february 14, 2018 volume 53, issue 4
the Everything Greenhill
It started with one simple phrase: “Make America Great Again.” He said it, over and over again. The media covered it. His supporters embraced it. Others questioned it. His opposition protested it. Hat companies profited off of it. He tweeted it. Thousands retweeted. Through all the headlines and controversy, he stuck to it. Those four words. One motto. Make. America. Great. Again. On July 16, 2015, Donald Trump launched his campaign for President of the United States. Two and a half years later, Trump is perhaps the most polarizing political figure the world has ever seen. His unconventional approach and his journey to the Oval Office has enraptured, alienated and confused many Americans. On November 9, 2016, the day after Trump secured the election, the divide at Greenhill was visible. Some students celebrated, while others took the day off. Some faculty wept in class, while others remained silent. The drama was impossible to escape. Now, here we are, February 2018, roughly one year into the Trump presidency, and we attempt to answer one simple question:
Where are we now? full story on pages 10-11 Story by Joseph Weinberg and Lili Stern
Photo by Sudeep Bhargava
A staff editorial on our vaping problem p. 2
Explanation of Trump’s tax plan p. 5
Informing Greenhill since 1966
Administration’s fight against rising tuitions p. 9
A review of the new “Pitch Perfect” movie p. 13
Preview of Winter SPC p.16
4141 Spring Valley Road, Addison, TX 75001
Rants & Raves
Evergreen staff editor-in-chief
executive editors A RAVE to puzzles in the library. It has been proven that doing jigsaw puzzles helps with cognition, anxiety, and, memory. Stopping by to take a break from studying can help you in the end.
A RANT to the smell outside the science building. Whose smelly ghost continues to haunt the weird space in between Crossman Hall and the Science Building? An exorcism with heavily scented candles is recommended.
A RAVE to the weekend in between exams. This extra 48 hours for cramming is truly a gift from Griggs. Make sure to stay hydrated, caffeinated and wellrested, and maybe just take ONE short six hour Netflix break….
Zoe Allen Abbas Hasan
managing editor Lili Stern
design editors Areeba Amer Alice Zhang
Natalie Gonchar Caroline Simpson
features editors Ross Rubin Amber Syed
A RANT to printers all over campus. The only reliable printer in the whole school is in the English pod, while all others could be out of paper, out of service, or out feeding the peacocks. For a school that requires lots of papers and other assignments, the printers could be much more functionable.
A RAVE to the new salad dressing jugs in the cafeteria. These are much less messy, and hold more dressing. Plus, it is easier to see what they look like, because I usually just pick dressing based on looks and smell.
A RANT to tall people sitting in the hallways of Upper School North Building. It is becoming increasingly difficult to navigate the minefield of hairy legs wearing basketball shorts without stepping on someone, so please, practice “crisscross applesauce,” or sit somewhere else.
views editor Maya Ghosh
asst. news editor Sonali Notani
asst. sports editor Jake Middleman
online editor-in-chief Areeba Amer
online executive editor Radhe Melwani
online broadcast editor A RAVE to mini bagels at bagel break. What is it about mini bagels that make them so much more fun to eat than normal bagels? Having bagels more than once a rotation is much appreciated and it’s fun to pretend to be a giant in between second and third periods.
A RANT to the lack of time between second and third trimester. To go from exams right to full days of classes is a cruel and unusual punishment. If any teachers ask you a question, plead the fifth. There’s an AP Gov exam coming up!
A RAVE to Stinger Night. For so long winter sports have drawn the short straw in attendance, so it’s great to have an event to draw out fans, like a mini Homecoming. It was so wonderful to see so many people turn out and cheer on the teams! #StingersUp Content courtesy of Sam Bovard Photos by Rylyn Koger
Staff Editorial: Enough is enough, put the vapes away Let’s get straight to it— this year, the amount of vaping on campus has drastically increased, and it needs to stop. There are students who can’t go a 55-minute class period without leaving to vape in the bathroom. Not only does this ruin the reputation of Greenhill students, but the actions of a few have detracted from the privileges and culture of trust amongst the entire student body. Greenhill’s learning environment is designed to be an open and comfortable setting for all students, not a place for high school students to do illicit substances. Vaping on school property is not only unacceptable, but is prohibited. Common spaces that students use should be safe and comfortable for all students. Vaping takes that luxury away. Because of an increase in vaping on campus, bathrooms, dark rooms, and other workplaces for students now have to be monitored by faculty to ensure students are
not breaking the rules. Dean of Students Jack Oros has given announcements at F-day assembly, where he has pleaded with students to stop vaping, and he expressed the concerns the faculty and administration have on the subject. Video Production teacher Corbin Doyle is regularly forced to check the MPAC bathrooms to make sure students are not vaping. Upper School Visual Arts teacher Frank Lopez has recently equipped the doors in the photography lab with more locks to make sure that students cannot vape in the dark room. “It’s unfortunate that I had to make some of these decisions and it’s unfortunate that we have a very small group of students that are placing everybody else at harm by vaping,” said Mr. Lopez. It is disappointing and shocking that the faculty should have to address this issue
in the first place. Greenhill students are expected to exhibit a certain level of maturity and also, common sense. Vaping detracts from the culture of trust that Greenhill has provided. Students are disrespecting the Greenhill environment by abusing the facilities that are offered to students. The few people who are vaping are taking away the freedoms of the rest of the Upper School. It is unfair that the poor decisions of a handful of students have to constrict the privileges of the student body as a whole which faculty previously trusted them to handle. It’s embarrasing that we are even having this conversation in the first place. Is it really that hard to follow and respect the rules? It’s on us to earn back the privileges and trust that we once had. Show some maturity, show some responsibility and please, put the vapes away.
Stephen Crotty Harrison Heymann Leopold Von Hanstein
business manager Rishi Vas
Dr. Amy Bresie
staff photographers Annah Abedi Sudeep Bhargava Josh Flowers Rylyn Koger
Have a response? Opinion? Original Idea? Email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
wednesday, february 14, 2018
Letters to the Editor It is time for Dallas to finally create an official Santos Rodriguez memorial Dear Editor, In July 1973, a Dallas police officer shot 12-year-old Santos Rodriguez Russian-roulette style for a crime he did not commit. In 2015, a Dallas Morning News editorial called for a memorial to be made at the site of the murder and that September, another editorial argued to add Santos Rodriguez’s name to the Latino Cultural Center. In 2018, in the same place of his murder, 2301 Cedar Springs, there is an office complex. We have no physical memorial to honor Rodriguez anywhere on the site. Every day, hundreds of people walk or drive past the site and many have no idea about the murder, so where did the conversation go? Since 2015, there have been no developments in this conversation. In fact, it seems to have petered out. The Literature of Human Rights English class recently did a week-long unit on local injustices. Half of our class, including me, studied the murder of Santos Rodriguez. After two days of research, we took a field trip to the site of the killing. The only way we could distinguish the site was by the number printed on the building. I am 17-years-old, and I’m ashamed to say that before this project, I had never heard of the murder. The majority of my classmates also didn’t know about it. Our generation has no recollection of the event, and many of us have no idea it occurred. We need a plaque where this crime occurred. Though a plaque seems insignificant compared to the Santos Rodriguez park, which was created in Seattle in 1975 to focus attention on unfair treatment of minorities, we should work
to create a memorial that is realistic: A memorial that can actually happen before we forget about the conversation, again. My group and I have worked to create a potential plaque to get the conversation started. This time, let’s finish it. The plaque will ideally be 2 feet by 1.5 feet at the site of the shooting, next to the apartment complex that stands there today. The approximate cost of this plaque is around $1,000. This money can be raised or allocated from the Dallas city budget. Today, more than ever, it is important for us to have some recognition of the murder. Many Americans are working to ensure that those who lost their lives in recent incidents of police brutality are not forgotten, such as Michael Brown, Walter Scott and Alton Sterling. How can we ensure that future generations learn about these shootings if my generation has little knowledge of the Santos Rodriguez case? We are done waiting. As Dallas citizens, it is our duty to commemorate pivotal events and keep our history alive. If we don’t act now, the murder of Santos Rodriguez will soon become a three-sentence paragraph in our Texas History textbooks: insignificant and seemingly irrelevant. And the damage will be irreversible.
-Senior Areeba Amer
The plaque proposal made by students in the Literature of Human Rights class.
This column was orginally written for and published in The Dallas Morning News. If you would like to read more about the Literature of Human Rights field trip mentioned in this column, turn to page 6.
Alum shares his experiences abroad as an Israeli Soldier Dear Editor, Half a year ago, on August 15, 2017, I landed in Israel and began my new life. That day, that moment when the plane touched down on the tarmac and the passengers- all immigrants like me- burst out in applause and tears, was years in the making. For as anyone who has ever met me knows, I’ve been waiting to move to Israel since long before I (or my parents) can remember. And after so much hype and anticipation, it’s been better than anything I could have hoped for. After arriving in August, I settled into my new home on Kibbutz Urim. A kibbutz is a sort of socialist-Zionistagricultural community and mine is in the south of Israel in between the desert and the Gaza Strip. I live here with 16 friends of mine from Texas and the midwest who I met throughout my senior year. We moved together through a wonderful program and have become each other’s family. In the three months after we arrived we spent our days learning Hebrew, meeting the families of the Kibbutz, setting up bank accounts, cell phone plans, and going to tests at the nearby military base. Army service is mandatory for Israeli citizens so, being of age, I was required to take present myself for tests to see where I would fit in the army. After many meetings and way too much bureaucracy I received my callup. I showed up to the base on December 5, 2017, and since then have been a soldier in the Israel Defence Forces. Unfortunately, I am (literally) not at liberty to discuss the details of my service so I can’t say much else. What I can say is that despite the hardships, I’ve never been happier.
I’m happy for the big, rare moments, like praying for forgiveness at the Western Wall on Yom Kippur with thousands of my brothers and sisters. Like lighting the Chanukah candles with my unit in the field. And I’m happy for the small, daily moments like being loved by millions of Jewish mothers who all feel it is their duty to take care of soldiers like me with no family in the country. Like being able to buy hamentaschen and challah at the gas station, and to kiss the mezuzah when I walk into a movie theater. I’m happy to walk into the synagogue on my base and pray alongside Jews from Argentina, Ethiopia, India, and Morocco. I’m happy because, despite all the problems (and yes there are problems here), this is a place I can call my own. Every day I walk down streets named after my kings and prophets, I hear people argue in a language that reflects my unique history, I eat at restaurants that adhere to my dietary laws, and I see old women who fought to protect me play with their grandchildren who I protect in turn. I left my family and friends behind because after years of dreaming, the time came for me to come home. Sending hornet passion and pride from the Middle East,
-Josh Rudner ‘17
Photo courtesy of Josh Rudner
Our Editorial Policy The Evergreen is an independent, student-run newspaper serving the Greenhill community. The newspaper’s goal is to help the local community interpret campus, local, national and international events through articles and editorials written and edited by students. The Evergreen aims to fulfill its agenda with policies of integrity and upholds a stringent code of ethics that values honesty, accuracy and responsibility. The Evergreen reserves the right to edit submitted material for accuracy, grammar and length. The Evergreen will not publish any materials that fall under the Supreme Court’s definition of unprotected speech: works that are li-
belous, obscene or invasions of privacy. All accounts of deaths and other personal issues will be printed only with family consent. Letters to the Editor are encouraged provided that they fall under protected speech. Any letters that are considered attacks on a plan or proposal will be shown to the person the letter most likely affects. All individuals will have a chance to respond to criticism in a letter. The Evergreen reserves the right to not publish letters they deem unfit for print. Anonymous letters will not be published. The Staff Editorial represents the opinions of The Evergreen staff, not necessarily that of Greenhill School. Similarly, individual columns and letters do not necessarily
reflect the opinion of The Evergreen or Greenhill School. The Evergreen does not submit to censorship and believes in the First Amendment rights for student journalists. Suggestions, critiques, and complaints are welcomed and encouraged. The paper encourages businesses to advertise in The Evergreen but reserves the right to refuse an advertisement. All business inquiries should be directed to Rishi Vas at email@example.com. The Evergreen is printed six times during the school year. Print circulation is 1000 copies. Past issues are available for online viewing at issuu.com/ghevergreen.
