The Galleon Issue 5 (2020-2021)

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THE GALLEON Spanish River’s Award Winning, Student-Run Newspaper


River Welcomes New On-Campus Students Ana Perez

back, it’s different, but after a few walks around everything goes back to normal,” said sophomore Adam Zausner. Students have been able to normalize their new situation and adapt. The school has been following the established CDC guidelines of staying

News Editor

Before the second semester began, students were once again given the choice to stay home or come back to school. The second semester began Tuesday, February 1st, and about 250 new in-person students arrived on campus. Most of these students have not been on campus since March 13, 2020, and now they are arriving in a new semester with a new perspective. “In virtual school, I was more distracted and it was easy to just push off work until later in the night, but school inperson keeps you away from the distractions,” says sophomore Nic West. “You end up learning more and getting more work done. I’d say I prefer in-person school.” Students working in a classroom alongside virtual peers. Students and teachers have reached the consensus that six feet apart at all times in classrooms, students do better in-person, but with and has made wearing masks a COVID still being an issue, many requirement to walk into school. parents still remain concerned about Teachers have also been provided with disinfectant wipes for students to wipe safety. “The school seems very safe with down their desks every period. The other aspect of students coming the precautions they take and coming

back is academic performance. Both Nic West and Adam Zausner feel that paying attention is much easier in-person which leads to better comprehension of the material. “I do notice a significant difference in performance when students come back to campus,” says English teacher Sean

Deecken “I think the reason behind this is that students have less distractions at school, and being there physically with their teachers’ guidance allows them to focus solely on their school work. “ Academic performance has been on the forefront of the minds of students

March 2021- Issue 5

and teachers alike but there are other aspects that go into the decision to come to school. “Is hard to say whether or not it is worth the risk in returning since everyone’s situation is different. Having a majority of students learning from home is not the same, and I am looking forward to the day when we can all be back together again, learning and forming relationships” says Deecken. In regards to forming relationships, it is apparent that doing so is immensely more difficult in virtual school. Students cannot congregate in the morning and sit together at lunch when they are in virtual school. While parents may have the concern that with the increase in the number of students, they might not always be able to socially distance, the school is still only at 30% capacity. This means only one or two more students in each class period. With the ongoing pandemic and the challenges that come with it, teachers and students will continue to work to the best of their abilities and hope for the best. PHOTO COURTESY OF SUZANNE DELANEY

Cambridge and College Board Share Exam Updates Louise Wyler News Editor

Without the district’s instruction, Spanish River won’t have any final decisions made about how the exams will be taken. Fortunately, College Board has provided us with some updates on their website. “We’ve made decisions that prioritize the health and safety of educators and students while preserving opportunities for motivated

Many students are growing anxious about AP and AICE exams as they are quickly approaching. Although last year’s AP exams were modified and AICE exams were canceled, the College Board has decided to go ahead with the full AP exam just as AICE plans to hold exams per usual as well. Spanish River’s Testing Coordinator, Ms. Eames, shared details about the upcoming exams. “I don’t have a lot of information at this Logo for College Board’s Advanced Placement program time. College Board students to earn college credit,” put out some updates regarding this announced College Board. “Rather year’s AP exams, but we are currently than offering a single testing approach waiting on guidance from the district that would serve only some students before we decide how this will look on and educators well, we are offering a our campus. As soon as we have that variety of testing options that reflect information, we will announce our the unique characteristics of each plans.,” said Eames. exam and the preferences we’ve heard @Galleon_News

versions of the exams, and they are synching the exams which will prevent communication between different time zones. For AICE exams, Cambridge has released minimal updates. As of February 5, Cambridge has announced on their website that they are doing their absolute best to support students all over the world. Keep in mind that AICE classes are taught in 160 countries, each school having their own circumstances to consider. “We continue to plan for exams to go ahead in June 2021 where it is permitted and safe,” Cambridge Logo for Cambridge University’s AICE program cheating. Because some testing will says. occur online, this will make it much Both College Board and Cambridge easier for students to cheat. First, are doing their best to be considerate they are requiring a camera, which of all the students around the world will take your photo at the start of the that take their courses. They are both exam and match it to a photo id. Also, working hard to formulate exams that they are using plagiarism software, are fair and work for everyone in these there are going to be different difficult times. from AP teachers, coordinators, and school leaders.” With this said, College Board is going to be flexible about the testing options, inspiring relief among AP students. To make things easy for them, they have an entire page on their website with the exam schedules. College Board is going to be very strict this year when it comes to






River Welcomes New Teacher: Ms. Carter What classes do you teach at River?

I teach Choir, Drama I, Music Theory and Keyboard

What classes have you taught in the past? I have taught drama in private school in Central Florida for high school and middle school.

Have you always lived in Florida? I have lived most of my life in Florida. The other places I have lived in are Michigan and Chicago.

Where did you go to school? I went to Stetson University in Deland, Florida.

What made you want to become a teacher? My passion for the arts and learning. I wanted to inspire and spread the love of arts in student’s lives. Theater and music taught me so much when I went to school and I wanted to be able to give students that same experience

Why teach at Spanish River and what do you think so far? I enjoy working at Spanish River, everyone here is very supportive and encouraging.

What’s it like to be a teacher during the middle of a pandemic? Teaching during this pandemic is definitely a learning experience with figuring out how to teach drama and music both virtually and brick and mortar! Do you have any advice for students taking your class or in general?

My advice for any student taking one of my classes is to just try your best and put yourself out there. PHOTO COURTESY OF ANA PEREZ

Class of 22’ Chooses Mr. and Ms. Spanish River

The Class of 22’ Ms. and Mr. Spanish River Mia Simon and Sam Chaskin stand with the Class of 21’ Ms. and Mr. Spanish River Emily Goldstein and Blake Smythe.





Should the President Have the Power to Pardon?

Yes, to Check the Judicial Branch Amelie La-Branche Guest Writer

With recent developments on the forefront of our minds, it is no surprise that the American people have begun to examine the responsibilities and powers of the President under a different light. The power to pardon is one of the most wide-reaching powers that the President reserves and many see this presidential power as a dangerous exercise of authority; however, this is far from the case. The President should be able to reserve the power to pardon, as pardons are subject and part of vital checks on which the government relies. In essence, the government was established in such a way that no absolute power could dominate over the people; the powers and responsibilities of the federal government were divided among three branches: the legislative branch (Congress), the judicial branch (the Supreme Court and inferior courts), and the executive branch (the President). The Founding Fathers developed the system of checks and balances as another safeguard against despotism, as this system assured that the powers of each branch counterbalance each other, maintaining the equilibrium the government depends on. For example, The Supreme Court checks the legislative and executive branches’ powers by declaring presidential actions or laws unconstitutional, and the President and Congress check the Supreme Court’s power through the power of appointment or through amendments to the Constitution respectively. There are few checks on the judicial branch, as the Founding Fathers were aware that the judicial branch could be influenced by the other branches. If a ruling is deemed to be unfair, the President is able to overturn the conviction with a pardon or use a reprieve to suspend a sentence. The power to pardon allows any mistakes or overreaches on behalf of the judicial branch to be rectified. The major grievance against presidential pardons and clemency is their wide scope, free from consultation with Congress or government agencies. America’s key defining trait is its democratic ideals, so a vital check to the executive branch are the people themselves. In order to sustain a functioning democracy, it is the responsibility of the people to elect a president who will make wise use of the powers at his or her disposal. But what if the President elected seeks to abuse such powers? The Founding Fathers were aware of such a possibility; George Mason spoke at the Virginia Ratifying Constitution of the troubling fact that the Commander-in-Chief of the United States may use his position as a means to his own ends, manipulating his powers to conceal his own wrongdoing. George Mason was concerned with

No, to Guard Against Depotism

the fact that the President “may frequently pardon crimes which were advised by himself.” and that “at some future day . . . he will establish a monarchy, and destroy the republic” (The Debates of the State Conventions on the Adoption of the Federal Constitution). James Madison understood Mason’s argument, but had a deep understanding of the limitations of presidential power that the Constitution details. “There is one security in this case,” states Madison. “If the President be connected, in any suspicious manner, with any person, and there be grounds to believe he will shelter him, the House of Representatives can impeach him; they can remove him if found guilty” (The Debates of the State

Conventions on the Adoption of the Federal Constitution). However, the President still holds office until he is convicted, so what stops him from pardoning those who were involved in his crimes, or those whose testimony could put him at a disadvantage? Well, according to Madison, the President still holds his office, but his power to pardon is suspended. The option to amend the Constitution is a testament to the commitment to longevity in this democracy. Power is a concept that the Founding Fathers treated with reverence and respect. Presidential pardons can be amended, with specific language outlining the situations and restrictions to which pardons must adhere. However, no government should or could rely on a single, itemized legal formula to achieve the good of society. The power of presidential pardon is tied to the principles that allowed this democracy to rise from an assembly of colonies, and this power should be allowed to remain.

