Volume 12 Number 2
Oswego High Schoolâ€™s Student Voice
OHS Celebrity Look a Like Page 16
What are Snap Grades? Page 4
Photo by Caitlin Sawyer Photo Illustration by Stephen LiVoti
T-Shirt of the Month Page 7
2 Buccaneer Bulletin
Oswego High Schoolâ€™s Student Voice
Editor-in-Chief Fred Maxon Managing Editor Emily DiFabio Layout Editor Stephen LiVoti Chief Photographer Catlin Sawyer Art Director Brian Richmond Business Manager Catie Furletti Sports Editor Ryan Galloway Senior Writer Hazal Pacaci Entertainment Editor Kailyn Gray Clublicity Editor Brittany Ross Alumni Editor Rachel Clark Photographers Carissa Benson, Emily Hoyt, Monek Cullen Ad Representatives Kijafa-Monee Berkley, Nick Dunsmoor Art Staff Heather Hanlon, Mary Losurdo Sports Writers Joe Bucher, Jasmine Davis Reporters Kaylee Barkley, Mary Kate Torbitt, Blair Harvey, Mackenzie Oatman, Katherine Robinson, Kaitlyn Scanlon, Liz Waterbury, Kathryn Whelsky, Kimberlyn Bailey Advisers Bill Reeser Mike McCrobie The Buccaneer Bulletin, a member of the Empire State School Press Association, and The Quill and Scroll, is published periodically by the students of the Oswego High School, 2 Buccaneer Blvd.; Oswego, New York 13126; (315) 341-2200. It is intended as a vehicle to inform, educate, and entertain the student body. Printing services are provided by The Palladium-Times. Opinions expressed are those of the students and do not necessarily reflect those of the administration or the advisers.
Cartoon by Brian Richmond
. . . to the gymnastics team that placed second in leagues. To Audrey Jackson, who is going to states for the balance beam and her floor routine. To Elizabeth Scullin, who was recognized as Athlete of the Week on WSTM NBC Channel 3. . . . to the newly overhauled Bridge Street Bridge reopening. After a long seven months, it should make the commute to and from school easier, and cut down on some of the traffic that was directed past OHS on Utica Street. . . . to the Environmental Club that planted flowers by the Utica Street entrance. It is a nice thing to look at on the way to classes. . . . to the overwhelming interest from students on the presidential elections. It is reassuring to see that students who are not old enough to vote really care about the future of this country. . . . to Haley Annal, Tara Fresch, Rebecca Smith, Alexis Ranous, Audrey Jackson, Jules Sheenan, and Ashley Welsch, who are all taking part in the Oswego County Academic Youth League competition.
. . . to the leaking ceilings. Not only are they a nuisance, but they prove to be a safety hazard to staff and students. . . . to the students who think that the front of the school is a skate park. It is very annoying to students waiting for a ride to have to dodge the skaters. This is a place of learning, not the Tony Hawk Institute for Higher Skateboarding Skills. . . . to the late hiring of a new social studies teacher. Even though the administration is dealing with the overcrowded situation in Global 9, waiting until November and uprooting students from the teacher they were used to upsets the rapport they have established.
In Our View . . .
OHS Has Much to be Proud Of
To be a student at OHS and not feel the energy pulsing through our school due to the number of athletic victories we have seen this fall season is nearly impossible. The members of the athletic community, especially the football team, have revived a sense of pride in our school. We commend them for restoring our sense of pride whenever we say “Yeah, I’m from Oswego.” The hard work and determination not only paid off, but has become a shining example of what we Buccaneers can do. We implore everyone to follow their lead, for if everyone does, then it is certain that this school, nay, this city, would be a better place. School spirit is higher than it has been in years. We assume this is due mostly in part to the dedication of our athletes and the countless hours spent practicing, playing and succeeding. We would, however, be remiss if we didn’t mention the spectacular efforts of the teachers and administrators who helped to create a sense of Buccaneer unity during one of the best spirit weeks this district has ever seen. While the old traditions of “antiquing” people with flour or celebrating school spirit with confetti are but distant memories, unlikely to be seen again, junior class advisers Mr. Warren Shaw and Ms. Taishana Jackson and their charges have created new traditions that are just as much fun and even more memorable. From the bonfire to the human sundae, each new tradition creates fun memories and helps strengthen our Buccaneer spirit. While some may believe that people are just now jumping on the Buccaneer bandwagon, we believe it is only natural for people to be excited by winning, and disappointed by losing. School spirit isn’t measured in the number of dollars spent per season to see Oswego vs. this team or Oswego vs. that team, nor is it measured in buttons or foam fingers that say that we’re number one, for those are trivial tokens, tokens that’ll eventually be thrown away. Rather, it’s measured by pride. It is knowing that each person involved in an activity played his/her best and is happy no matter what the outcome. School spirit has always existed in Oswego High School. It changes like the tides, but like the lake Oswego sits on, it is always there, whether you notice it or not. It may not have always been as obvious as it is now, its current clarity brought on by our athletic fortunes, but it has always been there, and it always will be. We will be able to look back at this fall and have fond memories, that will follow us wherever we go after graduation. When we’re older, we’ll be able to say “Remember when our football team had that awesome season?” and we’ll remember the unprecedented levels of school spirit that accompanied it. Good job, Buccaneers. We have much to be proud of.
Why do you think everyone has so much school spirit this year?
Courtney Bartlett “We’re winning football games.” Class of 2011
Jordan Smith “The JV football team won some games and has given everyone some pep.”
Letter to the Editor
Make ATVs and UTVs Street Legal Dear Editor: The topic I’d like to discuss with you is making (All Terrain Vehicles) ATVs and (Ultra Terrain Vehicles) UTVs street legal. This is very feasible. In today’s age, ATVs are very safe and reliable. For them to become street legal they would have to have a four-stroke engine, blinkers, mirrors and the appropriate tires for road usage. This would mean that they are environmentally friendly, and a majority of them would be reasonably quiet. ATVs are just like Enduro motorcycles, but ATVs have four wheels instead of two. ATVs would be safer than motorcycles. They are easier to control and give you more protection than standard motorcycles do. ATVs are also very fuel efficient, some better than many vehicles on the street now. UTVs, on the other hand, are just like golf carts, but with more power and a lot safer. The UTVs have role cages, seat belts, rear view mirrors, and some are enclosed with doors. They are just like a small car. The UTVs are suited with all the newest technology such as EFI, independent rear suspension for better control and comfort, and
center of gravity technology, where the driver and passenger sit in the center for better safety. While making ATVs and UTVs street legal, there would have to be rules and regulations that would follow. Of course all driving rules and techniques that motorcyclists and drivers follow would be the same for ATVs and UTVs. On ATVs, the driver would have to wear a full face or dirt bike helmet. More rules can be changed and can be added as research sees fit. In today’s economic situation, I believe that all public officials should be working diligently to help the citizens find ways to improve our economy. Making ATVs and UTVs street legal in New York State, would not only save people a lot of money on gas and on vehicles, but it will get people place to place easier and more efficiently. Please consider this an option and look into it further. Please remember, politicians are elected by the people, and should do all they can to help the people. Thank you for your time. Sincerely, Jordan C. Darling
Class of 2010
Class of 2010
Jasmine Cruz “They want to have fun and support more this year.”
Class of 2012
Cody Crouse “Our sports teams are finally showing some school spirit and it has a positive effect on the school.” Class of 2011
Sensitive Firewall Blocks Research nothing to do with the search word,” stated Runeari. Whether you’re researching inforShe went on to tell how students mation for your US History class, or have often decided to do all their resimply looking up photos of artwork search at home in order to keep their for your French biography, using the chosen topics. She said, “I understand computers in school has become a very the reasoning for the firewall, but it is helpful tool used by virtually every very frustrating when the students are student. trying to explore reasonable topics.” Unfortunately, many students at The Department of Technology for OHS have been running into trouble the Oswego City School District subwhen they start using an online web scribes to an Internet filtering service browser to research specific topics. The called Cymphonix. Because the filtercause is an over sensitive firewall. ing subscription is a national registry, Gretchen Sackmany companies beman is a senior stusides Cymphonix are To learn more about dent in a Participaable to use it. CIPA you can visit: tion In Government According to http://www.fcc.gov/ (PIG) class who has Mr. Brendan Fear, cgb/consumerfacts run into these probthe Director of Techcipa.html lems. “My research nology for the Oswas on homosexual wego City School discrimination. Our District, the national teacher gave us a company makes dewebsite to use and when I typed that cisions based on what categories the in it came up blocked. All it said for websites fall into, then they rate them. reasoning was ‘gay,’” said Sackman. “Many times when you bump into a Her teacher, Mrs. Patricia Runeari blocked site, it is not the content you shares in Sackman’s frustration. “It are researching that has caused it to wasn’t any single website; it was many be blocked, but rather other content websites depending on the topic. In on the page or advertisements that are many cases it was due to the topic run on the site,” stated Fear. Also, as a having something to do with sex or vio- school district, the OCSD is required by lence, but in other cases, we couldn’t law to provide content filtering under even guess why it was blocked. I CIPA (Children’s Internet Protection can’t remember the specific case but Act). This is just another piece to the whatever was showing up on the stop filtering puzzle. sign warning page, seemed to have The problems many schools are
By Mary Losurdo Reporter
Photo by Caitlin Sawyer
This screen, denying access to certain websites is a familiar sight to OHS students doing research.
seeing with firewall systems are frustrating to many. People see the internet use in schools as a vital tool for research
and school-related topics, and feel that learning is delayed when everything you want to research is blocked.
information they want at their disposal. Students really like the fact that SnapGrades is right at their fingertips also. Most students don’t mind that their parents see their grades because SnapGrades is in such detail that it shows every assignment. Even if the student doesn’t have a wonderful grade, their parents could tell they are putting in effort by all the grades and comments on the report. While most students rave about SnapGrades, some have problems with the program. Students feel that parents expect their grades to be significantly better because they can check their SnapGrades. Oswego High School junior Kali Purt stated, “I like Snap Grades, but I hate it when they con-
stantly e-mail things to my mom because then she won’t get off my case.” Kids love SnapGrades, except when parents are overly dependent on it and don’t trust kids to get their grades up anymore. “I don’t really like it because I hate having to get on just to get my grades, but then again, it’s good because you can check whenever,” stated senior Cheyenne Monteith. Other things students don’t like are the fact that their grades are only available as fast as their teachers log them in and their parents can see them whenever they want to. SnapGrades is a helpful tool whether you’re a teacher, parent, or student. The website is helping the education process for many by increasing communication between school and home.
