Page 1

WEST SIDE

WELCOME BACK STUDENTS! Get the insider on what to expect for the 2009 seasons for Tosa West fall sports pg. 4

STORIES

SEPTEMBER 2009

• Wauwatosa West high School • 11400 W Center Street, Wauwatosa WI • Volume 14, Issue 1

ADMINISTRATION

New Associate Principal Preparing for School Joins Tosa West EDUCATION

How Lena Crawford Plans to Bring Change to West

An Insight into Those who Help Kick off the New Year Angela O’Brien g Editor-in-Chief

The first day of school is a time for a new beginning. The classrooms are clean, the floors are polished, and students are armed with their new class schedules. However, there is a lot of work that goes into preparing – all conducted before the first bell even rings. Administrators, teachers, students, and custodians all play a part in making the new school year start off as smoothly as possible.

EMILY HOFFMANN West Side Stories LENA CRAWFORD prepares for the new school year, ready to bring new ideas and her own personal teaching style to West. g

Angela O”Brien g Editor-in-Chief The definition of associate is a companion or comrade who shares actively in anything as a business enterprise, or undertaking. The definition of principal is the head or director of a school.

Putting them both together in associate principal means that you are committed to helping and sharing ideas with the leaders of an educational facility, and that is exactly what Ms. Lena Crawford plans on achieving.

Ms. Crawford left her previous post as an associate principal at Northwest Secondary, an MPS school, to gain the opportunity to come and share her leadership skills at Wauwatosa West. A Whitefish Bay alum, Ms. Craw-

ford spent ten years as a high school science teacher before gaining her first administrative position. Young and confident, Ms. Crawford is firmly set in her beliefs and feels she can bring real change to Tosa West. g

please see “Q&A...” p. 2

BUILDING ENHANCMENTS

Mystery Construction Plowing Ahead Progressing Building to be State of the Art Concession Stand

Zack Garhart g Editor-in-Chief Rolling into the Wauwatosa West parking lot, it is difficult for anyone to miss the yellow bob cat’s and cement trucks rumbling across the torn up gravel and loose dirt. According to Associate Principal Paul Thusius, plans have been circling around the school for a new concession stand and a decorative entrance for two years now. As of August 1st, the construction has begun. “We’ve done quite a bit of fund raising through the booster club and different events,” Thusius said. An annual summer golf outing was another source of contribution for the

fundraising of both Wauwatosa West and East. Mr. Thusius also commented that the construction was on schedule for their goal of unveiling the new building by the homecoming game on October 9th. To meet this milestone the construction team has been working for approximately ten hours a day, but they have taken a few days off here and there. However, the concessions stand and decorative entrance is only the first portion of the two phase project. Plans for an additional storage space behind the concession stands are a priority that

ART DIAGRAM of the proposed structure for the completed concession stand project g

please see “New Concession...” p.2

How does an ADMINISTRATOR prepare? Mrs. Luebke: Well, the early part of the summer is spent tying up the loose ends from last year – evaluating what did and did not work. We have to organize schedules and registration and balance the classes so no one class has too few or too many students. I also monitor the enrollment trends. This year, we have 1,024 students enrolled, and I have to take that number and compare it to years previous to see if it fluctuated in any way. It is also my job to prepare the staff and see that new members are up to speed and ready to go on the first day. This summer has been particularly hectic as we have just gotten a new computer system, and the server crashed during registration. We’ve been running around like crazy trying to get everything back up and running. How does a SECRETARY prepare? Mrs. Cervantes: I do all the purchasing for the school. From pencils, to chairs, to paper, to the frogs that are dissected in biology. I prepare for registration almost immediately and I must also write the newsletter and teacher’s handbook. I have to make sure that teachers have the keys to their rooms and I have to inform new teachers of West’s policies. Also, you know how at registration everyone drops their forms into a convenient box? Well, it’s my job to take all those forms and sort them alphabetically by last name. The preparations really continue throughout the year. After registration I begin to work on open house, then parent/teacher conferences, then the Green and White awards. It’s a never-ending process. How does a SCIENCE TEACHER prepare? Mr. Vann: I usually look over my curriculum from last year and review the material that I am please see “Preparing” p.2 g


2 NEWS

WEST SIDE STORIES

September, 2009

Preparing for School...