Nashki Joseph Associate Editor The power to grant pardons is one of the president’s most powerful checks on the judicial branch. In Article II of the U.S. Constitution, the framers described it as the “power to grant reprieves and pardons for offenses against the United States, except in cases of impeachment.” The framers may have good intentions, but the power to pardon, at least in its current form, has shown itself to be an unreasonable weapon to use for political points and personal gain. The federal government stands upon a complex foundation of checks and balances, with each branch

being able to sway and be swayed by the other branches. In Federalist 74, Alexander Hamilton argues that without the power to pardon, there is no way to account for the imperfect nature of the criminal justice system. He then argues that “The reflection that the fate of a fellow-creature depended on his sole fiat, would naturally inspire scrupulousness and caution,” saying that it is preferable to leave the power to pardon to one person, rather than a body of people. This would, at least theoretically, encourage them to act ethically with respect to the power to grant pardons and commutations. However, there are several less-than-ethical examples of the president granting pardons. Looking recently, former President Donald Trump issued a pardon to Steve Bannon, his chief strategist who played a large role in his election, and was also charged with fraud on allegations that he lied to donors who gave money to

Art Courtesy of Maria Viloria Garcia

the “We Build The Wall” online fundraising campaign. In this same vein, Trump issued pardons to several people who were convicted of lies during Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russian election interference, including Michael Flynn, his former National Security Advisor, and George Papadopoulos, a former foreign policy advisor. Trump also issued pardons to four men convicted of killing 14 unarmed Iraqi civilians in 2007 under the banner of the private security firm Blackwater. A panel of the United Nations took an extremely dim view of Trump’s move, calling it an “affront to justice.” Clearly, there is quite a bit of room for presidents to use this power in a despotic manner. Congress is allowed little-to-no oversight over the process itself, and everso hesitant to use its only check on it -- the impeachment process. As House Democrats called for President Trump’s impeachment days before his successor’s inauguration, Republicans argued that it was unconstitutional to hold an impeachment trial for a president after they have left office. If the entirety of Congress held this view, the president could pardon their political allies with absolute impunity. Similarly, the Supreme Court has been less-than eager to limit the president’s power to pardon. In Connecticut Board of Pardons v. Dumschat, the Court declared that pardons have never been “the business of courts; as such, they are rarely, if ever, appropriate subjects for judicial review.” In the eyes of the Court, across the ages, the power is unrestrained and not subject to any kind of review or limitation, other than the constitutional threat of impeachment. But this broad definition of the power is why it is dangerous. Following an investigation of a sitting president, the president could direct his subordinates to interfere with the process, and then pardon them later as their term nears its end. Congressional oversight, for example -- one of the most powerful checks that the body has on the president -- would effectively be made obsolete, as the truth would be obscured by a small army of partisan aides and allies. In order to become a truly just country, the power to pardon cannot exist as it is. Leaving one person with the ability to override the decisions of federal courts is a danger to the very ideals of the judicial branch. While thousands sit in federal prisons due to unjust laws, unfair trials, and misconduct, the president is free to pardon his his political allies to secure power for himself.




Backed By Bri: A Senior’s Perspective Brianna Levine Editor-In-Chief This is my second-to-last editorial for The Galleon; it feels unreal. Editorials are typically supposed to focus on one topic that I am passionate about or view as controversial. But for this issue, I decided to take an unorthodox approach by focusing on a number of different topics. First off, I would like to discuss my experience working at Publix, especially during a Pandemic. Please note that I am grateful to still be employed and Publix is by no means a bad company to be employed at, and in fact, has many benefits for all of its staff. But as I have continued working as a cashier since the beginning of the pandemic, the pressure has not diminished. I have previously written an article about working at Publix during a pandemic, but now I would like to focus on my observations. While working, I am approached by countless amounts of people, and while I do my best to stay safe, oftentimes contact is unavoidable. I handle money, give directions, help customers out to their car, and partake in multiple other scenarios that require less than six feet of distance. In addition, the frustration of dealing with difficult customers is immense. I can recall numerous occasions where I would have to ask customers to wear a mask or even just

wear it correctly, only to get scolded by that customer. One person called me a communist, another said it would mess up their makeup -- the excuses are endless. But all this has made me realize that people can be mean -some people lack courtesy. Why can’t the senior that is precautious KINDLY request the person behind her to back up? Why does the person behind that senior get insulted when this is asked of them? I also want to address how my experience at Publix h a s differed since last March. First, we have toilet paper but lack paper towels and I am still clueless as to why. Next, customers are understanding when it comes to our situation and the lack of some products. And finally, there is an influx in sales, but when it comes to gatherings, customers tend to take a different approach such as buying a turkey that would only feed two people for Thanksgiving, or buying a cake and lots of balloons to make that

quarantined birthday feel special. Moving onto my next focus, there has recently been an increase in racial inequality. It is so inspiring to see the Black Lives Matter movement progress, but now anti-Asian and Transgender violence is on the rise. From namecalling to physical attacks, both communities have been cut no slack. The discriminatory attacks against Asians have commonly been geared towards elders and have the entire community on high alert. In s o m e c a s e s , A s i a n American s e n i o r citizens have been murdered or seriously injured. This raises my concern once again about people’s morals and their lack thereof. As for the transgender community, 2020 saw an all-time-high for violence and assault---physical and verbal---with transgender deaths breaking records. This occurrence is often due to the lack of laws that target these hate crimes. On the bright side, there has been an influx of unity

between minority communities. While the LGBTQ community has stood with BLM for a while, In some cities such as Oakland, California, Black Lives Matter activists have united with the Asian community to combat these race-based attacks too. Lastly, I want to briefly emphasize the status of women in the workforce. It exhilarates me to see women obtaining higher positions than seen before. To be more specific, seeing profound figures such as Kamala Harris, who happens to be a woman of color, in the position of Vice President of the United States encourages me to keep working towards my goals and not let anything get in the way. I personally have not experienced an immense amount of discrimination due to my gender but fear that I would lack opportunities in the future. Unfortunately, the oppression is far from over. Over the course of the pandemic, women, especially of color, were the ones most likely to be let go from work. It is too soon to get discouraged though, as all women have the potential to exceed their male counterparts. Anyways, I would like to conclude my rant disguised as an editorial with an inspirational message. As the beloved Morgan Freeman once said, “The best way to guarantee a loss is to quit”.