Parents’ Association hosts Community Conversation Series to address issues of race
Photo courtesy of the Greenhill Communications Office
CRUCIAL CONVERSATIONS: The Greenhill Parents’ Association hosted an event that took place throughout MLK weekend. A primary purpose of the series was to raise an understanding and awareness of what people of different races go through every day. Pictured above is the panel that took place on Thursday, January 11 with five panelists and a moderator.
Jeffrey Harberg News Editor
Greenhill’s Parents Association hosted a three-part parent forum event titled ‘Community Conversations’ on three nights throughout Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. weekend. The three-part event involved a panel discussion, a dinner conversation and a community service project, providing a venue for how to handle conversations involving race. According to Greenhill’s website, the event was designed to “create a platform for cross-cultural dialogues that foster deeper understanding and relationships amongst our diverse community.” “We’re all feeling the weight of navigating this divisive landscape where media headlines are often egregious and inflammatory,” said Parent Association co-chair Marlo Melucci. “Our goal with this series is to provide a space for our parent community to discuss the taboo topic of race with the hope of learning more about our vast perspectives and the challenges we might face. We, the adults, need to intentionally practice what we preach about respect. When we lead by example, we will more likely raise culturally aware children who will become the next generation of empathetic leaders.” Head of Lower School Michael Simpson said that one of the biggest topics of that night’s forum was how Greenhill parents talk about race with their kids. “People do not want to engage in [talks about race] because they are fearful,” said Mr. Simpson. “Either they’re just not comfortable talking about race in general, or, because of the climate, they’re afraid to offend somebody or say the wrong thing.” The first part of the event took place on Thursday, January 11 in Rose Hall, where a panel of five adults of different races and ethnicities took a seat in front of parents of Greenhill students. Tom Huang, the Assistant Managing Editor for Features and Community engagement at the “Dallas Morning News”, served as a moderator for the panel, asking the men and women about their own experiences with racial prejudice, what is happening in the world and what ways parents should discuss race with their children. The five panelists were Bianca Anderson, Dr. Poonam Desai, Byron Sanders ’01, Michael Simpson and Cynthia Sorto ’06. According to Greenhill parent and co-chair of the event Toria Frederick, they wanted to make sure there was a diverse perspective on the panel, both professionally and physically. “We were very deliberate in thinking about all the different touch points and perspectives because we wanted the conversation to be focused on our kids,” said Mrs. Frederick. “We brought a very interesting intersection of people who understood the intersection of race, education, and emotional health.” Mr. Simpson said that the variety of people speaking that night made the conversation more insightful. “Having diverse points of view makes the conversation
richer,” said Mr. Simpson. “Even if there is tension or disagreement, there will be a greater understanding of all the issues in the conversation.” Mr. Simpson said that while Greenhill has had racial discussion between students, the panel was more directed towards parents and how they speak with their kids. Head of School Scott Griggs said that the panel exceeded his expectations. He said his main hope is that people take away the fact that Greenhill is one community, working together. “Greenhill, since its founding, has had its mission to be a place that’s going to welcome people of all different backgrounds,” said Mr. Griggs. “One of my roles as headmaster is to support, push and challenge us to grow and have the ongoing conversations and learning around these issues.” The second event was a dinner at the homes of each of six different Greenhill families on Saturday, January 13. At each dinner were different tables of ten people who were each able to share their own personal experiences dealing with prejudice, injustice and inequality.
When you hear somebody else’s story, you forever interact with them differently; you’ve heard a little bit about what makes them who they are.”
The program was directed by an organization called “Dallas Dinner Table,” who have “participants share experiences and perspectives on race in a casual setting in a structured discussion in small dinners across the Greater Dallas area”, according to their website. Assistant Head of School Tom Perryman said he thinks Dallas Dinner Table’s intentions are a great idea. “I’m a big believer in fellowship over food,” he said. “When you sit down to eat with someone, there is just a bonding and a connection that goes on in a way that is different than any other context.” Mr. Perryman said that his three-hour experience went by very quickly and he bonded with the adults at his table. The hosts of the home he went to were Sabrina and Cleon McKnight, parents of fifth grader Nia McKnight. “When you hear somebody else’s story, you forever interact with them differently; you heard a little bit about what makes them who they are,” said Mr. Perryman. “There are now nine other people that I know in a different way now, and that I have shared myself with as well.” The dinner was not designed to be a debate of any sort, but rather an opportunity for people to take in other peoples’ stories, according to Mrs. Frederick. “A big part of the dialogue is the sharing, but also the listening, and the absorbing and understanding,” said Mrs. Frederick. “The empathetic listening is a big piece of what is missing in the dialogue about race.” Mrs. Melucci believes people actively exploring these differences in their relationships with one another can help us break down stereotypes and barriers.
“Asking parents to step outside of their comfort zones to listen and learn from one another was a great first step, said Mrs. Melucci. “We took part in a meaningful and supportive community building exercise over the MLK weekend.” Lastly, on Monday, January 15, members of the Greenhill community met at the North Texas Food Bank to sort, bag and box up weekend food supplies for families in need. Mrs. Frederick said that the food bank trip was a great time for individuals and families to reflect on the weekend with others. “Going through those two previous experiences [the panel discussion and the dinner] really just tops [the event] off because people who experienced the weekend can talk about their experiences with other people,” said Mrs. Frederick. “There were even more conversations happening at the service project.” Mr. Griggs said that none of the three events that took place over MLK weekend were more important than any other. “They are all different pieces of what we can do as a school community, what we should do as a school community, how we can grow as a community,” Mr. Griggs said. “We wanted to do several things around MLK holiday that focused around listening, learning and serving.”
Photos courtesy of the Greenhill Communications Office
wednesday, february 14, 2018
A Greenhill take on Trump’s tax plan Leopold von Hanstein Staff Writer
The Republican Tax Cut Plan was passed by the United States Congress in December. The bill has caused divide within Washington, with President Trump tweeting about it as the “Biggest Tax Bill and Tax Cuts in history.” In a tweet, former presidential candidate and Vermont senator Bernie Sanders called it “a moral abomination.” The new tax plan lowers the corporate tax tremendously which is a big advantage for companies. As the New York Times reports, the plan also tries to simplify the tax system by decreasing the tax brackets, divisions at which tax rates change in a progressive tax system, from six to four. However, the changes are more beneficial for corporations and wealthier people than for the middle or lower class. “I think that is definitely a tax plan that is more beneficial to corporations than to the individual at least in the middle or lower class,” said Upper School Economics teacher Adrian Martinez. “I don’t see that as a huge problem, because I think the wealthy pay the lion share of the taxes in the US.” “I didn’t like it,” Upper School History teacher David Lowen said. “It seems to be very pro-business.” One of the several changes the new tax plan incorporates is the reduction of the corporate tax, which is a direct tax imposed on the income or capital of corporations, from 35 percent to 21 percent. In a December meeting at the White House, Trump said that this change in the corporate tax is “probably the biggest factor” of the plan. The hope, according to Trump, is that companies are coming back to the United States because the tax burden has been lowered, which results by following his theory of
trickle-down economics, that says by reducing taxes the economy will be stimulated, in more jobs. “Companies…are taking the tax breaks to buy back stocks, which would increase dividends for stockholders. If the corporations would take the money and reinvest it in upgrading factories, hire more people yes that would work, but they don’t do that,” Mr. Lowen said. Another big change the tax plan in-
The bill has caused divide within Washington, with President Trump tweeting about it as the “Biggest Tax Bill and Tax Cuts in history.”
cludes is the reduction of the tax brackets from six to four. The idea behind that is to simplify the tax code . These changes in the brackets would have a positive effect on the middle class and upper class, because people with a middle-class income would get a tax break and the highest tax bracket would only apply to people with an income over $1 million. On the other side, people with a lower income have to face a small increase. Is it justified to cut taxes for the wealthy? Some people might argue that the tax load currently carried by the upper-class makes a tax cut for them reasonable. CNBC reports that in the US, the richest one percent payed 45.7 percent of the individual income taxes in 2014. For reference, The Guardian reports that in the UK the burden for the top on percent is only 27 percent . On the one hand, many tax cuts only apply to the wealthy, but on the other hand as government spending increases, it will lead to a bigger deficit. In fact, the Congressional Budget Office estimates an increase of the deficit by $1.4 trillion over the next 10
A CONTROVERSIAL CHANGE: President Donald Trump signed the Republican Tax Cut Plan in December of 2017, lowering corporate tax. The Tax Cut Plan sparked controversy in Washington DC and at Greenhill.
years. Another big effect of the Tax Plan is that it will increase the Child Tax Credit, a cash back into the pockets of American parents when they file their tax returns. This increase, that applies to every family with children under the age of 17, is especially beneficial to all families with an annual income under $19,050. However, this policy will only last until 2025 if it isn’t extended. The Affordable Care Act takes a direct hit. The Tax Plan repeals the individual mandate, which compels most Americans to buy health insurance or pay a fine. According to the Washington Post, this would free more than $300 billion in government funding for other projects of the Republican party. On the other hand, it would also make it less likely that young, healthy people
would purchase insurance. This could damage the system because it depends on young people who pay in. “To hide from the public that they are severely cutting the foundation of the Affordable Care Act is, to me, clearly irresponsible,” sophomore Josh Leffler said. Though he sees the effects on the Affordable Care Act very negatively, overall, he said that both parties have contributed to the situation. “The largest problems with politics in this country, especially with the tax bill, is the lack of cooperation between Democrats and Republicans,” Josh said.
New security system implemented for faculty Areeba Amer
Online Editor-in-Chief/Design Editor
Greenhill is implementing a new security system for faculty after revisiting the critiques from a security audit and the budget plan. With the new system, faculty members will now use cards that are programmed to give each faculty member specific access to classrooms that are deemed rel-
evant to them. Outside of every door on campus, there will be a card scanner that will unlock the door, instead of a key lock. Greenhill has been using this key lock system, or the “Intellikey,” for about 15 years. “We are just upgrading the system,” said Officer Steve Smith. “The Intelli-Key system was great for Greenhill for the time it served. However, there is always some-
thing bigger and better that comes out that you want to look at.” According to Officer Smith, the new system also increases campus security capabilities. “The card is just one aspect of the whole system,” said Officer Smith. “The system allows us to monitor activity closer. For example, if someone loses their card, instead of reprogramming the locks on campus like we would do now,
we could get into the computer and delete the card in the system.” According to Chief Financial Officer Kendra Grace, the new system is more cost-efficient in the long-run and in approximately a year or two, the new system would be more profitable. “The replacement cost for the new system is less expensive compared to the Intelli-Key system,” she said. “The Intelli-Keys them-
selves aren’t expensive, but the cost to replace broken parts, batteries, and so on adds up in the long-run compared to the new system.” Right now, administration is in the midst of shifting systems and plans to move completely to the new system by the 2018-19 school year.
wednesday, february 14, 2018
English class confronts Dallas’ past injustices This trimester, the junior and senior Literature of Human Rights class has studied some of the uglier parts of Dallas’ history. The class, taught by Assistant Head of School Tom Perryman, has spent the past few weeks examining the murder of Santos Rodriguez and the lynching of Allen Brooks that both took place in Dallas in the 20th century. The story of Allen Brooks, an African American man, dates back to 1910 when he was pulled out of the Old Red Courthouse, dragged down seven blocks, then lynched publically. Santos Rodriguez was a 12-year-old Mexican- American boy. In 1973, after being accused of stealing eight dollars of goods from a gas station, Rodriguez was murdered by a Dallas police officer after he refused to confess to the alleged crime. Both of these incidents happened in downtown Dallas. “I think the most striking thing about what you see, is that you don’t see anything,” Upper School English teacher Tom Perryman said. “You walk by there, you drive by there a million times and you have no idea. There is no marker, no monument, no commemoration to this horrible thing that happened here.” On January 15, the class visited both murder sites. They collected soil from the Allen Brooks site for the Equal Justice Initiative national lynching memorial in Montgomery, Alabama. As part of their final project in the class, they will be writing letters to Mayor Mike Rawlings to propose memorials on each site. The Equal Justice Initiative that the class
has worked with collects soil from every documented lynching site in the nation’s history to collect for the national memorial in Alabama. Before the field trip, students collected research and analyzing death certificates, old photographs and police reports from both events
I think the most striking thing about what you see, is that you don’t see anything.”