SnapGrades Program Increases Communication By Catie Furletti Business Manager
SnapGrades is an online system that helps teachers and students view their grades much more frequently than the five or ten week progress reports. The website lets teachers put students’ grades on site, and then the students and/or their parents can view them on their account. SnapGrades gives an overview of grades, a detailed review of those grades, a report card, and attendance. Students can always view SnapGrades, just by logging in. Currently, Snap Grades has over 16,000 teachers using it. Many teachers rave that it is a good way to communicate with parents and students. “I like using SnapGrades,
because it is easy to use. It also allows students to know their grades before it is too late to improve their work in a course. It also allows parents to keep an eye on how well their son/ daughter is doing in each course. The only negative for me is remembering to put in grades for people who are absent or do corrections to their work to increase their grade,” stated OHS French teacher Mrs. Maria Kaletta. Some parents love SnapGrades because it is easy to keep up with what their kids are doing at school. There is no more trying to hunt down a teacher to get an appointment with him or her to find out how their child is doing in class. Now, all they have to do is log on SnapGrades.net and they have all the
Simple Respect Should be Shown at OHS When I first get to school in the Emily DiFabio morning, there is only one thing on my mind: getting all the freshmen (and kids who hang out with them because they are probably still in freshman classes) out of my way so I can get to my locker. It is incredibly annoying not only to me, but to everyone whose locker is near mine or anyone who needs to walk by. These kids think that it is okay if they block the entire hallway with their shenanigans. These students are like a blocked artery in the heart of the school; with them in the way, the whole school just doesn’t flow. It is not just
in the morning that they block the hallway; it’s each and every time that I need to go to my locker. This problem exists not only where my locker is, it is in many places throughout the school. What makes kids think that they can have their entire bodies lying across the hall, so that people can only get by single file. It is not just the blocking of the hallway, but screaming as well. This is not the school to become the next “Scream Queen,” but one where some people actually are trying to get an education and get to class on time. What happened to the discipline from the time when we were in elementary school? If we ever pulled any of this stuff, the teacher would put our desks next to theirs. So it’s not entirely the fault of the kids who like to block the hallway, but teachers, who don’t reprimand these students for blocking the hallway. I have seen these teachers trying to get to their classrooms and not once have I ever heard
them tell these students to back up and lower their voices. Is it because they haven’t had their first cup of coffee yet? Or do they enjoy having to push their way through? Can we at least try and have just an ounce of respect for others? I know that we are in high school and respecting others may not be on the front of people’s minds (but I know what is: blocking the hallway). Let’s at least try and move if you see people trying to get by. No one in this school can honestly say that they have not either been in the way, or had someone be in their way. So next time this happens to you, just move. I promise that if your friends totally get on your case about being respectful for your peers, then they really have never had anyone show them respect. So let’s try something new at OHS: respect. Aretha Franklin knew what it was, and so should we.
Runeari Returns for Part-time Teaching Job Popular veteran educator returns to OHS to ease overcrowding in English classes. By Brittany Ross Clublicty Editor
Although Mr. William Runeari has had a shorter retirement period than most, his time has been put to good use. From spending time supervising student teachers at the college to writing his very own novel, he has found ways to keep himself occupied. Since his retirement in June of 2007, Runeari has been working towards his goal of producing a novel, titled My BFF Jainie. This story should be appealing to readers who enjoyed the novel Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson. Although his story is on the short side, Runeari hopes to have it published someday. More importantly, he wishes to have the opportunity to teach his novel. “The whole time I was writing it, I had lesson plans in my head,” stated Runeari. It didn’t take years of frustration to produce this novel. “The ideas came out pretty quickly,” said Runeari. He plans to extend the length of his
novel, and to enter it in a contest on December 1. “I have two additional chapters in my head,” he said. As his novel progressed, Runeari found time for more recreational activities. He started playing golf more often and picked up softball again, organizing a team of current and former teachers who won their league and playoff titles. So what brings a retired teacher out of retirement? With the first quarter coming to an end, ninth grade English classes were terribly overcrowded. So district officials decided to create newer, less congested classes and hire a part-time teacher. “Schedules already established made it harder to create classes,” said Runeari. This last minute decision has affected many ninth grade students. ‘Kids were in different places. Some were reading short stories, while others were reading novels. It wasn’t good; it wasn’t fair,” stated Runeari. To establish an accurate number of teaching positions from the start would have been easier. This newest part-time English teacher officially began teaching his classes on Tuesday, October 14. “I felt like a sub. I was somebody new, and I had no credibility. If I taught seniors, it wouldn’t be like starting over,” stated Runeari. Even though it seems as if Runeari is still in his re-initiation
Buccaneer Bulletin Photo
Thirty-three years at the Oswego High wasn’t enough for Mr. William Runeari, who after a one year retirement has come back to teach ninth grade English.
period, he applies new knowledge of teaching, as well as traditional teaching methods. “Watching student teachers, I’ve gotten some good ideas, and seen what you wouldn’t want to do. It was really refreshing, an eye-opener,” explained Runeari.
Not many people would choose to return to their job part time after retirement. However, someone as dedicated as Runeari apparently feels more comfortable teaching in the classroom than relaxing on the golf course.
What Do Teenage Boys Really Want? Kaitlyn Scanlon
The stereotype of the sophomore boy is that he has sex on the brain. But a study published by Dr. Andrew Smiler of SUNY Oswego’s Psychology Department suggests that boys are motivated more by love and a desire to form real relationships with girls they date. “The study did not surprise me, but appears to run counter to the conventional belief about the motives of teenagers,” Smiler told The PalladiumTimes. In our society, the dating and sex lives of teenage boys are often portrayed by promiscuous behavior, how they objectify women’s bodies, and how they discard the romantic aspects of a relationship and think mainly about the physical aspects. This image of sexually-amped teenage boys is well known in America and appears regularly in television programs and in sex education web sites and curricula. Movies and television shows deal a lot with boys and sex, because the topic grabs attention and can have a funny angle. And how many times have dads told their teenage daughters, “Boys only want one thing?” But is all this talk about boys demeaning girls and only wanting sex actually demeaning to the boys instead? Is this just labeling them with a negative, erroneous stereotype? That’s what Smiler’s study suggests. The results showed that boys were interested in their dating partner as a person, and not simply a sexual partner. The three most popular reasons for dating revealed in the survey were, “I liked
the person,” “I was really attracted to the person,” and “I wanted to get to know the person better.” These were supported by more than half of the boys questioned. When rating reasons for having intercourse, the answers that tied for first among those surveyed were, “Wanted to know what it was like” and “felt desire.” These answers were barely in front of “Because I liked/loved the person” and “My partner wanted to.” (Participants could endorse more than one reason.) The conclusions of the study show that most teenage boys date and/or have sex because they have a connection with the other person, because they are interested in getting to know the person better, and they like their personality. This is much different than the typical portrayal of high school boys in the media. To determine if boys live up to the low expectations our culture sets for them, Smiler surveyed 105 sophomore boys about their reasons for dating and having sex. They were ethnically and economically diverse: 71% were of European American descent, 22% were of Latino descent, 7.6% were of African–American descent, and no other single ethnicity was reported by more than 2% of subjects. Thirty-five percent of the boys also reported having been on welfare at some time during their lives. Sexual orientation, religious importance and drug use was also taken into account. The boys were able to check if they were heterosexual, bisexual, homosexual or not sure--90 percent were heterosexual and 10 percent were bisexual, homosexual or
photo Courtesy of The Palladium-Times
Dr. Andrew Smiler of SUNY Oswego’s Psychology Department published a study about how teenage boys are motivated by love, dating and sex.
not sure. Religion was also accounted for on a four-point scale--1 meaning not important and 4 meaning very important. Participants were provided with a list of eleven potential reasons to date and ten potential reasons to engage in sex. Wherever possible, the list was drawn from existing research, interview data and journalistic accounts. Those who reported experience with each behavior were also asked to indicate if they would like to perform this behavior again. Based on these questions it was determined that of the 105 boys in the study, 92 had started dating and 90 of them reported having had at least one girlfriend (or boyfriend).
On average, the boys started dating at 12 years of age (range 6–16) and reported 3-4 lifetime dating partners (range 0–22). Forty-three of the 105 boys reported having had intercourse. On average, the sexually experienced boys lost their virginity at 14-15 year old (range 11–17) and reported 2-3 sex partners (range 1–6). Only one sexually experienced boy reported no dating experience. OHS sophomore Nick Guido wasn’t surprised with the findings. “Some guys might ask a girl out thinking mainly about sex,” he said, “but I think most guys ask girls out to get to know them better or because they like their personality. In most cases, our intentions are true.”