Climate Change Cannot Be Politicized

Brayant Polanco Editor-In-Chief

Around February 10, 2021, a winter storm hit Texas, effectively shutting down the entire state as its infrastructure crumbled to the ground. Following the aftermath, dozens died, hundreds lost their homes, and thousands had no water or power to protect themselves against the unrelenting cold. After the state had its infrastructure destroyed following the winter storm, many conservative news sources quickly blamed renewable energy such as solar and wind for the lack of power. Many politicians in Texas worked to help their constituents and obtain federal aid. Others, however, such as the former mayor of Colorado City, Tim Boyd, were quick to post on Facebook how: “No one owes you [or] your family anything.” If this was not infuriating enough, many Republicans still fail to see how climate change has ongoing effects on our world - and how our generation will be the one to suffer from those effects. Even after politicians like Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio Cortez posted on their social media platforms why this environmental disaster is the exact reason we need to emphasize climate change, certain

Republicans replied and even made fun of her remarks. What is happening is that climate change is being actively politicized. It has not become a bipartisan issue but rather an issue actively vilified by most conservative Republicans. But what most

conser vatives fail to recognize is that climate change will continue to affect us more significantly if we do not take the steps necessary to slow it down. Although plans such as the Green

New Deal are often considered too radical because of its plans to make the United States have a renewable energy power sector, some similar plan is required to ensure we step in the right direction. There will be sacrifices in our lifestyles a n d many will

lose their j o b s combating climate change, but the costs of fighting back against it now will be less than what we will have to pay later down the road. This constant fight between Democrats and Republicans regarding

climate change should not even need to happen; we have to start working together to do something, rather than just bickering and debating about the same ongoing issues every year. Even though President Biden has already started in his efforts to make the U.S carbon-emission free by switching to electric cars and setting up a foundation to combat climate change, bipartisan support is needed to make sure legislation is passed to address it directly. We cannot continue to have legislation through executive orders because our government is too divided to pass anything to help the general public - and if anything, it proves that this current system is not working for and by the people. There are certainly more important issues to focus on such as handling the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and helping rebuilding efforts in Texas. However, we will soon have to come to terms with the fact that we will have to make some sacrifice to combat climate change - and if we don’t, we will pay the price sooner rather than later.



The World Needs More Forgiveness

Julia Horn

Editor-In-Chief As a graduating senior, it is no shock to me that our society has grown to become a place where we must please everyone and every group. I have also learned that our world is a place where we are constantly being judged. Whether it be on if we have managed to successfully please every person while not offending others or in our personal endeavors like academics and athletics. Speaking to society as a whole, I believe that everyone is constantly aiming to please everyone in everything they do. With cancel culture on the rise, people in the public eye feel like they are walking on eggshells because, in this world, it is only a matter of time before their career is destroyed from a single interview, Instagram post, or tweet. In the past year, several teens have risen to fame through TikTok and have also watched their newly found career as a content creator fall apart from a single mistake. For example, Nessa Barrett had been “canceled” earlier this year after making a TikTok video with a sound of a person reciting a verse from the Quran. While she was unaware that she was making fun of another

religion, her followers and the rest of the TikTok users quickly decided that she no longer deserved a social media platform. Although Barrett did release an apology, it has been made clear that her youthful mistake was most likely going to cost her her fame. Of course, what she did was wrong, and there is no harm in making people aware of their ignorance a n d insensitivity ; however, I hope that society can grow to become more forgiving in the future. We all make mistakes, and the fact that we must aim to please and worry about perpetual judgment at such a young age is honestly frightening. We live in a country and a world with so many different people and cultures, and if there is no forgiveness, no one can attain personal growth. Not only are we constantly being

judged on what we say, do, and post, but we are predisposed to please those around us from a young age, mainly in academics. As a five-yearold, I was examined to decide if I was academically “gifted.” How is that possible? In kindergarten, it is decided whether or not I grow up with the socalled “smart” kids or the average ones. I am still appalled that I grew up in an environment where I was judged on my intelligence before I could even add and subtract. But even now, we are judged on our academics in a way that will impact our entire future. I have spent my entire high school career aiming to please colleges I most likely will not go to or even get into. Even with my applications completed, I am still being judged by scholarship committees and award selection boards. While I have pursued the activities and



classes that I was passionate about in the last four years, I can admit that several of the choices I made and tasks I took on were for the main purpose of pleasing a random and unknown college admission officer. Looking back, I realize that the decisions I made to please others were because I am a product of my environment. I do not think that I would have taken on as much as I did if college was not at stake, but I do not regret any of the experiences I have had. However, I hope that those still in middle and high school will realize that this constant cycle of academic judgment is not the only important part of being a teenager. As I am slowly but surely approaching graduation, I have reflected on my experiences and this unprecedented year, and I have learned more about our society and the constant changes that will continue within it. While I have become more aware of the prevalence of cancel culture and our desire to please others in all aspects of life, I know that it will take time for people to adapt to our ever-changing society.



Arts and Entertainment

Sensation Amanda Gorman Stuns With Her Poems Nashki Joseph Associate Editor

First Lady Jill Biden personally recommended to the inaugural committee that Gorman be invited to perform, having been made a fan after she recited a poem at the Library of Congress in 2017. On that snowy day in January, Gorman sat waiting for her turn at the podium. She had written the poem the night of the capitol riot, when supporters of former president Donald Trump stormed the U.S. Capitol and disrupted the counting of the Electoral College votes, only two weeks prior. The 22-year-old was faced with a task that many would shrink at: to speak of unity, and an American dream that is rooted in equality and justice -- not bigotry and hatred. And she delivered -- commanding skill borne out of a lifetime of poetry, the lines “Somehow we’ve weathered and witnessed // a nation that isn’t broken // but simply unfinished” flew into the ears of millions. She said that “while democracy can be periodically defeated // it can never be permanently defeated.” Notably, she encouraged unity in the newest era of American democracy. In the span of minutes, Amanda Gorman became the nation’s center

of attention. She stands as a shining inspiration for young writers everywhere. But her love for writing began like most others -- in the classroom. Gorman fell in love with poetry in the third grade after her teacher read

impediment that makes pronouncing certain sounds difficult. “WriteGirl has been pivotal in my life. It’s been thanks to their support that I’ve been able to chase my dreams as a writer,” said Gorman as she announced her performance at the upcoming

Amanda Gormon reciting her poem, “The Hill We Climb” at the Presidential Inaugeration.

Ray Bradbury’s “Dandelion Wine” to her class. After that, poetry became a lifestyle for her. In the ninth grade, Gorman enrolled in WriteGirl, an organization that pairs young writers with mentors and offers workshops on several writing genres. There, she honed her craft and her public speaking skills. Similarly to President Biden, she has a speech

inauguration. Ever since then, her writing has continued to gather critical acclaim. Much of her poetry has the mark of an activist, speaking on issues such as police brutality, the African diaspora, racism, and feminism. In 2014, she was named the Youth Poet Laureate of Los Angeles. In 2017, she was named the first-ever National Youth

Poet Laureate, which was when First Lady Biden acknowledged her work. Gorman’s writing career stands out as an example of why education on literature and creative writing is essential for children. Additionally, having some sort of support system as a writer is essential for any young writer’s development. Here at Spanish River, Gorman’s story has stood out on several levels. “From an English teacher standpoint, ‘The Hill We Climb’ is an excellent example for rhyme, internal rhyme, rhythm and meter,” says English teacher Sean Delaney. “From a historical standpoint, it was important for my students to see this talented young lady become the youngest poet to ever recite her poetry for a Presidential Inauguration. And from a human standpoint, the poem gives hope and faith in humanity.” Gorman’s life as a writer has only just begun -- just weeks after the inauguration, she’s been interviewed by Former First Lady Michelle Obama for Times and was invited to be the first poet to perform at the Superbowl, where she brought poetry to the spotlight in one of the most televised events of the year. IMAGE COURTESY OF GOOGLE IMAGES

These Fun DIY Projects Will Beat Boredom Glass Painting

This is an easy painting project that results in a realistic final product. Try this out with friends too for an enjoyable experience! What you will need: - Picture frame (available from the dollar store) - Acrylic paint - The desired picture printed on white copy paper - Black Sharpie - Paint Brushes Directions: 1. Trace the printed copy of the image on the glass from the picture frame. Front of the painting Back of the painting 2. Flip the glass over and begin to paint the image in layers. 3. Be sure to wait a few minutes between each layer to ensure that the paint dries. 4. Once everything is painted in, allow it to dry, and then flip it over to reveal the final piece. 5. Lastly, place the glass back into the picture frame and put it on display or give it as a gift. An example of how to paint in layers: If painting a person or animal, paint the pupils of the eyes first, then the whites of the eyes, and then the skin color.