Senior Amber Johri was able to learn a valuable lesson from this eye- opening experience and look at things from a different perspective. “The biggest thing that I took away was probably to challenge things that we take to be fact...it’s really easy to overlook history if you’re only looking at it through one lens,” Amber said. Mr. Perryman and librarian Mrs. Sonja Hayes stressed the idea of facing the reality of America’s history, especially Dallas’ history, so that the community can learn from those problems and move on. “We have to be open. We have to be willing to look at the ugly part of history. Many people want to just shove it under a rug, or just pretend it never happened, but it did,” Mrs. Hayes said.
Photos by Zeenya Meherally
UNEARTHING AND LEARNING: In the top picture, Matthew Toudouze (middle), along with Kassidy Woods (left) and Phoebe Metzger-Levitt (right), dig for soil at the lynching site.
Story by Raag Venkat and Sarah Luan
Let’s stock about it
Seniors pursue interest in stock market analysis Photo by Anaah Abedi
TAKING STOCK: Mathew, Gregory and Max evaluate stocks on their computers during lunch. The three discuss their investments and do their research in their free time.
Alice Zhang Design Editor Three seniors gather in the senior pod, computers open. They browse through sites like Charles Schwab, TD Ameritrade and E trade, stock trading websites that they use. Senior Gregory Toudouze enters the ticker and the number of shares for the stock he’s planning to invest in. After some debate among the three, with just one click, he makes the trade. Seniors Gregory Toudouze, Matthew Zweig and Max Pidgeon are just a few of the Greenhill students that have been getting involved with the stock market this year. Inspired by parental influence or previous internships in business, these students invest their own money through their parent’s accounts. Most decisions have to be approved by their parents, but the students generally make the finals calls.
Working with real money gives them experience for their plans to pursue business-oriented futures Matthew said that trading stocks right now will only help him gain experience for the future. “In my opinion, the best way to learn is through experience. I’d rather make bad decisions now when investing the money I have than when I’m investing money that I make,” Matthew said. The students do not invest blindly. Their trades are backed up by research they conduct on their own time. Matthew reads weekly journals about corporations, and Max reads “The Wall Street Journal” in order to get a better idea of the direction of the company’s future. Max said that he researches these companies to look at the gains and losses of investing before pulling the trigger on any
trades. “I look at certain companies and start reading about what people have to say. I look at all the gains possible, but also the negatives, because that’s what’s more likely to happen. Then I see if the gains outweigh the risk, and I make the decision based on that,” Max said. Max said this aspect of research is his favorite part of trading stocks because he enjoys reading about companies and their futures. Recently, Max has looked into the technology sector and has invested some of his stocks in tech companies, like Apple, and Intel. “Being able to research a company and trying to determine its future, and be rewarded for that, is really exciting,” Max said. Gregory, Matthew and Max all invest time daily into checking their stocks and
researching their companies. Since the stock market is only open on weekdays, these students use free time to monitor the updates and read articles. Gregory said he considers time spent checking stocks and researching a hobby. “I don’t think of it as something that requires work, like math class. I’m not constantly checking my stocks: I look at my stocks during my free time, so I would call it a healthy obsession,” Gregory said. However, it isn’t always a win-win situation. There is risk, and all three of the students have dealt with the risk. “Sometimes the amount of research you do can’t always help you win,” said Max. “It’s a game of chance. It’s a dangerous game, but fun.”
S.O.S. Brigade takes the student body by storm Maya Ghosh
Last March, room 302 of the language pod was bursting at the seams with students craning their necks to watch SOS Brigade’s most highly anticipated club meeting: the Super Smash Bros. tournament. In the span of one lunch meeting, 24 club members went head-to-head, with an audience of 75 students watching. “Mr. Oros came in and got mad at me because there were so many students in that room. Kids were standing on desks, sitting all over the floor, and watching from the outside of the room to see people play [Super Smash Bros],” sophomore co-president of SOS Brigade Kai Hashimoto said. While most Upper School clubs are suffering from poor attendance and a lack of club leadership, SOS Brigade has maintained an avid following of students who appreciate anime and video games. Led by sophomores Kai Hashimoto and Michelle Liang, the club is named after a club formed by the characters of the anime Haruhi Suzumiya, which ran on TV from 2006 to 2014. “The reason that the club is doing so well is because Michelle and Kai are strong leaders. They always have a plan, the club
votes on what to watch, and then they do it,” said Upper School Spanish teacher and SOS Brigade sponsor Jacobo Luna. Recently, the club has been watching animes “My Hero Academia,” “Love Live” and “Inferno Cop.” According to club members, the laid back nature of watching and appreciating animes keeps people coming back and has contributed to the club’s strong following. “I like the culture of the club the most. It’s a bunch of people who like anime and get together to simply enjoy it. There’s no higher calling to discuss different topics or to find new meaning, we just come together to have fun,” said club member Bill Yang. And in addition to the video games and anime, co-presidents Kai and Michelle Liang always bring East Asian snacks. “The snacks are really good, but I most enjoy having the lychee jellies because they are sweet and taste good,” said club member Oliver Dai. But perhaps what SOS Brigade is most known for amongst Upper School students are their mass emails sent out prior to every club meeting, filled with memes and references to the anime show that the club will be watching the following day.
Photo by Rylyn Koger
GAMETIME: Club members watch an anime during one of their club meetings at lunch.
“I personally enjoy writing the emails. It comes randomly, sometimes. The hardest part is making the ‘hook,’ now I just resort to using pictures and memes. I get a lot inspiration from what I see online,” Copresident Michelle Liang said. According to Michelle, it is the
universality of her club that brings her the most joy. “Video games and TV shows appeal to everyone, we just want people to have fun,” said Michelle.
What do you do for Greenhill?
In the mornings, I start at SAGE. In the morning I start as the breakfast cashier. From breakfast cashier at 11, I go to the Lower School dining. I have to serve all of Pre-k and K, and then it is lunch for everyone else. Then, I work from 2:45-5 here in the concessions stand. If there is a game, we might work until 7:45 pm. What do you have to do to get breakfast ready for everyone? I usually get here at 5:30 AM. I arrive early because everyone that has to prepare breakfast arrives at 6 AM. If we all get there at the same time, everyone is gonna try and get to the same thing at the same time. So, I always come earlier than them so I can get all my stuff and move. I don’t cook, but I bring out all the condiments for the food. I bring out the stuff for the oatmeal and coffee and stuff like that. It all has to be predone before 7. It takes a whole lot of itty-bitty steps to get everything out there and ready. What is the hardest breakfast food to make? All the breakfast is so simple. It’s just some scrambled eggs. The biscuits just bake. Breakfast is not hard at all. Lunch is a lot of prep. What makes lunch so hectic? There is way more of y’all. In the morning, y’all have to pay for breakfast, so we only get 150 to 200 people coming through. Everybody in the whole school is coming to lunch. Everyone on the grounds, everywhere. We got to prepare enough food for everyone. A lot of people are coming through getting seconds or thirds. That’s why when high school comes around we run out sometimes. There is no way to know how much we need. SAGE brings in everything fresh everyday. So, everything has to be hand chopped, it has to be baked. There are no microwaves, so there is no quick way to prepare things. Everything has to be marinated, baked, cooked fully through. It takes time, like you’re cooking in your own home.
wednesday, february 14, 2018
one thing you’ll see. Everyone comes in with one plate of potatoes. Potatoes, potatoes, potatoes. What is the most popular lunch item? Anything fried. Burger day is big, but anything fried. You remember, we used to have French fry bar, but we had to stop. People would just come up and take more and more fries. They would get everywhere. It was just french fries, french fries, french fries. Do you memorize what people get everyday? A lot of them get the same thing everyday. Maybe 20 out of 100 get the same thing everyday. Are there any out-of-the-box orders in the morning? Well, I have one guy who, if it’s there, will get a whole plate of cinnamon rolls and bacon. I’m talking a whole six/seven slices of bacon and three cinnamon rolls. He stacks those cinnamon rolls on top of his bacon. His plate looks like a mountain, and he eats it all. What is your favorite meal SAGE makes? I don’t really eat breakfast, but my favorite thing when we have them is pancakes. It is the best thing, and everyone wants them. For lunch, I love the wings. I am a big wing fan, no matter where they are. We got all different kinds, so I think those are my favorites. Photo by Amber Syed
Does it ever get stressful working behind the counter for lunch?
A FRIENDLY FACE: Ms. McGill in her daily position behind the counter ringing up breakfast charges for students early in the morning.
Oh yeah, on pizza day. We can only bake so many at a time, so you got to hurry up and bake those pizzas. I don’t make them, but I know the guys in the back are working. Pizza day is probably the craziest day for making the food. It’s funny because it’s an easy day, because it’s pizza! It’s the simplest food, but it’s the craziest getting it out there to you guys.
serving the preschoolers. The little ones love you! They just love everyone. Every little thing makes them happy. They are so care free, nothing matters. You give them a chicken nugget, they’re happy! I love working with the preschoolers the most. It’s nice that we are K-12. If it was just high school, I wouldn’t get that fun time of the day. High schoolers don’t care about nobody, at least not like the little ones. They ask all kinds of questions.
What is the most popular breakfast item?
What’s your favorite time of the day to work?
Potatoes. It’s gotta be potatoes. That’s
My favorite time of the day is lunch
What kinds of questions do the younger kids ask?
"Who cooked it?" "What are we having?" On Monday, my first question is, "what are we having for dessert on Friday?" The little guys only get dessert once a week. Their focus on Monday is what are they gonna get on Friday! They always ask what day it is and if today is Friday.
Reporting by Abbas Hasan
wednesday, february 14, 2018
Tuition on the Rise
How administration is combatting annual tuition increases Hayden Jacobs
In six years, Greenhill’s tuition has risen $8,225. Greenhill administration has acknowledged this rapid increase in tuition as a problem and is attempting to combat it. Last spring, the business office conducted a study that focused on the school’s longterm financial sustainability. According to Greenhill, the study carried the goal of reducing the rate that tuition increases and maintaining the school’s economic diversity. If the study is successful in lowering the school’s expenses and ultimately reducing tuition increases, the hope is that Greenhill can stay economically diverse in terms of families who attend. If tuition continues to rise rapidly, the school would risk their ability to accommodate families from all economic backgrounds. “We knew we wouldn’t be able to stop these [tuition] increases, no one has, but we wanted to moderate those increases. Tuition has been increasing either 4 or 4.5 percent over the last 4-5 years and we wanted to try to decrease that,” said Head of School Scott Griggs. According to Mr. Griggs, tuition rises annually because of expenses such as insurance, ground and facility maintenance and utilities and importantly the extra costs of faculty salaries and benefits. The cost of these things rise every year as costs of living in Texas increase. One of the largest increases in yearly expenses comes from employees’ medical insurance which continues to rise significantly more than tuition does.
The financial sustainability study was coordinated in the spring of 2017 by Greenhill’s former Chief Financial Officer, Melissa Orth, Mr. Griggs, and an outside group of financial experts from “Measuring Success,” a group that works with nonprofits to “improve companies’ effectiveness by finding the information needed to improve strategic and tactical decision making,” according to the group’s website. The study was recognized in the 2017 November/December of Net Assets Magazine. The author of the article was Dr. Harry Bloom, the Senior Vice President of Client Solutions at “Measuring Success.” In the article, Dr. Bloom examines the financial planning and testing process that “Measuring Success” used to help Greenhill conduct their study. It talks about five working groups that the school was divided into for the study to ensure all parts of Greenhill, including administration, maintenance and each academic department were involved. Each groups consisted of faculty members from different grade levels, administration and members from the Board of Trustees. The five working groups identified Personnel, Teaching and Learning, Net Tuition Revenue, Non-Tuition Revenue and Purchased Goods and Services as potential areas for increased financial sustainability were Personnel, Teaching and Learning, Net Tuition Revenue, Non-Tuition Revenue and Purchased Goods and Services. Last year, Mrs. Orth worked with faculty through all divisions of the school to find ways of reducing the school’s budget and increasing the revenue.