Turkey. Not Thanksgiving but Hazal’s Homeland A Foreign Perspective Hazal Pacaci Leaving your country, going to a place that you have never been before, meeting new people and speaking a foreign language …Those are all fears I faced as an exchange student. For some, it would be something hard, and for others, something cool. But for me, it is way amazing and I can say that I am really glad to have come to the USA. It was one the of the best decisions that I have ever made. First of all, for those who do not know me, let me tell about myself a little bit. I am from Turkey and I will be here in the USA as an exchange student until the end of June. I am 18 years old and already graduated in Turkey. Since I am planning to be a translator, and in the future an ambassador maybe, my year here is basically for my career and for a different experience. So, I think it is not far away from the truth to say that I am kind of having a year off ! As soon as I tell people that I am from Turkey, most of them give me a weird look and think that I am kidding. I know that it is kind of hard, especially in America, where tons of ”turkeys” are consumed this time of the year, to believe that “Turkey” is a country. I know that it sounds funny and quite frankly, I have no clue why you Americans name my country after a bird ! So let’s just say that I am from “Turkiye.” Now that I introduced myself a little bit, I believe I can start telling about my experiences here after I answer the most common questions such as “Do you have turkeys in Turkey?”, “Do you speak English as your native language ?”and ”Do you get snow in Turkey?” Well, these are actually
good questions and I like it when people are curious about my country and ask questions about it. Here are the answers: • Turkeys exist in “Turkey,” but we do not eat them. I assume that the reason is they are not as common as here in the USA, and it is not actually traditional to eat them. • We do not speak English as a native tongue although students start learning it in fourth grade. We have our own language which is Turkish. • We do get snow in Turkey. Since Turkey is really close to the Middle East countries, people have the misconception that it is a whole desert. No, it is not. Turkey is on the crossroads between the continents of Asia, Europe and Africa. It has borders to Greece and Bulgaria on the northwest, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Armenia and Iran on the east, Iraq and Syria on the south. In winter, it gets snow, but since the west coast has a warmer climate, it does not usually snow there. When I first came here, since I did not have the chance beforehand to choose my host family and the state that I was going to live in, I pretty much expected anything. But I can say that once you start adjusting and become aware of what is going on in the family life and at school, it is just all about enjoying your time. There are many differences between my culture and the American culture. Relationships between people, the educational system at school and family lifestyle are different. I think, for example, American people live more “individually,” while Turkish people have the tendency to live
as a community. In the USA, families are larger with at least three children when compared to the families in Turkey that may have only one or two kids. Schools have different rules and methods for teaching. In Turkey, students do not go from one room to another. Teachers move instead. Breaks between the periods are ten minutes and since schools are not that crowded, everybody, including the principal and the teachers has the same lunch period which is usually 45 minutes. Schools usually start at 8:30 am and ends at 3:30 pm. It is customary for students to try to make sure that their classrooms are kept neat and clean. Food is also different. Although here, the only meal that is eaten all together with the family is dinner, in Turkey, usually all the meals are eaten together. The table is set and it is also important not to start the meal without everybody sitting. As you see, being an exchange student is like a fresh start for me. I can tell for sure that it is also an experience that everybody should have. If you have the chance to go to another country and be an exchange student, I would certainly recommend it. Next month, I will write about Christmas traditions in my homeland compared to here.
T-Shirt of the Month
Alex Hall proudly displays the t-shirt of the month, as well as his “guns.” If you know of someone who has a great novelty t-shirt, contact Fred Maxon at email@example.com for future placement in this spot.
Extracurricular Organizations Busy WBUC
If you have ever seen the morning show or the daily show at 5:00pm at home, you may know all about WBUC. It is a club of about 20 members that meets once a month with Mr. Chris Mangano being the adviser. They meet in the TV room and it is mostly for students who enjoy working in the TV studio outside of school as well as in class. During the club, they do extra productions besides the regular Buc news. Andy Meaney is the president, Hayley Lukaczyk is treasurer, and Crystal Howse is secretary. They cover mostly “primetime sports” such as boys’ basketball and baseball, girls’ hockey and basketball, and more. They will be doing girls’ hockey in the near future. WBUC Club doesn’t do many fund raisers. They hope to do some type fundraiser in the spring off of campus, possibly with a good band. You do not have to be in TV or any type of TV class to be in the club. Anyone can join at anytime. If you’d like to join the club or you have any questions you may email Mangano at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Spanish Club is offering a variety of activities to the students. Since Spanish is becoming one of the most common languages in the world, this club gives students the opportunity to explore Spanish culture by way of music, food, games, films, pictures, conversation and other cultural practices and customs. Lacking time in regular classes to learn the culture, students have the chance of practicing the actual Spanish traditions as well as improving their language skills in the club. Planning to do community service in elementary schools to reach out the younger students to teach Spanish and the culture, Spanish Club also has fundraising activities planned such as Yankee Candle and a fresh Christmas wreath sale for late November and early December. Aiming to teach the students the diversity of Spanish culture, Spanish Club meetings are held every other Thursday in room 240. The adviser, Mrs. Gloria Canale-Giberson also notes that everybody is welcome to join the club at any time of the year.
Travel Club is planning a trip to Ireland next summer, soon after graduation. A few of the key places the group will be visiting are Dublin, the Ring of Karry, the cliffs of Mohr, and Barney Castle. The trip is recommended to anyone who likes experiencing new places and learning about different countries. The cost of attending is $2,600, plus spending money. If you are interested in joining the Travel Club, contact either Mrs. Sarah Williams or Mrs. Lisa McPherson, the advisers of the club. The club meets the first Wednesday of every month, immediately after school, in room 104. All students are invited to attend meetings. If you don’t plan on travelling this year, you can always begin fundraising for trips in future years.
Media Club is for anyone interested in different types of media such as novels, movies, and even blogs. They meet every other Tuesday in the library. Sometimes they may meet twice a week depending on their scheduled activity. “We are pretty flexible to explore any type of novel or other media that students are interested in,” stated club adviser Ms. Janet Bernreuther. Currently the club is viewing a Japanese graphic novel. However, Bernreuther is open to investigating other types of novels, story writing, poetry, and reading. Also, if students express interest their use, blogs may be used. Anyone who’s interested in joining and has new or different ideas in media is encouraged to join. If you have any questions, you may contact Bernreuther at email@example.com.
The Senior Class has been very busy lately with fundraising for its March trip to Florida. Some things that the advisers and volunteers are doing to help fund raise are having a packaged meal sale, a chicken BBQ, and a restaurant night. For the restaurant night, they are going from place to place, seeking a restaurant to sponsor Oswego High School, and donate a portion of the money they make from our own high school students.
They are also organizing the semi formal, which will be held in the new gym, Saturday December 6. Also they are preparing the 100 days to graduation celebration. This will include breakfast and a hypnotist for entertainment. Some other things that they are responsible for are senior night, the dinner dance, and the senior picnic, which will all be held later in the year. The senior class advisers, Mr. Mark Mirabito and Mrs. Heidi Sweeney are looking for some more volunteers to help out with fundraising and organizing. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the officers of the senior class, Andy Meany, President; Mo Donovan, Vice President; Katie Metcalf, Treasurer; Brandy Earl, Secretary.
We have five foreign exchange students in our school this year. There is one student from Turkey, one student from Egypt, one student from Italy and two students from Germany. The Foreign Exchange Club is doing everything it can to make them feel welcome. Foreign Exchange Club does a lot of fun things to make sure the exchange students have a welcome experience in Oswego. On Wednesday November 19, the club had an international dinner, where students made different foods from their homeland. The club is currently working on a possible field trip to Corning Museum of Glass. They also go bowling sometimes, for fun. The exchange students stay with a host family. In order to come to Oswego, they have to be able to speak fair to very good English. “It is a great opportunity to learn about other countries,” commented Mrs. Janet Bernreuther, the adviser for the Foreign Exchange Club. Any OHS student is welcome to become a member of this club. Students having any questions or concerns can contact Mrs. Janet Bernreuther in the library or President Amy Wilcox.
The National Honor Society recently attended its annual college visit on Monday, November 3 to Ithaca College. “The tour was exceptional and it was an excellent opportunity for students to experience a college visit, so they know what to ask and look for when they go
to future college visits with their families,” said adviser Mr. Mike McCrobie. Emily Lloyd chaired the blood drive on November 8, which had a good turnout. Eighty two people attended and 55 pints of blood were retrieved for use in the community. An important thing to note is that if you are a member of the National Honor Society you need to continue your volunteer service. Volunteers may do any number of projects from being elves during the holiday season, to babysiting, to working at the hospital, to being guides for the upcoming open house, to tutoring, and many more.
The Future Engineers of America, advised by Mr. Bill Reeser put in a lot of work this month. Teams of talented students competed in the Balsa Bridge competition, held at the MOST Museum in Syracuse. This event held on Saturday, November 15, consisted of teams of two or three students who were responsible for building a truss bridge, or a jib crane, depending on which category they entered. All teams were required to use the balsa wood that the museum provided, however participants could use any type of glue desired. Every student who participated received a certificate of participation and a t-shirt. The lucky top three teams received a plaque, and individual students received ribbons. Active members of the club are looking forward to participating in two upcoming engineering competitions. One competition sponsored by the Entergy Corporation and another sponsored by the Sensis Corporation. Editor’s Note:Clublicity is a regular monthly feature for the Buccaneer Bulletin, the following reporters contributed to this months Clublicty; Caitlin Sawyer, Fred Maxon, Hazal Pacaci, Brian Richmond, Blair Harvey, Mackenzie Oatman, Brittany Ross, Steve Livoti, Kaitlyn Scanlon, Heather Hanlon, Carissa Benson, KijafaMonee Berkley, Mary Losurdo, Kailyn Gray, Emily Hoyt, Monek Cullen.
Clubs Engaged in Charitable Activities Environmental Club
Change takes place every day, but the Environmental Club has made a difference. The Environmental Club takes notice of the little things that affect our planet, which many people would ignore. In honor of National Make a Difference Day, which was held on October 25, the Environmental Club planted flowers in front of the Utica Street entrance, right under the new tree. Flowers, including mums, daffodils, hyacinths, bulbs, and cone flowers make up the three-season garden. The club members worked very hard to get the job done. The Environmental Club members are also busy fundraising for the Costa Rica trip to be held in April, which 18 students are planning on attending. The Costa Rica trip will be a learning experience for the club members. During the trip, they will be planting trees in the forest and learning about the ecosystem.
