," assistant principal Sean McDonnall said. "It was mostly because of the conflict of who was needed to teach what in the most needed subjects," Jackson said. "It was a certification conflict; the only way you can teach a physical science is to have a 182 or a 189. I'm certified to teach in all areas." As to who is teaching what, that shift operates similarly to a supply and demand formula. With the new growth of the school and greater number of students taking one science class over another and so teachers had to be moved around to deal with this. This isn't always limited to the science department, though this year changes in the science department are more noticeable than in others. However, end result is that Jackson now teaches Phys- ics, Physical Science, and Advanced Placement Biology, leaving Chemistry with some of the other science faculty. "This year there are three new people in the department. Any time you have that number of new hires, the department is going through a transition phase," Jackson said. Though this uncertainty could possibly negatively affect some faculty, Jackson embraces the changes. "I don't know from year to year what I'm going to teach anyway," Jackson said. "I could teach anything really, I love it all." Jackson manages her Physics I classroom as they go through a lesson in the morning. Photo by Alisha Carter. " Half-Japanese senior Akane Little's parents met in a strange way. "My dad was an exchange English professor at my mom's university in Japan," Little said. "She didn't actually take his class, but one of the teachers threw a Christmas party. My mom remembers thinking my dad was weird because he ate dried fish headfirst, and on the way home, he insisted on holding her hands to keep them warm. I'm just surprised she ever talked to him again." The details of the meeting � the American man holding a Japanese woman's hands, the awkward American way of eating, the curiosity resulting from the social missteps � reflect what Little feels about her mixed cultural identity. The differences and opposing messages she received from American culture and Japanese culture used to make her overly conflicted. "Japanese people aren't as out there as Americans are," Little said. "They care more about their own space, they it's Japanese. I like what I like and I don't like what I don't like." And as proud as she is of her background, Little does admit that it has isolated her at times. Her most vivid memory of outright prejudice, though, was in elementary school. "Teachers would get to the part in history when we talked about Pearl Harbor," Little said. "Everyone stared at me. I started crying." She points to the sixth grade as the year she started feeling alone for being different, when she "kept wishing that there was someone else who spoke Japanese and knew the culture." In a self-contradicting attempt to both blend in and show her individuality, Little started making "self-degrading, racist jokes" when she got to middle school. Now, though, she's grown out of those jokes. "Now, I find that humor to be cheap, stupid and really not funny," Little said. "Like when an Asian person does something, you comment on it, and they just say `It's because I'm Asian.' I wish they " How much you identify your cultural identity with yourself is how much people are going to identify you as that culture. -Akane Little Little says she hasn't even noticed anyone stereotyping and dismissing her achievements as being solely because of her ethnicity (as people sometimes do with Asian teenagers), which she believes is because she doesn't harp on it to fit in anymore. "It hasn't been bothering me because I haven't been hearing it," Little said. "How much you identify your cultural identity with yourself is how much people are going to identify you as that culture. With the state of mind that I have now, I'd be incredibly annoyed if people said something like that to me or made assumptions that I did certain things because I'm Asian. No, it's because I'm me and I want to do it. It's because that's what makes me tick, not because I'm Japanese." Still, though, Little says she sees other Asian teenagers doing this, kids who she still wishes she could pull aside and shake. But it's still not her place. And despite her annoyance, it all boils down to her wanting others to just be themselves so they could be as happy as she is. !"#$%&'(()*!+,--(*.'/"$'+"* SHS grows by 0-12(#3-4*54+$)#/)* Starkville School District .'/"$'623-4* Other Schools Page 6 � 09-07-12 News shsjacketbuzz.com 204 students This year alone, 255 new students have enrolled in the Starkville School District. 204 of those alone enrolled at SHS. By Ashley Rude News Writer Population Distribution %&$ SHS !"#$ Veteran teacher Sally Warren teaches English II students about poetry. Photo by Robert Dandass. " " Starkville High School started the year off with 204 more students than last year. 1,288 students attend SHS verses the 1,084 students from last year. Many blame the sudden increase on the freshman class which grew by 66 from last year, the most of all the classes. Juniors had 47 extra, 39 seniors, and 27 sophomores. The sudden population increase has left administrators and teachers thinking of solutions for crowding. "I'm trying to make sure everyone has textbooks and desks in all the classrooms," assistant principal Avence Pittman Jr. said. Classrooms are overrun with students. Algebra II teacher Xavier Tillman has packed in as many students in her classroom as possible. "I have someone seated at my podium, someone seated at my desk, I brought extra desks up to the front of my room and I actually brought in a couple of tables for kids to sit at," Tillman said "So everywhere, every nook, crook and corner I can find." The problems caused by overcrowding are overall a good thing compared to downsides. Principal