Kendra Grace, Greenhill’s Chief Financial Officer as of this year, took over the study at the start of her stint this fall. She now oversees the implementation of the initiatives that resulted from the study when creating Greenhill’s annual budget in the fall. This includes subtracting items the study deemed unnecessary and purchasing more cost-efficient supplies. “Each working group across campus developed hypotheses with ways they could either increase revenue or decrease expenses with the goal of being able to limit tuition increases to 3% a year over the next 5 years,” said Mrs. Grace. One of the main responsibilities of the different employees involved with the creating these hypotheses was to compile lists of items that the school would no longer need to purchase. The Purchased Goods and Services group listed water as one of their items that Greenhill could cut back on. They learned that Greenhill used 1.9 million gallons of water every year. Instead of paying for this water from the city, Greenhill decided to build a well last spring so the school could supply their own water. This change alone saves the school nearly $100,000 a year according to Director of Facility Operations and Services Mike Willis. While the study identified a multitude of ways the school can cut back to reduce costs, not all are feasible. When Mrs. Grace took over this year, she was tasked with choosing which different hypotheses, like the well, she would actually be able to implement. “We had the summer to go through each initiative and determine if it would actually
work or not, for instance, do we decide we can’t increase prices on something because the market won’t allow it,” said Mrs. Grace. Families would quickly see the benefits if the rate that tuition rises were to slow down, according to Mrs. Grace “By reducing the rise of tuition from 4.5% to 3%, a family with one student would save between $1,200 and $1,500 a year over a five-year period,” said Mrs. Grace.
Graphic by Harrison Heymann
LOOKING AT LOGISTICS: Admissions explains the five groups that were used in a study that examined ways to increase financial sustainability.
Reducing, Reusing and Recycling on the Hill Natalie Gonchar
On the ground in the quad lay multiple wrappers from snack break. In the recycling bins around the Greenhill campus lay plates full of uneaten food. Kindergarten teacher Janice LaMendola and the Green Team are trying to solve these problems within Greenhill one by one. Mrs. LaMendola is the head of Greenhill’s Green Team, which is composed of faculty, parents, Upper School students and administrators. She has been a member of the Green Team for the past decade, and became the chair this past year. The Green Team is an all-community program that focuses on the conservation of resources, educating others, and lower Greenhill’s overall carbon footprint. Her interest in the Green Team and its initiatives has grown ever since she participated in a recycling project with the Primer kids, when she was a primer teacher, where they recycled about 10,000 bottles in the span of six months. “I have always been involved ever since, recycling has been my baby,” said Mrs. LaMendola. Over the past few years the Green Team has been focusing on tackling internal issues such as the trash that is being left behind by the students on campus. “There is just a lot of trash left on campus by us. It’s us,” said Mrs. LaMendola. The initiatives undertaken by the Green Team geared towards resolving these issue on campus funnel down to the hopes of educating the student body on how to properly recycle.
The Green Team is planning on doing this through announcements, posters, and early environmental education starting in Lower School. Upper School members of the Green Team participate in educating the Lower Schoolers on how to be more aware of their part in the environment and on campus. “It would be great to see Greenhill students be more conscientious of the environment and what their effect on it is,” said Rylyn Koger, Upper School member of the Green Team. The Lower School Team Green, run by Laura Flanagan, has already started their own garden in the balcony in the third and fourth grade hallway. “The kids have felt like they have done something greater, and that they have been able to leave their mark on the Lower School,” Mrs. Flanagan said. Team Green is more of a student run club mainly focused on internal Lower School changes. It was founded last year by the fourth graders in attempt to keep the Greenhill campus clean. There are currently 25 members of this club. The internal issues and potential initiatives are discussed during the monthly meetings held every third Thursday at 4pm. The Green Team meetings are similar to board meetings, according to Rylyn. The members are emailed the list of discussion topics so they are prepared to discuss the certain issues present on Campus. During these meetings the student members are advised on how to handle certain issues and ideas for potential student led projects-.
Photo by Rylyn Koger
GREENHILL GOES GREEN: Lower School Green Team members pose by their creations.
A new, upcoming project within the Upper School is using small hydroponic egg growers to grow plants around the two Upper School buildings. A major accomplishment for Team Green has been building the Tower Garden, as well as remodeling the terrace into a garden with a bench. A Green Team long-term goal includes growing gardens in every building and using the vegetables and products in the dining
hall. The Green Team also participates in out of Campus initiatives, such as EARTHx, an Earth Day conference that educates different communities about better choices. “We started to focus on the outside community and teaching other schools how to conserve as we had, but now we are really going on the inside. We want to take care of us first,” said Mrs. LaMendola.
The conservative voice on ca
cont’d from page 1
A rise in offensive speech To say the 45th president of the United States is unlike his predecessors would be an understatement. “Trump is bizarre. He is uncouth. [George W.] Bush carried himself with a sense of dignity that other presidents in the past have. Obama, although I disagreed with him vehemently, had a sense of decorum and decency and elegance and grace that was reflected in previous presidents,” said Upper School History teacher Adrian Martinez. “Trump does not have those things.” Trump’s list of controversies is endless. He has called Mexicans “bad hombres,” called African countries and Haiti “s***hole countries,” and said that when “you’re famous, you can do anything to a woman: even “grab ‘em by the p****.” The list goes on. As a result, some students said the president’s actions have normalized bigoted attitudes and language on a Greenhill campus that stands firmly against bigotry. “There’s a new headline everyday about something Trump said to offend someone and people are beginning to feel numb towards the things that are happening in our government,” said senior Kameron Wilkerson. “We’ll talk about it for a day then just go right back to our normal daily lives.” In January, the Anti-
Defamation League (ADL) released a report revealing that white supremacist propaganda tripled on college campuses during 2017. According to the ADL report, 346 incidents of white supremacist propaganda on college campuses have occurred since September of 2016, 290 of which took place in 2017 since Trump was elected. With the president spewing and tweeting what many consider to be offensive speech on virtually a daily basis, Greenhill students and administration are left with a difficult task: should they talk about the president’s comments and address them up front, or silence views and opinions they deem bigoted? “We hear things being said and see things being written today that give license to any of you to say the same kinds of things that as an educator and as a head of school I would tell you are not acceptable,” Head of School Scott Griggs said. Senior and Political Action Club (PAC) secretary Erin Puckett said ideas at Greenhill should be able to be expressed freely even if they are somewhat controversial and possibly offensive. “There are always going to be people out there that have different views, sometimes offensive ones. America is built on the principle of free speech and on some level
we need to let those people have their own views to a reasonable extent even if we don’t agree with them, otherwise we threaten the foundation of our democracy,” she said. However, students said there is a certain line that can’t be crossed. According to many students, when political views become license to launch attacks on individuals or groups on campus, that’s when it becomes unacceptable. “Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, we shouldn’t tolerate bigotry, but until something happens that hurts somebody, I don’t think we have a right to shut anybody down,” said Kameron. The question must be asked: what happens when there is an intersection between someone’s political views and a personal attack on somebody that someone deems offensive? According to Mr. Martinez, the best way to face that potential intersection is through discourse. “It’s really just about putting your ideas out there and being willing to defend them, whatever they are,” Mr. Martinez said. “Sometimes those ideas might be offensive to you and if that’s the case, the response isn’t to shut it down, or prevent that idea from seeing the light of day, the goal should be to take that idea and unpack it, and analyze it.”
On the surface, nothing about the scene seemed contentious. With a PowerPoint of Trump’s immigration policies and goals pulled up on the Smart board behind him, sophomore Jose Portela, president of Greenhill’s Conservative Club, led the discussion among the roughly 20 students who showed up to the club’s second meeting this past month. The club attendees, a mix of liberals and conservatives, listened intently as Jose explained everything from Trump’s stance on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) to his personal beliefs on illegal immigration in Texas. But the story behind Greenhill’s Conservative Club is not quite as free of contention as the club discussion that day might suggest. Jose said he revived the club after a hiatus in response to what he deemed a rise in marginalization of conservative voices at Greenhill following Trump’s election in 2016. “Voicing opinions about the president or the Republican Party has become a basis to be mocked and made fun of at Greenhill,” Jose said. With the club, Jose wanted to create a space where conservative opinions could be shared and discussed in an open forum without
judgment. Senior Brock Bagelman said the club gives people an opportunity to discuss ideas that he feels don’t frequently surface at Greenhill. “There’s not a strong conservative influence within the student body and student council here, and talking about politics can get heated pretty quickly. So having a place where you can actually voice your true opinions is good,” he said. Some conservatives on campus said that generalizations about the party as a whole often dilute their true political opinions as they get lumped in with an extreme brand of politics. Jose said he has received threats from other students for wearing proTrump apparel to school. Mr. Martinez, along with other students, also said it’s important to recognize the division between the party and the president. “There’s an intellectual laziness that you see on TV and at this school that suggests that ‘if you are conservative, you must agree with the party in power’ and that’s just not true,” he said. Brock said within the conservative students who attend the club, there is plenty of disagreement. There are club members who tend to
wednesday, february 14, 2018
ampus align more with the Trump and what he described as “his unconventional approach,” and others including himself who are more “suspicious” of Trump’s actions and policies, he said. Brock, who used to attend Political Action Club, but doesn’t anymore, said he doesn’t feel the club’s attendees are always committed in engaging in dialogue with the conservative viewpoint. Erin Puckett said the conservative representation at PAC has significantly declined in recent years, and even more so since Trump took office. However, she hopes to plan a joint meeting with the Conservative Club in the near future. Upper School Science teacher Mike Krueger, a self-identified conservative and the club sponsor, said he sees the formation of the conservative club as a response in part to the conservative students feeling isolated at Greenhill. “My sense from the group [of about 40 people at a conservative club meeting] is that there are more and more people who are feeling ostracized on campus,” Mr. Krueger said. “For a school that prides itself on diversity, it seems like the diversity of political thought is not really important to people on campus here.”
Political discussion in the classroom Before the 2016-2017 school year began, Head of School Scott Griggs led his colleagues in civil discourse training. With the presidential election pending and divisive rhetoric flying around the debates, speeches and press regarding the election, Mr. Griggs anticipated that political discussion at Greenhill would be more contentious in the upcoming school year. Mr. Griggs talked to Greenhill faculty about keeping political bias out of the classroom, and focusing on being a neutral mediator of healthy political dialogue. According to students and teachers alike, however, many teachers do hold a liberal bias that shows itself inside the classroom. “My opinion is that there are a number of teachers here who are so upset about the election, and still upset about the election, that they are letting their personal political feelings get in the way of balanced discussions in the classroom,” said Mike Krueger, Upper School Science teacher. “Conservative students have come to me in tears about the way they are treated by classmates and teachers when they dare to stray from the liberal position.” Mr. Krueger is the sponsor of conservative club, and a confidante for conservative students feeling ostracized on campus. While all of these things are true, and while he voices his political stances outside of the classroom, according to Mr. Krueger, it is not hard to keep his personal opinions at bay during class. “I’m a science teacher, so I don’t moderate political discussion in the
classroom, even if the opportunity arises,” he said. “Ideally, students should not be able to discern a teacher’s political leanings from interactions in the classroom. That’s what I strive for.” Other teachers, particularly in the History and English departments, welcome political discussion into the classroom. It is in these discussions that the alleged liberal bias on campus takes root. Upper School History teacher Dr. Amy Bresie, who leans left on the political spectrum, acknowledges that condemning what she considers bigoted rhetoric coming from the White House can be interpreted as a liberal bias. However, Dr. Bresie considers it her responsibility to teach students that hateful language is unacceptable. “If someone that is in a position of power says something that plays into negative stereotypes, I do consider it my job to call that out,” she said. “Not because it’s a left-right thing, but because it’s a right-wrong thing.” With that said, Dr. Bresie said that she thinks she would call out a democrat who were to use similar language. She tries to make sure she is being fair to all political perspectives. “Overwhelmingly, the most vocal participants in a lot of these discussions in classrooms tend to be liberal students,” Dr. Bresie said. “I try sometimes to play devil’s advocate, but perhaps I don’t do that as much as I should.” Upper School History teacher Adrian
Martinez, a self-identified conservative, also approaches political discussion in a manner intended to challenge his students; an approach that sometimes involves sharing his own political views. “I will always play devil’s advocate,” Mr. Martinez said. “At Greenhill, that frequently means taking the conservative position, which is one I actually happen to agree with.” Students hold mixed opinions on whether teachers should foster political discussion in the classroom. Senior Kameron Wilkerson said that politics should not be discussed in the classroom unless absolutely necessary; other students, however, embrace the discussion and the bias that may potentially come with it. “I think one of the best things about Greenhill is the recognition of bias that we have here,” said sophomore Elli Dassopolous. “Everybody is aware of the bias because [teachers and students] make it really explicit.” Elli said that such bias does not necessarily silence conservative voices on campus, nor does she think that all teachers contribute to a liberal bias in the classroom. “All of the conservatives in my class are very vocal and do get their voices heard a lot,” Elli said. “[Upper School history teacher Scott] Cotton is aware of how Greenhill is a very liberal campus. He’s definitely intent on making sure everybody’s views are heard.”