cont. from page 1 teaching. I change tests I didn’t like, or add homework assignments that could be more helpful in understanding a topic. I also review all my labs and see which ones I want to keep, which ones I want to revise, which ones I want to eliminate, and which ones I want to add. How does a SPECIAL EDUCATION TEACHER prepare? Ms. Smith: My main job is the schedules of my students. I have to hand write them and make sure everyone is in the classes they need to be in. I also have to prepare accommodation sheets for the students and must meet with their teachers to explain to them the special accommodations my students need in order to get the most out of learning. I also must prepare the computer reading program. I have to put everyone’s name in the system. I have to align my student’s curriculum in special ed. with their other classes, and prepare an Individual Education Plan for each student. How does a CUSTODIAN prepare? Mr. Dennis: We start by pulling all the furniture out of the rooms and giving that a good rub down and washing. We wash the floors, walls, and doors and then wax the floors so they are at that shiny glow on the first day. When the waxing is done, we pop the furniture back in the room and move onto the next hallway. This year was a challenge because we had to work around summer school, as it was using a lot more classrooms. We’ve had to cram six weeks of work into one week, so we’re pretty busy. How does a STUDENT prepare? Herschel Kissinger: I completely clean my room from top to bottom so I have a clean slate. I also cover and decorate my books for optimism and get my school supplies real early for the best picks, because they have to be the right type. For instance, I need Ticonderoga pencils and five stare notebooks, otherwise school supplies are useless.

Q&A With the New Associate Principal cont. from page 1

Q: Why did you apply for this position? A: I believe in schools that have diversity in their student bodies. The more variety you have in your students, the better they are going to respond to challenges and problems and work to find a resolution. The students at West have a wide variety of opportunities open to them, with all the clubs and extra-curriculars that are offered to them. Back where I previously taught, we didn’t have any of those things. I chose to come to West because I feel the students are very involved in their community and they really take advantage of what is offered to them. Q: What ideas or philosophies are important to you? How do you plan on applying them at West? A: I am a firm believer in excellence in who you are. The only person you should strive to be better than is yourself. Everyone has their own talents and strengths and should never compare themselves to other students. Just because Billy is good at math, doesn’t mean Johnny should feel obligated to be better. Although Billy may be better than Johnny in Math, Johnny may be better in athletics. Do you see how students shouldn’t compare themselves to each other? Everyone has their own strengths and weaknesses and

should always strive to do better than the did previously. I also believe in modification on behalf of the teachers, meaning they need to find a way to juggle their curriculums to fit the needs of every student. Not all students are the same, and you are never going to get the ‘perfect class’. Teachers need to adapt to make sure all students are on the same level instead of leaving someone behind in the dust. I also believe that it is my job to see the potential in students, and guide them when they cannot see the road in front of them. If a student is straying from what they are good at, I feel it is important to address their talents and get them back on the path of achievement. I plan on applying these philosophies by making my face known and interacting with the students. I don’t want to be an administer who hides behind a desk and a nameplate, but I want to be out among the students, showing them what they are good at and if necessary, I will help them reach those goals.

Q: How would your former students describe you as an administer? A: Fair, consistent, a good conversationalist, supportive, and very firm. I believe that when students do wrong, that is a choice. All students are warned of the rules on the very first day of

classes, and the teachers outline the consequences for those rules. The student makes a choice to break the rules. Now, students often come to me, “Ms. Crawford, I had to because-” and then fill in an excuse of your choosing. I tell them, “That’s fine, I understand. But because you felt like you had to do it, you also have to pay the consequences for your actions. If you need to break it, you need to accept the consequences.”

Q: Would you say that you take a more active or passive role in school issues? Do you work to resolve a problem, even if it’s not under your jurisdiction, or do you leave the problem to the person who’s in charge? Why? A: Oh no, I would say I am very active. When I first arrived at West, I was the new kid on the block, so to speak. There wasn’t much I could do as I wasn’t familiar with the system and wasn’t yet part of the administrative team. I could have just sat behind my desk and waited for someone to come to me, but I took the initiative and found things to do. I asked everyone I saw if there was something I could do to help them, and even helped out with some of the filing in the reception area of the office. In my opinion, we’re all in this together, and you should always help out, whether or not it is or is not in your job description.