Keith Fennell not only believes the student body has increased due to freshmen, but also because of the opportunities offered by the school. "We do provide a comprehensive educational experience and I think people will recognize that in the immediate surroundings and prefer to be part of the Jacket Nation because of that," Fennell said. "So when they have that opportunity to, I think they will pursue that opportunity in efforts to land in the location where the best education is provided." I'm trying to make sure everyone has textbooks and desks in all the classrooms. -Avence Pittman Starkville High School's increased population shows best during lunch, when the cafeteria is loaded with the extra students. Photo by Robert Dandass. Warren considered retirement By Jareth Murrell News Writer English II teacher Sally Warren, despite looking young and beautiful, could very well have retired this year. However, she decided to stay. "I think you know when it's time to leave: when you can't stand to see your students any longer and every obstacle becomes something that you don't feel that you can overcome," Warren said. "I just haven't reached that point yet." Warren said continuing teaching has been a positive aspect of her life. She also looks forward to the future rewards of continuing to teach here at SHS. Specifically, she would like to teach at SHS long enough to see her son attend the school. Her son being in the eighth grade, it won't take too long for Warren to have a chance to teach her son or accompany him in his high school years. As for what Warren would be doing if she had retired, she wouldn't be ending her career. Warren would instead be extending her passion for teaching and taking advantage of other opportunities. "I would have to work," War- ren said. "Maybe I'd teach at Mississippi State University." Warren feels that this would be something she would look into when she does finally retire from SHS. For now though, Warren is content with continuing to have her position as an English Teacher at SHS. "For some reason, I still like my students, and I love SHS," Warren said. @shsjacketbuzz News Page 7 � 09-07-12 Millsaps loses three, Cheeks returns to SHS still set for new year By Jareth Murrell News Writer By Ashely Rude News Writer The Starkville High School BEST robotics team lost three valuable members from last year: CEO Nick Elder, builder Joey Pritchet and lead programmer Abdalla Sherif. Pritchet worked tirelessly for the entire group to complete the robot's booth in time. "Joey was good in the booth construction, but now this year we have the booth, so all we have to do is change it to whatever the theme is," advisor Denise Adair said. While Pritchet focused his strengths on the building aspect of the competition, Sherif channeled his talents towards programming the robot. By the time he was done, the robot ran well. "If it wasn't for Abdalla, we wouldn't have the robot in the running condition by the time we did," marketing director Nick Kolbet said. Sadly, Sherif's programming was not enough to bring the team to a first place win. The team only managed to secure the People's Choice Best Booth and Rookie Team of the Year awards, and the robot's true capabilities were not demonstrated thoroughly due to a small difficulty in charging the battery. As CEO, Elder had more responsibilities than any other member. His loss leaves a major vacuum within the team. "His job was to look over both branches and make sure that everyone was on task," Kolbet said. "To make sure that we're getting things accomplished in a very specific manner of time." Elder left Starkville High School and the robotics team behind to attend the Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science. He will be replaced at the beginning of the 42 day period to build the robot when the team votes on a new CEO. While the loss of valuable members is regretful, it provides opportunities for newer robotics club members to step up and do what they love. Talisha Cheeks is the newest addition to Starkville High School's math dept. faculty. However, Cheeks isn't entirely meeting unfamiliar with the territory. Tuesday, 3:15 p.m., "I was here in 2004 to 2007," Denise Adair's room Cheeks said. "I taught Algebra "For 42 days it's a lot of I to geometry, transitions, prework, but the kids get so algebra, any math course they much out of it that it's worth had, basically." Since being back, Cheeks it," Adair said. notes the familiarity she has with the school in its faculty, students and general atmosphere. "The whole climate is pretty much the same," Cheeks said. "The whole culture is also pretty much the same. There are lots of familiar faces." Not everything is the same, though. Even though the students and staff stay consistent, policies shift from year to year. To help her adjust to these new changes, the administration has provided her with a p Robotics mentor for her to ask questions to when she needs clarifications on new policies and other changes within the school. Cheeks has noted several significant changes since she was last here. Some of those included more involved technology in the classroom as well as the dress code. "I love having the SmartBoard and being able to use YouTube," Cheeks said. "I think that was a step in the right direction, especially in a math classroom. There are so many things that I'm able to show them now and that they're able to experience it with the technology. [It especially shows] when we're graphing and when they're able to see a bigger perspective on things." Even with these changes, Cheeks still feels at home here. "The turnover rate is not as great as in some places, as in you go back the next year and `poof' -- all new faces," said Cheeks. "And that's great be- Cheeks uses her old skills to teach a fresh concept to a class of her new high school