Graphic by Zoe Allen
Change on the Horizon
History department revamps 9th and 10th grade curriculum Amber Syed Features Editor
While attending a People of Color Conference (POCC) last year, Upper School History Department Chair Dr. Amy Bresie ‘96 Ph.D and senior Brooke Allen sat amongst their fellow Greenhill faculty members and students. At the conference, the two heard an empowering speech about the importance of diversity being represented in history curriculum. After the speech, Brooke turned to her teacher and said “Doc, we gotta do something about AX9 and AX10.” “You’re right,” Dr. Bresie responded. This was the turning point for Dr. Bresie, as this speech compelled her to initiate the overhaul of the Atlantic Experience 9 (AX9) and Atlantic Experience 10 (AX10) curriculums, something that had been discussed within the history department for years but never materialized until now. Next year, freshmen will no longer be taking Atlantic Experience 9 (AX9), but instead will be taking Global History, a course that will broaden the curriculum perspective to countries beyond Europe and America. This overhaul will allow students to understand tensions of the current world through exploration of various countries pasts’, according to Dr. Bresie. For example, the Black Plague, which is currently taught through the lens of Europe in AX9, will now be taught from the perspectives of countries such as China, Africa and India. “When you just do Atlantic Experience, you don’t get the richness of this full story.
We’re trying to broaden the story, and take Europe and America out of the story. Are they important players? Yeah, of course. But there’s a bigger picture, and that’s what we’re trying to do,” Dr. Bresie said. Some physical changes students will see is the removal of the Atlantic Experience textbooks, which will be replaced with new textbooks, one entitled “1493” by Charles C. Mann, and the other entitled “World’s Together, World’s Apart” by Robert Tignor. Additionally, this initiative will eventually lead to the removal of AX10, which will be replaced with an American history course starting in 2019 that all sophomores will be required to take. “I’ve had several people come talk to me saying they wanted to see themselves reflected in the history curriculum, and so that’s what we’re trying to do...we’re trying to make a curriculum where students can find themselves reflected,” Dr. Bresie said. Senior Brooke Allen felt that her own identity was lost in the AX9 and AX10 curriculums, and wanted to see this overhaul be brought about. “I was just kind of upset because it was around the time that we had started learning about the Holocaust in AX10, [which is] my personal history, and then I thought about how other people would feel if you’re just sitting in a classroom for two years that’s not like relevant, not pertinent, to me. It just kind of felt like we were wasting time and that our history curriculum didn’t at all reflect the mission we claim to push forward as a school,” Brooke said. Additionally, Brooke felt that the AX9 and AX10 courses limited students’
perspectives of the world. “Social justice work is really important to me and that being so deeply intertwined with history, like the Civil Rights Movement [and] struggles for independence especially in the non-western world, we’re not doing a good job of educating people to be a diverse community of learners like we claim. We’re not doing a good job if we’re not teaching people about that,” Brooke said. Sophomore Elli Dassopoulos overall enjoyed AX9, but felt that economic diversity was lacking, meaning the AX9 course was limited to the perspectives of wealthier countries. “Not only is it a Eurocentric history class in that there’s a hyper focus on Western Europe and the United States, but [it’s also a] pretty capitalistic viewing of history,” Elli said. While this initiative is in part aimed to diversify the content taught in freshmen and sophomore history classes, there are other aspects of the current AX9 and AX10 courses that the history department wants to see be changed. Upper School History Teacher Dr. Kaaz Naqvi said this overhaul aims to bring about two new major changes. First, the history department wants to create a better cohesion between all of the AX9 classes and all of the AX10 classes. Dr. Naqvi also said the history department wants an easier-to-follow curriculum that tells a single story instead of pieces of multiple stories, which will be accomplished by separating American history and World history into two distinct classes.
With all of these major changes of the history curriculum transpiring, Upper School History teacher Adrian Martinez said he would like to see Global History have a greater emphasis on skills, meaning a greater emphasis on analytical writing and reading as well as forming strong arguments. “I do like the emphasis in skills. We’re going to hit primary sources a lot harder and we’re going to hit analysis a lot harder, which I’m in favor of,” he said. Mr. Martinez feels that the transition to a more skills-heavy freshman history course would be beneficial to students throughout all their years of education, rather than just one year of history. “If it were up to me, the ninth grade would be more of a geography class instead of history class. I have a somewhat cynical view in that when freshmen leave freshmen year of history, most of the content that they’ve learned is out anyway, they forget it. But the skills stick with you, the skills are transferrable. You can take the [writing and analytical] skills that you learn in a history class and apply them to [other classes], even a science class,” Mr. Martinez said. According to Dr. Bresie, a good balance between learning history skills and content is key to creating a successful course. “I think [content] sends a message about who and what we value, I think the things that we choose to cover in a class send a message about what we value and I want to make sure that that message is one that affirms students instead of tearing them down,” said Dr. Bresie.
Graphic by Areeba Amer
Photos by Sudeep Bhargava
A PICTURE-PERFECT TALENT FOR THE ARTS: Senior Sudeep Bhargava’s submitted five photos in a portfolio, which consisted of the photos above: “The Mirror and Nothing” (top left), “She Never Knows Who” (top center), “It’s No More Than Me” (right), “You Can Laugh If You Want” (middle left), and “Who Ron Wants Her to Be”(bottom left).
Senior Sudeep Bhargava nominated for the U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts Radhe Melwani
Online Executive Editor
Senior Sudeep Bhargava finds solace in Greenhill’s photography darkroom. There, he uses tools he takes from the workplace around him, from shot glasses to masking tape, to work with his photos to create his vision. In addition to these tools, Sudeep utilizes a multitude of unique techniques that alter the traditional approaches to timing and using solutions. “Sudeep goes into the dark room and works his magic. He is doing things that many other people are not capable of doing at that level,” said Mr. Frank Lopez, Upper School Visual Art teacher. “He is looking at personal touches and techniques that have not been done before, or at least to the level of sophistication of what he is doing at this point.” This past November, the National YoungArts Foundation, a prestigious application-based program for emerging high school artists, that are in tenth to twelfth grade, nominated Sudeep as a finalist for the U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts award for his photography work. After he was nominated, Sudeep was
invited to attend a program in Miami where he assembled a portfolio that was sent to panelists who decided the award winners. “This is probably the biggest competition that we submit to,” Mr. Lopez said. “This is one of those contests that thousands of students apply to and he is one of only ten photography students from around the nation to be accepted to the final one percent in Miami.” The YoungArts nominees were invited to the National YoungArts Week held in Miami, Florida. There were around 140 students in multiple disciplines taking master classes and working with professionals in their fields. Photographers went to location shoots and created images every single day. “I loved it because everybody there was taking risks with their art because we were all confident in our work, so it was time to take risks and try other things,” Sudeep said. Throughout the weeklong convention, the nominees compiled and finalized portfolios of ten images as their final assignment. These were sent to panelists that would determine who received the U.S. Presidential Scholar award and the Gold, Silver, and Bronze awards. Although Sudeep was ultimately not selected for the U.S.
Presidential Scholar award, he felt that the results were not the biggest part for him. “What I really loved about YoungArts was meeting amazing people from all over and that I had 24 hours a day, seven days a week to just make art,” said Sudeep. “I love having the time to do that work and love to be constantly creating.” For the application process, Sudeep submitted a portfolio of ten images to YoungArts, five were of breadth, which means a variety of photos that reflect Sudeep’s abilities, and five were of concentration.
I loved it because everybody there was taking risks with their art because we were all confident in our work, so it was time to take risks and try other things.”
Sudeep said his objective with his photography is to show the experiences surrounding young people of color in America, including their expectations and identity crises caused by their environments. “I talk to my friends a lot about [my concentration]. It is very common for us, it is not something new or unknown,
but I realized that is unknown to a lot of people who aren’t young people of color so I decided to put it in an art form to help people understand and see that this is real and this affects us,” Sudeep said. Outside of his YoungArts portfolio, Sudeep likes to photograph people of color in general. “I do a lot of my work photographing people of color, not just for this project,” said Sudeep. “I like to photograph people of color just to emphasize the beauty of brown and black.” In the future, Sudeep hopes to possibly pursue a bachelor’s degree in visual arts at college along with another major. According to Sudeep, he wants to continue having photography in his life, as it is an avenue to express himself in a way people can understand. “The images I take and the meaning behind them, they get very personal and they have to do with my identity as an artist and a person,” said Sudeep. “It’s not always pretty, but I don’t think that’s the point of art. It’s not supposed to be pretty. I think it’s supposed to convey something and for me. It’s who I am.”
wednesday, february 14, 2018
Op-ed: With liberty and art for all Zoe Allen
On January 4, The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York announced that it was abandoning its formerly egalitarian “pay what you wish” policy. Starting at the beginning of March, the museum will require a mandatory 25 dollar admission fee for non-New York State residents, and still the same suggested price for New York residents. I was shocked upon hearing the newsas a non-New Yorker (contrary to popular belief) and art aficionado, it is deeply saddening to see such a valuable institution lessen its availability to the public. Many believe that art is for the affluent (which is understandable, a work of Jean Michel Basquiat recently sold for $110.5 million), and the Met is only strengthening their argument by charging a hefty sum upon entrance. For years, entrance to The Met cost less than an MTA ticket from Astor Place to 66th (or in Dallas terms, exponentially less than a Honey Butter Chicken Biscuit from Whataburger). When I went to The Met last spring, I paid a single dollar to gain entrance. Starting in March, tourists will pay the same price as a full tank of gas in my Mazda for the same experience. And yes, art is priceless. There is no doubt that the Met’s collection is worth the 25 dollar fee, but the problem is, many cannot afford this fee. Art is often considered to be a luxury of the privileged because it is associated with having enough time and money to view or participate in the art. But we live in Dallas, and not New York City, so let’s talk about the art here. The Dallas Museum of Art offers free admission to its permanent collection-good. However, to see the visiting exhibits, such as last year’s popular Frida Kahlo and this year’s most
Photo by Andreas Praefcke
THE DALLAS ART SCENE: The Dallas Museum of Art (above) does offer art that is visible to the public without an admission fee, the special exhibits require that one pays $16.
artsy selfie, “The Eternal Love I Have for Pumpkins” by Yayoi Kusama, coughing up some money is required (yes, you have to pay money to stand in that box for less than one minute and attempt to get the perfect mirror selfie). On the Google Art and Culture App, there is a camera that lets the user take a selfie, and the app matches it to art pieces that most resemble the selfie. I have seen all of my friends’ comparisons—my friend from Maine was compared to a medieval portrait of Jesus Christ, my friend in California was likened to Henry VIII—but when I tried to find the function in my app, it did not appear because of Texas’ privacy laws. Even this
is a small example of inaccessibility to art. This function on the Arts and Culture App was created to draw millennials into the art world, and yet, no one of any demographic can access it in Texas. Now, back to the specific example of The Met. Think of all the ten-year-old boys and girls whose minds will no longer wander and wonder at the site of The Met’s extensive Egyptian Wing. The decrease in awe as less people view the Manhattan skyline from the rooftop garden. There will be a loss in patriotism as less people have the opportunity to view Washington Crossing the Delaware, and there will be less amazement at Monet’s water lilies.
