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Entertainment Granada’s Visual and Per-

forming Arts Department presents “Working”


Feature The Plaid Press explores ways to battle climate change

Granada Hills Charter High

Sports Swim and Dive team start off a successful season

10535 Zelzah Ave, Granada Hills 91344

April 28, 2011

Photo Courtesy Cliff Ker

FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: (TOP) Coach Mathew Arnold, Riki Higashida, Diego Ardon, Austin Kang, Eugene Lee, Joon Lee, Sindhura Seeni. (BOTTOM) Celine Ta, Harsimar Dhanoa, Elysia Eastty, Shagun Goyal, Hamidah Mahmud, Hana Kong, Coach Spencer Wolf. Not pictured: Coach Nicholas Weber.

AcaDeca returns home as state champion By Danielle Sink For the first time in history, Granada’s Academic Decathlon (AcaDeca) team won first place in the annual Academic Decathlon State Competition held on Monday, March 14 in Sacramento. The team concluded the competition with a 1000 point lead – the top score in the entire nation. It was followed by Marshall High School in second place and El Camino Real High School in third, the latter having won a record six national titles in years prior. “I am both proud of this accomplishment and humbled…for us to have won the state competition by outpacing these two schools reflects on what an amazing group of students and coaches make up the Granada team,” AcaDeca Coach Nicholas Weber said. He is one of three coaches, including Mathew Arnold and Spencer Wolf. In addition to the team earning the top score, seniors Austin Kang and Harsimar Dhanoa took the first and second place top individual scores, respectively. Senior Joon Lee was the third highest scorer in the Honors-student category and

senior Elysia Eastty was the second highest scorer in the Varsity-student category. Her score increased the most between the regional and state competitions by about 670 points, helping to close the gap between Granada and Marshall at state. “I made sure that even if I didn’t really have an affinity for a subject, I made myself love it for the sake of the team,” Eastty said. “It felt really nice that I had closed that gap with my fellow varsities Riki [Higashida] and Sindhura [Seeni].” But for returning members, it was the feeling of redemption after receiving second to El Camino Real last year that made the experience memorable. “This year’s team had a greater sense of confidence because we were already highly successful at the regional competition,” senior Eugene Lee said. “Overall, with the different outcome, this year’s state competition was more satisfying.” At the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) Regional Competition held at Roybal Learning Center, Granada also won first place. The structure of the competitions remains uniform whether it is at the re-

By Madushi Wanniarachchige Granada’s Academic Decathlon (AcaDeca) has many talented decathletes but senior Harsimar Dhanoa was recognized for his individual achievements in the annual Academic Decathlon State Competition when he was chosen to speak at the awards ceremony. “It was really great to be able to speak on behalf of myself and my team,” Dhanoa said. “I felt like it was a great honor.” Dhanoa was chosen not only because his team took the state title, but also because of his individual performance in the speech events. He earned a perfect

600 points for the prepared speech and a perfect 300 points for the impromtu speech. “Harsimar’s speech was amazing,” AcaDeca Coach Mathew Arnold said. “I think it was really well received by the parents, judges, and all the other teams.” In his speech, Dhanoa compared the journey of life to a .55 caliber bullet, explaining how people can go dashing through life like a bullet. However, he does not want to be like one of those people. “I want to be a doctor,” Dhanoa said. “But I don’t want to be a doctor that doesn’t care about his patients. I don’t want to have a bullet path of a life.”

gional, state, or national level. It is divided into two parts. In the first part, team members participate in a combination of prepared and improvised speeches, essays, and interviews. The second part is a series of multiple choice questions on seven subjects including math, economics, and the Super Quiz. This year the Super Quiz topic is geology. The remaining four subjects – history, literature, art, and music – relate to an annual theme. This year’s theme is the Great Depression. “We never try to study all of the subjects at once,” Weber said. “We try to build up our scores and our skills little by little throughout the year so that when we do get to the state competition it is almost all just a review of what we have been doing all year.” The AcaDeca team has been studying since last June for this competition season. There was a week of tryouts in June, summer prep on some of the more difficult subjects, and then continued preparation throughout the school year. “In the last couple of months, we spent

over twelve hours at school every day except Sunday,” Eastty said. “Even Sundays we tried to squeeze in a few hours to read or to listen to some of the music selections.” Still, this has always been the study schedule for the team. The only major difference Weber notes is an increased focus on math preparation every day for the last nine months. But with this focus and all-around dedication, Granada’s AcaDeca team was able to secure the California spot at the national competition in Charlotte, North Carolina in April 27 to 30. “It felt great to make our parents, our coaches, our school and our community proud, especially after all the support we received,” Eastty said. “We hope to make them all proud again by winning nationals.” All three coaches are confident in the team’s chances at this competition. “I think we have a really good chance at winning as long as we maintain focus, don’t get ahead of ourselves and don’t get cocky. Chances are good, but I don’t want to jinx us,” Wolf said.

Dhanoa’s speaking skills make AcaDeca proud Dhanoa’s message behind his speech was represented in his changed study habits upon joining AcaDeca. “I heard from Harsimar’s teachers that he had the potential to do great work but he just didn’t have the motivation,” Arnold said. “That changed when he joined the team.” Dhanoa’s previous procrastination and lack of motivation disappeared as shown through his constant studying for competitions. “I was always doing something related to AcaDeca,” Dhanoa said. “I memorized so many facts, looked at so many dates. And in the end it was worth it.”

Photo courtesy of Harsimar Dhanoa

02 news

April 28, 2011

Granada is a California Distinguished School The school is one of 97 public middle and high schools selected in 2011 By Danielle Sink Granada is one of 97 California public middle and high schools to receive the 2011 California Distinguished School Award as part of the California School Recognition Program. This program, celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, honors some of the state’s most successful and exemplary schools. “These schools are being recognized for attaining high levels of performance and sustained growth, and for making significant progress in closing the academic achievement gap,” State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Tom Torlakson, said in a press release.