Q: A student comes to you with a problem. What are the steps you take in resolving it? A: I would say there are four steps in this situation. First, I need to assess the problem. I need to decide if it is serious or minor and who was all involved. I then have to ask myself, “Am I able to resolve this problem?” If the answer is yes, I will do everything I can to get it all sorted out. If I cannot resolve the issue, then I need to direct the student to someone who can. Many times, a student will feel uncomfortable talking to someone other than the confidant they’ve chosen to express the situation to. In those cases, I act as the liaison between the administrator and the student, if the student wants my help in that way. Q: What is the most important thing the students of West should know about you? A: That I love my job and am one hundred percent devoted to it. You all should know that my door is always, always open and you can come to me anytime with any type of problem. In saying this, I want to reinforce the point that while I may be a friend to you as well as an administrator, I do believe in rules.

New Concession Stand Shaping Up cont. from page 1 athletics director Mike Hetzel have found to be vital to the athletics program. “The storage space would be used to store pole vault and high jump pits which usually get damaged by rodents,” Hetzel said. He also regarded that plans are circling around an extra space for the home and away football teams to meet at half time. According to Principal Pat Luebke, Mr. Hetzel has been the head of the program for the additions to the field, as well as Mr. Shuster and alumni Mr. Calarko. Together they sent out 12,000 letters to alumni of Tosa West asking for donations and contributions, and they received 70 letters back with money for donation. Hetzel said that the goal of getting up an entrance arch plastered with the Trojan logo will be something to

Photo Credits: Emily Hoffmann

shoot for in the future. When this arch is finally completed, it will cost $6,800. “The base bid for the entire project was $525,000,” Luebke said. With the alumni letters that we sent out, we raised $8,000. The $8,000 that we raised has put us a lot closer to our final goal.” Now $8,000 does not come close to $525,000, but Ms. Luebke said that the money being used for the field renovation is coming from a few separate accounts. One of the accounts is called the Tosa Fields Fundraising, and that account holds a little over $100,000. As for now, the construction plans only include a building for tickets and concessions to be sold during sporting events. Senior football player Dylan Rogahn couldn’t be happier with the new additions being implemented this

year, and not only with the football field. “I think it will organize the look of the place a lot more and make it look a little bit classy without just a tent for food. The jerseys have helped add to the excitement too,” Rogahn said sharing his enthusiasm. The football program has redesigned their jerseys again by this time enforcing the white numbers with white trim on the front of the collar as well as chevrons running down the side of the jersey. Green pants will coordinate well with the green jerseys, as the pants will include chevrons as well. These implementations are all the more reason for the energy to be flowing in the football program this season, as the Trojans are showing a promising performance for spectators.

It wouldn’t be fair to pour money into one athletics facility and not the other, that’s why the athletics department distributed some of the money towards building benches for the opposing and home team on the soccer field at Whitman. The benches are sheltered to protect from poor weather conditions. According to Mr. Hetzel, a brand new underground sprinkler system was implemented as well as a new scoring table. Little by little, the donations and contributions are making a difference in the athletics program, something that Mr. Hetzel works towards each day as the director.


FEATURES 3 WEST SIDE STORIES

September, 2009

THEATRE

Lights, Camera, Action!

AT TOSA WEST!

Renovations to Tosa West’s Theater carpet and dusty curtains. However, as students file in for one of West’s many assemblies, they will notice some subtle changes in the appearance of the auditorium. These changes include newly installed carpeting, a replacement to the old curtains, and an updated lighting system. ANGIE O’BRIEN West Side Principal LuELECTRICIAN MARC DYRCZ describes the improvements to the lighting system in Tosa West theatre ebke had an explanation for Herschel Kissinger g Managing Editor all of these additions to the auditorium. Any returning student of Wau- “I love the carpeting,” Luebke said in watosa West is familiar with the high an interview about the theater updates. school’s auditorium, with its well-worn The carpeting will be the most noticeg

able of the changes for most theater-goers, though the students who participate in the musical and other West productions will be some of the first to try out the new lights. “The people in the audience might not notice the changes, the people behind the scenes will,” Luebke said. So why make these changes now? The carpeting was a replacement that had been planned for years. The school district periodically updates things such as this, and it just happened to be the year for Tosa West. As for the curtains, they had deteriorated to the point where a replacement was required. The new lighting system is to replace the old one, which has not been changed since the school opened. The new lights will increase the number of possible lighting arrangements for the stage crew, while hopefully reducing the stress of changing bulbs and untangling extension cords. Since her arrival at Tosa West in 2007, Principal Luebke has done much to promote interest in the theater depart-