Cloud Lights

Cloud lights have recently gone viral on Tik Tok and create a cool atmosphere in anyone’s room. This project is not too hard but can be time-consuming. What you will need: - Poster boards (enough to cover the desired ceiling) Tip: use caution when doing this project- Polyester filling (cotton) having someone there to help may be the best choice. Be sure to turn off lights when - Double-sided tape or duct tape they are not in use and read the descrip- LED strip lights (noise sensitive are best) tion on the LED lights that are purchased - Spray adhesive to ensure that fire hazards are avoided. For Directions: added aesthetic, add artificial vines around the room or around mirrors. 1. Place tape (make duct tape double-sided) on the back of a poster. 2. Attach the poster to a ceiling or wall. 3. Stick LED strip light adhesive to the poster in the desired pattern. 4. Use spray adhesive to stick the polyester filling onto the poster and over the LED lights in clumps in order to give it a more IMAGES COURTESY OF BRIANA LEVINE realistic cloud appearance.

Arts and Entertainment



Nothing to Watch? Try Out These Trendy Shows Elle Borstelmann

Arts & Entertainment Editor


Cobra Kai Thirty years after the 1984 All Valley Karate Tournament takes place, Johnny Lawrence is now on the hunt to reopen the famous Cobra Kai karate dojo. Hearing of this news, his old rival Daniel LaRusso decides to reignite his old rivarly with Lawrence. Cobra Kai follows the lives of these two mixed martial arts rivals.

In the Regency era of London, Daphne Bridgerton, the high class Birdgerton family’s eldest daughter, is making her debut into the competitive marriage market. The story follows Daphne’s encounters in society along with the other members of the Bridgerton family.


Attack on Titan

After the events of Endgame, Marvel characters Wanda Maximoff and Vision find themselves in a small town called Westview where they are living in a sitcom. As each episode brings a new decade of sitcoms, Wanda and Vision are living their perfect suburban sitcom lives but not everything is as it seems.

Attack on Titan is set in a world where humanity was forced to live behind walls in order to protect themselves against hungry man eating titans. After a tragic attack from titans breaking the walls, young boy Eren Jaeger vows to destroy all titans. Eren decides to joins the military in order to discover the secret behind the titans and protect humanity.

Avatar Katara and Sokka, two siblings from a southern water tribe, discover a mysterious ice sphere containing a young boy. The boy turns out to be the Avatar who vanished 100 years ago named Ang. From there, Ang, Katara, and Sokka go on a journey to master all four elements to restore peace in the world after the Fire nations tyrannous rule. IMAGES COURTESY OF GOOGLE IMAGES

Scholastic Allows Students to Strive for Success Elle Borstelmann

Fuchs won a gold key for her artwork “Neon Grime” in the category for art Spanish River students Maya Fuchs portfolio, another gold key for “Forest and Catherine Hernandez, recently Cry” in the category for drawing and participated in the Scholastic 2021 illustration, a silver key for “Mourner’s Regional Art and Writing Awards Kaddish” in the category for digital art, competition. The Scholastic Awards an honorable mention for “Webcam Girl” in the category for has been in motion digital art, and lastly, an since 1923, making it honorable mention for the longest-running “The Museum” in the creative competition. category for drawing The competition allows and illustration. students ranging Fuchs had previously from grades seven to competed in the twelve to apply up to Scholastic Art and 28 categories of art Writing competition and writing. The goal during her sophomore of this competition year and decided to test is to give students her luck by entering an opportunity to again as a senior. showcase their bold When the pandemic and creative ideas first began, Fuchs within their artwork. With the help of Art piece “Forest Cry” by Maya Fuchs. decided to devote her select jurors, the goal is to find pieces spare time to creating work and later that exceed expectations in originality, chose to submit some of those pieces in technical skill, and the emergence of the competition. On average, one piece personal voice or vision. The highest of work can take anywhere from one to award available is the gold key. The fifteen hours depending on the level of recipients of this award, including difficulty. Fuchs’s top placing pieces “Forest Cry” Fuchs who won two gold keys, move and “Mourner’s Kaddish” both hold a on to compete at a national level in New York and become eligible for special place in her heart. “Forest Cry,” the title given to Fuchs painting that scholarships of up to $10,000. Fuchs, a senior at Spanish River, received a gold key in the drawing and secured a total of five awards ranging illustration category, depicts a roaring from honorable mentions to gold keys. bear on a wood plank. In preparation

Arts & Entertainment Editor

for this piece, Fuchs did not stick with received an honorable mention in the usual pen and paper illustration and the drawing and illustration category. instead incorporated The piece was created 3-D materials. when Hernandez was “Mourner’s Kaddish,” awake late at night and a memorable piece tried cutting and gluing that received a silver pieces of graph paper key in the digital art onto a white page. She category, is a tribute began to draw with pens piece about Fuchs trying to create a serene grandfather who environment in the passed away her middle of the woods. freshman year. “I did ‘The Forest “I really like ‘Forest in the Night’ during Cry’ because I cut the few earlier months and sanded the wood of quarantine,” said myself [and] worked Hernandez. “I got so out the problembored that I was drawing solving that went Art piece “The Forest in the Night” basically every day; I into working with the by Catherine Hernandez. was trying new things and wood texture,” said Fuchs. “‘Mourner’s made a bunch of interesting artwork.” Kaddish’ is a The piece I have Scholastic 2021 an emotional Regional Art connection and Writing with because a w a r d s it is dedicated provided a way to my Zadie, for Fuchs and which means Hernandez to grandfather in take a chance Yiddish.” and submit Fuchs, their artwork into the however, was not the only Art piece “Mourner’s Kaddish” by Maya Fuchs. comp etition. one who excelled. Junior Catherine Their hard work was well received and Hernandez also submitted her piece resulted in outstanding awards given COURTESY OF MAYA FUCHS named “The Forest in the Night”, which for their talent. ART AND CATHERINE HERNANDEZ




Brayant Polanco Co-Editor-in-Chief, Head Features, & Feature Focus Editor


EDUCATION President Biden plans on enforcing education reforms - both for students and teachers. Biden has acknowledged that education needs immense work to make it more effective and affordable for future American generations. First Lady, Dr. Jill Biden, who is a college professor, has proved to be a great source of influence for Biden’s education reforms. The first step was to fire the Secretary of Education, Betsy Davos, or at least that was until her resignation after the Capitol insurrection on January 6th. With no wage increase for teachers since 1996, Biden plans on increasing teacher’s wages and benefits to make it a more competitive field against others that require the same experience and education. Biden will triple funding for Title I and require corresponding school districts to allocate those funds for competitive salaries and other critical investments prior to using the federal funds for other purposes. In terms of students, Biden plans on providing two years of community college or other “high-training” programs for free by creating a federal-state partnership which will cover 75% of the costs. He will create a new grant program to assist students during - and after - community college, along with a $50 billion investment towards workforce training and community college business partnerships. For families making less than $125,000, Biden will also make all public colleges and universities tuition-free and double the amount of Pell Grants so they are accessible by middle and lower income families. He will further build on loan forgiveness by reforming the income-based repayment program and investigating private lenders who profit off students loans. Most recently, Biden has stated he would cancel up to $10,000 of student loans. Democrats, however, believed Biden could do more, asking for an increase of up to $50,000 of student loans through an executive order.

Press Secretary Jen Psaki.

Chief of Staff Ron Klain.

The outcome of the 2020 elections resulted in dent, Joseph R. Biden. Over 81 million US cit involved changing immigration policies, eco from the previous Trump administration. In his first few months as President, Biden From the reversion of the Muslim ban to th Biden has already taken drastic steps to achie will cover all about Biden’s policy plans and w in office. Title I: A federal program funding schools with a high percentage of students from low-income families. Pell Grant: a grant which the U.S. federal government provides for students who need it to pay for college.

Senior Advisor Mike Donilon.