The Recognition Program first identified schools with these high levels of performance by examining their Academic Performance Index (API) and Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) results. With an 874 API and all state and federal requirements for AYP met, Granada was eligible for the Distinguished School Award. In terms of narrowing the academic achievement gap between higher- and lower-performing students, Granada was recognized for the two Signature Practices it described as part of a selection process conducted by the California Department of Education. The school identified its strategy to

By Kathy Zerbib The Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) Board of Education held a meeting on February 15 to discuss the $400 million deficit that has plagued the education system for years. At the close of the meeting, LAUSD decided to authorize layoff warnings to over 5,000 school district employees, notifying them that they may potentially lose their jobs in the future. Such warnings are a legal obligation of LAUSD, who sent out all notices by March 15. Many people spoke out against the impending layoffs, including the future LAUSD superintendent John Deasy, who primarily blames the state of California for

its problematic education system. According to ABC7, Deasy said in a press conference, “We live in a state where we fund prisons at substantially higher amounts than we fund schools. It’s borderline immoral.” Yet, immoral or not, sufficient funding for education continues to be problematic. The budget, which is now described as being in full crisis, is also threatened by a smaller school enrollment rate, also reported by ABC7, resulting directly in less federal education money. Still, many believe there are other ways of reducing the budget, without compromising student education. “There are so many other ways for LAUSD to save money instead of firing teachers,” French teacher Veronique Fastre-

prepare all students for college and career readiness and its focus on preparing freshmen students via formative assessments, the Summer Transition Academy, and the Skills for Success program as its two Practices. All of these factors have led Granada to becoming one of only six middle and high schools located within the Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) to receive the award. Of the six, only one school is not an independent charter and Granada is the only public school in the San Fernando Valley to be named. ­ “Becoming a Distinguished School is a direct reflection of the dedication, hard

work, and vision of each school’s education community,” Torlakson said. “They have succeeded despite a bleak economic environment and have endeavored to maintain their momentum and focus.” Executive Director Brian Bauer credits this success to the efforts of Granada’s staff and student body. “Our culture of high expectations and support demonstrates that all students, especially historically underperforming student groups, can achieve at the highest levels,” Bauer said in a press release. Granada will be honored along with the other 2011 Distinguished Schools at an awards ceremony in Anaheim on May 20.

Budget cuts to LAUSD lead to possible layoffs

Gabrielle Amar/ The Plaid Press

Energy drinks cause more harm than good By Laura Nunez A recent rise in the consumption of highly caffeinated energy drinks raises serious medical concerns for teenagers. The popularity of energy drinks such as Monster, Red Bull, and Rock Star has grown increasingly in the teenage population. However, as a result, the rate of teens affected by dangerous side effects from the drinks has gone up as well. While producers grab the teens’ attention by advertising that the drinks contain fruit juice or that they increase performance, they leave out the effects of the harmful ingredients in the beverages. Some of these drinks contain five times more caffeine than one can of soda. In addition, other chemicals that companies put into the drinks enhance the effects of caffeine on the body. Side effects of the drinks include increased heart rate, nausea, diarrhea, seizures, strokes, hallucinations, and even death. Health complications are more common in teenagers than adults because their bodies are not fully developed. Lately the school’s Health Office reports a high rate of students being sent to the nurse with symptoms attributed to the consumption of energy drinks. In fact, the cases relating to the drinks have become

so common that anyone who arrives at the Health Office complaining of a racing heart is immediately questioned about any recent over-consumption of these beverages. “One of the first questions I ask kids when they come into the office complaining of chest pain or a fast heartbeat is if they have had an energy drink,” Nurse Kathy Morgan said. The nurses try their best to educate students on the dangers of drinking energy drinks, yet they treat the same students over and over again for the same symptoms as before. A medical report published in the journal, “Pediatrics,” reported that one third of teens consume energy drinks on a regular basis. The result of this high number of consumers can be illustrated in the number of kids hospitalized each year. The American Association of Poison Control Centers reported that 677 cases of energy drink overdoses and side effects were reported nationwide from October through December of last year. So far this year, 331 overdose cases have been reported with a majority of the patients being teens. In order to prevent side effects of overconsumption of energy drinks, teens should try healthier alternatives to the highly caffeinated drinks.

Blavier said. “They could use less consultants and keep the teachers’ jobs instead.” United Teachers of Los Angeles (UTLA), a union that represents the teachers of LAUSD, is presently asking parents to push for a school-funding initiative to help curtail the budget. However the campaign’s success on the ballot is not guaranteed. President of UTLA, A.J. Duffy recognizes that something must be presently done to fight for LAUSD students. “Cuts this deep will severely limit our ability to meet students’ most basic needs,” Duffy commented to CBS: Los Angeles. Additionally, nurses, school psychologists, counselors, and 4,000 teachers’ jobs are at great risk from the layoff warnings.

According to “Daily Breeze,” Point Fermin Elementary and 156th Street Elementary, bot located within the Los Angeles area, have the top number of employees given layoff notices. Other schools such as Carnegie Middle School, Park Western Place Elementary, and Peary Middle School, are also facing a fourth of its employees receiving layoff warnings. Governor Jerry Brown has started pushing for tax extensions that would bring $2.2 billion for public education in the state, tough these measures would be too late and do nothing for the next school year. The LAUSD staff will know on or before June 30 whether or not they will be able to keep their positions.

03 spirit

April 28, 2011

“ I Am Granada”

Gabrielle Amar / The Plaid Press

Classic Movie Club returns with dedication and passion By Allison Ouchi The Classic Movie Club was restored this year, following its two-year hiatus after disbanding in 2008. “When I was a freshman, I was a member of the Classic Movie Club, however no one kept the club going after that year. This year, after seeing how the school didn’t have many hobby clubs, I decided that I wanted to reinstate this club because it allows people to come together and get lost in the beauty of a classic movie for half an hour,” club president, senior Daniel Morales said. The Classic Movie Club was created with the intention of invoking the appreciation of classic American movies dating from the 1920’s to 1980’s among students by exposing to them the cinematography of these times. At the beginning of every month, Morales and the other club officers choose a certain genre for a movie, such as horror, silent movie, or romantic comedy, and find a few movies that fall under that genre. The officers then present the movie

choices to the club members, conduct a vote on which one they want to view, and then watch that movie over the duration several club meetings. After completing a particular movie, the club has a discussion to talk about its background and analyze its characteristics. “We talk about important trivial facts of the movie and discuss big ideas presented in it that relate to modern movies,” Morales said. Such discussions help to broaden the knowledge of students about the history of cinematography. “Our purpose is to help the younger generations understand how the American culture has evolved over time—in taste of music, actors, and special effects—and to show the beginning of many modern clichés and themes,” Morales said. The Classic Movie Club meets in room J8 on Mondays. “We close our doors halfway through lunch to keep our atmosphere as close to a movie theater as possible,” Morales said.