ment, including extending show dates for the fall musical and spring play for two weeks versus one, purchasing a new soundboard, and the recent hiring of new theater director Katie Shorer. However, as Ms. Lueke points out herself, the auditorium is far from being her only area of interest. “I take interest in improving all of Wauwatosa West. We have a wonderful facility-we need to improve what we have,” she said. Outside of the auditorium, other additions to the high school include the new entrance building for West’s stadium, including bathrooms and a concession stand. If completed on time, the building will be inaugurated over homecoming weekend. “If our facilities are in good shape, I tend to believe [the students] will take better care of them,” Ms. Luebke explained. New and returning students will be able to see the new theater for themselves during the beginning-of-school assembly.

CLASSROOM

CLASSROOM

New Classroom Faces

New Frosch Faces

Herschel Kissinger g Managing Editor

Incoming Freshmen Open Up About New Opportunities and Fears of High School

New Teachers Share their Plans and Interests

Q: What classes are you teaching?

Neil Sheaffer: Latin, levels 1, 2, 3, 4. Amanda Rumpf: Experimental B&W Photography as Fine Art, 1 and 2nd hour. Rebecca Kirchman: I will be team-teaching Biological Sciences one period with Mr. Schneider and teaming the Transitions class with Ms. Tajnai. I will also teach a special education section of English, U.S. History, and a Study Skills class.

Q: What schools, if any, did you teach at before coming to West? Neil Sheaffer: I have taught for 25 or so years in both public and private schools, most recently schools in Racine. The first school at which I taught was a private school which was a school before the USA was an independent country. Amanda Rumpf: Before coming to West I student taught at Eisenhower Elementary with Kris Jack. I later spent the spring 09 semester as the long-term Art sub at Wilson, TSHST, and Longfellow schools. Rebecca Kirchman: Previous to coming here, I taught six years at Madison East High School, one year for CESA 5 at an alternative school, one year in Albuquerque, NM and one year in Milwaukee.

Q: What are you going to bring to your classes?

Neil Sheaffer: I can’t tell you, but it will be fun and interesting. Ancient money is involved. Take Latin and find out! Amanda Rumpf: I am very enthusiastic and like to have fun in class. Using photography as a way for students to explore art and themselves is very rewarding. However, I also expect the best personal effort from myself and my students. High school is a great time to build confidence and responsibility in ourselves and our work. Rebecca Kirchman: I hope to bring a smile, structure and fun to my class activities.

Q: What is something that every student should know about you?

Neil Sheaffer: I am a musician with copyrighted songs. I own guitars that are almost as old as I am. Amanda Rumpf: I love animals. Over the past three years, my husband (Mr. Rumpf 5th grade at Eisenhower), and I have fostered more than 70 animals for the Wisconsin Humane Society. It is the most rewarding thing I have ever done. We currently have two kittens of our own I adopted from WHS. “Emma Peep” is a black and white Main Coon with beautiful green eyes. “Jackie Chins” is a short hair black and white that we rescued from our neighbor’s garbage can. I cannot wait to share my experiences with you! Rebecca Kirchman: That underneath my sarcasm, I’m a secretly an optimist.