Softball Club is holding the seventeenth annual Buc clothing sale, from now until Thanksgiving break. They are selling a variety of buccaneer apparel (not just softball clothing). There are tie-dye, hoodies, baseball caps, tee-shirts, neck ties, flannel pants, sweatpants and much more. Orders will be delivered before Christmas vacation. If there are any other questions about the sale ask the softball club adviser Mr. Mike McCrobie or any of the Softball Club members.
Buccaneer Bulletin The Buccaneer Bulletin started out this school year strong, with the release of its first paper and recognition for being an “All New York Gold Overall Newspaper” winner at the Empire State School Press Association (ESSPA) convention. Many individual awards were also presented to current staff members and 2008 graduates. Newly appointed editor-in-chief Fred Maxon received gold plaques for Editorial Writing and his Entertainment Review portfolio, and current art director Brian Richmond was presented with a gold for his participation in the on-site writing contest. Former senior writer Kevin Kearns earned several honors, including silver for his Sports Columnist portfolio and bronze for a sports feature. He received honorable mentions for a feature story, and for a sports news story. Oswego earned a half dozen bronze awards. Former managing editor/editor-in-chief Katie DiVita received two bronze awards for news stories. Sophie Rosenbaum, former clublicity editor/managing editor, also received bronze for an in-depth reporting article, along with former columnist/clublicity editor Jack Carmody, who was recognized for his Columnist portfolio. Former chief photographer Morganne Atutis earned a bronze for her photography portfolio as well. Honorable mention awards were also presented to photographer Michaela Frost for one of her featurephotographs and Jack Carmody for a feature story.
Key Club is currently working on a variety of activities for fall and winter. They have a blanket drive wherein students can bring in new or gently used blankets for those in need and drop them off in the main office. They are also planning a “Mr. Oswego” beauty pageant for the guys of OHS. The volunteer “candidates” will perform all the normal parts of a beauty pageant, with all the profits going directly to benefit charity. In addition, Key Club members will be volunteering their time during the holiday season to ring the bell for the Salvation Armys donation kettles.
The Math Club is not just for the kids in the top of the class anymore; everyone is invited to join the Math Club where you can improve your skills and receive help if you are having problems in your math class. The Math Club is advised by Mrs. Jennifer Bernard and Mrs. Victoria Hull. They have two kinds of meetings. One is a practice session where the students take a practice exam that they try to finish by the end of the meeting. The test is taken in a group setting where the members can help each other on a problem if they get stuck. The next few practice meetings will occur on Tuesday, December 2; Wednesday, December 3; and Thursday, December 4. After completing a practice session, the club members go to the competition meeting. The students compete in a math tournament, where the club members battle to win prizes by taking a test. The ones with the highest grades on the test win various prizes. The next competition meeting will be held on Tuesday, December 9. All of the meetings occur in room 233, after school at 2:35. All students in every grade are welcome to join the Math Club. If you ever thought wanted to get in involved in your school and get help in math while you’re at it, Math Club is the perfect thing for you.
Student Council Student Council will be conducting a canned food drive in December to benefit familes in need. The two homerooms with the most canned food brought in will receive a class prize. Usually the prize received is breakfast for the class. In mid-December they will be working with the elementary schools on Christmas activities such as reading them stories and asking them what they want for Christmas. Also for Christmas, they will be adopting a family as a way to make Christmas better for those less fortunate. Leighton school usually provides them with a family. They give the family useful gifts such as clothes and cleaning products. They wrap the gifts and give them to the staff at Leighton who then gives them to the family. Student Council meets every other Thursday in room 231 with Miss Holly Beckwith and Mr. RJ Vayner.
Photo by Fred Maxon
Rachel Pittenger of the Environmental Club removes a piece of sod as club members planted flowers at the Utica Street entrance to OHS on National Make a Difference Day.
For more than 30 years, Mr. Thomas Altman has been the adviser of Science Club. Science Club meets every Tuesday after school in room 127, and is open to anyone who wishes to participate in fun experiments. The Science club is teaming up with the Engineering Club for the bridge building competition hosted by the MOST. They also anticipate involvement in a science fair, along with a couple of other projects. For more information, contact Altman in room 127.
Yearbook Yearbook Club is aimed at high school kids, freshman to senior, interested in working on the yearbook. Teachers Mr. Warren Shaw and Mr. Chris Mangano have been the advisers for the past five years. Yearbook class meets every day eighth period, and several times a week after school. Approximately 50 kids are enrolled. Aside from working on the yearbook, the students and advisers attend the ESSPA (the Empire State School Press Association) conference in the fall, where they have won numerous awards, sponsor Battle of the Bands in May and go to New York City in March to attend classes at Columbia University. This year’s yearbook will be full color.
Cafeteria Ready for C
photo courtesy of christa Construction.
Above is an artist’s rendering of what the new OHS cafeteria will look like. The size of the dining area will increase by one third.
By Caitlin Sawyer Chief Photographer
The Oswego High School cafeteria will undergo its first major construction since the building opened in 1971. The renovation will result in a completely new look in both the dining and the serving areas. Buccaneer Bulletin
The tentative renovation plans for the Oswego High School cafeteria have been put in place and construction is expected to begin in December. Another phase of the project, the science wing addition, is expected to begin in the summer. The first sign of construction work is expected to begin next month. When students come back from Christmas vacation either the cafeteria’s ceiling tiles or floor will be gone. Students will be walking on concrete until construction crews get a chance to work on the floor, which may not be until February break or a long weekend. However, the construction that takes place while school is still in session will not be major. “If there are distractions, they will be minimal,” stated Mr. Peter Myles, executive principal. The cafeteria addition and remodeling will increase the cafeteria size by one-third. Along with its increased size, the cafeteria will have a whole new look; the district is aiming for a more modern feel with a floating ceiling, and a variety of seating, such as booths and different size tables. The floating ceiling will give the cafeteria a more modern feel; students will visibly be able to see the ceiling and hanging lights, similar to the redesign of the pool area several years ago. After the renovations, students will no longer clutter the hallway while waiting in line. There will be one line which will sprout out to five others. Mr. Dennis Jerome, the school lunch director hopes that the increase
in number of serving lines will help students get their lunch faster and more efficiently. The layout of the service lines will be similar to that of a college campus. Jerome hopes to greatly improve quality and service of the school breakfast and lunch options. Jerome’s three goals to improve lunch quality are low prices, good quality, and fast service. Jerome also hopes that these three goals will please the students. “It’s all about the students, and what they like. Everything is geared around the student body.” Also, Jerome has high hopes for the remodeling. “My whole goal is to get students to want to eat in the cafeteria,” stated Jerome. He hopes to put together a student advisory group to encourage students to share their ideas about the lunch program. The group will try different foods and will be able to voice their opinions. The cafeteria will not only have a whole new look in the dining hall, but also in the serving area. Along with the new look, Jerome hopes to hire people for the dining hall, to keep up with the sanitary needs. This will enable them to keep the cafeteria looking like new for years to come. All new appliances are being purchased to update the outdated appliances currently being used in the kitchen. One of the most important appliances that will be purchased is a dishwasher. After the renovations, students will no longer use little styrofoam trays. The styrofoam trays are not environmentally friendly and are costly to the
Construction Project school. “Eating on styrofoam trays everyday wouldn’t be appealing to me; the transformation to a modern atmosphere will help this,” stated Jerome. The cafeteria is expected to be finished by the 2009-10 school year if all goes as planned during the summer months. The new addition to the science wing is expected to begin over the summer. There were two tentative plans for the science wing; one consisted of two stories, the other was with one. When the board voted, the one-story addition was approved. Myles stated, “I sat down with the science teachers and essentially let them chose what they needed in their classrooms, because they are the ones teaching in them, and will essentially be the ones who benefit from them.” The science wing addition is mainly to update the classroomsand increase the space students have to work on things like projects, activities and labs. “I’ll be able to have kids facing me when we’re doing labs and other class activities,” stated biology teacher Mrs. Catherine Celeste. Building codes and State Education Department guidelines will be met after the addition. “It will get the classrooms up to code, and meet safety standards. Also
I’ll finally have windows,” stated Celeste. The science wing is expected to be completed by January of 2010. However, “Construction projects usually take longer than they say,” stated Myles. When the renovations begin, some teachers may be inconvenienced by sharing or
ers; it will give them adequate space to teach, and it will help students learn to the best of their abilities,” stated by junior Elijah Tyler, a student who frequently spends time in the current science wing. While construction is going on, senior parking will be diminished or eliminated. “We will have to reevaluate the parking lot and “It’s really going to benefit the there may be a reduction or eliminaof senior parking,” stated Myles. science teachers; it will give them tion However, with the bridge construction adequate space to teach, and it will now over, students are again permitted park on Utica Street and Hillside help students learn to the best of to Avenue. This will enable students to their abilities.” park closer and have more spots avail Elijah Tyler able to them. The parking lot located the tennis courts and LeighClass of 2010 between ton School will be used to house the equipment trailers for the construction. moving around to different classrooms and not “Hopefully, with construction going on having their own classrooms. “Once the science there will be minimal distractions and noise for wing is occupied with construction, teachers will the students who are learning,” stated Myles. have to move to other locations. You may see While construction is going on, many students English classes in a math room,” stated Myles. will be in class learning, although some classes The new addition will provide students with and teachers will be relocated, it remains to be seen more room to work on labs and other class activi- how significant those distractions really will be. ties. “It’s really going to benefit the science teach-
photo courtesy of christa Construction.
An artist’s depiction of what the proposed new science wing will look like. This is a view of the southeast corner of the school where room 105 is located.