students. Photo by Robert Dandasss. cause it shows stability within the school where people can feel secure and safe, unlike how they are in a new environment." Former BEST CEO Nick Elder works on last year's robot. Photo contributed byVictoria Hearn. ! ! ! ! ! Russ McReynolds, DMD 100 Brandon Rd. Suite E 401 East Main Street Louisville Starkville 662.773.6215 662.323.8065 """#$%&'()*+,-*&./*#%*$ Editorial Page 10 � 09-07-12 Opinion shsjacketbuzz.com The editorial below is a written collaboration among all members of the Jacket Buzz staff. Ideas expressed represent the majority opinion of the students. "Don't worry. We're just making you miss school for that text to your mom. Just step inside for a little while and wait for your teacher to send everything you need..." Phone policy needs change Starkville High School's attitude toward technology has improved greatly in recent years. Unblocking YouTube on school computers shows this best. However, the school's outdated policy on cell phones still flies in the face of this recent progress. The punishment for cell phone use is far too severe. Because a student gets caught glancing at his phone, he has to report to In School Suspension (ISS) for an entire day. Theoretically, this would not be a problem, as teachers are meant to send any work from that day to the ISS room. But in practice, this system is flawed in multitudes of ways. Seldom do teachers actually send work to ISS, justifying their misstep by claiming to be too busy for the inconvenience or saying it was the student's fault for misbehaving in the first place. A day in ISS also goes on a student's permanent record, which colleges will see and assume was because of a fitting rules violation. Thus, the student suffers academically as well as behaviorally, compounding this already egregious punishment. On top of the ill-conceived punishment for cell phone usage, many teachers often don't even enforce the rule. Many of them discourage but conveniently overlook cell phone usage. From one block to another, a student can go from a class that allows listening to music on his phone during a test to a class that has the phone confiscated for so much as having a suspicious outline in his jeans. Such uneven enforcement sends mixed messages to students who see the only difference between the rules in those classes as whether they can text above or beneath the desks. The rules on cell phone usage need either uniform enforcement or heavy revision. Almost every student texts, so why not use cell phones educationally? There are websites that allow students to anonymously text in questions and comments instead of speaking in front of all their peers. This can be a solution to one of teachers' biggest complaints: that their students won't ask the questions they need help with because they're too embarrassed. Teachers could just take students' cell phones up at the beginning of class and keep them for as long as necessary, maybe even until the end of the day. This would stop students from texting during tests, one of teachers' biggest fears. However the school decides to handle cell phone usage from now on, the Jacket Buzz staff hopes for the SHS faculty and administration to take a more levelheaded approach to this issue. Chick-fil-A donates to hate groups LACHIEM: A DIFFERENT OPINION AVERY COHEN If I turn on the news or even pick up a newspaper, I'm almost guaranteed a story about Chickfil-A. The same is true for Starkville High School. In almost every class (especially around lunch time), it seems to be a popular conversation topic. On the news I hear all about the donations that Dan Cathy, the CEO of Chick-fil-A, makes to not only anti-gay organizations, but hate groups as well. In class, though, I hear my peers raving about Chick-fil-A and how they can't wait to go back. It worries me that the majority of the students here at SHS have no idea where their money is going when they buy a chicken sandwich at Chickfil-A. When we put our money in the cashier's hand at the counter, it is going straight into Cathy's pocket, and what he does with that money is horrifying. Dan Cathy donates millions of dollars to causes like the Family Research Council, Exodus International and the Marriage & Family Council. The Family Research Council, whose motto is "Advancing faith, family, and freedom," is classified as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. A hate group is an organized group or movement that advocates and practices hatred, hostility or violence towards members of a race, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation or other designated sector of society. As well as being advocates against Lesbian-GayBisexual-Transsexual rights, they are also antidivorce, anti-stem-cell research and many more things. FRC is defined a hate group, though, because they strongly discourage anti-bullying campaigns because they work to prevent LGBT teens from committing suicide. Now, I realize that not everyone is pro-LGBT, but when suicide is involved, someone's sexual orientation is irrelevant. The fact that the FRC is against any type of anti-bullying campaign is sickening. Is an organization like that really where we want our money to go? Just the other day I overheard a fellow student talking about how her youth group had breakfast at Chic-fil-A earlier that morning. When I heard this, I couldn't help but think about how much money that youth group inadvertently donated to hate groups like the FRC. So I ask you, SHS: Is that chicken sandwich worth it? Starkville's own local Chick-fil-A. Courtesy photo. Cullom McCormick Kelley Mazzola News Editor Editor-in-Chief Photography Editor Staff Members Jareth Murrell Angela White Colin Damms Shelby Adair Alicia Carter Avery Cohen Ashley Rude Statement of Policy The Jacket Buzz is published three times each semester by the