Art is supposed to make you feel something. The Met’s collection makes people feel all sorts of emotions-emotions less and less people will get to experience due to this entrance fee. Why aren’t museums like libraries? They are institutions of learning after all; sensory, visual, important learning. Like libraries, the public should be able to wander into a museum and gaze at art with the same ease as reading a book. Society considers the ability to read to be an essential skill, but visual literacy should be valued with the same importance. If I could grade the Dallas/Fort Worth art scene in terms of accessibility, I would probably award it an A-. This is not solely reliant upon the DMA--the hardly talked about Dallas Contemporary is always free and located in South Dallas. The Contemporary’s tagline is “always free, always different,” and shows off the work of local and nonlocal contemporary artists. Fort Worth boasts an impressive collection of art at the Kimbell Museum and the Fort Worth Modern, two neighboring museums. At the Modern, you can find an entire room of Jenny Holzer, Kaws, and Warhol, and if you are a student, the entrance fee is minimal. At the Kimbell, entrance is free (except for traveling exhibitions), and the new Renzo Piano additions to the museum are worth taking a look at. Museums should be available to all people. I suppose that The Met’s newfound exclusiveness is simply a reflection of the country that we live in-recently, it has become trendy to shut people out from all over the world. I was holding on to hope that precious institutions such as art museums wouldn’t fall prey to this elitist attitude, and although The Met is hiking up its prices, I still hope that other museums will not follow in suit.
The Greenhill Gala: an ever-evolving event Stephen Crotty Staff Writer
35 years ago, the Greenhill Gala, then known as an “auction,” was modest: a potluck meal brought in by guests, a makeshift stage in the Greenhill cafeteria or gym, and a hired auctioneer. Things, however, have changed. The gala now is held at a venue with tickets ranging from 150 to 200 dollars a ticket. The Parents’ and Teachers’ Association works hard to find entertainers that will draw large crowds and thousands of dollars worth of prizes are donated by alumni and the parents of Greenhill students. The gala auction is the most lucrative of only three fundraisers held by the Parents’ Association, bigger than the Greenhill Fund and the Cheer Fund. The gala auction’s total dollars raised varies from year to year. Depending on a variety of factors, net profits usually range from a quarter million dollars to more than a million dollars. With the Gala growing more and more luxurious every year, the organizers of the gala face a balancing act of whether to let the gala auction be an event that is open to all members of the community, regardless of economic status, while also giving Greenhill the best chance to maximize funding. “I have concerns about the idea of the gala because I worry that it is no longer something that everybody in the community can be a part of,” Assistant Head of School Tom Perryman said. Mr. Perryman has attended almost every gala auction for the last 30 years and
has seen the development of the event. He questions whether an event with such exclusionary ticket prices are truly what is representative of the Greenhill community. According to Director of Special Events & Parents’ Association Liaison, Theresa Jones, the term “gala” does not refer singularly to the auction that is held in the early spring. The gala is a type of season and ranges all the way from August to May, throughout the whole school year. Movie and casino nights held in the quad are part of that gala season. This year, there will be a snow day at Greenhill, with snow machines being brought in to create a winter environment on February 10.
I have concern about the idea of the gala because I worry that it is no longer something that everybody in the community can be a part of.”
All of these smaller events have prices that are significantly lower than the typical cost of an individual ticket to the gala, and are meant to give every member of the community a chance to participate in the gala season. “We have opportunities that everyone can participate in. So by participating in any of those things, there are other ways to help with the PA and fundraising,” Ms. Jones said. Parents’ Association President Manisha Desai said that The Gala auction organizers try to make the opportunity available to everyone.
“For those who have difficulty with that price point, they can always contact the financial office to have that discussion,” Mrs. Desai said. According to Ms. Jones, even the full price of an individual ticket is actually a bargain if all the costs per person are estimated. “A four-course dinner and drinks and world-class entertainment. I think the price point of that ticket would be about 220, 230 [dollars],” said Ms. Jones when referring to the estimated price that a ticket would cost if all the amenities were added up. This year’s gala auction at the Omni Hotel in downtown is expected to be more formal than last year’s event in the Marshall Family Performing Arts Center (MPAC). The Omni, besides the Hilton Anatole, is the only venue in Dallas with a big enough ballroom to accommodate this year’s guests. The Omni is able to accommodate twice as many guests and more seating will allow for a sit-down dining experience as opposed to last year’s appetizers. This year’s gala auction is also meant to be a send-off for Head of School Scott Griggs so the event is intentionally being planned to be grander, according to the Gala Chair Michael Harrington. Hit-band “Earth, Wind, and Fire” will be playing at the Omni but the cost of their performance was not paid for by Greenhill and is not reflected in the ticket price that seven hundred people have purchased. The band was underwritten by alumni along with many of the auction prizes. According to Mrs. Desai, the biggest
Photo by Greenhill Communications
GALA GLAMOUR AND GLITZ: Last year’s Greenhill City Limits Gala was held in the Marshall Family Preforming Arts center. This year, it will be held at the Omni Hotel downtown.
object that will be on the stage of the auction this year is a Lexus donated by the company. The car will not be bidded on but instead will be dealt in a raffle format, with raffle tickets costing 100 dollars, according to Ms. Jones. She anticipates that there will be more than 40,000 dollars sold in raffle tickets.
wednesday, february 14, 2018
DINNER & A MOVIE Alice Zhang Design Editor
Abbas Hasan Executive Editor
We had just finished marathoning “Pitch Perfect 1” and 2 before we decided to hit the theaters for “Pitch Perfect 3” “(PP3)”. Having heard the reviews, we knew that “PP3” would be the right way to end our night. So we braved the Texas winter and drove to Cinemark West Plano XD, caroling the songs “Flashlight” and “The Cup Song” (from the first two movies) along the way. As we strolled into Theater 19, we realized no one else would be joining us to watch “PP3”. We looked at each other, realizing what this meant. “Karaoke night!” we shouted as we turned towards the empty seats in delight. We performed our vocal warm ups during the previews, and soon after, the movie began. “Pitch Perfect 3” follows the Barden Bellas, an a capella group from the fictional Barden University, on their overseas adventures. The Bellas, now graduated from college, are unhappy with their adult lives thus far and are hopeful to perform at their reunion. However, at the venue, they realize that they aren’t the ones performing; instead, the new generation of Barden Bellas have invited them to watch their performance. They are disappointed, but determined to reunite for one last performance. When the Bellas get the chance to perform on the overseas USO tour, in a competition with the four other bands, they hastily agree and head to Europe to begin the tour. The stakes are high, as the winner gets to open for DJ Khaled. The Bellas meet their competition at the base, and we are introduced to one of the groups, Evermoist, specifically Calamity, Serenity, Veracity, and Charity. Fat Amy says, “If I joined, I could be Obesity,” wearing a Make America Eat Again hat. This sent us both into an involuntary, uncontrollable fit of laughter. “OMG Abbas, if you joined, you could be Abbasity,” Alice said. Abbas chuckled.
Then, as expected in any “Pitch Perfect” movie, a riff off ensues between the groups. We belted along with the groups, singing “Shut Up and Dance”, “If I Were A Boy” and “Grenade”. “You know I’d catch a grenade for you yaAAAaaYAaaAaa,” Abbas sang, perfecting the pitch change. “Wait. Is Bruno Mars here?” Alice asked, looking around in disbelief. “No, it’s just me. I’ve been practicing for this,” Abbas said. The rest of the movie continued, with us cackling at every joke. A family walked in halfway, but that didn’t stop our singing. We were having the time of our lives. As the competition plays out in the movie, the drama escalates, and the Bellas eventually find themselves held captive on a yacht. Suddenly, we realized that the movie had transformed from a funny, light hearted comedy to a hardcore action movie with explosions and violence. Don’t get us wrong, we loved every minute of Fat Amy beating up people on a yacht, but we were confused about the necessity of such violence. Although we didn’t appreciate the abrupt, actionoriented ending, we still shared many laughs and enjoyed the movie overall. We walked out of the theater, content with our movie choice, and headed to North Italia in Plano to pay our homage to the stop in Italy on the USO tour. Walking into the restaurant, we immediately noticed the high class vibe of North Italia. It fit in with the feel at Legacy West, a new shopping center in Plano. We got our seats next to a couple on a bad date, and we were offered the wine list. “I’ll pass,” Alice said, like a good, underage American. We read over the menu, and Alice decided on a butternut squash soup and the chicken strozzapreti. Abbas had a caesar salad and a margherita pizza. “Do you even know what a butternut squash is?” Abbas asked. “Nope. I’m trying new things. We are in Plano now,” Alice said. “Can’t go wrong with a salad and pizza,” Abbas said, judgmentally.
Graphic by Kaethe Thomas
“Basic,” Alice made clear. Our food arrived, and we munched happily. Alice’s soup was flavorful and the strozzapreti was freshly made, the creamy sauce complimenting the tender chicken and tasty pasta. Abbas was satisfied with his salad and the margherita pizza. The pizza had the perfect ratio of cheese to tomato sauce to pizza dough. We decided that North Italia, while a bit pricey, was well worth the money. If you’re looking for some comforting Italian food in restaurant with a classy atmosphere, we recommend checking out North Italia for your next meal. We left the restaurant, our stomachs full and our hearts warm. We got into our respective cars and cruised out of Legacy West with the windows down, the Pitch Perfect 3 albums playing on full volume. “Nieeer nuer nuer nur nur,” Abbas trilled, imitating the Bellas’ rendition of “Toxic”, as he swerved onto Legacy Road.
SPC Ready: Winter teams prepare to compete in Houston Boys Soccer After starting off the counter season with 4 wins, 2 ties, and 0 losses*, the boys soccer team has secured a first round bye in North zone for the Southwest Preparatory Conference (SPC) Tournament. The team is undefeated in counter play. and had a highlight 1-0 win at archrival St. Marks in January. “If we can secure a bye in tournament, then we think we have a legitimate shot at winning the championship” said Coach Greg Krauss. Junior Hayden Gerard leads the team in goals and assists. A win for the team would bring home the sixteenth championship in team history for the Hornets and avenge the loss in last year’s championship game against Bellaire Episcopal.
Swimming The quest for an SPC title for both teams is not an easy path. “We are really coming into [SPC] with a very strong boys team. The relays look strong and many of those boys are looking to score in tough competition,” said Coach Patti Monzingo. The girls’ team is also looking to bring home a championship. The additions of two strong freshmen and the return of Junior Erica Yang among other upperclassmen will help the team continue to improve on last year’s eighth place finish. “I think we are definitely going to see a change in where we place this year with both boys and girls teams. The team has worked hard all season which will be evident in our strong showing at SPC,” said Coach Monzingo.
Girls Soccer The girls soccer team started off slowly with an 0-2 start in counter play but currently stands at 3-0-2* in counter play after a big win against Fort Worth Country Day, 5-0. The defense plays an important role with goalies Brooke Allen and Divya Inaganti posting a total of three shutouts. The team’s leading scorers are Gabrielle Coben with 6 goals and Jordanna Goldstein with 3 goals. Looking to win their eighth SPC title, the team has secured either the third or fourth seed in the North Zone entering the tournament. “We are looking to pull our hard work together as the season comes to a close. Of course we want the big win, but our fight and heart are going to be what will get us there,” said Senior Audrey Berner.
Girls Basketball Despite having a fairly young team and only one senior, the girls basketball team is currently 3-2* in SPC Counter games with strong wins against Hockaday and Oakridge. “We have nine players on the team who all get a good amount of playing [time]. On any given night, different players step up and lead us on the court,” said Coach Darryn Sandler. Coach Sandler has been constantly changing the team’s starting five this season in order to find the most effective group. All but one player on the team has been the first or second leading scorer in at least one game this season.