Student body offers aid to help tsunami victims in Japan By Austin Kang The student body has united to support the Japanese people in light of the Tohoku earthquake and tsunami last month. The earthquake had a magnitude of 9.0 and was both preceded and succeeded by shocks that ranged around magnitudes of 6.0. The Tohoku earthquake is the most powerful one to ever have hit Japan, and has caused an estimated 309 billion dollars in damages, making it the world’s most expensive natural disaster. School clubs and organizations have combined their resources to help fundraise for the cause, such as the Highlander String Association and Art Club in their one-dollar wristband drive. Wristbands are red and white in honor of the Japanese flag. “During middle school and my early high school year, I actually studied at a Japanese school to learn about the culture and the language. I basically made another family there, so when the earthquake and tsunami happened, it shocked me and hit me right at home,” Art Club President senior Jean Pongsai said.


April 25 - 29

The staff and student body have been remarkably supportive and generous for the cause. “Many people give donations regardless of whether they get a bracelet or not. Their help is really appreciated,” Pongsai said.

Gabrielle Amar / The Plaid Press

Holm shows helpful school spirit by organizing the CST By Bridget Moreno As the California Standards Test (CST) testing period comes to a close for Granada students, the work for our Student Assessment Coordinator Janie Holm has just begun. Holm has been our Student Assessment Coordinator since 2008. As the testing coordinator, she gathers information from the school’s CST testing to help teachers implement new ideas on classroom instruction. She also helps teachers to work with data in order to determine current academic strengths and weaknesses. Holm always keeps in touch with the staff to make sure she knows how the students are feeling about the test as well as to make sure that everything is simple to understand and prepared for us. “School is about the students. In my role of organizing tests, I think of the student first,” Holm said. Holm strives to make sure that the whole school is comfortable with the way the testing environment is set up and that everyone is prepared for the CST. Apart from her job of gathering and analyzing data from the CST testing results, Holm teaches classes during the summer including the freshman Transition Academy class and the web-based summer academy for credit recovery. She is also working with coordinator Judie Baumwirt and math teacher Andrew Nelson to strengthen the school’s academic courses with a class called “Business Statistics using Excel” in which students would be performing statistical analysis on real student data given to them. “We are hoping to get vocational training and experience for the students, a certification of marketable skills for completion of the class, and possibly even some future jobs as interns for local employers,” Holm said. A contribution that Holm has brought to Granada is helping raise Granada’s Academic Performance Index (API) score from 843 to 874 for last year’s CST testing results.

With her help to finding the right data to evaluate, and just how to inspect it, Granada’s educational limits have been surpassed by many student and staff expectations. “I think the rise of the API score was due to a combination of many things such as students feeling motivated and everybody doing their part and contributing,” Ms. Holm said. To raise the student’s motivation of taking the CST, Holm added and created the “Most Improved” STAR incentive based on the recommendation of special education teacher Martin Eisen. She believes that all groups of students should be recognized for their achievement. Before she took on the role as Student Assessment Coordinator in 2008, Holm started off as a math teacher in 2006. She provided students with basic math skills. But she always found a way to carry out new and interesting ways for students to comprehend math even if her students were kinesthetic (hands on, visual learners). To try and break the cycle of boring math problems, she would play a game in which the students would be a point on a plane and they would have to create shapes on the x-and y-axis on the P.E. field. Although Holm spends most of her time analyzing data from the CST test results, she always makes it a point to go back to her roots and teach during summer school to make sure she never loses the connection between herself and students. “I am a teacher at heart. But I also recognize the importance of my job as testing coordinator; it’s almost like helping teachers become classroom doctors-- analyzing data to diagnose what students’ learning needs are,” Holm said. Holm has several hopes for next year such as the “Business Statistics using Excel” class and hopefully raising the API score by at least 30 points. “If we continue to increase our score at same rate we will reach a news breaking 900 which no charter or large comprehensive high school has done so far,” Holm said.


d n o M




Friday s

y da


r hu

Freshmen: Gray Sophmores: Blue Juniors: Purple Seniors: Burgandy

04 feature

DANCE: Elusive Movement members show off their impressive dance skills.

April 28, 2011

By Jenny Lee Dressed in black, white, and gold, the six members held each other tightly on the dimly lit stage, waiting for the judges to decide on the winner of the competition. Just as one of the judges announced their team name, the group gripped each others’ shoulders and jumped with joy while the audience burst into clapping and cheering for Granada’s Best Dance Crew (GBDC) of 2011. Elusive Movement, this year’s winner of GBDC, is a group of six dancers: senior Roy Kim, juniors Richard Chung, Rommel Asprer Jr., and Lawrence Yong, and sophomores Siana Kim and Arielle Lopez. “We struggled with forming a name. We came up with names such as ‘Infamous Vibe,’ or ‘EMagination,” but a couple days before the competition, former member senior Marco Lazo suggested ‘Elusive Movement,’” senior Roy Kim said. “At first, we were confused because we didn’t know what exactly it meant to us, but the name

itself seemed to spark a light in all of the members of the crew.” Elusive Movement performs mainly at benefit concerts and has previously appeared at concerts that collaborated with other high schools in the valley. The group’s performances focus mainly on hip hop, popping and break dancing. The choreographing for each type of dancing is evenly distributed and created throughout the group. This year’s GBDC performance for Elusive Movement was centered around showing the best of everyone’s choreography rather than last year’s performance, where there was a story line behind the dance. The complex choreography required a lot of practice, patience, and talent. Finding a location for practices was difficult for the group because the dance room facility was unavailable for rehearsals. However, the members managed to practice the choreography at least three to

four times a week. Some pitched in moves to fill gaps in routines while those who already prepared their choreography taught the rest of the members. The members believe that the fun experiences of performing outside of school with their crew and being recognized as Granada’s best dance crew fall under the many benefits of being part of a dance crew. “Most of all, bonding with other fellow dancers and collaborating with their own styles of dancing along with each of our own is my favorite part about being part of Elusive Movement,” Roy Kim said. The crew plans to expand their popularity with more performances throughout the year and with crew apparel sold through the members of the crew. Elusive Movement members ask Granada students to support their hard work by attending performances. The group continues to put effort in producing dynamic shows for everyone to enjoy.

Script Frenzy competition starts in April

Photo courtesy of Eman Dadashian

DODGE THIS: Granada teachers prepare for the ultimate showdown against the top two student dodgeball teams.