Walking The Plank
Superfan Mrs. Sullivan Walks the Plank Mrs. Mary Sullivan has been an integral part of OHS since she first arrived here in 2000. She is also one of Oswego High’s most loyal sports fans. Buccaneer Bulletin: How long have you been working at OHS? Mrs. Sullivan: Since 2000. BB: What are the specific details of your job? S: My job description would be a special education teacher, which entails me going into the classes of my students. I do co-teaching, which allows me to teach with the teacher of the room that I’m currently in.
much? S: I like to support my students not only in the classroom, but also in any endeavor they do outside the classroom. I like to support them in sports and it also allows me to talk to parents I normally wouldn’t be able to talk to. I also go to the music programs. BB: We’ve all seen the car you drive, a ‘Buc Blue’ PT Cruiser. Was it planned as school colors? S: Not really. The car I had was getting really old and I needed a new car. I happened to see an ad for a new car in Owego. It was almost like fate. We went and there it was and it was the perfect blue color. It was also a turbo, so it could get me to all the games faster.
BB: What would you say the best part about your job is? S: The best part of my job is getting to see the students I help walk across the stage at graduation.
BB: What is your favorite part of watching the sports here? S: I like to see the students giving their best effort, not necessarily winning, but if anyone gives their best effort, I’m happy. I also like to see the camaraderie of all the kids out on the field.
BB: If you could change one thing about OHS, what would it be? S: I like how we have everything now, but I always think we could make it better. We have a lot of spirit that’s been revived so I think we should have a Buc mascot that would help promote spirit. Also, we should help promote spirit at the grade school levels.
BB: If you could be athletic director for one day, what would you do? S: I would still incorporate the Buccaneer spirit. I still like a mascot and the pep rally concept for all sports. We need to pursue and carry on spirit even more than we are now. There’s always something that could be done better.
BB: You’re at so many sporting events, what is it about high school sports that you like so
BB: What is your favorite sport to watch? S: I like football, I like to see all the students
in the stands with parents and the energy that kicks off the year. I also like to watch the marching band. BB: What is your favorite sporting memory? S: This year has been the best ever. I’ve been watching football since 2000 and we’ve seen a lot of dark days, but this year, especially for the seniors, was just wonderful. Seeing all the kids in the stands supporting them was amazing. BB: Do you think the success of the football team will help carry over to other sports? S: Absolutely. I think all the spirit that the kids have shown will help. Also, some teams who may not have been so good before will see how well the team did and it may help them to do better in their seasons. BB: If you could dine with any three people, living or dead, who would you choose? S: I would pick my parents because I miss them, and Jesus. It would be an interesting dinner conversation. BB: If you were stranded on a desert island, and you could bring three things, what would you bring? S: I would have to bring my husband, my children, and my car. Editor’s Note: “Walking the Plank” is a regular feature of The Buccaneer Bulletin. This month’s installment was compiled by Ryan Galloway. If you know of a student or a staff member you’d like to see walk the plank, contact Emily DiFabio at edifabio@ oswego.org
Photos BY caitlin sawyer
Mrs. Mary Sullivan, Special Education teacher, poses with her ‘Buc Blue’ PT Cruiser. Not only does Mrs. Sullivan attend nearly every Oswego High athletic contest, play, and concert, but she even purchased her new car and vanity license plate to show her school spirit.
Report Outlines Improvements to OHS Fred Maxon
At the request of several board members, educational consultant Mr. Ray Savarese completed a report looking into the organizational structure of Oswego High School and presented it to the board October 28. Following meetings with students, parents and staff beginning in the middle of August, Savarese presented the 35 slide report which featured more than just problems with the house plan. Savarese mentioned insufficient communication between staff, students and parents and poor phone service, as well as teacher input rarely being sought and building cleanliness as other problems with OHS. Mr. Peter Myles, principal of OHS, was “shocked and disappointed” by the report. “We used to be a great school in every area. We’ve slipped from great to good.” Myles felt as if the report focused too much on the negative issues, and not enough on the positive aspects of OHS. Of Savarese’s report, only two slides were positive, while six slides focused on negative aspects of the school. Among the positive aspects of OHS, Savarese found that most teachers were very helpful and caring, and that many teachers saw students at OHS as good kids. While students were proud of what athletic teams and activites they were on, they were not so proud of OHS as a whole. Photo by fred Maxon Mr. Bill Crist, acting superintendent of schools noted “People tend to focus on the negative aspects of One of the recommendations of consultant Ray Savarese was to make the entrance to OHS more things instead of the positive aspects of things, and I inviting to visitors. By relocating the trophy cases and painting the walls in the school colors, do think we have a very good school district. I think we’ve already addressed one of Savarese’s many suggestion to help make OHS a better place. we also have a very good population of teachers and on an individual basis. “We do have a certain range two days of talking to people, I realized that there support staff that work to do the best that they can on of penalties for different infractions,” she said. Last was no house plan, so I went to Mr. Crist and said a daily basis; I would include administrators in that year, September and October saw 16 fights, while this ‘Bill, there is no house plan, but people are talking too.” year there was nine. about other issues’ and what he suggested to me was School security was presented as an issue, along Savarese’s report also brought up the number of to continue to listen to them.” with the idea that fights happen daily. However, ac- absences and tardies during the 2007-2008 school year, Savarese had three recommendations for the cording to Myles, the idea that fights occur daily is stating that 117 students had more than 30 tardies, and house plan. The first was retaining the current strucsimply not supported by current data. “We rely on Mr. 55 out of the 117 were absent more than 20 days, the ture of the house plan, but changing the titles. His John Anderson average be - second suggestion was to make a modified house plan (Director of Se- “People tend to focus on the negative ing 41.5 days. with focus on the ninth grade. This would be based on curity) a lot to Out of the 117 the team concept and would have one assistant prindiffuse situa- aspects of things instead of the positive students, 46 cipal and teachers exclusive to the ninth grade team. tions, whether aspects of things, and I do think we have a earned fewer Piasecki noted that 75 percent of disciplinary issues it’s kids that go t h a n t h r e e come from freshmen, making it difficult for the house at it to fight or very good school district.” credits, and principal of the freshman class to deal with all of the the name call- Mr . Bill Crist five of the 117 disciplinary issues. The last recommendation was ing. All of the Acting Superintendent dropped out. based on West Genesee High School, and features a things we deal However, the change to having a principal, an academic dean and with on a daily r e p o r t a l s o only two assistant principals instead of our current basis and he really has some good relationships with notes that this problem doesn’t start in high school. three. The academic dean would supervise English, the students; that helps to diffuse those situations,” In Savarese’s report, it was noted that our “house” social studies, math and science and would be a direct stated House 2 principal Ms. Susan Piasecki. As for system isn’t a true house system. In order for it to be a liaison with the assistant superintendent for instructhe number of discipline problems, “One day you can true house system, the teachers would be sorted into tion. The principal would be responsible for staffing, have 15 referrals, and another day 30 referrals. It re- the houses too, with a teacher having only students public relations, code of conduct and student activities, ally varies from day to day,” she noted. As for the from one of the houses. According to Savarese, the and the assistant principals would be responsible for idea that discipline was inconsistent among the three fact that we didn’t have a true house system was the discipline, building issues, AIS and security. “I think houses, Piasecki noted the need to look at each student biggest surprise he found. “Initially, within the first Continued on page 14
‘Call Home System’ has Pluses, Minuses By Emily DiFabio
The Oswego City School District has implemented a new call home system to notify parents and guardians about important issues that will affect their children—including whether or not they attend school. This system also notifies parents for many reasons aside from their children not being in school. It will call to let them know about upcoming events such as days off, parent teacher conferences, state wide testing, and emergency and early releases from school. It will even call to inform them if their child’s lunch account is running low on money. This system is a California-based system that is referred to as SchoolMessenger. It notifies parents or guardians of children in grades K-12. According to the OCSD Technology Director Brendan Fear, “After evaluating several notification solutions, we selected SchoolMessenger because it offers a real value to the district and is proven to measurably increase parental involvement, staff communications and student attendance.” For attendance at the high school level, a call is made to the student’s
home in the morning and again in the evening so the parents and guardians are aware that their child has missed school. Acting Superintendent of Schools, Mr. Bill Crist said, “SchoolMessenger is just one other great communication tool that will allow the school district to immediately address parental concerns. We are hopeful that this will allow for a more open, direct line of communication between home and school.” Many students, parents, and faculty feel that this system could have a positive impact on the attendance rate, though some students, like junior Kathryn Lombardo, feel otherwise. She stated, “I think it is a good idea, but half the kids who have an attendance problem don’t care, and their parents probably don’t either.” As many students are discovering, the SchoolMessenger is not as accurate as the district hoped it would be. Many
students’ homes received calls stating that they had missed a class that they were actually in. This mistake occurs due to the fact that the teacher may have not taken attendance, or the student came in late with a pass. In a recent poll of 100 random students, 56 had received a call home that was inaccurate. Each day at 9:15 a.m. calls are made from the Oswego High School and the Oswego Middle School, to notify parents that their child is not in school. For the five elementary schools, the calls are made at 9:45 a.m., then once again each evening at 6:30 p.m. Because this system is in the middle school as well, some teachers feel that it has been a great tool. OMS special education teacher Mrs. Karen Breen said, “I think it is another good tool that our school district can use to communicate with parents. The more
the school/teachers/administrators can do to encourage parents/guardians to be supporting partners in the child’s education, the better for the child. I like this system, too, because it is ‘user friendly.’ My understanding is that it is automatically done and is not labor intensive.” Many teachers at the middle school had the same views as Breen, like Mrs. Debra Smith, who teaches English. Smith stated, “Any system that allows for better communication between home and school is good, but it is especially beneficial when news that can impact our students’ safety is disseminated as quickly as possible to parents.” The view is common throughout the district; many school personnel believe that the SchoolMessenger is a good tool. Although a goal was that this system would make the communication ties between parents and the school stronger, attendance office secretary Mrs. Joyce Gleason stated, “I don’t think that it has affected the attendance rate, but I do think that it has made parents more aware of what their students are doing because they are getting calls in the evening. It has also made teachers more careful about taking attendance in the classroom.”