CLIMATE Prior to President Biden’s run as a presidential candidate, Democratic Representative Alexandria Ocasio Cortez and Senator Edward J. Markey introduced the Green New Deal, a bill that called for a smooth transition into the clean energy industry - all while paying those who would lose their jobs as a means of transitioning into this proposal. As President, Biden plans on leaving a foundation to achieve a 100% clean energy economy before 2050. Biden has already signed executive orders to start tackling climate change, these include a US foreign policy and national security development for a new, reduced emission target rate along with the reestablishment of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. President Biden has rejoined the Paris Climate Accord to work with other nations in combating the climate crisis, canceled the Keystone XL pipeline, and directed federal agencies to reverse Trump’s actions on the environment - such as cancelling previous legislations that withdrew gas emission limits. Biden also wants to focus on improving and modernizing infrastructure. This means a transition into a carbon pollution-free power sector and investing in clean energy innovation. Biden will additionally replace all 650,000 U.S government vehicles to electric models, and hopes to improve infrastructure so it is able to support electric vehicles. This would create a clean energy industry throughout the United States by banning fracking, offering jobs to those previously misplaced by the transition, and achieving a green energy economy.

Green New Deal: A congressional resolution that lays out a plan for tackling climate change in the United States. Paris Climate Accord: An agreement between the United Nations that exemplifies the goal of avoiding climate change. Keystone XL pipeline: 1,700 mile pipeline system through the US and Canada that serves the purpose of transporting crude oil. Fracking: Process of injecting liquid at high pressure into subterranean rocks to force open existing fissures to extract oil.



n the United States welcoming its new Presitizens voted for President Biden’s agenda that onomic plans, and environmental regulations

impressively signed over 30 executive orders. he cancellation of the Keystone XL pipeline, eve his agenda at the federal level. These pages what he has achieved in his first two months

Bailout: is a general term for extending financial support to a company or a country facing a potential bankruptcy threat. Trade Union: Organization with a membership made up mainly of workers aiming to protect and advance the interests of its members in the workplace. NOTE: These boxes

will explain political terms used throughout these pagaprahs.




President Biden acknowledges that in order for jobs to return, the COVID-19 pandemic has to be under control first. Biden established the COVID-19 Advisory Board which will offer strategies of dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic and its aftermath - including helping the thousands of unemployed workers who lost their jobs due to the pandemic. Biden will place great emphasis on helping middle class families by providing a comeback package for businesses and extending federal aid to COVID crisis insurance. This includes higher wages, stronger benefits, and safer workplaces for corporations who were commonly bailed out during the Trump administration. Through his executive orders, Biden has signed a nation-wide moratorium on evictions until late March, extended a pause on student loan payments and interest, increased worker and union protections, and set the foundation for a $15 minimum wage. Biden plans on creating more manufacturing jobs in America by building on the clean energy industry - which includes electric car or solar panel manufacturing. This means Biden will have to retroactively deal with trade and bring back jobs to the United States that were lost to China. In fact, Biden has explained in his website, JoeVision, how “The number of jobs brought back… to the United States last year under Trump was lower than the number of jobs [brought back] in 2016 under the Obama-Biden administration.” Notable sources of income to the United States economy are immigrants. Immigrants contribute over $2 trillion to the United States, and many, who are often here with work visas or asylum, deal with an ever-changing immigration system. Biden hopes to modernize this immigration system so that it is more consistent and immigrants who are on the ‘waiting list’ can obtain a permanent residency, increasing the workforce of the United States. Biden and Vice-President Kamala Harris will work to expand the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, an immigration policy that allows immigrant children who came to America to receive a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation and eligibility, increased security.

Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona.

Interior Secretary Deb Haaland.

Secretary of State Antony Blinken

PUBLIC HEALTH Pre-existing conditions: A medical condition that started before a person’s health insurance went into effect. Premium: An amount to be paid for insurance policy Big Pharma: Nickname given to the world’s pharmaceutical industry. PHOTOS COURTESY OF GOOGLE IMAGES

President Biden’s healthcare plan began in 2010, when, along with President Barack Obama, the Affordable Care Act - otherwise known as Obamacare - was signed into law. This allowed more than 20 million low-income citizens to obtain health insurance, and saved more than 80 million citizens from having higher premiums due to pre-existing conditions. After President Trump passed many laws hindering the Affordable Care Act, however, millions of people’s health care coverage has been compromised. President Biden plans on further enforcing and protecting the Affordable Care Act by reducing health care costs and simplifying the healthcare system. Biden plans on creating a new public health insurance choice similar to Medicare - increasing the value of tax credits for lower premiums, and expanding healthcare coverage to low-income citizens and middle class families. According to Biden on his website, JoeVision, he believes that “every American has a right to the peace of mind that comes with knowing they have access to affordable, quality health care.” Biden will also tackle Big Pharma with legislation that will repeal drug corporations from negotiating with Medicare over drug prices and limiting launch prices for drugs that face no competition in the market. In terms of COVID-19, Biden has already imposed a mask mandate on any federal property, distributed vaccination supplies, and passed legislation requiring negative COVID-19 tests prior to entering the United States. As proposed by Vice-President Kamala Harris, Biden will establish a Racial and Ethnic Disparities Task Force to help high-risk communities of color throughout the United States. He also plans on fixing personal protective equipment (PPE) by utilizing the Defense Production Act. Biden will double the number of drive-through testing sites and create a Pandemic Testing Board that will produce COVID-19 tests more rapidly.




Pandemic Poses No Problem for Tiburón

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This year is truly one for the books -- literally. With the help of technology, Yearbook Supervisor Sean Delaney and Tiburón staff are able to transform that phrase into reality. In capturing what life is like at Spanish River, the Tiburón serves as a nostalgic recollection of the school year that provides students with ever-lasting memories. Despite the drastic shift in what has so long been our norm, the Yearbook staff has been able to overcome its obstacles by adapting to their situation. A lack of staff, accompanied by a divide between those on and off campus, has certainly burdened the typical process. However, each and every member has been all-hands-on-deck as far as staying up to date with school events, such as pep rallies or spirit week. “With so many of those events being virtual, it definitely has been difficult to gather photos and information,” said Co-Editor-inChief Kori Ernst. “But that just means a lot more preparing on our part in making sure we talk to the right people to get the best responses.” Considering that Tiburón relies on active student participation, whether it is providing pictures or quotes, it has also been a struggle to reach out

Nikky Apgar, acts as another outlet to reach a greater number of students. Their Instagram account posts updates regarding relevant school occurrences, whether it is the deadline to submit senior portraits, or a request of photos of students’ festive


Features Editor

to the entire student body due to the brick and mortar structure and current COVID-19 precautions. Nonetheless, the staff have established new, unique methods for interacting with a wider range of students. Google Forms have been allocated along with hand-outs for English teachers to distribute,

providing a more indirect way for the members to obtain what is necessar y to make a memorable yearbook. Additionally, the Tiburón Instagram page, run by junior


Brooke Styka

spirit week outfits. Aside from strictly school-related activities, they have also recognized hobbies students are engaging in outside of school, due to the limited events occurring in school. Yearbook Co-Editor-in-Chief senior Maddy Lucco explained that the staff has not only been able to live up to standards set from previous books, but exceed them by working together united, adhering to deadlines, and staying creative.

“I truly enjoy the sense of community our class holds,” said Lucco. “Although it’s usually more fun in person, Yearbook has always been the class I look forward to the most, and over the years has become the most fun part of my day.” Despite the hardships the Tiburón staff has endured throughout the year, it has been able to maintain a positive attitude and adjust to its new circumstances for the better. This has assisted them in creating something that many will look back on for years to come. “My favorite part of being in Yearbook is the moment when we can finally hold the book in our hands and see how all our effort has paid off,” explained Co-Editor-in-Chief Savannah Garrett. “When putting together spreads, and receiving quotes, you only get to view all your work through a screen. So, the gratification that I feel when I get to hold the book and see others enjoy the book that we put so much time into is amazing.” With the diligence of the Tiburón staff, the Yearbook can truly represent the good of this year and how our school has managed to make the best of a difficult situation.