Competition heats up at the annual Dodge Ball Inferno By Eidah Hilo Dodge ball. It’s more than just a game. It’s a complex combination of strategy, speed, focus, and heart. It brings out the savage fighter in you. The last man standing wins. Hundreds of students and parents packed the large gym on Friday, April 1 to watch the second annual Dodge Ball Inferno, hosted by Senior Leadership Class (SLC). This year, 16 student teams and 1 teacher team battled for the coveted first, second, and third place trophies. The first round consisted of eight games from which eight teams proceeded to the next round. After all three rounds, there were two remaining teams, El Diablos and Prestige World Wide, competing for the first place trophy. A diverse group of teams participated in Dodge Ball Inferno. Cheerleaders, swim team members (appropriately called “The Lifeguards), the baseball team, and even just a group of friends, all took part in the event. There were also returning teams from last year. “The Smurfs,” decked out in blue, were ready to bring their A-game. The competition was fierce from the start. One of the first rounds between “The Juicers” and “Prestige World Wide” came down to sudden death. Two team members from each team battled against each other to decide which team moved on to the next round.

In the end, Prestige World Wide came out victorious, but SLC Vice President and “The Juicers” team captain, Jose Juarez, played hard until the buzzer sounded. “The sudden death match was so intense, it really captured the excitement of dodge ball,” Juarez said. In addition to the compelling, cut-throat dodge ball matches, SLC arranged a host of fun activities including prom giveaways, a halftime show in which the dance team performed, and an all-night snack bar. “I won a free tux. I save money so it’s great,” senior Ryan Pak said. The giveaways included full price prom tickets, half price prom tickets, free tuxedo rentals courtesy of Friar’s tux, and more. SLC worked very hard to put on this successful event. “A lot of students came out to support the senior event. SLC was very excited to host such a great event that brings the school together,” SLC delegate and CoChairperson of Dodge Ball Inferno David Lee said. Towards the end of the night, the teacher and faculty team went up against the two final teams: Prestige World Wide and El Diablos. The El Diablos won

against the teachers but Prestige World Wide were defeated. The night ended with the El Diablos, consisting mainly of the baseball team members, taking home the first place trophy. “We know how to catch and throw. You can’t beat the El Diablos,” team captain and senior Casey Gergen said. Overall, it was a fun and unforgettable night.

TOP: The El Diablos wins first place. LEFT: Prestige World Wide comes in second place. Gabrielle Amar / The Plaid Press

By Jane Ha With the start of April comes a new challenge to all script-writers in the form of Script Frenzy. The challenge is to write 100 pages of a script in 30 days, and the final draft is due on April 30. The contestants may write any script from a television show to a graphic novel. Script Frenzy is open to every willing participant, regardless of age or expertise in the area of script-writing. A participant must submit one or multiple scripts in any genre, whose page number totals up to 100 in order to qualify for the winner. Because winners are chosen based solely on the submission of 100 pages of script, the content and plot are completely up to the writer to create and decide, allowing spacious room for fail-proof originality. Being internet-based, the challenge is entirely cost-free and is open to international participants as well. However, there is a catch that may discourage some potential participants from taking the challenge: there is no real prize, other than the certificate stating that the winner completed the challenge, awarded to official script frenzy winners. In addition, since the only criterion for the award is completion of the challenge, no assessment will be made on the content or quality of the submitted scripts. Nonetheless, the hosting website,, offers numerous sources for script-writing guides and tips that can help make the experience more meaningful for the participants, especially if Script Frenzy is their first exposure to script-writing. International forums also exist on the website for writers of the globe to meet each other and partner in writing, should they choose to. Students across the campus regard the challenge with curiosity. “I think it’s a good idea and a big chance for scriptwriters without degrees to have a feeling of achievement,” freshman Mina Ha said. All in all, Script Frenzy provides an outlet of creativity for any student. Whether as a hobby or an extracurricular activity, the Script Frenzy is an unforgettable experience. It is too late to join this year, but students should consider Script Frenzy for next year.

05 feature

April 28, 2011

Climate change affects our world By Ahra Cho Even the colossal oceans stand no chance; even the complex balances of the world’s ecosystems can no longer adapt; and even mankind is helpless against the monstrous storms and disastrous floods. It is daunting to know with what speed and magnitude we, by worsening climate change, can affect the world. Global temperatures have always been fluctuating, so what? A National Geographic public service announcement on climate change made it clear that “variable climate is not unusual, [but] it is the pace of climate change today that is unprecedented.” The Earth is able to adjust to slight and gradual changes in the environment, but there is a limit to this buffer system. In essence, mankind may be hurting the Earth faster than it can heal itself. Our modern lifestyles of affluence and convenience have generated burdensome amounts of greenhouse gases that absorb infrared radiation, which traps heat in our atmosphere. Furthermore, wasteful habits handicap the Earth’s ability to counteract any changes since trees, freshwater stockpiles, and stable ecosystems are all part of the Earth’s intricate system of balance. Today, we have the highest average temperatures in the past thousand years, with the five hottest years ever to be recorded all occurring within the last fifteen years. We can see that the temperatures are rapidly rising, and with it,

Rethink, Reevaluate,

Reconsider To produce the average city county’s Sunday newspaper, 500,000 trees will have to be cut down.

Recycling one aluminum can saves enough energy to run a TV for three hours.

- Santa Rosa County Citizen County Center Americans throw away enough paper annually to build a wall 12 feet high stretching from Los Angeles to New York City. In one lifetime, the average American will throw away 600 times his or her adult weight in garbage. That is a legacy of 90,000 lbs of trash.

-Montgomery School Energy and Recycling Team

the consequences are intensifying. Even seemingly minute changes in the average global temperature result in alarming repercussions. The National Geographic explained that an increase of one degree Celsius means an ice-free Arctic for parts of the year and tens of thousands of flooded homes around the Bay of Bengal. “Don’t let average temperatures fool you: a one-degree increase may be found in one place, a 12-degree increase in another place,” the Nature Conservancy warns. Additionally, this one degree elevation will cause severe droughts in the western parts of the United States, which affects global agricultural output and prices, and create deserts, which decrease the amount of arable land. Future predictions are validated by evidence from today. The beautiful paradise island of Maldives is sinking and thousands of inhabitants will be forced to relocate. The encroaching tides have already destroyed many houses, displacing several families who could not afford to find a new home. As the ocean threatens to engulf the island as a whole, the President of Maldives has been contemplating whether or not to relocate the island’s 300,000 citizens. In other parts of the world, strange patterns of insect migrations have caused the breakdown of ecological communities and the outbreak of insect-borne diseases such as malaria. The Earth’s biodiversity is also at risk.