Consultant Makes Recommendations to OCSD Continued from page 13
it would be very difficult to go from three (assistant is that the district is not in unison and that morale was think you can acknowledge those accomplishments principals) to two . You would be going from dealing low. Crist believes that low morale is something that in a positive way so that people feel good about what with 500, 550 (students) a piece to 800 to 850 kids,” is not unique to the high school.” I think the morale they’ve done.” Piasecki noted. of the community needs to be uplifted. There needs Savarese’s report, aside from minor criticism Among the other recommendations, Savarese to be some recognition of things done well. I think over it being too negative, has been well received recommended a re-write of the student code of there needs to be corrections of some things that are by the administration. This is Savarese’s first report, conduct and an upgrade of the stuand he was contacted when the dent handbook to a student planner, “I think the morale of the community needs to be district contacted BOCES and which would allow students to record after some discussions with assignments, feature the code of con- uplifted. There needs to be some recognition of the BOCES superintendent duct and would include information things done well. ” in regards to individuals who on how to locate assistance. This, he experiences with large Mr. Bill Crist had said, can be paid for though state aid. high schools with house sysActing Superintendent tems, and he was one of the He also suggested adding Saturday suspension as an alternative to outfirst names that came up. One of-school suspension. It would meet misconception is that he came from nine in the morning to noon and would be the not going as well.” He said that morale is a mindset. to Oswego with an agenda. Crist denies such a thing. parent’s option. He also called for a review of the “From a professional perspective, it’s coming to work “He knew nothing of this school or school district grading policy and an increased focus on freshmen, with an understanding that you’re going to choose the with the exception of when he worked at Liverpool starting in eighth grade in January and allowing attitude that you’re going to come with.” He went on and had interaction with the school and the district, freshmen to come for the first day of school without to state that morale comes from recognition of people so he really didn’t have any conclusions before he sophomores, juniors or seniors in the hall, which is doing things well, and he cited some of the things walked into this place, so I think he provided an obsomething done in Fulton and Liverpool. the district is doing to promote school pride, which jective view of what he saw and who he spoke with Savarese also suggested a public relations cam- adds to the morale of students as well. “Whether and gathered the perceptions of those people and paign to restore the district’s image, as the perception it’s passing a math test or winning a football game, I provided a report to us on that.”
Arts & Entertainment
Students Recognized For Musical Excellence Chorus
The Chamber Singers went to St. Joseph’s and St. Stephen’s churches to sing for parishioners. The Area All-State Chorus will be performing at Herkimer High School on November 21. The Area All-State Chorus consists of eleven OHS students, Kevin O’Connor, Annie Taverni, Aryelle Caruso, Kathryn Lombardo, Chelsea Bartlett, Maggie McCloskey, Tyler Spicer, Bryan Syrell, Fred Johnson, Jeremy Gosek, and Nicole Williams. On December 4-7 the All-State Conference will be performing in Rochester, NY. Tyler Spicer will be performing in the mixed choir. There will be a chorus concert on December 3, at 7:30 in the OHS Theater which will include the Concert Choir, the Chorale, and the Chamber Choir. This is the annual Christmas concert of the year.
The All-State Conference will be performing December 4-7 in Rochester, NY. Billy Darvill will be playing the violin in the orchestra.
The Wind Ensemble hosted a professional Woodwind Quintet, the Dorian Wind Quintet, recently. The Wind Ensemble also played a brief concert for seventh and eighth graders. Chelsea Bartlett, a senior at OHS, plays flute in the marching band. On January 3 she will be in San Antonio, Texas as one of only 97 students chosen to play in the U.S. Army All-American Marching Band. Bartlett received her army hat and jacket at a special ceremony held for her at Joe Wilber Field last month. The game at which the band performs features the top high school football players in the country; it will be aired on NBC on January 3. Garrett J. Robinson, a senior at OHS, was selected by Bands of America to perform in the 2009 National Honor Rose Parade. Among hundreds of applicants from across the country, he was chosen. Robinson was the only student applicant from New York State who was accepted into the Parade. He will play the snare drum in the parade. The directors of the OHS marching band are Mr. Stephen Defren and Mr. William Palange. The BOA honor band is a 300 piece national ensemble with winds, percussion, and a flag and dance team. George N. Parks, Director of the University of Massachusetts Minutemen Marching Band, and an all-star staff will be the directors of the band. On December 4-7 the All State Conference will be performing at Rochester, NY. Mason Rabalais will be playing the trombone in the band.
Photo By Miss Heather Sweeting
Garrett Robinson and Chelsea Bartlett, seniors in the OHS marching band, will each perform on a national stage in January.
There was a teaching day for the upcoming school musical My Fair Lady by Learner and Lowe earlier this month. All students were welcome to come to the teaching days, and did not have to be involved in a musical class to attend. At the teaching day, students were taught a song to practice, given script material, and taught a dance combination. On November 11 and 12 auditions were held for My Fair Lady. The principals in the cast are in the gray sidebar box on this page. The directors hope to begin rehearsals this week. If you have any questions please contact musical director Mrs. Veronica Shaver, stage director Mrs. Eve Phillips, or choreographer Mrs. Laurel Artz. Mr. Steve Braun will design the set and the lights, and Mr. T.J. Bandla will be the sound designer. Costumes will be designed by Mrs. Jeanette Reyner. My Fair Lady will be performed Friday, February 6 and Saturday, February 7. Editor’s Note: This month’s Arts & Entertainment page was written and designed by Buccaneer Bulletin Business Manager Catie Furletti. If you know of any upcoming arts & entertainment events that you would like published in future editions of The Buccaneer Bulletin, please contact Catie Furletti at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cast of My Fair Lady
Eliza Doolittle-Danielle Posillipo Colonel Pickering-Kevin O’Connor Mrs. Eynsford-Hill-Annie Taverni Mrs. Higgins-Becca Smith Henry Higgins-Jeremy Gosek Freddy Eynsford-Hill-Tyler Spicer Alfred P. Doolittle-Fred Johnson Harry-Cody Crouse Jamie-Paul Kio Mrs. Pearce-Aryelle Caruso Professor Karpathy-Nate Westcott Singing Maids-Chelsea Johnson, Jessica Krauss, Kathryn Lombardo, and Erin McIntosh Also, a chorus of OHS students
Not all Celebrities are Role Models Caitlin’s Craze Caitlin Sawyer In this day and age, young women and girls all around the country have the frequent misconception that celebrities like Paris Hilton, Britney Spears and Lindsay Lohan hold more importance in society than people like Rosa Parks, Susan B. Anthony, or even their own parents. They believe idolizing young celebs like Hilton and Spears is normal. However, idolizing someone who has constantly checked in and out of rehab or is known for being a party animal is wrong. When young girls see celebs behaving in that manner, many young girls get the wrong impression. They don’t see what their idol may be doing wrong, they only see their photos in every pop culture magazine. Young girls should not idolize someone because they have temporarily beaten their on-going battle with an eating disorder or a drug problem. When the media covers these negative aspects of the celeb’s lives, young viewers are exposed to inappropriate behavior that could have negative effects on their self esteem or lifestyle. The National Eating Disorder Association shows that self esteem
issues are a big problem in the US. Their data shows that 42 percent of first through third grade girls say they want to be thinner, and 81 percent of ten-year-olds are afraid of being fat. Children that young should not be concerned about their weight unless they are diagnosed as obese and have health issues. “Girls today are being bombarded with the message that they need to be super-skinny to be sexy,” stated psychologist Sharon Lamb in USA Today. The reality is, the everyday soccer mom and business woman are obsessed with celebrities’ lives. These overzealous moms and young women buy magazines like People and National Enquirer that fill them in on all the gossip and celeb sightings. Young girls see important figures in their lives such as parents, teachers and relatives reading about and discussing the celebs, and they too begin to admire celebrities. When the likes of Lohan and Hilton are being idolized, it ends up affecting the future generations of America in the worst ways. We criticize them, yet, we rush to hear about their latest disasters. The Hilton sisters and Lohan are notorious for being in the media’s spotlight for partying and exposing parts of themselves that the sun (not to mention the paparazzi) should not see. Don’t get me wrong, I do not doubt their magnificent skills in the
art of shopping, but there is a place where someone must draw the line. Hilton learned this lesson when she went to jail in 2007 for driving while intoxicated. However, for other celebs, going in and out of rehab is just like visiting another designer store. Their antics are not sending a message that the younger generation should be witnessing. The fact that Paris Hilton is in search of a new BFF via a television show illustrates how pathetic these celebrities are. Although the show makes for a good laugh, the reality is that she’ll probably dump her new ‘BFF’ after a couple of red carpet events and after-parties; it’s just reality TV. This new reality show of Hilton’s will be her second attempt at a reality TV show. In December 2003, Hilton and her pal Nicole Richie attempted
to switch over to a simple lifestyle by traveling the country trying to fit in with average Americans in the show The Simple Life. They found work as farmers, waitresses, and camp counselors. Hilton even trademarked her signature phrase at this time, “That’s hot.” The heiress’s logo was seen everywhere. Both of these shows give young girls the impression that young celebs are similar to them because they do ordinary things like work and hang out with friends. However, this is not the case. Young celebs are not going to help a little old lady cross the street because they don’t genuinely care about anyone other than themselves. They are wrapped up in their own perfect worlds, that consist of shopping, partying, and boys. Celeb role models are certainly not for me.
Gellar or Larca?
Larca or Gellar?
If you know anyone at OHS that has a celebrity look-alike, contact Jasmine Davis at email@example.com. Above, Living Environment teacher Mrs. Susan Larca (left) is compared to actress Sarah Michelle Gellar (right).