Students Consider Paths After High School Aiden Rubenstein Staff Reporter

In the 21st century, it has become One very fulfilling option that one can the norm that after high school, going partake in is join the military. Enlisting to college is the only option, as parents in the military is a way for people to give and most broad work fields look for a back to their country, while also gaining college degree. While going to college some benefits for themselves. Joining is definitely beneficial, there are other the military gives people multiple options for those looking benefits such as a guaranteed paycheck for a different experience. and bonuses, special discounts, It is a common misconception that education benefits, and assistance with without a college degree of some sort, paying for healthcare, which can be you can’t get a job, or at least not a good very expensive. The education benefits one. One job that has grown in popularity can also be a huge advantage if one is Marines pose for graduation and pays well looking to join the is real estate. military and then Real estate go to school. This has become a is because college job that many education can be very high school expensive, so having graduates the benefit could take part in. really help. Being While it could in the military also be beneficial teaches many valuable to go into it skills and lessons such with a degree, as teamwork, combat it is in no lessons, perseverance, means 100% and more. As a little necessary. This means that while it is bonus, joining the military also allows recommended, one can explore other people to interact with places often paths besides college while still being foreign to them. Colton Cleveland, a successful and not putting their future Marine recruiter, joined the military at risk. So what are some of the other 7 years ago with the goal to receive possibilities? benefits on his college payment, but

he enjoyed serving so much that he One clear and very important benefit is decided to stay, and is still with them the paycheck. Gaining additional funds to this day. Cleveland specializes for college is highly significant and will in servicing and repairing aircraft ultimately be very helpful. Getting a job vehicles and has gained many military also allows one to start practicing for a certifications future career. in regards It is a great to aircrafts. way to explore Cleveland has interests and had the pleasure discover one’s of traveling to passion. several different While college countries, and is certainly has gained so important and much leadership, recommended, mechanical, it is crucial for and hands on high schoolers, experience. especially A l t h o u g h seniors, to according to Real Estate is considered a good option for those who u n d e r s t a n d don’t plan on attending college. him, this is just that there are the beginning of other options the benefits of exploring untraditional following graduation that present routes. invaluable benefits. There are so many “This is only the tip of the iceberg other routes one could take after high and there are many other benefits to school, and although taking one of joining any branch of service.” said these routes may seem to be a challenge, Colton Cleveland. or may be stressful, it’s still important One of the most common options is to follow your own path, and explore to get a job. Whether it’s just during the other options. summer or for longer periods of time, ART COURTESY OF COLTON CLEVELAND getting a job has so numerous benefits. AND GOOGLE IMAGES




Hernandez Changes Lives Duru Boranalp

“I feel incredibly honored and grateful to have been Features Editor nominated,” says Hernandez. “I am amazed at the amount of thought and time that went into LifeChanger of the Year is the nomination and I cannot an annual program that recognizes express how appreciative I am that and rewards educators and school a past student would do that on employees that have a positive my behalf.” impact on the lives of students. Hernandez was nominated The program is funded and run by by an anonymous student that the National Life Group and the she previously had. The student National Life Group Foundation. was touched by Hernandez and Each year, the organization provides nominated her. 16 educators and their school with “I am overwhelmed by a cash reward. After a rigorous the outpouring of kindness by selection from more than 700 so many,” admitted Hernandez. nominees, the winner will obtain “As a teacher it can be difficult to the grand prize of $10,000. remember that you are making a One of the nominees this difference. Reading all of these year from Spanish River High comments encouraged me in School is AP Psychology and my desire to focus on being AICE Sociology teacher Samantha present, approachable, and Hernandez. Hernandez, apart from caring of whomever is within my being an excellent teacher, is the classroom.” advisor of the We Dine Together Many previous and current students of He r nand e z h a v e commented underneath h e r nomination w i t h loving and encouraging messages. “The ability to create a sense of connection with others Samantha Hernandez during a We Dine Together club meeting talking with even in fleeting students. mome nt s give my day club, which makes a platform out of meaning and is the inspiration that combating bullying and helping new keeps me going,” says Hernandez, or lonely students make friends. Hernandez is inspired

“My favorite teacher is Mr.Daub, he is alwats making me laugh and he does an amazing job at teaching. Mr.Daub makes the class a lot more enjoyable, and has made this whole online learning easier,” said Sara Leon, 11th .

everyday in this virtual setting by focusing on what she can control.

“She always pushed me to do more than what I thought I was capable of doing.”

Hernandez had many l i f e changing teachers throughout her life that encouraged her to become who she is today. Samantha Hernandez talking to the members of We Dine Together. “If I had to pick a way to change the lives of my students, I Hernandez says, “ would say it is to attempt to always Refocusing my energy on make them feel genuinely accepted, the things in life that matter. valued, and heard when they come ‘Controlling the controllables’ is into my classroom,” says Hernandez. a motto that has helped me let go I hope that I can remind those who of the noise that blocks me from I interact with that they are loved being able to feel inspiration in and of great value, and that this these trying times.” realization follows them when they By focusing on the things go out of my classroom. that can be controlled Hernandez Hernandez continues to practices healthy behaviors to feel change lives everyday despite the more present. virtual settings of classrooms, and “My mother was my continues to put a smile on students life-changing teacher. I was faces. homeschooled from 2nd-10th grade and my mother instilled in me a passion for learning at a young age. I’m eternally grateful for this.” Hernandez played soccer as a kid, and her soccer coach was an important part of her life. “Rachel Grimes, my soccer coach and mentor throughout high school and college, often had more confidence in me than I PHOTO COURTESY TO SAMANTHA had in myself,” states Hernandez. HERNANDEZ.

“Coach Abbandondalo is my favorite teacher because he connects with us like unlike other teacher, he checks up on us if we miss his class to make sure we are okay, and he treats us like his own kids,” said Gavin McCarthy, 11th.

“Mr.Doellinger is my favorite teacher. He puts a smile on my face every day, and makes learning fun!. Mr.Doellinger gives good advice and never fails to make his class boring,” said Kevin Papa, 12th.





Vaccine Distribution is in Full Swing Lyndsey Roth Currents Editor As the COVID-19 vaccine distribution begins extensively across the United States, some senior citizens have encountered difficulty in signing up for a reliable appointment. Some are simply not comfortable enough with technology - especially when it comes to checking their emails and confirming these appointments. With President Joe Biden recently taking office, he plans to increase supply, create a more efficient way for states to update their appointment availabilities, and have a more organized way to assess the amount of doses in each location. With this, the Biden administration has set its goal to administer 100 million vaccinations in the first 100 days of the Biden presidency. However, Biden cannot assure these plans as the Center of Disease Control(CDC) Health Department does not want to “underpromise and overdeliver.” So far, the vaccine distribution has some defects like appointment scheduling in regards to the groups of people that are first-in-line to receive the vaccine. However, the CDC Health Department has answered some basic scheduling questions: “States and jurisdictions across the United States are using different webbased applications for vaccination

clinic management,” said the CDC. “One of those systems is the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Vaccine Administration

health department. Biden has also explained how his administration plans to open community vaccination centers to distribute

Vice President Kamala Harris receives vaccine.

Management System, or VAMS.” This system has been provided to group individuals in order to schedule vaccination appointments appropriately. The vaccines distributed are developed by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna. Both vaccines require two different doses scheduled 42 days or six weeks apart. Problems arise from this because it is difficult to set these appointments as they have been under high demand since early December. People are able to discover the vaccine management system they belong to by contacting their provided

the vaccine as efficiently as possible. “To accelerate vaccinations, he said his administration will work with federal, state and local officials to set up thousands of community vaccination centers across the country and deploy mobile units to rural and underserved areas,” said The Wall Street Journal. Biden and his team target chain pharmacies to increase the rate of vaccines each day. The CDC Health Department recommends frontline healthcare workers, nursing home residents, senior citizens, and high risk citizens to be prioritized over the general

population when disseminating. Although some states have not followed these recommendations, their plans are just as effective. These approaches focus more on reopening businesses and returning to normalcy. As an example, Oregon made it a priority to vaccinate teachers rather than the elderly. This would inevitably open up schools and businesses at a faster rate. “But states create and implement their own plans, and sometimes counties deviate from those plans, leading to a national patchwork of policies,” said The New York Times. The United States does not have a confirmed date of when every citizen will be vaccinated, however, at some point, more appointments will become available in a greater capacity. Some states enforce strict eligibility requirements, such as only allowing seniors of ages 60 to 75 and up to receive the vaccine, while other states care less about who gets the vaccines and rather focus on how many people receive the vaccine. If citizens are able to comply with their state’s guidelines and wait their turn to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, the process will become much swifter. Eventually, the general public will receive the vaccine and, hopefully, COVID-19 will be an impactful memory in history. PHOTO COURTSEY OF NYMAG