Journalism Department at Starkville High School. The Jacket Buzz is a student-run publication committed to providing SHS with objective information. The Jacket Buzz serves SHS as a forum for student expression. Opinions expressed are those of students and don't reflect the views of others in the Starkville School Distict. Content decisions are made by student editors, and factual errors will be corrected by a retraction in the next issue. Letters to the Editor are accepted and published, excluding those that are deemed libelous or disruptive. Unsigned letters will not be published, and all are subject to editing. Please email all letters and comments to firstname.lastname@example.org. Robert Dandass Jordan Cohen Yearbook Editor Aaron Remotigue Sports Editor Adviser Marketing Director Rex Ames R.J. Morgan @shsjacketbuzz Opinion Page 10 � 09-07-12 Underclassmen have advantage Voter I.D. MAZZOLA MANTRA KELLEY MAZZOLA There are very few benefits for being a junior in a senior-oriented high school. The junior class is being infringed upon because the senior parking lot is bursting at the seam from drivers of all ages parking in it. As a freshman, I enjoyed the perks of having a sister who was a junior who also had a nice car and a junior decal. Now, myself a junior, I expected a junior spot, since my twin sister and mother lodged themselves in the front of the line for a parking decal, yet I got a sophomore decal, and a bitter taste in my mouth. Then, I realized how selfish I was being. So what if I got a sophomore decal? It just means that other people in my grade have to park there, as well as the few sophomores who can drive and a longer walk (which is better for me). Why was I so mortally offended? Then, it hit me: I've got the Seniority bug. I never thought before I would get hit with that infection; as a freshman, I took the "abuse" of being a "Freshie" and, then, as a sophomore, I never thought myself "better" than the freshmen I knew and talked to. In all honesty, I didn't have privileges that were associated with class standing unless I wanted to go out of my way to tease freshmen. Even then, teasing freshmen was pointless. They were going to find out that there isn't a third floor or a pool in the basement; haranguing them would only alienate them from the upperclassmen. In the long run, it would just continue a vicious circle of freshmen tit for tat, and no one would get anything done. Sophomore year only gave me a headache and tired sigh, due to the English II state test in December and Advanced Placement European History tests every Friday, as well as writing on the side as a news writer. To present day, I simply shook my head at my own foolishness- what's the point in thinking about not having a junior spot? I have a parking decal, I have a car to share with my sister, and I have my Intermediate. I can drive myself from point A to point B. As to seniority, I have a right to write the English III research paper, perform Trigonometry, and stress about the news section of The Jacket Buzz. I've got enough on my plate, with or without feeling superior for being a junior. After all these considerations, the grade that has it best (despite being stereotyped as the worst) is the freshmen. The freshmen have the easiest classes, as well as the most slack among the teachers and students. "They're freshmen. Let `em be." Contrary to popular belief, the seniors don't always have it easy- they've got incessant questions of "Where are you going to college?" or "What do you want to do after high school?" They've got college applications on top of the dreaded English IV research paper, on top of other duties to clubs and organizations. As my prophetic sister said, "You've got it easy, little sister. Enjoy it while you can." So be happy, my fellow juniors (except the few lucky ones). We'll be soggy on rainy days, but, hey, we've got another year till graduation. We can invest in hair dryers until then. ineffective, unconstitutional A MODEST PROPOSAL JARETH MURRELL The next time someone goes to vote, they may find themselves denied of the very right to do so. Since 2010, 37 states have passed laws involving voter identification, Mississippi included. The laws in question require voters to have both photo identification and certain legal documents that would prove their citizenship. The main purpose of these laws is the prevention of illegal immigrants influencing the democratic process. Though this idea might sound good on paper, it fails in its implementation. The fact-checking journalism group News21 recently released a study recording the number of voter fraud cases of the past decade. What they found was that within that length of time only 10 allegations of voter fraud were found. With 16 million registered voters, that would equal to a 0.000000625 percent occurrence a year making voter fraud virtually nonexistent. Still, many of those in favor of these laws claim higher percentages, even though they are false. The greater fraud occurs in absentee ballots and voter registration. Note who this affects. It does not, in actuality, counter illegal immigrants from voting. An illegal immigrant trying not to get noticed is not going to pretend to be another person so that they can submit a single vote that many think will not matter in the grand scheme of things. These laws do harm to legal citizens, however. Those who misplaced their specific legal documents, cannot afford photo identification, or simply don't have specific documents will end up deprived of the right to vote because they can't afford it or because they don't have pieces of paper with their names on it embroidered with stamps, fancy lettering and legal terms. These laws allow those not having the provided materials to pay a fee to receive them. This is a blatant poll tax, something that is outright illegal. The