Polar bears are starving and drowning, while vibrant coral reefs are reduced to bleached lumps on the ocean floor. National Geographic predicts that onefourth of the Earth’s 1.7 million species (about 425,000 species) will be extinct in just forty years. According to an Oxfam report, higher temperatures have caused 21,000 deaths from heat-related illnesses, diseases, and disasters in the first nine months of 2010. This was twice the death toll of the entire year of 2009. With the hopes of human progress tucked underneath our arms, we headed into the industrial era of vast energy consumption. However, as the signs of environmental damage become more apparent, we should start to care about the consequences of our actions. National Geographic explains that if we continue to damage the Earth at this pace, not only does the tropical island of Tuvalu disappear, but our own East Coast will start to sink. While the United States powders into sand, the Canadian tundra will melt into fertile farmlands. When summer vacations to European countries become unfavorable due to heatstroke, densely-populated deltas such as Egypt and Bangladesh will be flooded. Drastic changes to the earth have occurred and will continue to occur. At this point, it becomes important for us to consider the impacts of climate change.

Photos courtesy of Green School

Photos courtesy of Green School

Unless otherwise noted, photos courtesy of Celsias

Cities pave the way for green innovation By Shilpa Bhongir The buses run on hydrogen and the parks extend freely throughout the city. The shipyards are powered by waste and the parking meters powered by the sun. The water is safe from contamination and the people are safe from pollution. Though this sounds like a utopian city, such environmentally-friendly adaptations are the realities of many places throughout the world. The sprawling metropolis of Curitiba, Brazil is just one example. According to US Public Transit Report, Curitiba, Brazil is known for its effective public transportation system which reveals a stark contrast to our car-dependent nature. The bus stations in Curitiba are a marvel of their own. These tube-structured stations are raised above the ground, so they align

directly with the opening of the bus. Thus, buses do not need any steps or ramps, because passengers, including those on wheelchairs, can enter the bus directly. But passengers rarely have time to wait in these dynamic stations; buses run almost every 90 seconds in Curitiba. No wonder almost 70% of commuters in Curitiba use public transportation, a system which leaves the streets free of traffic and air free of pollution. But transportation is not the only factor that makes a city green. Establishing green buildings and reducing CO2 emissions are also prominent factors. Portland, Oregon, deemed one of the five greenest cities in the world by both Treehugger and the magazine “Popular Science,” has made strides to work towards just that. Portland was the first U.S city to create

a plan to reduce carbon emissions and has pushed for the creation of environmentallyfriendly buildings and public areas. The dedicated city even demolished a six-lane highway to develop a waterfront park in its place. According to “Travel Writer’s Magazine.” Portland has over 92,000 acres of green land, much of it preserved for biking, hiking and running trails. Biking is not reserved just for the green hills, though. The city has been named “Americas No. I Cycling City,” by “Biking” magazine for its accessible biking and walking lanes. On the other side of the world, biking serves not only as a means for transportation for common citizens, but as a replacement for school buses. The aptly named “Green School” in Bali, Indonesia utilizes a “co-operative bicycle

program” where students ride on a bicycle trail that connects the campus with local areas of the community. The school furthers their environmental innovations by using construction material made from 99% natural materials, like bamboo. In addition, it powers its facilities through solar power, bio-diesel and microhydro power, fueled from their very own nine-meter water vortex generator. Not many schools can say that they are powered by a water vortex. But this innovative way of harvesting energy is just one more way “Green School” spreads environmental awareness to their students, and the world. In Curitiba, Portland and other cities, this message of sustainability is heard. And as these cities continue to advance, their message will surely spread.



April 28, 2011

VAPA’s “Working” displays lots of talent By Danielle Sink and Madushi Wanniarchchige The Visual and Performing Arts (VAPA) department presented a rendition of the musical "Working" for their spring showcase, charming audiences on both March 31 and April 1. The play, originally performed in Chicago and later on Broadway, is based on Studs Terkel’s bestselling book "Working: People Talk About What They Do All Day and How They Feel About What They Do," published in 1974. “I thought it was a unique play,” senior Bobby Lebeda said. “Normally a show will have one story, but this one had lots of different ones. So that made it interesting.” These stories are the lives of twenty-six working class people from different regions and occupations. Together, they reveal what makes each person’s job meaningful to his or herself, whether in a positive or negative way. “This play brings some great

insight,” junior Brianna Bringham said. “You are all a part of America, whether you’re a construction worker or a celebrity, you all work in America. I thought it was the best musical ever – the music, dancing and acting were all incredible.” The play’s subplots are linked together by Lebeda’s character, a steelworker named Mike Dillard. He is the first performer to introduce himself, describing the many perils of his job, and continues to pop in throughout the show to provide a feeling of continuity amongst the cornucopia of characters. Just a few yof the characters include a proud waitress, played by junior Alexandria Lewis; a comedic newsboy, played by senior Jared Price; and a dancer and her love played by senior Pamela del Valle and Angel Sanchez, respectively. The performers transition from the story of one individual to another through a well-orchestrated balance of monologues and musical numbers.

“I loved all the roles, and the songs were so catchy. People who didn’t even have to memorize a certain song would sing it anyway,” sophomore Giselle Reyes said. It was quite remarkable to see just how many students have musical talent at the school. With an abounding number of fair-sized roles, this play was able to showcase this musical talent as well as exceptional acting and dancing. And one of the most pleased audience members was the director, VAPA teacher Ali Taylor. “Those who were on stage for the first time were able to develop new skills and they performed very well,” Taylor said. “It is nice to know how much they all loved the play and bonded over it, becoming like a family.” Not only did the cast bond with each other but got attached to the adult roles that they played. “Even though it was adultthemed I could still relate to it,” junior Bridgette Shimojima said. “I definitely have more appreciation for what adults go through.”

Photos courtesy of Ann Phan

Disney waters down originally gruesome tales By Laura Nunez Once upon a time, there lived a beautiful princess. She had a heart of gold, the face of a goddess, and the voice of an angel, so of course something must go wrong in her life. A jealous, old, nasty queen bewitched the princess with a dastardly curse and luckily, but not surprisingly, a handsome prince manages to save the princess and lives happily ever after. Life in a fairytale seems to always work out. A damsel in distress nabs Prince Charming all while staring death and magical warfare straight in the face. The evil-doer faces his or her ultimate demise and the good rejoice across the land.

