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The Record mherst Steele High School VOL. XCIII No. 1 Wed., October 5, 2011

Amherst Alumni Inducted Into Gallery of Success Georgie Kaurich, Sports Editor

The Gallery of Success recognizes Amherst Alumni who encounter great success in their lifetimes after graduation. Mary Powers Miller who graduated in 1944 and Joe Hribar who graduated in 2001 were inducted into 2011’s Gallery of Success. Miller is a retired kindergarten teacher from Powers Elementary School. She considered her induction a “humbling” experience. “Things I do are done from the heart and no other reason except for my belief that it’s right and my faith,” said Miller. Although she misses teaching kindergarten, she enjoys being able to go out and do things that help other people. She now volunteers as crew chief for Oberlin Community Meals, as a pianist at her church and as an AIDS and gay rights activist. She also works at Cleveland’s St. Paul’s Community UCC at a thrift shop.

She represents the Lorain County AIDS ministry at the Lorain County AIDS taskforce and also helps organize World AIDS Day. Miller hosts a monthly PFLAG (Parents, Families & Friends of Lesbians and Gays) and is on the founding committee to establish the Parent’s Group in Colorado. As an activist she went on a mission trip to Eastern Europe two times where she and others “visited schools and assisted people to get the things they needed to accomplish what they wanted in their lives,” said Miller. Miller told stories of her past at the Gallery of Success ceremony and encouraged students to be who they are and do what ever they can for others. She commended the GSA (Gay Straight Alliance) Club and said she wished it existed during her time in high school. Hribar is currently a touchscreen-graphics developer at ESPN. He was an

honor student at Amherst all through high school. During the ceremony he reached out to the students by explaining the power of hard work. “Nobody has become a better person by doing nothing,” said Hribar. He spent time expressing the importance of college and staying on track. His helpful advice impacted several students who attended. “After listening to Joe Hribar and Mary Miller speak, I learned the value of reaching out to people who need it, and the power of education,” said senior Lauren Keene. “They both made me realize that anything is possible, whether it just offering a helpful hand, or finding happiness in a job you love.” After the ceremony there was a brunch for the inductees, family and staff. The brunch gave people a chance to socialize and the alumni to reminisce. Both were nominated by the Amherst community

Mary Miller and Joe Hribar celebrate their induction into the Gallery of Success. {Photo J. Shalkhauser} and then chosen by student council and Jeanne Kornick.

Hribar and Miller will stay in the hearts of Amherst Steele

High School students and staff for years to come.

acebook Fears

Steele Club Introduces World Cultures Annie Nickoloff, Copy Editor

Cultural Committee sets out to entertain and engage the community through a range of educational events. Josh Cole, president of the club, created cultural committee to bring more spirit and identity to Amherst. The club itself is a group which will host international events hardly known of in this small Ohio town. Cole commented on how there is “nothing really Anna Frankart and Abbey Zellers design a Cultural Committee poster to hang in the halls of Steele. impromptu or {Photo A. Nickoloff} spontaneous” in Amherst, and how he would like to change that through there has never been somelam also has high hopes for all legal matters, including this organization. thing specifically designed the club. Gillam approved fundraising. One of the events posto involve the community.” Cole’s idea for the club over Bierfeldt attended the sibly in store from Cultural Dispenza disappointedly rethe summer and believes the Oberlin Culture Festival on Committee is Octoberfest, marked that “Amherst doesn’t club will continue with its September 24 to experience a replication of an Austrian have a sense of community.” amount of student support. different cultures and said festival. The event is still in its Of course, the town holds Gillam positively said that the event was “so much fun planning phase. events like the annual Skeleton “any time you can develop a and really helped [him] learn Since the club is in its Run and the summer Jamprogram to involve different about world cultures.” He beginning stages, there are not boree, but nothing that truly cultures is good.” covered the event with a short many events planned at this engages the community. Certain members of the video that can be seen at www. time. However, the club hopes Students have their own club hold leadership posiyoutube.com, under the title their future-planned events goals in mind. Joe Miller, tions, voted on by all other of ‘Oberlin Culture Festival.’ will eventually attract all local who found out about the club members of the group. Nina To learn more about people after starting within through its founder, thinks Hill is secretary, Sterling Cultural Committee, contact Steele High School. Cultural Committee will Voss treasurer and Josh Cole Steele High School or check Club advisor Sherry “make Amherst a more fun president. Jackson Bierfeldt is out the Amherst Steele CulDispenza said, “I’ve been an place to live.” humorously titled Legal Guy tural Committee group on Amherstonian all my life and Steele principal Mike Gilwithin the club and reviews Facebook.