The Debate Rages: What’s a Sport? Point
ports are defined as activities that have a set of rules and that can be played competitively; but if we followed that logic, any activity from basketball to full-contact backgammon could be called a sport and frankly, I don’t care for that. The way I see it, basketball, baseball, soccer, and football are the only real sports. Anything else isn’t a sport; it’s a game or an activity. By my own rules, I submit that for something to be a sport there has to be a ball, you have to be able to use your arms, and there has to be some risk of getting injured. So by rule one, I’ve immediately eliminated hockey, because it uses a puck and not a ball. I personally like hockey, but I don’t think it’s a sport. It’s an amalgamation of activities. It’s like a big violent party, but it’s not a sport. I suppose you could consider it a sport if you argued that the puck is like a ball that got flattened by an eighteen wheeler truck, and then I may accept it. This also removes cheerleading from the list. Sorry folks, not only is there no ball, but the risk of being purposefully injured by someone on an opposing team during the “game” is only there in a malign and illegal sense. I have every respect for cheerleaders’ ability to inspire morale at sporting events, but a guy in a costume can inspire morale too. Last time I checked, being a mascot wasn’t a sport, so being a cheerleader isn’t either. As I write this article, I am being threatened with physical harm by gymnasts and cheerleaders. I’m willing to say I wish gymnastics were a sport, not only to protect myself from being lynched, but because it’s visually entertaining. But really, I think of it as another version of working out. Some people are energy-drinking, hulk-like, ripped, weight lifters and some go the less visually disgusting route and get into gymnastics. Besides, no ball. Running and swimming are survival skills. Running lets you not get eaten by something, or to go from point A to point B. Swimming lets you not drown. The risk of physical harm from the other competitors is very low, they don’t use a ball, and while you can use your arms, I still wouldn’t say it even qualifies to be anything other than a survival skill. Not that there is anything wrong with survival skills, but I wouldn’t qualify surviving as a sport. Boxing and wrestling aren’t sports, but they’re very entertaining. I wouldn’t want to call them any denomination of sports because they seem more akin to warfare. They have the risk of violence and injury, and you have to use your arms, and although if they had a ball, they could be considered sports; one has to wonder where that ball would fit in with the most basic of matches. I suppose I can give you lacrosse, despite it not being on the original list. It’s violent, you use your arms, and you have a ball. It’s not my cup of tea, but it’s certainly worthy of being a sport. It’s also rather fun to watch, so that’s an added bonus. But it can also be very boring. Reluctantly, it’s a sport. While the sports I listed as true sports are all okay, I do think they could be improved and that we have yet to reach the pinnacle of what a true sport should be. When that day comes, it’ll certainly be something to see. (So long as the risks are high and you can use a ball.)
sport is physical activity that is governed by a set of rules or customs and often engaged in competitively. Sports can include anything from swimming to dance. Just because the activity doesn’t involve physical contact or a ball doesn’t mean it’s not a sport. The way I see it, if it’s competitive and athletic, it’s a sport. I don’t believe the risk of injury is needed for an activity to be considered a sport, and injuries happen everyday. The use of a ball should not be the only determining factor to whether or not something is a sport. In my perspective, swimming is more than a survival sport. If the Olympics can classify it as a sport, it is. Athletes have to be mentally and physically prepared to jump into a pool of water and go back and forth with minimal breathing. In August, the 2008 Olympics aired on television. American swimmer Michael Phelps won 8 gold medals, an Olympic record, along with breaking world records in his events. Phelps did all of this without a ball. Running is, in fact, one of the purest forms of racing. It’s clearly athletic and competitive; it is a sport. If running isn’t a sport, why were the entire original Olympic games built around it? Track and field is the centerpiece of every Olympics - not basketball, not baseball, not soccer, not any team game. It has been that way ever since the first Olympic games. Again there is no use of ball, but this doesn’t mean it’s not a sport. It may not require a ball, but it does require endurance and speed. The skills involved in cheerleading leave no doubt in my mind that cheerleaders are exceptional athletes. To perform their sport, they must be as strong as any football player, as poised as any dancer, and as flexible as a gymnast. They are athletes performing in a very controversial sport. Cheerleading is much more than just standing on the sideline and boosting your team’s spirit; tumbling and stunting are also included. Have you ever tried to throw a girl five feet in the air? Cheerleading involves physical exertion and skill. Cheerleading is similar to football, hockey, and soccer in that it’s competitive and you have to work as a team. At competitions, teams are getting scored on the accuracy of stunts, precision of dance routines, and the cheer itself. Dance has all the elements of a sport: physical endurance, coordination, practice, strength, discipline, and in some cases, competition. At Oswego High School, I’m willing to bet 60 percent of girls are involved in dance. Dancers generally have a high self esteem. When you are in a room filled with mirrors, you find a way to cope with the way you are, and be happy with yourself. “Dancing allows me to explore myself in so many ways, to learn about my limitations and strengths, my ability to cope with adversity and to go farther than I thought I could. You find out what you’re made of,” stated Andrew Asnes, a graduate of Dartmouth who pursued dancing on Broadway. The quotation further explains that dancers are faced with many challenges like those that may be in a soccer game. When a girl injuries herself before a competition, as a team, you have to work together and fix your piece. In soccer, you could just send someone else in to replace the injured player. In dance, there are no subs. If a problem arises, you must fix it on the spot. Dance is a different type of sport; if you really want a ball added, I am sure any dancer could use it as a prop. Boxing is indeed a sport. Taking multiple hits in the face requires endurance and mental stability. Rocky Balboa showed America the jab, upper cut, and the hook, which all came after long months of training. Although Balboa was not a boxer in real life, America’s love of boxing grew. Instead of the use of a ball, the opponents use each other by fighting with gloves. A sport is much more than what Brian thinks it is.
Editor’s Note: Point/Counterpoint is a monthly feature in The Buccaneer Bulletin. Staff members will debate controversial topics sure to get people talking. If you have an idea for a future installment of Point/Counterpoint, contact Brian Richmond at firstname.lastname@example.org Buccaneer Bulletin
What’s the Big Deal About Dressing For PE? Shades of Gray Kailyn Gray Get off your lazy butts and participate in Phys. Ed. class. It simply must be said. It’s so ridiculous to walk through the gym and see dozens of kids lined up against the wall because they don’t feel like participating. It’s 42 minutes, every other day. It’s nothing compared to the other things we have to deal with in our seven hour days here at OHS. Now, granted, I can’t judge based simply on schedules. There are students out there who have nine study halls a day, and for them, I can understand where kicking a ball around every other day for one period might be enough stress to make them run home crying to their mommies, but honestly? Here’s a news flash: physical exercise during the course of the school day will in no way damage your precious, already-fragile little psyches.
Don’t quote me on this one, but I’m almost certain that no one has ever died by changing into gym clothes and doing the minimal physical activity in a Phys. Ed. class. I could be wrong, but I’m not. What makes our students get the impression that it’s okay for them to just abstain from Phys. Ed. altogether? You’re no more important than I am. I don’t think it’s fair that you get to sit around and suck up all the oxygen while I’m working out like I’m supposed to. Are there places I’d much rather be some days than in Phys. Ed. class? Absolutely. I think everyone has those days. The only difference between you, Mr. /Ms. NonParticipant, and us, is the fact that we don’t act on those urges to remain an unproductive bump on a log, taking up perfectly good playing space for the rest of us. Apparently, much has changed from the days of old, where as elementary students we would run around in circles until we threw up, just because it was movement of some sort. Now that we’re older, it seems that we’ve lost simple appreciation for
the fact that we can still do pretty much whatever physical activity we want to get “physical education.” As we get older (your parents will tell you), our athletic ability will start to deteriorate. Who knows? Maybe, sometime in the distant future, when you get the urge to play a game of kickball again “just like old times,” you won’t be able to run to first base without throwing out your back or breaking a hip. We should enjoy our youthful abilities now, instead of complaining about how hard it is to run the mile, or how much we don’t want to swim. I understand how uncomfortable it is to have to get in the pool for Phys. Ed. and then go sit through the rest of your day soaking wet. You’ll get over it. Unless you plan on refusing to participate when something is a little bit out of your comfort zone for the rest of your life, I suggest you suck it up, soldier. You’ve got four years here, that’s eight semesters of Phys. Ed. you need to pass in order to graduate. I think we can all manage to throw on a pair of shorts and run around for a little while every week. It’s not like the
Phys. Ed. teachers are looking for the next LeBron James or Brett Favre to be in every one of their classes. They aren’t running a boot camp. They just expect everyone to try to put forth an effort, and I think the fact that there are so many people who won’t even try is incredibly disrespectful to them. What it all comes down to here, I believe, is the result of a recent phenomenon in the United States called enabling. Our mommies and daddies are so quick to swoop in and write us a note to excuse us from participating in Phys. Ed. every time we so much as stub our toe. It has taught us that when the going gets tough, the tough back out. Is that really what we want our future to be like? A bunch of lazy, immature, nonparticipants? Get over yourselves and start participating in Phys. Ed. class. Be the responsible young adults that we’re expected to be, and do what you’re supposed to do, because if it’s people like you who end up running this country in a few years, then I’ll be high-tailing it to Canada as soon as possible.
Cross Country: Misunderstood and Underappreciated Ross’s T houghts Brittany Ross Generally, when people think of sports, basketball, lacrosse, soccer, volleyball, etc. automatically pop into their heads. Most people don’t consider running a true sport; they consider it as a way to prepare themselves for “true sports.” What people don’t consider, is what goes into running, that classifies it as a sport. Running is more than a life skill if you choose to pursue it in the competitive sense. “Cross country can be very competitive if you want it to be, along with hard work, but it can also be less intense,” said junior Katie Abramski. However, not many people usually consider participating in this difficult sport. “It’s really a challenge. People who have never run cross country before don’t really understand how physically and mentally challenging it is. You might not expect running three miles to be that difficult, but running it as fast as you can without taking any breaks is probably the hardest sport I’ll ever play,” explained senior Emily Lloyd.