However, many people forget that fairytales did not originate from the watered-down Disney movies. Rather they began as gruesome folklore that did not necessarily end with a “happily ever after.” Charles Perrault, better known as Mother Goose, first translated some of the most famous fairytales from oral traditions to a published story book. Some of his most recognizable bedtime stories include “Puss and Boots,” “Sleeping Beauty,” and “Cinderella.” His rendition of the classic tales included a bit more gore than Disney leads us to believe. For instance, in the original “Sleeping

Beauty,” the Prince’s mother, an ogre, attempts to slaughter and feast upon the meat of Sleeping Beauty and her two children. Perrault’s stories typically included cannibalism, bloody gore, and sexual innuendo. His stories appealed to French aristocrats who believed that the lower class deserved the misfortunes they dealt with in the stories. Later on, the Brothers Grimm reworked Perrault’s stories and twisted them to fit their own style of storytelling as well as the ideas of their time. The Brothers Grimm published the largest and most famous anthology of fairytales. While they may have slightly changed the

plots, they were sure to leave in the gruesome gore that comes with living in these far off kingdoms. In their version of “Cinderella,” the evil step sisters chop off chunks of their own feet in order to fit into the glass slipper. In addition to self mutilation, the Brothers Grimm promoted public torture and death. In their adaptation of “Snow White,” the Brothers Grimm forced the evil queen to be burned alive at a party thrown by the prince. Fairytales illustrating darker tones of death and violence quickly faded away as Walt Disney stepped into the picture. As soon as Disney took hold of these classic stories, he immedi-

ately eliminated all violence and replaced it with cheery musical interludes. Disney appeals to the mass audience by transforming the classic sinister villain into a pathetic conquered wimp and has obliterated the traditional character of helpless princesses with his addition of the self-confident and independent protagonist like Belle from "Beauty and the Beast." Fairytales progress each generation, adapting to new times and ideas. They have come a long way from dark themes like cannibalism, to modern ideas such as feminism. Who knows what’s in store in the next chapter, as long as they live happily ever after.

By Nicole Martinez

The Hustle When 1975 Originated: New York Song: “The Hustle” by Van McCoy How: A few moves for this dance are “the Travolta,” “the egg beater,” and “the chicken.” They require a lot of energy. Fun fact: Today the dance is seen in ballrooms and night clubs. It also song reached the top of the Billboard Pop Singles chart July 26, 1975. Additionally, McCoy was named the top instrumental artist of 1975.

Thriller When: 1984 Originated: The 'Thriller" music video which Michael Peters choreographed. Song: “Thriller" by Michael Jackson How: This dance consists of head snapping, clapping, and stretching your arms and hands into claws extended into the air. Fun fact: "Guiness World Records" listed the song has the most successful music video, selling over nine million units world-wide.

Macarena When: 1995 Originated: Spain Song: “La Macarena” by Los Del Rio How: The Macarena is an entertaining dance that consists of many hand movements as well as spinning. Fun fact: The song was originally about a woman named Magdalena, but singers changed her name to Macarena because at the time, a song named "Magdalena" by Latin artist Emmanuel was popular as well.

Crank That When: 2007 Originated: Mississippi Song: “Crank That” by Soulja Boy Tell ‘Em How: To do the "Crank That" dance, incorporate different moves such as “the superman” and the “lean with it roll with it.” Fun fact: Many teenagers still remember this dance and continue to do it. Soulja Boy’s real name is DeAndre Cortez Way and his song was number one on Billboards Top 100 for seven consecutive weeks in 2007.

Dougie When: 2010 Originated: Dallas Song: “Teach Me How to Dougie” by Cali Swag District How: The upbeat song involves different dance movements such as a casual shoulder lean and elbow twists. Fun fact: The song was originally made for fun, but when the group saw the reaction from their fans, they decided to promote the single. Now young adults are Dougying everywhere. It has been made into many remixes.

07 opinion

April 28, 2011

The loss of Valley Region High School #4 is upsetting VRHS #4 will not get the chance to succeed under Granada’s control By Lucy Lee After months of preparation and hard work from faculty, parents, students, and the Granada Hills community, it is with great disappointment to announce that our school did not win the opportunity to run Valley Region High School (VRHS) #4. Our school should have won VRHS #4 because we are better situated to run the school with stable finances and learning environment. Although our school is the top public high school in Los Angeles and one of the best in the state, the decision was ultimately

made by Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD). One might question the purpose of this rivalry since many assumed LAUSD would choose themselves over our school anyway. However, this competition lead the entire community of Granada Hills and many other regions to truly understand and appreciate why Granada Hills Charter High School succeeds as a great school. “Our school sets our own schedule and we’re unique because of that,” senior Matt Pell said. “Granada makes the schedule more appropriate to meet student needs. It

implements policies that work in favor of the students’ best interest rather than trying to make compromises with other high schools.” Taking over VRHS #4 as a mentor would give us an opportunity to provide students with skillful Charter teachers. We would also set up the new school to have a governing board run by local parents and community members to serve all student populations, including students with special needs and English learners. “Being a Charter Granada makes high school a more competitive setting and al-

By Sindhura Seeni For those seniors looking for an easy way to add an extra class to their schedule, becoming a teacher assistant (TA) seems to be the easiest option. After all, it can fulfill needed credits, boost your grade point average, and reinforce an otherwise-weaker schedule. However, the amount of work that students have to do varies greatly depending on which part of the school they work in. If you are a TA for a teacher, you probably end up grading and checking off more than a few tests and homework assignments. TA’s for offices, such as the counseling office, file papers and deliver summons. Those TA’s in peer mentoring classes tutor struggling students in subjects like biology and algebra. Despite all these jobs TA’s are entitled to carry out, there are still those TA’s that do nothing at all–at least in comparison to others. These are the TA’s that sit inside the

classroom, listen to music, text, or sleep the whole period. The difference in the amount of work given to TA’s makes grading a tricky process. What constitutes an A? Doing all of the errands required of you? The meaning of an A is that it “exceeds expectations.” What are these TA’s doing in comparison to the TA that is constantly filing, running around campus delivering summons, or tutoring struggling students? There is no real way to judge a TA’s efforts because there is no grading rubric attached to this job. Having a rubric would make it a lot easier to define the requirements of an otherwise ambiguous class. Who can really say that they know exactly what a TA does? One thing is for sure. If there really were a grading rubric, I doubt there would be as many eager students waiting to sign up as a TA.

By Gabrielle Amar High school writing is supposed to prepare us for the long research papers colleges drown us in. Students not only learn how to do research itself, but they also improve their skills in font manipulation, adjusting page borders, and plagiarism. For those who do complete this timeconsuming process on their own, teachers try to continuously assure us that it will help us in the future. They tell us the practice of writing extensively long papers allows us to become more comfortable with our own writing, as well as the art of language itself. In addition, these papers apparently prompt us to venture into the realms of “outside the box” critical thinking, and help us become aware of new information. Teachers try to explain that the research involved in writing these papers is also important because it helps us add credibility to the points we want to argue and perspectives we want to analyze. Although these skills may significantly help us in college, what good are they for the writing we really have to take on afterwards?