Abrams Earns Nobel Nomination

Nashki Joseph Associate Editor

Georgia voting rights activist and former Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams has been nominated for the prestigious Nobel Peace Prize. She was nominated by Lars Haltbrekken, a Socialist Party member of the Norwegian parliament. “Abrams’ work follows Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s footsteps in the fight for equality before the law and for civil rights,” Haltbrekken said. “Abrams’ efforts to complete King’s work are crucial if the United States of America shall succeed in its effort to create fraternity between all its peoples and a peaceful and just society.” While serving as the minority leader of Georgia’s House of Representatives in 2014, Abrams co-founded the New Georgia Project in 2014, an organization dedicated to increasing voter registration. From the very beginning, its target has been “people of color, those 18 to 29 years of age, and unmarried women,” a group of people that the project called the “new American majority.” A spokesperson said that it has registered over 500,000 Georgians to vote. The organization was founded in response to the Supreme Court stripping key provisions of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, limiting federal

oversight of election practices of the states and removing certain safeguards. In 2017, Abrams left her position in the Georgia House and ran in the gubernatorial race against Georgia’s then-Secretary of State Brian Kemp. She

that he was running in. According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, his office purged 1.4 million registered voters from 2010 to 2018, with 668,000 of those purges occurring in 2017. Critics call it a massive act of voter

Stacey Abrams Nobel Peace Prize nomination comes after years of working for change.

eventually became the first black woman to win a major party’s nomination for state governor. However, she lost to Brian Kemp by about 55,000 votes. Following her narrow defeat, she accused Kemp of engaging in voter suppression, citing the fact that he had a clear conflict of interest -- his own office was managing the election

disenfranchisement, while supporters called it a routine operation to increase election credibility. After her gubernatorial defeat, she re-focused her efforts and founded Fair Fight, a project aimed at combating voter suppression. Since then, it has filed a federal lawsuit against Kemp and has been active in over a dozen states.

Abrams realized in 2018 that the key to “flipping” the state for her party was to engage disenfranchised voters of color -- especially black voters, who comprise 33% of all registered voters in Georgia -- and who were becoming a larger portion of the state’s population as a result of foundational demographic changes. In the leadup to the 2020 election, the New Georgia Project and Fair Fight registered 800,000 voters, according to Politico. Most of them were young and people of color, and leaned hard for Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden. Many observers have credited her for Abrams says that the change she hopes to bring is not to simply bring people to the Democratic Party, but to “persuade them that voting can actually yield change.” She is spearheading a voting rights movement that has been ongoing for years, and has been carried on by a large coalition of grassroots organizations, activists, and local politicians. Many point out the obvious parallels between her work and that of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., who received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964 for his work against racial injustice. In the next year, it is possible that she will announce another bid for governor as a recipient of the prize herself. PHOTO COURTESY OF BRITISH VOGUE




LGBTQ Youth Facing Discrimination In Schools Dominic D’Arelli Currents Editor

All around the world LGBTQ students face discrimination daily; even today in the U.S., there are still laws that discriminate against LGBTQ students. In states such as Mississippi, South Carolina, and Georgia transgender youth do not have access to health care; in Georgia and Alabama, there are many restrictions on athletics for trans youth. The Alabama State Code, which was created in 1975, states that “...homosexuality is not a lifestyle acceptable to the general public and that homosexual conduct is a criminal offense under the laws of the state.” (Ala. Code: 16-40A-2.) In Texas, there are no laws against hate crimes specifically targeted toward LGBT people. There are numerous other countries that still consider being a part of the LGBTQ community a choice and a criminal offense, but it is not considered illegal

in the U.S. However, in the first few weeks of 2021, lawmakers in over 14 states have proposed multiple bills that would put many restrictions on the freedoms of LGBTQ citizens, most of which are targeted at transgender youth. In Montana, bills that would ban transgender children from receiving gender-affmirning healthcare and ban transgender girls from playing on female school sports teams were introduced in the state legislature. State RepresentativeJohn Fuller, who sponsored the bills, stated that they are necessary because “every child deserves a natural childhood, one that allows them to experience puberty and other normal changes that shape who they will become.” Many residents of Montana were outraged and began protesting against these bills. They have not been passed yet, but Christy Mallory, legal director of University of California, Los Angeles’ research center on gender identity and sexual orientation, states “even introducing the legislation is daaging to

LGBTQ people, especially youths.” The targeting of trans youth is nothing new. In 2016, North Carolina passed the “bathroom bill”, which was put into place to restrict transgender people from using the bathrooms which corresponded to their gender identity. The law was repealed in 2017, but many other “copycat” bills have been introduced since then. The Trans-Military, which was put into place by President Trump, prohibits transgender people from serving as the gender they are or have transitioned to. Following the Inauguration of President Biden, the ban was lifted, which caused many lawmakers around the US to propose new anti-LGBT laws. Biden’s executive order reversing the ban states that “Children should be able to learn without worrying about whether they will be denied access to the restroom, locker room, or school sports.” As stated in the policy, it is ordered by the President that no child is discriminated against based on

their gender identity. Currently, the majority of schools in Florida contain no laws which prohibit the bullying and discrimination of, specifically, LGBTQ students. In August of 2020, a high school in Ponte Vedra Beach was taken to court for refusing to allow student Andrew Adams to use the restroom which conformed with his gender identity. The school was ruled to have broken the law by the US Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals. Florida is one of the more accommodating states when it comes to transgender citizens. There are many laws within the state that accommodate transgender people; it is legal for a citizen to change their driver’s license, birth certificate, and legal documents. But there are many states which still have many restrictions and laws specifically against LGBTQ citizens. Although certain states have gotten much better with repealing laws that target LGBTQ citizens, there is still room for improvement.

Black Lives Still At Stake In 2021 Nashki Joseph Associate Editor

2020 saw several popularized killings of black people at the hands of both police officers and everyday racists. Social media exploded as activists posted news articles, boosted charities and mutual aid funds, and called for a meaningful response to the issue of systemic racism in America. The movement for racial justice reached its boiling point after the killing of George Floyd last May sparked national outrage. It seemed as if everyone knew something about the case. Notably, the anger of the majority of people was directed at the police officers associated with his death. The situation called massive attention to the issue of police brutality, and in turn the racist power structures that perpetuate it. On social media, young activists shared petitions in response to the egregious killings of several black men. reported that users of its platform acquired over 184 million signatures for these petitions in 2020 and reported a 62% increase in petitions declared as “victories.”

Some drew parallels between the current racial justice movement and the civil rights movement of the 1960’s. But the use of social media to promote the movement divides the two in a very striking manner. Because social media facilitates the dissemination of critical information and communication, the movement has not become reliant on a handful of leaders (think Dr. King). Instead, it has become noticeably decentralized. It has become easier for individuals to take initiative and practice daily activism. There have been several developments as the movement grew and evolved. After the firestorm brought by the killing of George Floyd, the Minneapolis Police Department banned the use of choke holds, which was the maneuver that resulted in his death. Similarly, after Elijah McClain was killed by police officers who used the same maneuver not too long afterwards, the Aurora Police Department in Michigan banned it as well. In addition, many police departments have increased the accountability of their officers in

situations where force is used, oftentimes releasing body cam footage to the public. After the killing of Breonna Taylor, a black EMT in her home in Louisville, Kentucky, the city of Louisville passed a law strengthening body cam requirements for all police officers serving warrants. They called it Breonna’s Law. Many cities have also taken the step of enacting “duty-tointervene” policies, which would require police officers to stop their colleagues from using excessive force. Additionally, in most cases, police officers were arrested and charged with corresponding offenses. For example, Derek Chauvin, the officer who knelt on the neck of George Floyd and caused his death, was charged with second degree murder. The three other police officers involved were charged with aiding and abetting second degree murder, with the trial scheduled to begin in March. Perhaps the most profound effect that social media has had on the Black Lives Matter movement

is the nation’s attitude towards it. According to a Pew Research Center study in June of 2020, 67% of all Americans at least somewhat supported the movement, with 38% expressing “strong support.” The study found that a majority of all races supported the movement. The same study found that 37% of all Americans had “posted or shared on social networking sites” content related to racial equality. The last year has been a promising one for social activists. But there are several obstacles halting progress -- for example, the Pew study found a partisan split in support of the movement. This split is represented in legislatures around the country, and often acts as a stopgap for progressive legislation. But if the previous civil rights movement was an indicator of anything, it would be that the leaders of the new movement will not be stopped so easily.