Boys Basketball Despite the loss of four seniors the boys basketball team has managed to stay competitive this season. The team is currently 6-0* in SPC counter games including a six point win against St. Marks, along the way winning six straight games as well. The team is led by senior Xavier Bryant averaging 21.5 points per game, junior Jordan Simmons averaging 22.4 points per game and sophomore Grant Bulmash averaging 12.8 points per game. “Our team is really gelling right now, and [we’re] on a roll going into the SPC tournament, so I am very confident on a great showing this year,” said senior Xavier Bryant. Story by Ross Rubin
Photos courtesy of Joe Monaco *Records as of Feb. 8
PROS and CONS: the SPC playoff format Beginning in the 2014-15 school year, the SPC switched to having one post-season tournament for all applicable sports where the 12 teams from North and South zone qualify. Previously, there would be two playoff tournaments for each season: Division I (top four teams in North and South zone qualify) and Division II (everyone else) as a consolation bracket. Staff Writer Harrison Heymann and Editor-in-chief Joseph Weinberg offer their opposing takes on whether the current playoff system should change or stay the way it is. This is high school, not the pros, the SPC playoff is fine the way it is. The 12-team playoff is perfectly fine the way it is for SPC. The Southwest Preparatory Conference is a high school sports conference, not a professional sports league. In the NHL and NBA, 52 and 53 percent of teams make the playoffs respectively, as well as 54 percent in the MLS, 38 percent in the NFL and 33 percent in the MLB. So, in each of the five major sports leagues in America, at least a third of teams get into the playoffs and more often than not, over half of the teams in a league qualify for the playoffs. An 8-team playoff for the SPC playoffs is arguing for slightly greater than 50 percent participation, fairly comparable to the participation rate in professional sports. But this is high school, not a league where players are paid to be good. Players on professional sports teams are paid to win, because the sport they are competing in is their job. They are getting paid to be athletes. High schoolers play sports as an extra-curricular activity. Most schools in SPC do not require their students to compete on sports teams, instead offering P.E. as an acceptable replacement for athletic credit. The postseason cutoff for high schoolers should be lower than it is for professional athletes, should it not? The SPC playoffs are an experience for athletes to take part in. The opportunity to travel to another city on an overnight trip and compete in elimination games is something any person who wants to play sports throughout their high school career should have the opportunity to do. High schoolers should get the experience of spending time in a hotel with teammates, regardless of whether their team has an actual chance of winning a championship or not. Considering that in the past 5 years, only one of the 32 teams that has earned a #5 or #6 seed has made it to the semifinals, it is clear these lower seeds are not significantly affecting who wins the SPC championship. Teams that make the playoffs with only one win are not winning awards they did not deserve because they suddenly started winning at the right time, and teams that earned top four seeds in the tournament from their regular season performance are the ones winning championships. The best teams are not being upset by weak teams who are gifted places in the playoffs. Maybe SPC invites so many teams to the playoffs to let kids take part in a cool experience. Weak teams aren’t getting disproportionate rewards for their regular season performance, because they all end up losing. The best teams in SPC are still winning the conference championships. Story by Harrison Heymann
If you don’t win in the regular season, you shouldn’t make the playoffs. It’s that simple. The current SPC playoff structure makes little sense. 12 of 15 (80 percent) SPC boys teams will head to Houston to compete this weekend, and 12 out of the 14 (86 percent) girls teams in the conference qualified for the playoffs as well. No matter the sport or level of play, in no world should over 80 percent of a conference’s teams qualify for the playoffs. Such a low standard of playoff qualification makes regular season games meaningless as teams can still qualify for the playoffs with abysmal conference records. This fall, both Fort Worth Country Day and Oakridge qualified for the 2017 Field Hockey tournament after posting 1-5 conference records. To be fair, let’s unpack the case for the 12-team playoff. More teams in the playoffs equals more room for exciting upsets and the “playoff magic” that sports fans fall in love with. While this sounds ideal on paper, it’s simply not the case. Since the switch from having the top-four in each zone qualify to the top-six in 2014, just ONE #5 seed has made it to the SPC semifinals (St. Marks soccer in 2016). No #6 seeds have advanced past the quarterfinals. This “Cinderella team” is yet to prevail in SPC tournament play. After all, this is the SPC, not March Madness. The current playoff system actually makes underdog upsets and excitement more unlikely by putting #3 and #4 seeds at a disadvantage by forcing them to play an extra game on the Thursday night of the tournament weekend while the #1 and #2 seeds get a bye to the quarterfinal round. This extra game leaves #3 and #4 seeded teams’ players susceptible to injury and fatigue for their Friday matchups, while higher seeds start fresh on Friday morning. If a team that had to play on Thursday ended up winning their first two matchups, we are looking at teams being forced the play three games in a 24-hour span in order to make the championship. #1 and #2 seeds find themselves at a disproportional advantage. Although the “more the merrier” argument carries some validity, if the SPC is serious about creating the most competitive, fair playoff tournament possible, it needs to switch back to its old policy of having just the top four teams from each zone qualify for the postseason tournament. A spot in the playoffs should be a reward for posting a strong regular season conference record, not a gift for teams who failed to win in the regular season. Teams should have to earn their rightful spot in the postseason. Story by Joseph Weinberg
wednesday, february 14, 2018
Working with the water Swim coach makes community impact in and out of the water Photo by Rylyn Koger
POOLSIDE: Coach Havrilak spends his days in Greenhill’s Natatorium teaching lower school students basic swimming techniques as well as coaching the middle and upper school swim teams.
Sonali Notani Asst. News Editor
Born with a clubfoot, Aquatics Teacher Dan Havrilak wore casts and braces on his legs until the age of five. Since he couldn’t walk, the only place he felt liberated was in the water. “When I was let out of casts and braces every so often my mom would put me in the pool, since then I have always just loved the water, it’s a place to be free,” said Coach Havrilak.
After a surgery at two-weeks-old, another at five, and the last at 22, his foot was restored and he could take part in all the activities he always desired to try. Since a young age, Coach Havrilak did not let his childhood impairments hold him back. His passion for swimming, the original sport that allowed him feel liberated, is what ultimately turned into his career. For the past 20 years, Coach Havrilak has taught swimming techniques to 4-yearolds in the Lower School all the way to
teenagers in the Upper School, and ends his day by coaching Greenhill’s varsity swim team. Junior Erica Yang, who has been swimming for Greenhill since sixth grade, has known Coach Havrilak since she was three-years-old. “He was my first Coach that I remember, he saw me when I was three-years-old. My mom always told me funny stories about him and how he would always tell her that he knew Erica would turn out to be a great
swimmer when she’s older,” said Erica. According to Erica, his goofy personality along with his knowledgeable coaching skills has helped hold the swim team together. “I think he’s sort of like the glue to the team. I feel that he relates to everyone, he has always been a friendly face,” she said. According to Coach Havrilak, working with his students at Greenhill for such a long time has strengthened his love for swimming, and along with that, his love for the campus and its staff. Coach Havrilak believes that the old bleachers in the Cox Gym have sentimental value to Greenhill, and to preserve their legacy, he decided to reuse them when they were replaced in September 2016. “I have had an eye on those bleachers ever since I started working here, through three bosses, it’s been 20 years,” he said. Coach Havrilak and his son brought a pick-up truck to Greenhill to move all of the wood back to their house to be carved. This project was especially enjoyable for him given one of his quirky passions. “I have worked with wood ever since I was young, said Coach Havrilak. “As a skateboarder I liked to build ramps and all sorts of stuff to skateboard on.” When he took the wood home to carve, he decided to use it to build new bleachers for the Greenhill Natatorium and refurbish the floors around the Greenhill pool. On top of that, he decided to make a picnic bench out of the leftover wood for Assistant Head of School Tom Perryman, who he claims is the school historian. “I’ve known Dan for 20 years, and on myriad occasions, he has demonstrated a deep and genuine interest in Greenhill history, often coming to me with questions about historical events, pointing out Legend tree plaques that have gone missing, or following up on a story I’ve told at a meeting,” said Assistant Head of School Tom Perryman. “He bleeds green and gold.”
TBF participation triples, High Performance Center undergoes changes Caroline Simpson Backpage Editor
In the fall, Coach Gillian Glengarry counted and examined 55 small, thick, sheets of paper every night, each representing a different student in the Total Body Fitness (TBF) Program. TBF is the workout program with a requirement of 2.5 hours per week, earning participants a sports credit. Three years ago, before unscheduled TBF—when students could come workout whenever they want—was added, Coach G only had to know 18 faces for TBF. However, in the past three years, the number of students joining the program has tripled, in turn igniting change in the layout of the gym and a need for a modification of the way that students log their time in the gym and how Coach G keeps track of it. This winter season, Coach G is monitoring 46 students. Next trimester in the spring, not including students that could join because of being cut from a team or those who decide not to play after the sport begins, she will have 35 students. Coach G found it necessary to order eight bikes as well as reorder the entire gym. This necessity is due to the flexibility of TBF as a program. According to Coach G, the numbers increased because TBF only requires 2.5 hours per week while other sports require 2 hours per day. “I see kids in TBF that are sleep deprived from the homework that they have to do, and that’s without the commitment
that sports require,” Coach G said. She is aware of the academic intensity of Greenhill, and when she sees juniors adding TBF to their schedule, she said that this is because of the rigor of junior year. “I don’t want students to have to choose between academics and athletics. I want to keep them in athletics but also for them to be successful academically,” Coach G said. Junior Ariana Carr, who played varsity basketball last year, made the switch to TBF this winter. “The flexibility with TBF is great, if I have a lot of homework one night and can’t make it, I can just find another time to complete my hours,” Ariana said. While the lack of time required for TBF is attractive to students, the crowdedness of the gym, according to Carr, was hard to deal with.
I see kids in TBF that are sleep deprived from the homework that they have to do, and that’s without the commitment that sports require.”
Coach G got rid of three treadmills, added benches, dumbbell shelves, a couple workout machines and put the bikes on the side to create more space. She also recently ordered eight more bikes to replace the lack of cardio machines because they are more space friendly than treadmills or
Photo by Rylyn Koger
WORK IT OUT: Greenhill’s HPC is used by individual students in Total Body Fitness as well as Greenhill’s athletic teams who perform weekly lifts in the HPC.
ellipticals. Due to the sheer amount of student’s in TBF, the process of keeping track of students has intensified for Coach G. She signs students in and out (though multiple coaches have this ability) and keeps track of their hours each week. If a student has not met the requirement for the week or she doesn’t think they are going to, she emails their advisor and parents. “With everyone rushing around, in and out, it’s harder for me to interact with them, and talking to the students is my favorite part—the best I can do is leave notes on their
sign in cards,” she said. Coach G would prefer a software that could do the tracking for her. When students arrive in the gym, they would check in, their timers would start, and then they would choose a workout and begin. The software would track the time for the entire week, and Coach G would be able to check it at her own will—allowing her more time to interact with her students. The software is only an idea now, but Coach G said she hopes to turn it into reality soon.
wednesday, february 14, 2018
What’s in the name?