laws don't actually address the real problems: absentee ballots and corruption within the voter registration system. They instead provide a ruse to look like something is being done and restrict the amount of poor and minority votes, which tend to go against the party that proposed these laws. These laws don't help the country or stop fraud, but only help the people who proposed them get a larger percentage in the polls by cutting some of the competition. Have an opinion of your own? Tweet to @shsjacketbuzz. Have too much to say in just 140 characters? Email it to email@example.com. Your views could be in the next issue! Democratization unforceable CULLOM'S COLUMN CULLOM MCCORMICK Foreign countries will not instantly become Western democracies, and the United States should stop expecting them to do so. The recent jailing of a Russian punk band is one of the lighter illustrations of this point. The group protested Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin in an Orthodox church and got a two-year jail sentence. The Western world was shocked and appalled at this (entirely predictable) courtroom affront to freedom of speech, but Russian society itself couldn't have cared less. In fact, the Levada Independent Research Group conducted a poll that found only six percent of Russians sympathized with the incarcerated rockers. To use a more extreme example, look at U.S. involvement in Afghanistan. The Afghani government is a corrupt, theocratic plutocracy that can't control its own people or the many terrorist cells within it. The U.S., being God's Gift to Liberation, is intervening to oust these cells and restructure the government. But it isn't working and the natives hate the Americans. That's not to say, though, that countries like Afghanistan, Pakistan and Russia will never be truly democratic. It's that outside powers, like the U.S., cannot force them to be something they're not. The change must happen from within these countries or not at all. It took Western society over 500 years to develop to its current, comparatively egalitarian form, and the East is still a couple hundred years behind. Why are these countries so seemingly backwards? Well, they're not backwards at all. Russians and Afghanis literally think differently than Americans. The West has been richer than the East for just under a thousand years now. This means that at various points the West could afford to think about itself and make reforms because it had enough extra food, people and resources to contemplate nonessential things. They could forgo worrying about having enough food to survive the week and instead think about how it's unfair for a government to have absolute control over people. The East, however, has had to scrape by just to survive. They largely retained their mindset of a select few being in charge and controlling the rest because they couldn't afford to take the time off and philosophize on injustice � they'd starve if they stopped working. Thus, the East has come from a background of absolutely powerful rulers who allow little or no individual rights and use religion to oppress their people. Given, some Eastern nations are more advanced than others, but even the more advanced ones are behind the West. These countries have never been democratic and have not had the necessary social and philosophical advancement to take that step. Some of these places even turn to Communism, like Vietnam and China. However, many countries are actively working toward "Westernization," so to speak; Arab Spring being an example of this. So the U.S. shouldn't be surprised when a band gets jailed for speaking its mind or when natives don't want more violent change. Page 12 � 09-07-12 Wilson critical for Jackets on defense By Aaron Remotigue Sports Editor Sports shsjacketbuzz.com At these practices, Wilson works on her strongest part of her game: Her serve. "My greatest strength is serving because my serves are consistent," Wilson said. Wilson supports the team with her serve, and she has all ready posted 37 aces this season. Wilson says that her team is "very encouraging" and that she loves playing with Local ref: crowd not factor By Aaron Remotigue Sports Editor A recent Harvard study has suggested that referees may tend to make calls in favor of a home team if a large crowd is present. Kevin Randall is the head physical athletic trainer for Mississippi State University, but he also referees for the Mississippi High School Activities Association. Because he graduated from Starkville High School after playing quarterback in 1995, he cannot be an official for Starkville varsity games. Randall says that the study doesn't seem accurate to a high school setting. "I don't think as an official a crowd is going to sway you much at a high school game," Randall said. "Maybe at a college game where the crowds is much bigger. Most of the time I can't tell you who the home team or the visiting team is-- honest to goodness--once the game gets going." Not surprisingly, Randall says that referees hear more of coaches than anything else in the game. "The biggest thing you run into in high school football is noise on the sidelines with the " Athleticism doesn't come naturally for a lot of people, but volleyball certainly did for sophomore Courtney Wilson. Wilson has only been on the volleyball team for two years, but it only took her one-year to move up to play on the varsity team. Wilson has tallied up 39 digs this season alone. Wilson credits her coaches with her progress. "The people who have helped me most are Coach Lauren Love, the SHS volleyball coach, and Jeanne Sumrall, one of the Mississippi Juniors Club Volleyball coach," Wilson said. "They have both taught me so much about the game, technique, and fundamentals. They have also pushed me to do my best at every game and every practice." " My goals are mostly