Choosing to participate in this invigorating sport, is accepting a great deal of commitment. Most of your spare time is sacrificed, including Saturdays. “If you want to be good, you have to commit all year round,” stated assistant coach Ron Nelson. You must maintain a good “base” in order to be successful and better your times. In order to do this, running everyday is essential in achieving your personal success. Taking a week or two off can greatly affect your performance; it’s important to remain consistent in your training. Cross country may also be stressful to numerous runners. “It makes you mentally tough. You endure lots of pain and have to deal with nerves, and the fear of not doing your best,” said Abramski. Many athletes from different areas use this fall sport as a form of training to prepare their bodies for their next athletic season. Running cross country is very beneficial to other athletes. “It helps with all your anaerobic sports. These sports build power and muscle mass. A huge anaerobic base will benefit any athlete,” stated Nelson Technically, cross country training really takes place in the summer. During these few months of relaxation for most people, dedicated runners are completing mile after mile on the roads. Coming into a cross country season, running 30-35 miles per week, will greatly help you to have a successful
season. “It takes up a lot of my time on the weekends,” said Lloyd. It’s nearly impossible to not run more than ten miles a week, and try to be competitive. “Oswego has athletes as good as Fayetteville Manlius, just not the same level of commitment,” said Nelson. Having this type of individual training greatly impacts performances in other sports. “Even though being in shape for hockey and being in shape for cross country is completely different, it still keeps me ahead of the other girls,” said Lloyd. Athletes who participate in other sports as well as cross country also find ways to appreciate its rewards. “I run because it’s one of the most important sports to me, but it also benefits me to be in shape for basketball. Cross country gives athletes lots of endurance to have more stamina in a game,” stated Abramski. If you run every day, your body can handle more speed work, such as sprints, which are essential in multiple sports. Running can be accommodated in your everyday life; other sports won’t get you through your whole life. “Running cross country is the purest exercise you can do. When you get to be older, you wish that you could have started running,” explained Nelson.
‘New’ Boosters Adding to Athletic Success By Joe Bucher Sports Writer
Oswego athletics look as though they have turned the corner and are heading in a positive direction. There’s a renewal of school spirit which has been absent for many years. A lot of this could be attributed to the recent success of many of the fall and spring teams, or to our Athletic Director, Mr. Scott Sugar. But another group of people responsible for the upswing, the Buccaneer Boosters, hasn’t received quite as much recognition. In the past two years, membership in the Buccaneer Boosters has increased dramatically. A few years ago, the membership was down to only ten people and questions arose about whether the athletic booster club would fold. But now, the membership is over 200 people. President of the Buccaneer Boosters, Mr. Mike Howard, anticipates that number to rise as the year continues, especially following the success of the fall sports programs. With membership that high, the Buccaneer Boosters have been able to get corporate sponsorships from many local businesses, including Burritt Motors and Dunkin’ Donuts, who helped sponsor the “Oswego Pride” t-shirts this year. Some of the other contributions made by the Boosters have been the purchase of a new vehicle for athletic trainer Mrs. Michelle Wink, and the sponsorship of this fall’s “Bucfest” and homecoming. The Buccaneer Boosters help a lot with fundraising to pay for things that cannot be included in the budget. They also have done a lot to increase the community’s role in Oswego High School
athletics. They sponsor an annual golf tournament to help raise money for the services they provide. Some of the booster club’s plans for the near future include a “winter fest” that would be very similar to this fall’s “Bucfest” that would take place sometime during the induction of the first class into the new Athletic Hall of Fame here at Oswego High School. The first class will be inducted December 29. Another goal of the Buccaneer Boosters is to improve the weight room and other facilities in the district. “We want to help with the improvement in facilities. I think that’s one area where, when we look at schools that we play against, we’re pretty far behind, and that’s probably going to be one of the biggest areas we’re going to try and make an impact on this year,” stated Howard. With new flooring being installed in the near future, and the painting of the walls that was done over the summer, it looks like that plan is already underway. Also, there will be a new scoreboard built on the softball field which the Boosters photo by caitlin sawyer helped support financially. What’s going to help take things to a new level in Oswego Freshman Leslie Usherwood enjoys Bucfest, an event athletics is an increase in membership, and sponsored by the Buccaneer Boosters, with the NY an infusion of new energy and new ideas. Bold Onion. Boosters are working very hard to be more involved Head Coach of the boys varsity basketball team, Mr. Warren Shaw, feels the Boosters in a number of school organizations to increase are doing a great job to raise school spirit here at the level of school spirit. Special events like the Oswego High School. “Members of the Buccaneer “Bucfest” go a long way to making this happen.”
Volleyball Student-Referees an Absurd Idea G’s Way Ryan Galloway Almost every time a team loses a sporting event, someone, somewhere will blame the officials for missing calls that cost a team the game. These officials, however, are paid professionals who are trained to make the tough calls. Recently, though, at a girls’ sectional volleyball game, this was not the case. Oswego played Cicero-North Syracuse in the first round of sectionals last month and lost. Many supporters of the team were outraged by the officiating. However, they had a different reason for their frustration. There were the two, regular paid, adult officials, one on each side of the
net; they were not at the heart of the controversy. Standing on opposite corners of the court were two CNS students. If you walked into the gym, you would think that they were just trying to get close to the action. If you thought this you’d be wrong, however. These kids were actually officiating the match. Think about this for a second. Two students, not trained, not even upperclassmen, from the home team, basically decided who won and lost an extremely intense, important game. What if this was another sport? Think about if the Buccaneer baseball team traveled to an away game where there were normal umpires behind home plate and at first base, but instead of trained professionals at second and third, they just had two kids from the home
school come down and decide who was safe, who was out, and if a ball was fair or foul. What if at an Oswego lacrosse match, they had a normal, head official, but some student of an opposing school decided who received possession of the ball when it went out of bounds on a shot? If the Buc basketball team played Fulton and they had a referee who had gone through the proper training and then a Fulton student called down from the crowd called a crucial foul at the end of the game to give Fulton a win, people would be outraged. Not only are they inadequate officials, but think about the bias of a home team fan. I’m sure that if 99 percent of you were chosen to come down out of the crowd and make crucial, game-changing calls, most of the time you’d make the call that
would benefit your team. Just like two students from CNS would make the calls that would benefit CNS, or a kid from Central Square would benefit Central Square, and so on. Also, this wasn’t a normal match, or just some throw-away game in the middle of the season. This was a sectional game, win or go home, and these kids are the ones deciding the game. For the seniors on the OHS team, it is horrible that their last game was decided in the way that it was. To have such an important game decided by inexperienced, untrained kids is despicable. There is no silver lining for these kids; they didn’t know what they were doing in any way, shape, or form, and whoever decided to put such an important game in the hands of these children should be ashamed.
Buccaneer Bulletin Sports Volume 12 Number 2
Oswego High School’s Student Voice
Oswego High School Athlete of the Month
By Jasmine Davis
s number thirty-two breaks away down the field, the whole crowd anxiously rises. The stadium lights are like a spotlight as he sprints towards the end zone, leaving the rest of the players in the dust. Just as he crosses the goal line, the crowd erupts. “Damian, Damian!” Chanting starts and the football team surrounds their teammate, slapping him on the back and patting his helmet. Oswego varsity football player, Damian Jermaine Williams, number 32, has been the star on the team this year, averaging 250 yards per game. With a 7-2 season record, averaging thirty points a game, varsity football enjoyed a rebirth this fall. Their starting running back, Williams, had a lot to do with this success. His speed and elusiveness are a lethal combination. Williams is a junior, and this is his second year on varsity, and his sixth year playing football. He said, “It was our best season this year; I’m proud of it.” Williams was the highlight player of most games all season, scoring multiple touchdowns for the Bucs. Varsity football coach, David Gryczka said, “I think the Fowler game was his best game. I think it was his arrival, proving to both himself and the rest of the league that he was a good player.” Williams felt that Homecoming was his most important game, because it’s been such a long time since the football team had won its homecoming game, and it meant a lot to him to be part of that. Williams’ speed is not his only skill, “His vision, and his toughness,” are skills his coach said are most important to his success on the field. Gryczka said one of his most important plays of the year was against arch-rival Fulton. “For his fourth and gamewinning touchdown, he got a crease, made a great cut, and scored on fourth down. He left a trail of seven guys in red lying on the ground,” the coach stated. His goals for next season are to keep improving as a team and hopefully improve on this season’s record. On a personal level, Williams hopes to reach 2000 yards by the end of the next season. It’s going to be hard to achieve success like he enjoyed this year, especially since they’re losing several important senior players, but Williams believes that they can do it. “We have half of the line coming back, but harder to replace will be Matt Demm. He was the lead blocker on a great number of his long carries. Damian will have to be patient early, giving the young guys time to gel as a unit,” said Gryczka. Gryczka is very proud of how far Williams has come as a player. “Damian is a hard-nose runner who’s learning the value of hard work, determination, and teamwork. He’s hardworking and he has skills that aren’t teachable. He’s an excellent athlete with a bright future.” Williams’ teammates had many good things to say about him. “He’s the best running back I’ve ever played with and I’m glad I had the opportunity to play with him,” said senior, Jon Berkley. Adam Johnson, also a senior, said “When Damian gets the ball, he will find the end zone by any means necessary.” Off the field, Gryczka said Williams is a “quiet and very humble” player. Williams plays basketball, and was on the JV team last year. As for college, Williams has not considered any specific schools yet, he does, however, wish to pursue football in his future. Photo Courtesy of Photos-N-Motion Photo Illustration by Steve LiVoti