Tess Henthorne, Design Editor

look at someone's profile they can see who they are friends with and what they are interested in, but this limited amount of information could also give them the wrong impression." A recent Kaplan survey of college admissions officers provided that almost 80% of all colleges use Facebook to contact current or potential students. Although many schools do not contact students individually, they use some of Facebook’s features to spread information on a mass scale. Many colleges including Baldwin-Wallace and Ohio Northern University have created a page so users can stay informed about upcoming events, get in contact with other students or simply find out more information about the school. Although the page is visible to all Facebook users, those who press the ‘like’ button will stay updated on changes to the page through the news feed. There are many benefits to social networking; however, if there is a lesson to be learned when applying to college, it is important for users to censor what they post on social networks in order to secure a future unaffected by the past.

In recent years, colleges have started taking advantage of developing technology and using social networks like Facebook to contact prospective students. Fox News reported that communicating through Facebook can be a good way to keep in touch with people who you might not get to talk to daily, but some information that you put on the internet can be harmful to your reputation when applying to colleges. Jonathan Wehner of Case Western University said, "If I had advice for students, it would be to suggest that [they] be extremely conscious of the information that they choose to share via social media... The digital world lasts forever, so make sure your profile is something that would reflect the kind of image you would want seen by potential college admission officers." While most colleges, including Case Western, do not monitor all applicants to their school, there is no guarantee your account will be completely hidden from the public eye. Several students at Steele are uncertain of how much they should post on Facebook due to the possibility that colleges might research their applicants. Senior DJ Kulp said, "If colleges

Excellent District Fails To Meet Value-Added Nina Hill, Staff Writer

For the 2010-2011 school year, the Amherst School District received its highest ever performance index score. The Ohio Department of Education rated Amherst as “Excellent” with a PI of 102.8; however, Amherst did not make the cut for “Excellent with Distinction” because of short-falling in a category called “Value-Added Measure.” Value Added- Measure is the attempt by each school district to enhance the student’s intellect by what standardized tests consider to be a full year’s growth. If a student places in a lower percentage on testing than previous years then the school has not fulfilled their commitment. Measures have been taken by the school district to address these issues. Over the summer teachers were taught to view and access

their value-added data. This allows each teacher to assess their own performance in the classroom. two-year grant from the state for the Ohio Performance Assessment Pilot Program will hopefully have a positive influence on the District’s performance. The OPAPP grant provides for professional development in the areas of English and social studies. In terms of Performance Index, Amherst has been trumped by three other schools in Lorain County: Avon, Avon Lake and Columbia. According to Executive Director of Educational Services Todd Stuart, this simply indicates that “[these school’s] PI is higher because they had a greater percentage of their students score at accelerated and advanced levels on the OAAs/OGT.” Amherst students are

tracked in their years in the district which is what should drive teacher instruction. Once students reach the 4th grade, the “gifted” track begins and often carries through until high school. Stuart reported that it is “through differentiation in the classroom that all students needs are met” however this does not seem to be the case because value-added was not met. Though some other schools begin advanced and accelerated classes as early as the second grade, funding does not allow Amherst such luxuries. This past year, eight of the District’s teachers retired and none of the positions were filled which could negatively impact PI. Higher class sizes and less personalized attention can decrease student retention of information and therefore lower assessment scores which contribute to PI.

Performance Index (PI) 2010-2011 109.00 109.00 107.25 107.25 105.50 105.50 103.75 103.75 102.00 102.00

Avon Lake Avon Lake

Avon Avon

Columbia Columbia

Amherst Amherst

Source: Ohio Department of Education {Graph N. Hill} If no changes are made, the school district will be facing a 1.8 million dollar deficit next year, but no decisions have yet been made as to what will be

cut. The community will just have to wait and see how the Board decides to maintain an “Excellent” education.

The Record Staff

Design Editor: Tess Henthorne Copy Editor: Annie Nickoloff Sports Editor: Georgie Kaurich Editor in chief: Renee Opel

October 5  

Oct 5 2011

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