I think high school writing should gear us towards picking up the incredibly useful skill of knowing how to write one’s idea concisely and eloquently. In our generation, more than ever, communication is very prominent. Whether it is through text messaging, advertisements, or social networking sites, people want to get their information fast. We need to be prepared for writing professional emails, memos, or presentations that our jobs will require. It is important to learn how to become economical with language and still manage to get the point across. Once in a while, students should be challenged to respond to prompts in twenty words or less. This will teach them to choose their words wisely and get their points across quickly. For example, I would love to have a writing assignment in which we must come up with original Youtube video comments. To make it even more fun, we could take on the challenge outside the classroom. When writing in the public diary of Facebook, you should at least want your status to get to the point in a poetic manner.

Maybe you’ll get more “likes” not exactly for having a communal hate for homework, but rather being the one to use imagery and profound words to express that deep loathing for it. Even trying to sell something over Ebay requires convincing word choice. Kyle MacDonald, the guy who traded a red paper clip and eventually ended up with a house, must have written something right in his product summary. However, moving towards shorter language does not necessarily mean taking short cuts. Mark Twain once stated “[he] didn’t have time to write a short letter, so [he] wrote a long one instead.” It sure is a lot easier to ramble when you write than it is to be concise. As painstaking as it may be, good writing involves making your point with the fewest words possible. I just think in this day and age, classrooms should advocate a good amount of time to short writing samples alongside the academic research papers. It’s a slow movement, but I think teachers should begin implementing this writing style in order for students to become tighter writers!

By Kathy Zerbib Nowadays, it seems as if music has been following a “good song, bad lyrics” trend. The most popular songs have nice beats to dance to, but once you listen closely to what the music artist is actually saying in the song, it becomes obvious not all of them have very meaningful lyrics. Many songs have drug or alcohol references (LMFAO’s “Shots”), degrade women (YG’s “Toot It & Boot It”), encourage violence (Eminem’s “Kim”), or just do not have any real meaning at all (Rebecca Black’s “Friday”). Some think music is and should be all about what is currently going on in the world today, and I completely support that. However, while I agree with those who consider music to be our own personal his-

tory records, I do not believe music artists should pursue a demeaning or despairing message of negativity towards our society in their songs. Yes, there are hard times and songs should be made about them. But why would you not want to add an inspiring message of hope for a better future? After all, music is meant to uplift our spirits, not make us feel drowned in our own misery. Thankfully, there are songs out there that have lyrics promoting good character, such as Run-DMC’s 1989 hit song “Pause.” The song acquired recognition for its lyrics, including “Next time you think of doing a crime, pause and remember this rhyme.” Songs should be fun to listen to, while

still making us feel inspired. Music can change lives, so would it not be a good idea to have music change our lives for the better? Take Superchick’s 2002 song “Hero,” for instance. The song promotes befriending those who feel harassed or bullied, in order to stop them from committing suicide or murder. With lyrics like “Heroes are made when you make a choice,” the song is a perfect example of the positive messages more music should be sending us. Songs do not need low quality lyrics to make them reach the peak of the Billboard’s Top 100 list. With a cool sound and meaningful lyrics, any song has the potential to reach maximum popularity.

lows me to take advantage of the opportunities I’m presented with,” senior Danielle Wilson said. In addition, without the burden of worrying about the budget cuts, we would have offered rigorous, college-prep curriculum along with cutting edge, industry-driven career strands at the students’ best interests. “Being a Charter means we can provide the students with unlimited opportunities to succeed and truly challenge themselves,” social science teacher Brian Luko said. “It also means not getting laid off as a teacher because there is no budget cuts.”

Variations in TA work habits make grading difficult

Benjamin Vivas

Students need more than research paper writing skills

Popular songs often lack meaning behind lyrics

The Plaid Press The Plaid Press is published by the Advanced Journalism class at Granada Hills Charter High School. 10535 Zelzah Ave. Granada Hills, CA 91344 Phone: (818) 360-2361 The Plaid Press welcomes all letters and commentaries on all matters and reserves the right to edit as required. Unsigned letters will not be printed. Opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect those of The Plaid Press, its adviser, Granada Hills Charter High School faculty or student body.

Eidah Hilo Danielle Sink Madushi Wanniarachchige News Editors Jane Ha Austin Kang Entertainment Editors Sindhura Seeni Kathy Zerbib Opinion Editor Allison Ouchi Feature Editors Shilpa Bhongir Ahra Cho Sports Editors Matthew Seeman Matthew Kahn Spirit Editor Lucy Lee Photo Editor Gabrielle Amar Business Managers Austin Kang Jane Pyeon Editors-in-Chief

Staff reporters: John Cho, Jenny Lee, Nicole Martinez, Bridget Moreno, Laura Nunez, Jane Pyeon, Steve Ruiz


Melissa Mason

The Plaid Press is a proud member of National Scholastic Press Association.

08 sports

Boys’ varsity volleyball ready to dominate at the playoffs By Madushi Wanniarachchige The varsity boys’ volleyball team’s regular season comes to an end on Thursday April 28th when they face off Chatsworth in a fight to win the first seat in their league. First seats in every league are identified as the top-performing team and always get a spot in the city play-offs. The team has played an undefeated season in their league with Taft, Cleveland, Birmingham and Chatsworth and now have their eyes on winning the city title. “We’re going to city no matter what,” captain senior Jose Juarez said. “And we’re fairly confident that we can get the city championship as well.” Though they are confident the team is taking it step by step, first with defeating Chatsworth, and then hopefully going undefeated once more when playoffs start. “Since we’re playing teams that were at the top spot in their own league it’s definitely going to be a challenge,” Juarez said. “But we’ve played a great season so I think that we can do really well.” The team has worked hard by practicing to their full potential to ensure their winning streak and don’t plan on losing that streak anytime soon. “After each game we come together even more as a team,” senior Robert Nguyen said. “We see our strengths and keep them strong and see our weaknesses and try to make those go away.” For the seniors, winning the city champion title would be the perfect end to their volleyball careers. “We seniors have come so far as freshman and we did so great this season,” Nguyen said. “We want to dominate and that’s what we plan on doing.” Soon the results of their hard work will show once playoffs start and they plan on bringing an even better game than they brought at league. “We’re ready to win city,” Juarez said. “Once we’ve taken care of that step we’re just that much close to our dream of state champions.” The team’s goal is to be able to place at the state finals which comes after playoffs. If they do win city title, that goal may become a reality.