Examining possible changes to Junior Varsity athletics Harrison Heymann Staff Writer
Behind nearly every varsity sports team at Greenhill is a group of underclassmen that support the program’s overall goal of winning a championship. Junior varsity (JV) teams are rarely recognized among the student body because they do not compete for titles or have the most talent, but they set up a foundation for the future of the team. Some teams have fluidity between their varsity and junior varsity rosters, while others establish rosters at the beginning of the season and rarely move student-athletes between the two squads. Given this role variation of junior varsity depending on the sport, Athletic Director Chad Wabrek is evaluating whether the Athletic Department should officially change the title of junior varsity teams to “substitute varsity”, or “sub-varsity” for short. According to Mr. Wabrek, there are several possible benefits to making this name change, such as allowing for a better definition of sub-varsity teams across all sports, and creating even more unity between the varsity and current junior varsity teams. “A name change in itself to sub-varsity suggests that a student-athlete may not be on varsity, but the apparent gap between the teams isn’t perceived as distant as varsity and junior varsity,” Mr. Wabrek said. “I think sub-varsity feels more like an extended varsity team than a separate junior varsity team. It also suggests any student-athlete on subvarsity can theoretically step in and help at the varsity level. I simply want rising ninth and tenth graders to be passionate because they feel connected to the varsity team.” However, some coaches are unsure of the value of the name change. Junior varsity baseball coach Adam Maul questions whether this name change will have a positive impact on student-athletes looking to join a team, or if the namechange is just splitting hairs. “Baseball is one program. I don’t look at things like
there are varsity and JV baseball teams, it’s just baseball. If I was a student-athlete, it would make me less willing to go out for the team because substitute is a different type of word than junior,” Coach Maul said. Yet varsity field hockey coach Brittany Johnson ‘09 said the name change might be a more accurate representation of the junior varsity team’s role in her program. “We expect JV players to want to move up to varsity and for some of them to be able to conduct themselves like varsity players. Changing the name [to sub-varsity] would be closer to a true definition of how we run the team in field hockey,” Coach Johnson said. Boys varsity soccer coach Greg Krauss views the relationship between the junior varsity and varsity soccer teams in a similar way. He refers to the junior varsity soccer team as the “reserve team” as opposed to the junior varsity team, in hopes to help to create the feel of a more cohesive program. ”The reserve team is meant to be a developmental opportunity for players, with the end goal being competing for SPC championships at the varsity level,” Coach Krauss said. “We have a reserve and a first team, because we want players to feel like they can compete for a place in the first team. I would hope that a name change would have some actual meaning and significance.” While girls varsity basketball coach Darryn Sandler is supportive of having unity between varsity and junior varsity teams, he doesn’t support forcing a name change on coaches as a means to establish a closer relationship between teams. Coach Sandler keeps his team rosters the same throughout the season barring significant injury issues, and the two teams never practice together. “It’s up to head coaches how cohesive a program should be. Changing the name of a team doesn’t automatically create a more cohesive program. We should talk to head coaches if we want to generate a more connected environment,” said Coach Sandler. If a permanent change is to be made to sub-varsity
Photo courtesy of Chad Wabrek
POSTGAME: Girls JV and Varsity Field Hockey teams relax together in between games.
from junior varsity, and there are no guarantees as of now, an announcement will likely come this spring detailing the change for the 2018-19 school year after thorough analysis from student focus groups and Mr. Wabrek about the pros and cons of the change. However, according to Mr. Wabrek, a name change is not the only thing that may be adjusted about junior varsity teams at Greenhill. The entirety of the current junior varsity system at Greenhill is being looked at in an effort to give junior varsity teams more warranted appreciation. Some of the honors the Athletic Department is considering adding for junior varsity athletes are invitations to the traditionally varsity-only season ending athletic ceremonies, certificates of participation, and philosophically including them in everything that the varsity team does at an expectedly lower level. “If we are going to make a change from junior varsity to sub-varsity here at Greenhill, then we don’t want to do it half-heartedly. We want to go all in and make sure our student-athletes at all levels know they are supported by the community,” Mr. Wabrek said.
thursday, february 14, 2018
An open letter to hockey
If I had been born a boy, I would have been named Stanley. I was born in October 1999, mere months after one of the most important moments of my father’s life: the Dallas Stars had won the Stanley Cup that June. He never played hockey or watched hockey prior to 1993, when the Minnesota North Stars uprooted the franchise and moved down south to Dallas. He has had season tickets ever since, but no Stars
moment since 1999 has approached bringing the Stanley Cup to Dallas. Thankfully, I was born a girl, and given the name Zoe. My Dad figured that no matter how hard he tried he could not turn Sergei or Mike into a girl’s name. Every Thanksgiving, my family travels out of the country and in November 2011, our family trip was to Vancouver. Our hotel was situated right next to Rogers Arena, home of the Vancouver Canucks. We headed out to dinner one night and ran into hordes of Canucks fans making their way towards the arena. There seemed to be millions (but of course it was only thousands) and I couldn’t believe how passionate and excited they were. Inspired by their passion, I decided to give this hockey thing a try. And I fell in love. During middle school, I couldn’t get enough of the sport. I begged my dad to go to games, began writing “hot take opinion”
pieces about the Stars, and I wrote fifty page novellas about teenagers in Vancouver and their love of hockey. As games played in my living room TV, I would mute the broadcasters and provide my own color commentary. I suspect that I was a little too biased in favor of the Stars to ever make it on national television. It was with hockey that my passion for writing truly took form and my journalistic endeavors began. Although I never shared these pieces with anyone, I still keep them in a box in my closet, a reminder of my middle school aspirations to be a sports journalist. My aspirations since then have only changed by one word- I have deleted the word “sports”. Writing and journalism are still my greatest passions and what I see myself doing ten, 20, 30 years from now. Above all, I identify myself as a writer. Somehow, this is all thanks to the sport of hockey.
Just like my dad, I have never picked up a stick and attempted to play the game. And like my dad, I have been deeply impacted by the sport in ways that transcend the arena. From October to April every year, my family invests fully in the success of the Stars and I am reminded almost daily of how my dreams took root. I watch each game hoping for a victory, and sometimes I still mute the television and narrate the game aloud. Being a Dallas Stars fan has left its mark in my life, and has helped me find my voice. I learned to put pen to paper to make a difference. Now, rather than writing about hockey, I help run several publications, including “Crybaby Zine”, an online and print platform for teenagers to share their voices and talents. I write about issues that matter, and topics that entertain, and it all started with the Stanley Cup in Dallas.
my eyes with the back of my hand, leaving large smudges. The first time I applied makeup on myself was in the eighth grade, after I had learned about lip liner for the first time. Smitten with the idea of lip liner, I went home and went through my mother’s makeup drawer, searching for something that resembled my idea of what lip liner looked like. I took out a dark pencil and immediately began applying it to my lip. After making a large black circle which outlined the edges of my mouth, I realized that was not lip liner, but eyeliner. I immediately took it off, not out of concern that I had used the wrong product, but because I was ashamed of using makeup. My relationship with makeup has
always been a tumultuous one. For most of my life, I have thought that wearing makeup would simultaneously be admitting that I was uncomfortable with the way that I looked and succumbing to the unnatural beauty standards society sets for women. By not wearing makeup I thought I was showing the world that I would not conform to what they think women should look like. By not wearing makeup, I believed that I was on a mission to fight the patriarchy. By not wearing makeup, I was personally going to take down the systemic social, political and economic inequalities women face. And boy, was I wrong. In high school, I soon came to realize that my peers who wore makeup were not doing so to conform, but rather to express
themselves. By not wearing makeup out of fear, I was actually letting the forces I wanted to beat influence the way I looked. Being a feminist is about giving women the power to make decisions for themselves, and women who wear makeup had made that decision for themselves. At the beginning of this school year ,I began to wear makeup every few weeks, which made me very happy. Putting on makeup felt cathartic, the experience allowed me to take time out of a hectic schedule and allow me to take care of myself. Some days I wake up and apply glitter like it’s lotion, and some days I just don’t want to. But either way, I am making this decision for myself. And by being who I want to be, I am fighting the patriarchy.
worst is when they knock even a fragment of that foundation away permanently. My OCD has eroded a chunk of my foundation. It puts me in cold sweats, traps me at the bathroom sink for eons at a time, forces gallons of tears from my weary eyes, and leaves me gasping for fresh chances. My OCD, in its most brutal form, began after summer camp in the lush Texas Hill Country. It was a lawless land, full of sweaty boys just like myself. What should have been paradise instead was a gateway to hell, especially when a stomach virus erupted. The seeming lack of basic sanitation drove me literally crazy. Even when home safely, I couldn’t relax. Certain words would trigger my hand washing compulsions, and my hands became very bloody. But, I’d like to think my OCD has helped me. I feel I finish each day with a new resilience, new pride, new hope. Daily, I run my hands through my hair hundreds of times, chew on my shirt ferociously, and
carefully maneuver doorknobs to avoid strange stains. I’ve been told of the idea of being an “upstander,” standing up for someone who is being beaten down by someone or something. Sometimes I feel I am “beating” OCD, being an upstander for myself against myself and the little monster lurking inside me. But I’ve only truly been an upstander once, and that involved help. I was at Dr. Holland’s office, his nose twitching gleefully as I nervously learned about my new “exposure” program. “Ever dug through a trash can?” he inquired, eyeing my chafed hands. “No,” I scoffed. “Touched a toilet, then licked your hand and rubbed your face?” “God, no.” “How about with bird poop?” “I don’t think so…” And so we did all these things and more. It was thoroughly nasty for anyone—and
especially for an OCD patient. My highlyrecommended psychologist experienced it with me: rubbing toilets, digging through garbage, picking at bird poop and, then licking our fingers, enjoying the savory remains. That is being an upstander: facing the fear and kicking it square in the jaw. OCD will always continue to pick at my foundation. It will probably still chip some pieces loose. But I’ll know what to do. I might take my treatment a step further, and make sweet tea with toilet water. Take that, OCD! But it is almost impossible to stand up to yourself by yourself. Fortunately, I’ve always had support. I have friends who give me loving grief, parents who love and support me and a psychologist who uses some effective, if questionable, methods. Now I want to do things for other people, maybe encourage people to embrace the peacock poop. On second thought, let’s not.
six years of dancing at Greenhill, I still feel self-conscious when I step on stage with my slightly-modified costume. My black tights are a striking contrast to everyone else’s nude-colored ones. For a normally outspoken person, I hated talking about my black tights. I felt a bit ashamed when I thought about how I have to cover the majority my legs. Subconsciously, I felt that my dress code made me prude and old-fashioned. On the flip side, I hardly ever talk about dance in Pakistani gatherings. When I do, I clarify my dress code to avoid strange looks from the judgmental aunties. Modesty is an important topic for many Muslims, but it has gotten to the point that it determines a Muslim woman’s faith. If a woman wears a tank top, she is nonreligious, and if a woman wears a hijab, or a Muslim headdress, she is seen as the perfect Muslim. Today, the “dress code” for Muslim
women has relaxed so that more women are comfortable with showing a bit more skin. And, I have yet to find someone who truly knows the “perfect dress code” because the lines are so blurry. However, at the end of the day, why does a piece of clothing determine my faith? A women’s faith should be between her and God, not between her, God, and all the other aunties in the community. As Muslim women, we should be helping each other develop our faith, not scaring each other into submission. I know that at some point, I’ll have to compromise one or the other: my dress code or my passion for dance. Unfortunately, not all places are like Greenhill, thus if I’d like to continue dancing, there’s a good chance I may have to compromise my dress code. But at least I’m certain about one thing: The color of my tights will never determine my faith.
Making up with makeup
The first time I wore makeup was for my third grade play. Thick coats of mascara were applied to my eyelashes so “people could see my eyes on stage”. Why did they need to see my eyes? The unfamiliar feel of the mascara weighing down my eyelashes irritated me, so without hesitation I wiped
Bird poop heals
Does self-advocacy justify violating societal health norms? Would only a sick soul think so? If so, Dr. Grant Holland, a psychologist who specializes in Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD), is one sick dude. But twisted brilliance can create a beautiful result. Nothing is quite as uncomfortable as having something integral to who you are being insulted, chipping away at an essential stone in your existential foundation. The very
The tights under my leotard
When I was seven, I took home a balletat-home VCR from the library. Focusing intently on the tall, white, blonde ballerina depicted on television, I used all my energy trying to copy her perfect tondues. Following her movements, I attempted her perfect pirouette and subsequently landed on the carpet with a sprained ankle. Granted, I had absolutely no dance experience, but I was invested in becoming a dancer.
Being a dancer is a taboo topic in more traditional Pakistani-Muslim households like my own. The revealing clothes give the art a bad reputation among all the aunties. I always believed that I could never be a dancer since I’ve never heard the words “Pakistani,” “Muslim” and “dancer” in the same sentence. Though the majority of dancers are fine with the revealing nature of clothing, this was not an option for me. I finally got the opportunity to take dance classes in 7th grade at Greenhill and I’ve never looked back. Since it was schoolsponsored and recreational, I could modify my dance costumes to fit my religious and cultural dress code. When I joined the Dance Company in Upper School, I was told that there would be no problem accommodating my clothing restrictions. Now, I wear darker-colored, typically black, tights under all my costumes while most dancers wear flesh-colored tights. After
wednesday, february 14, 2018
1. The number of months until the Class of 2018
2. On this day in February, approximately 190
million cards are sent
3. The 52nd annual game that ended 41-33 4. The annual event to raise money for the Grant Haliburton Foundation 6. Tournament held in Houston where multiple sports teams compete 7. The event after winter sports games where food, games, and activities are provided for students to enjoy
5. Split between two weeks in February, this event takes a lot of planning 9. The opposite of Laugh Adult 10. On this weekend
night, seniors dress up
in costumes 11. This Vietnamese soup is perfect for cold February weather 12. Groundhog day determines the length of this period
8. Charity event put on by the Parentâ€™s Association to raise funds for Greenhill Graphics by Natalie Gonchar