Ellyn Kirtley g Staff Writer

Every year, new freshmen roam in middle school. Alik Hansen, when the halls of Tosa West, keeping their asked how much homework he thought heads down and trying their best not to he would receive on a daily basis, said, “I get lost. I talked to some of the incoming hope not much.” freshmen at regis The uppertration this year classmen have to learn about the by and large expectations they been looked have for their high upon by freshschool experience. men with a When asked what mixture of fear, they are most worrespect, and ried about, getting admiration. good grades and When I asked finding their way what some around the buildof the incoming were frequent ing freshmen concerns. Austin thought of the Jones said that he upperclassis most nervous men, I got a about “Homecomvariety of aning and spirit swers. One week.” freshman opti E v e n mistically rethough starting plied, “Hopefulhigh school can be ly, they won’t nerve-wracking, trample me.” there are also Most however, many things the EMILY HOFFMANN West Side Stories said that the freshman I talkSTUDENTS receive their textbooks for the upperclassmen ed to are excited upcoming year. they have alabout. Both Alex ready met are Andria and Suzie nice. Shively said that they were looking for- Becoming a sophomore, and esward to seeing friends. pecially a junior or senior, means prepar Of course, it is always interest- ing for college becomes a big project for ing to see what classes new students most students. However, when I asked are the most, and the least, interested the freshmen what they were thinking in. English and math seemed to be the they wanted to do after high school, most classes some of the students are looking of them said they had no idea. Alex Anforward to the least, but the highly an- dria though, said, “College, and then med ticipated classes varied from person to school.” person. Claire Wojonowiak is looking for- Whether high school really be a ward her art class, but is not so thrilled wild roller coaster ride, better than midat the prospect of taking geometry. Other dle school, or maybe a just little harder, courses some of the freshmen expect to be freshmen can count on it being an unforfun are Chef Foods, and Earth/Space. As gettable experience. for the issue of homework, it was generally stated that more is anticipated than g


4 SPORTS WEST SIDE STORIES

September, 2009

SPORTS

SPOTLIGHT

ON TOSA WEST FALL SPORTS

EMILY HOFFMANN West Side Stories g

LAURA SHIVELY works hard to perfect her breastroke as she enters her third season as a Tosa West swimmer.

Girls Volleyball

Boys Volleyball

Sam Himmelspach

Sean MacGillis

2008 Record: 7-3

2008 Record: N/A

Team Needs to Improve on: Defense; Offense looks

Team Needs to Improve on:

good. We need to get together as a team and work together and we’ll be good

Key Players for Success: Sam Himmelspach. Jenny Ciriacks. Lauren Dumke.

Biggest Game this Season: Brown Deer.

Tough loss last year; took away a conference title from us. And the star player is back

Young Player(s) with Biggest Impact: Sophmores

We need to work on better passing, blocking, and filling the holes left from graduated players

Key Players for Success: Sophmores Mitch Lahmann, Alec Redlich, and senior Ryan Bruss

Biggest Game this Season: New Berlin United

Young Player with Biggest Impact: Matt Stohles

Boys Soccer David Boardman/Tim O’Brien

2008 Record: Made it to 2nd Round Playoffs

Team Needs to Improve on: We need to improve on our work rate in practice. We need to get the young players acclimated to the varsity program/game.

Key Players for Success: Sam Krenzein and Niko Zabala

Biggest Game(s) this Season:

Tosa East, Germantown, Menomonee Falls

Young Player with Biggest Impact: Josh Flobert

Alexis Hasemeister, Jenna Lahmann, Kelsey Quakenbush.

Football

Girls Swim

Girls Tennis

Dylan Rogahn

Laura Shively

Devon Wiseman

2008 Record: 0-9

2008 Personal Record:

2008 Pesonal Record: 9-3

Team Needs to Improve on: Playing better as a team

Key Players for Success: Offense: Kevin Gorman, Mark Wesson Defense: Barry Ballinger, Reggie Cole

Biggest Game this Season: New Berlin Eisenhower

Young Player with Biggest Impact: Reggie Cole

1:32 on 100 Meter Breaststroke

Team Needs to Improve on:

More technique work; We need to find the balance between conditioning and technique work

Key Players for Success: 4x1 relay of Lexi Utech, Monica Wojnowink, Andrea Bretl, and Jenny Budzien.

Biggest Meet this Season:

Every meet will have different challenges

Young Player with Biggest Impact:

The freshmen have superb technique and are really working hard and consistent. With them, we are really going to have a good season.

Team Needs to Improve on: We have to improve on our mental stability; we were pretty up and down. Getting the ball in. Focusing on the the game

Key Players for Success: Katy Schmutzer; she’s improved a lot; and she’s improved every year. She’s really good.

Toughest Game:

New Berlin Eisenhower; solid. Some girls have been playing there for awhile.

Young Player(s) Showing Potential:

A lot of sophmore players; Megan Faulk, Katie Adams, Lea Mott

Dylan Rogahn

Sam Himmelspach Tim O’Brien

Devon Wiseman

2009/2010 Issue 1 Sep  

An Insight into Those who Help Kick off the New Year EMILY HOFFMANN g West Side Stories LENA CRAWFORD prepares for the new school year, read...

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