Boys Soccer has an Amazing Run

Elijah Levine

Sports Reporter Boys Soccer, one of the most dominant Spanish River sports teams in recent years, continued its strong

Sharks have been playing this season without freshman phenom Marcelo Campedelli, who is out due to a back injury, and senior Tyler Jones, who had shoulder surgery after the first game. With both the pandemic and injury

The boys take picture to celebrate thier District Championship victory.

play this year in the face of a global pandemic. The Sharks are having an incredible season, boasting a 13-11 record along the way to a District Championship. The Sharks have had great success from senior Captain Diego Reyes (13 goals, 10 assists) and fellow senior Tomas Gomez (9 goals, 4 assists). One of the many questions the team faced was how it would fare coming off the loss of graduates Ryan Balmer and Aris Copulos. As it turns out, the team was eager to answer the bell, exceeding all expectations. The Sharks’ season got off to a rough start, with a 10-day layoff before the season opener, which ended in a 1-1 draw with Boca Raton High. Although ending in a draw, the game itself provided the team with renewed energy and faith. Additionally, the

concerns, the Sharks have managed to stay focused mentally, with the players simply doing what they love to do -play soccer. A major contributor to the Sharks’ maintained focus was the leadership of Reyes. “Being captain always means having to be a leader, and I always try to lead by example when it comes to drive, motivation and work ethic,” Reyes said. “It is not hard to keep my team focused since they trust in me as a person and player and they know how important this season is, so they do a good job of staying disciplined.” With COVID causing numerous problems with travel and team meetings, the mental toll on both coaches and players has been brutal. The Sharks also overcame a positive COVID-19 test earlier in the year, but

thanks to the efforts of both the team and the infected player, they were able to resume the schedule without an extended period of missed games. “We are doing all of the COVID protocols all the time,” coach Stephen

to put the ball in the back of the net with almost 4 goals a game, they also have been able to keep the ball out of their own net, thanks in large part to junior Goalkeeper Tayton Osborne. Osborne has earned his starting

Cochran expressed in a recent Sun Sentinel article. “We have to spray the balls. We have to wear masks. We have to keep space and be smart and not be going to parties or anything. We are not shaking hands. Mentally, that is tough on the guys, but I think it is tough on every team.” Another major factor in the Sharks’ amazing play this season is a pure result of team chemistry. Numerous players returned for their senior season and have grown close to one another, which has contributed to the success of this team. “This team is so successful because we have been playing with each other for a while now and we have come so close last year, so we are much more capable and ready to win this year,” said senior Isaac Schweiger. Although the Sharks have been able

position with only 11 goals given up and 51 saves. Osborne also has had six shutouts, including a big one on the road at Atlantic Community High School. The Sharks have been able to outscore many opponents, but the team also knows it has the luxury of a shutdown goalkeeper on which to rely, all of which has resulted in a winning team. To continue Spanish River history, the Sharks won the district championship defeating Park Vista with a commanding 5-0 win. The sharks hope to go even farther next year.


Boys Volleyball Sets for a Strong Season Murray Litman Sports Reporter

In 2020, many spring sports teams at River were let as COVID-19 ended their seasons and cancelled potential playoff runs and senior nights for the class of 2020. In this year’s spring season of sports at River, many teams are looking to be in top shape as they enter their first games since the start of the COVID-19 outbreak in the U.S. Led by Head Coach Amanda Youell, the boys volleyball team at River had an outstanding season in 2019- winning

district and regional tournaments. In that season, they made an appearance in the state tournament as the 6th seed. “COVID struck us right in the soul of our program,” says Youell. “It was a devastating event as we ended our season before the halfway mark with a big home court loss.11 of the guys didn’t get their senior night, 11 seniors didn’t get to make a run at the state title that I knew they were capable of stripping from all other Florida teams, [and] 11 seniors were left with a huge ‘what if ’ as their parting memory of their time in the [boys volleyball] program at River.”

This year, the Sharks look to bounce back after COVID-19 spoiled their season and their run to states. “The truth is, I don’t know what to expect other than working through teaching each kid how to give his best each time he steps in the gym,” says Youell. “This year we are looking to clean up after the mess covid put on our program. I have a few deserving seniors that will hopefully get a somewhat normal season! I’m looking forward to ensuring that their hard work teaches each player strong lessons in their capabilities and strengths.”

As the 2021 spring season approaches, boys volleyball and other sports are hoping for redemption and a shot at glory. “We plan on making it to states. We have a great group of guys and we all work together. Our chemistry is great and is only getting better…,” says sophomore Skyler Allekotte. “There will be less fan[s] attending and there was [were] less people that tried out for the team. We still have the mindset to win and do great for River.”




River Swim Team Takes Over Tri-County Swim Meet Kylie Brooks

safe during Corona, our swim team did a great job of taking all the necessary Sports Editor precautions to make sure everyone at the swim meets were safe and we will The Swim Team had a lot of continue to do that when we go to Trihope for their Tri-County Meet last Counties month. Trio n County is made Februar y up for states 16th.” because states As were not able you can to happen this see the year. The Triswimmers County meet was who have on February 16, qualified 2021. for TriCoach County Reidel was so are super pleased with the excited that team’s efforts. it finally Some Swim Team member pose for a pictiure after the “ C o n s i d e r i n g Tri-County Meet. gonna happen we have a small with all the team, it was amazing to see everyone postponements. Tri-County will be step up and do so well.” taking place at Coral Springs Aquatic Senior Mik Praestegaard Center. Due to Covid they the athletes stated, “Even with the trouble of staying

had to wear their masks at all times that in the same event. Thomas Powers they were not in the pool. placed fourth in both the 200 and 500 At the Tri-County Meet free events. Kylan Costa placed tenth Spanish River placed seventh overall in the 100 Breast. Ava Balsam placed in the Championship out of 22 teams. 11th in the Girl’s 100 Fly. Lior Zimberg Spanish placed second River only overall in the brought five Diving Portion s w i m me rs of the meet. Six and one of our athletes diver. The cut time from team placed their seed times third in during their both the events, which boy’s 200 is an amazing medley and accomplishment. 200 free relay events. Jacques S o n n i e r The Swim Team poses for a picture before their p l a c e d swim meet. third in the 100 Breast. Mik Praestegaard placed sixth overall in the 200 individual medley, and Sonnier placed seventh PHOTOS COURTESY OF MIK PRAESTEGAARD

Tennis Seniors Have Unfinished Business

Senior Akhil Kancherla state, “ It is not over until it is over.”

Senior Katie Heller stated, “I think we have a really good team this year and I am hoping that we can win states.”

Home Games

Tennis Schedule

2/25/2021 VS Atlantic High School 3/13/2021 VS Santaluces High School 3/5/2021 VS Palm Beach Central 3/30/2021 VS Olympic Heights High School

Senior Kobe Francis stated, “Playing tennis at this school has been an amazing experience and I am so glad to have played on this team for three years. I have met new individual sport but at school I got the opportunity to play with a team.”

Away Games

3/4/2021 @ Wellington High School 3/9/2021 @ Park Vista High School 3/23/2021 @ Atlantic High School 3/25/2021 @ West Boca High School PHOTO COURTESY OF AKHIL KANCHERLA, KATIE HELLER, KOBE FRANCIS


MARCH 2021 Volume XXXVII Issue V

Girls Water Polo and Lacrosse Take on the Season


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