April 28, 2011

Swim and dive are making a splash By Steve Ruiz Granada Swim and Dive is back for the spring season and expects to improve from the past year. Last season, boys’ varsity ranked fourth place in city finals, while girls’ varsity ranked fifth place. With a successful last season, more consistent training will ensure improvement. Training is more rigorous, with practices taking place every morning before school at the CSUN pool and dryland workouts on campus on late Tuesdays. “Since the beginning of training I have improved in my speed, the technique of my strokes, and my knowledge of swim meets. When the semester started I had no idea what to expect,” freshman Samuel Sanchez said. This year’s four senior captains, Vinayak Dhingreja, Grant Richman, Soo Kong, and Bianca Valencia, are training hard and believe this year will be more victorious than last year. “I expect a major improvement from last year, and the relays are going to be much better,” Valencia said. Relays are one form of competition in which swimmers swim to the other side of the pool and back, and then another swimmer dives in and repeats the cycle three times. The other type of race is the individual race, in which eight people compete against one another. Aside from rigorous training, experience may also benefit swim and dive.

Photo courtesy of Soo James Kong

THE STROKE: Captain Bianca Valencia shows off her strong butterfly stroke. “We have the upper-edge because we’ve maintained a lot of swimmers from last year, while other schools lost good competitors,” Richman said. The swim & dive team is much more prepared this year, according to Coach Gila Sanford “There’s more depth, so instead of just having one good person at one thing we have multiple people good at more things,” Sanford said. The swim team captains assist in providing advice on how to better improve and moral support. “The captains have helped me improve my swimming by telling me what I do wrong or by pulling me aside to talk to me,” Sanchez said. The dedication of the Swim and Dive

team would be lacking if it were not for the dedication of coaches Gila Sanford, Helenka Lozano, and Kaley Meister. “The coaches have taught us that in order to do well in this sport we must be dedicated and train hard. They are our motivators,” Valencia said. With a strong team, extra practice, and the support from captains and coaches, Swim and Dive will have a promising season. The boys varsity swim team has won five of their six swim meets leaving the swim team and coaches hopeful for an improved outcome in city finals. “The boys are capable of winning city if they continue to be dedicated and I think the girls have the ability to go from the top five to the top three,” Sanford said.

Martial arts has kicked up new interests By Matthew Kahn Modern day martial arts was founded by grandmaster Gichen Funakoshi. He had a simple task: learn more karate each day and give back what he had learned to his pupils. Martial arts continued to grow, from Bruce Lee, all the way to the famous film, “The Karate Kid.” The sport has taken the world by storm, becoming one of the fastest growing phenomena in the world. I have studied the art for almost fourteen years. It has given me strength, dedication, responsibility and a passion. I have earned my black belt. However, the beauty is that I can always learn something new. I can teach one day to my students and have one of my teachers do the same for me. The art still may not be as popular as

football or basketball, but there are students, along with myself at school who have taken on the duties of becoming a martial artist. Senior Alex Mckay has been studying martial arts for about three years. He takes on the tough task of kickboxing and ju jitsui. “My favorite part is that it teaches you self defense and discipline,” Mckay said. However, there is more to martial arts than just kicking and punching. On one side, there is the martial, the active self-defense, but then there is the art, the grace, beauty between each move, technique or transition. It can be a dynamic punch, or a smooth sidekick thrown just right, between the chest and the solar plexus. In a sudden headlock given, and without thinking, you tuck your chin into their

flexed arm, reach around the tight grip, putting your hand onto their face lifting up as you hook step and strike with your other hand. Finally, you finish the technique with a knee to the stomach, a two punch combo, step back, help your partner up and bow. Martial arts has that innate ability to release anger and turn it into good energy. The sport is for everyone. You do not have to be tall, short, strong or fast. If you have the desire and the heart, you will succeed. “For anyone who is nervous to try karate, go for it. Fear is your greatest enemy. Karate allows you to channel your fears and give you the confidence to overcome anything in this world,” Mckay said. Martial Arts truly is an unfathomable journey.

Granada gears up for NBA playoffs

Gabrielle Amar/ The Plaid Press

SLAM DUNK: Students support stars Dwyane Wade of Miami and Kobe Bryant.

By Matthew Seeman As the NBA delves deeper into its playoff run, the Los Angeles Lakers have ensured many fans will keep their eyes peeled to the hardwood. Even Granada begins to show its Laker pride and support the sixteen-time world champions. The Lakers currently lead Chris Paul and the New Orleans Hornets three games to two. After losing the first game in Los Angeles, the Lakers stormed back, taking three of the next four games. Kobe Bryant injured his ankle after Game 4’s loss, even requiring crutches to leave for the team bus. However, he started Game 5 and scored 19 points on 8-for-13 shooting, even emphatically dunking over Emeka Okafor to prove his good health. Many students are ecstatic over the run the Purple and Gold can put together. “I’m sure they will win it again,” senior Chirag Prajapati said. “If you look at it, [coach] Phil Jackson won all his championships three in a row. Kobe’s gonna get his sixth ring.” Fans have high expectations for the Lakers. The team has been to the NBA Finals each of the last three years, winning the last two championships in the process. Bryant received the Finals MVP award for the last two championships, and Jackson currently has eleven championships as a head coach, more than any other coach in NBA history.

“The playoffs are where you show your true potential, and I think the Lakers are going to prove that they are the best at the game,” senior Chivon Azamian said. The Lakers can expect to meet stiff competition in the Western Conference if they hope to win their third straight championship. After New Orleans, they could face either Brandon Roy and the Portland Trail Blazers or Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks. After the second round, the Western Conference Finals would feature either Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder or O.J. Mayo and the Memphis Grizzlies. Students are not just watching the Wild, Wild West though. Some have their eyes on the East. The Boston Celtics have already swept the New York Knicks and look forward to playing LeBron James and the Miami Heat in the second round. The other round will likely see the Atlanta Hawks face the Chicago Bulls. The potential matchups in the East have students eager for excitement. “I look forward to watching the Easter Conference Finals,” Prajapati said. “I think it’s going to be either Chicago-Boston or Chicago-Miami; no matter which one, it might go to Game Seven!” The second round of the playoffs begins on Monday, May 2. The NBA Finals will begin on either May 31 or June 2.

GHCHS April 2011 Plaid Press  
GHCHS April 2011 Plaid Press  

GHCHS April 2011 Plaid Press granada hills charter high school