just to be faster than I was last season and to work a lot harder. p match vs. Calloway at the SHS Gym Next them. However, she believes she can be doing more to improve the chemistry. "On varsity I feel like I shouldn't be making simple playing errors like I did on JV because varsity is more competitive," Wilson said. "I need to work on defense when [the other team is] hitting the ball. I also need to work on hitting the ball harder." Defensively, Starkville High School is posting better stats than last year. In the 2011-2012 season, the Starkville High School Yellow Jackets posted only 29 blocks, but this year the Jackets have already posted 35. Sophomore Courtney Wilson prepares to serve against the Ridgeland Titans (Right). Yellow Jacket Varsity Starters from top to bottom Khris Carr, Vicky Vo, Michaela Mills, and Jamiyah Covington (Top). Not pictured: Stacie Young, Vivian Barksdale, and Hannah Knox. Photos by Alicia Carter. coaches hollering and carrying on," Randall says. "It's been my experience in the seven years I've done it that a lot of high school coaches don't know the difference between high school, college and NFL rules." Randall says the coaches may not sway referees, but officials do hear much more of them than the crowds. 411 Highway 12 East Starkville, MS 39759 @shsjacketbuzz Sports Page 13 � 09-07-12 Don't drink your dessert pounds... per person. So now that we know just why sodas are so dangerous, you go for another drink. Instead of reaching for a Coke, you grab a nice Lemon-Lime Gatorade because it's healthy, right? Take a better look at the label. Yes, its 50 calories look nice and slim next to the Coke's 140 calories, but its 21 grams of sugar aren't worth it. It's just a glorified soda. The same is true for other "healthy" drinks. Take Vitamin Water and fruit juice. Vitamin Water has 120 calories and 32 grams of sugar, and those couple milligrams of vitamin C don't make up for it. Most fruit juices are packed with sugar, most of which are only about 10 percent actual juice. So, you decide to get 100 percent juice instead. There's real juice in there and incredibly real 35 grams of sugar in there, too. So what do you drink now? I've basically subjected you down to water and, God forbid, milk. Next time, try a Coke Zero or a Diet Coke instead of the original. Get a Gatorade G2 Low Calories, which has a third of the sugar a regular Gatorade has. As for fruit juice, drink it in moderation and it won't be too much of a problem. Just make sure it's juice, not preservatives. Drinking low sugar drinks not only make you feel better and give you less of a crash in the short term, but could ultimately help lower and obesity in the long term. So the next time you're just craving a Coke, think about the consequences and the alternatives for it. Lechiem|Avery Cohen Cross country off to racing start by Avery Cohen Sports Writer We've all heard it a million times: soda is bad for you. But just to reiterate, one can of Coke has 140 calories and 39 grams of sugar. That's just as many calories, and twice as much sugar as one brownie.According to the Children's Nutrition Research Center at Baylor College of Medicine, teenage girls should be eating an average of 2,000 calories per day, and teen boys should eat somewhere between 2,200 and 2,400 calories. So that one Coke just took 140 calories away for you to eat that day, and you received little to no nutrition from it. When you drink that one can of Coke, your body breaks down the sugar and a chemical called Serotonin is then released into your body, causing you to crave more sugar. So that already steep 39 grams of sugar you just drank is now turned into twice that number because of sugar's addictive quality. Sugar isn't the only culprit, though. There are also loads of high fructose corn syrup in that tiny little can, and ignore those commercials, because high fructose corn syrup is just as bad as sugar, if not worse. Since high fructose corn syrup was introduced in 1967, our annual sugar intake has gone up 25 This season, the Cross Country team has hit the ground running -- literally. It's barely a month into school, and these runners are fully charged and ready to compete. "We already started because we started working in the summer," Coach Caroline Woomer said. "And they're practicing hard, practicing consistently." Senior runner Haley Jenkins concurs, saying she already has a lot of miles under her belt for this 2012 season. "It started off a lot harder than last season," Jenkins said. "I got into it really fast getting my mileage in, and it's just gotten better from there." Even though the runners have been practicing harder this year, they got a late start on the competition. The team decided against going to the annual Choctaw Relay meet this year that traditionally kicks off their competitive season. "I didn't want everyone to know how good we look right now," Woomer said. The same is not true for the meet this weekend. "For the MSU Invitational... we want to win it," Woomer said. "I mean this is like a home meet for us we want our girls to win it and we want our boys to win it." Senior runner Damian Grady is going to take that to heart as he strives for first place. "I'm going to stay motivated and win a state championship," Grady said. "Training's going pretty well so far. I've done pretty well. I think I'm going to have a good year" Fellow senior runner, Garison Arinder, has a different way of looking at things. "I'm just trying to improve my time," Arinder said. "I'm not the best." Each runner is not just competing for themselves, but for their team as a whole, which makes training that much more important. "My goals are mostly just to be faster than I was last year and to work a lot harder," Jenkins said. "It's my last year to make a difference on the team and I want to actually use it wisely." p MSU invitational September 15 8 a.m. @ XC Course The competition will be tough for the MSU Invitational, not only for the runners to beat their own times, but the other schools as well. But Woomer is still confident that her runners will end up on top. That being said, there are some previously troublesome teams she plans on keeping her eye on. "I hate to say it, I really hate to say it," Woomer said grudgingly, a forced smile and a wince crossing her face. "But there's Pearl and Madison Central." XC Rankings Boys 1) Saltillo 2) Starkville 3) Pearl 4) Oxford 5) Picayune 5A Miss. Girls 1) Saltillo 2) Pearl 3) Starkville 4) Oxford 5) Longbeach Eighth Grader Kate Mattox and Sophomore Patrick Bell (right) lead their group on their long run at the South Farm. Photo by Robert Dandass. ! ! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ! ! 100 Russell Street Suite 9 Starkville 662-323-9771 ! @COSTUMEPARTYMS /COSTUMEPARTYMS ! Page 14 � 09-07-12 Sports shsjacketbuzz.com Offensive line causes trouble by Angela White Sports Writer The 2011-2012 football season was pretty solid for the Yellow Jacket offensive line. The offensive line was consistent and played as one. This year, offensive line coach Justin Moss and offensive coordinator Preston Leathers have their hands full after three linemen graduated. And with starter Kirk Kinard injured and out for the season, Moss and Leathers are working from the ground up to build a top-notch offensive line. "All (of our players) have evident talent, it is just young talent," Moss said. "We just have to become more consistent." This inconsistency has been the root of SHS football troubles since the beginning of their season against Noxubee County. "Every year it takes some getting used to but I love our offensive line," Leathers said. "We have got some good guys that are coming along, and we are already so much better than we were a week and a half ago." According to the coaches, these weaknesses will disappear as the young players gain more experience and learn to play as one unit and not as individuals. "Our first game, we started a sophomore at left and right tackle," Leathers said. "Youth, obviously, is a big thing but we are getting better and better and better- there is no doubt about it." Quarterback Gabe Myles suffered an ankle injury after scoring Starkville's first touchdown against Noxubee. Photo by Alicia Carter Myles set to return tonight By Angela White Sports Writer Offensive line faces off against Noxubee. Photo byVictoria Hearn. In the season-opener against Noxubee County, senior starting quarterback Gabe Myles injured his ankle after taking some hard hits from the Noxubee County defense. This injury gave the Yellow Jacket players and coaches a great scare. Although the injury turned out to be minor, Myles has still been feeling weakness and, therefore, sat out during the games against Madison Central and Tupelo. During those games, Myles had the opportunity to watch from the sidelines, which is not somewhere he is used to being. "I wanted to play (last week) because Tupelo is a rivalry and it's my last year playing but at the same time, I like to watch the team work," Myles said. "Caleb did an outstanding job and so did the offense, and thanks to the defense for shutting (Tupelo) out." Myles will be back for tonight's game against West Point and this will be his first time to suit up in three weeks. While the team wants Myles to return, coaches know not to rush the healing process. "We hope Gabe will be back as quick as possible," head coach Jamie Mitchell said, "but we have to make sure he is ready." After much practice, Myles says he is 100 percen and ready to take on the Green Wave. "I'm very excited to get back out there because two weeks is a long time to not be playing," Myles said. "I'm always nervous before a game so that won't be anything new. I just know that I have to go out there, play my hardest and have fun." According to Myles, the West Point game was a good game to come back on. "I know the stadium will be packed and it will be loud," Myles said. "It's almost like a championship type atmosphere so that in itself is a big deal. I'm really excited just to get to play in this game." Myles was relieved by backup quarterback Caleb Wilson will lead the Jackets after completing 66 percent of his passes against Tupelo for 180 yards. However, with so much change in such little time, the offensive line just got used to the new playing style of Wilson, and they are now adjusting back to Myles, whom many of them have played with for four to five years. $1 SCOOPS ON TUESDAYS! @shsjacketbuzz by Avery Cohen Sports Writer The pressure was on Friday night as sophomore Caleb Wilson was replacing the regular starting quarterback Gabe Wilson deals with pressure Henderson gets coaching from NFL pro kicker Myles because of an injury. "I was nervous at first, but after the first play I was alright," Wilson said. "It was hard following a Dandy Dozen like that, but it was a good experience out there." Even though Wilson's first game as starting quarterback ended in an 24-8 loss against Madison Central, Wilson sees the game as learning experience. "It's a lot faster than ninth grade ball, and I just got to keep working," Wilson said. "It was raining pretty hard, but I can't make any excuses, so I didn't throw the ball very well." The Madison Central game wasn't just a learning experience for Wilson, the rest of the offense had to adapt to playing with a different quarterback. "Him and Gabe are very different, as far as Gabe's a runner and Caleb is more of a thrower," Offensive Coordinator Preston Leathers said. "[The players in the offensive line] have got to work like one. It takes weeks and weeks of just playing together and communication and knowing rules. They've got to learn their rules first and then just play them together.They've got to play like a unit instead of just individual positions." Wilson not only has to get used to playing with guys older than him, but leading them as well. "It's different because I normally lead people my age, but it's just something you've got to learn to do," Wilson said. According to Leathers, this transfer is going smoothly. "Caleb's a natural leader," Leathers said. "He's gotten in there, and you can tell when he's in the huddle people are listening to him and going through things as business as usual." Wilson's offensive leadership might be hereditary. His father, Chris Wilson, is the defensive coordinator at Mississippi State University and was at his son's first game last Friday. "His understanding of the game is awesome," Leathers said. "Last year was actually his first year to play QB as a ninth grader. He didn't play quarterback in seventh or eight grade so it was new for him last year. He's come so far. His accuracy passing-wise is very, very good. [His] decision-making is really, really good. All that really lacks is he's just got to get better with his feet. Being so tall � and being young and tall � it just takes a lot of young players time to grow into their bodies or what not." The team is still trying to improve to have a successful season. "Every year it takes getting used to," Leathers said. "But I love our offensive line. We've got some good guys up there. We're already so much better right now than we were [during the Madison Central game] it's not even funny. I think our first game we started a sophomore at right guard and a sophomore at left guard, so you know [the team has] youth, but obviously but they're very, very talented. They're going to get better and better and better, there's no doubt about it." The Jackets might have gotten off to a rocky start, but they are looking onward and upward. "I plan on trying to win the game this Friday," Wilson said. by Colin Damms Sports Writer Sports Page 15 � 09-07-12 Caleb Wilson winds up for a pass at practice. Photo by Alicia Carter. First meet learning experience for underclassmen swimmers by Colin Damms Sports Writer Charlie Henderson, the junior kicker for the Starkville high school Yellow Jackets, attended a camp this past summer to improve his kicking. Retired kickers were counselors who taught drills on how to improve the kids' abilities and give tips to punters and long snappers. Last season Henderson gradually became the starting field goal kicker while Senior Daniel Fumo did kickoffs. Henderson's improving accuracy was key to reaching the championship game. However, there is bound to be more competition this year with four other kickers on the team. Charlie's instructor was Ray Guy, a three time Super Bowl winning punter with the Oakland Raiders. At the start of his career, guy was a first round draft pick from the University of Southern Mississippi. "I kicked a lot of balls," Henderson said, "and we did a lot of drills. I've got potential for far ones." Ray Guy was the last kicker/punter to be selected in the first round of the NFL Draft and the only kicker to hit the video screen at the Super Dome in New Orleans. He was a seven time Pro-Bowler during his career from 1973-1986 with the Oakland Raiders and helped win the Super Bowl in 1977, 1982 and 1984. "You can tell by his presence he's a legend," Henderson said, "He's very personable and patient." Henderson is excited about this season, and he is perhaps a kicker for the future as well. When asked if he wanted to play in college, Henderson said, "Definitely, if the opportunity arises." On Aug. 25, the SHS swim team went to their first meet of the year in Clinton, finishing second overall to Madison Central. It was a valuable experience for the newcomers to be in a competition and learn how swim meets work. Points are earned depending on which place the competing school finishes in for each event. At the end of the meet the points are totaled up, and whoever has the most points wins. "I think we performed as we were expected," senior swimmer David McKell said. "We mostly just need to get back in form. Most of us don't do any competitive swimming with other teams after high school season, so a lot of swimmers haven't competed since last season." Senior swimmer Mark Anne Hobart, who had shoulder problems last year, is "feeling a lot better" this season. "I feel like an actual swim captain this year since I'm contributing so much more," Hobart said, "and we had a great first performance." Although eight seniors are beginning their final year, this was the first meet for several swimmers. "They're improving and I expect them to keep improving over the course of the season," McKell said. Hobart is also impressed with the younger swimmers. "They're putting in lots of hard work and have potential to become assets to the team this year and in the future", Hobart said. "We're all being very supportive of each other and they're doing very good." The Yellow Jackets competed at the Jackon Yacht Club on Tuesday, and the Jackets are expected to compete in their next competion at Tupelo next week. Senior capt. Mark Anne Hobart opens up her season at the Clinton Invitational. Photo by Avery Cohen. Junior Charlie Henderson warms up at practice. Photo by Alicia Carter. B J The Page 16 � 09-07-12 Jacket Buzz Starkville renews WP rivalry This historic rivalry continues tonight. FEATURE: Page 8-9 SHS volleyball starts up The 2012 season means moving up for Courtney Wilson. Page 12 Does the crowd affect the refs? Referee Kevin Randall weighs in on a study showing that strong crowds may affect referees. Page 12 Jacket kicker Henderson goes to camp Charlie Henderson was instructed by Ray Guy, three-time Super Bowl Champion for the Oakland Raiders. Page 15 FINE & DANDY Quarterback Gabe Myles returns tonight against the Green Wave. Page 14