Back Talk. Should students be allowed to choose their own summer reading?
Hagerty High School
news....................2 lifestyles..............3 middle.................6 opinions...............8 sports.................10
Halo Reach Tournament: Game Truck will be hosting a Halo Reach tournament at the student parking lot on May 25 from 3 to 5 p.m. to benefit the HHS Band. The cost is $10 per player, and the event is limited to 64 players. Prizes will be awarded, and pizza will be served. Tickets are available from Mrs. Baird at the front office. Exams: Exams for students in grades 9-11 will be on May 27 for periods 1, 4, and 7, May 31 for periods 2 and 5, and June 1 for periods 3 and 6. All three days will be half days and no backpacks will be allowed on campus. Summer School 2011: Session 1 will be held on June 7 to June 23 from 7:20 a.m. to 12:50 p.m. Session 2 will be held on June 27 to July 14 from 7:20 a.m. to 1:18 p.m. Both sessions are held on Monday through Thursday, and students are not permitted to miss any time during summer school. If you have any questions, contact your guidance counselor. Graduation: The graduation ceremony will be held on May 26 at 2:30 p.m. at the UCF Arena. Graduating students must attend, and any student that did not participate in the May 23 rehearsal will not be permitted to participate in the ceremony.
volume 6 issue 6 may 25, 2011
Merit pay raises anger, questions
News bites Arnold Palmer Teen Program: The 2011 Summer Teen Program will be held from June 19 to July 30 at the Arnold Palmer Medical Center. This is an opportunity to learn more about the medical field and gain community service hours for Bright Futures. Service hours must be pre-approved. Arnold Palmer volunteer applications are available on the HHS website.
High hopes. With lacrosse season ﬁnished, the team prepares to come back stronger next year.
3225 Lockwood Blvd. Oviedo, Florida 32765
photo by jack schwartz
English teacher Erick Wicker discusses assigned reading with his ﬁfth period. Wicker, who was new to Florida this year, will not be eligible for tenure under the merit pay plan, like all ﬁrst and second-year teachers. Sabrina Chehab
co-lifestyles editor asing teacher pay on student performance, merit pay seeks to dispose of teachers with inadequate teaching strategies and to reward those with constructive classroom activity. The bill has caused discontent within the public school system and Democratic lawmakers. Teachers question its constitutionality and argue that the new plan lacks credibility due to the absence of supportive statistics. New York City just recently scrapped their merit pay system because it had no noticeable effect on student performance as well. A recent study by Vanderbilt University found that performance pay alone does not raise student test scores. A valid concern for the system is the manipulation of lesson plans to falsify student improvement and ensure a raise in
teacher pay. Additionally, some teachers are concerned that their lesson plans will be forced to comply with merit pay standards in order to continue teaching. “Unfortunately, if our pay is dependent on one test, we must sadly ‘teach to the test’ or perish,” chemistry teacher and SEA member Trent Daniel said. “Usually for science, that means less laboratory activities, since performance assessment, lab techniques and lab understanding are not tested on traditional science exams.” Supporters of the bill argue that, ideally, the success of a student relies on the quality of a teacher’s instruction. The ﬁnancial rewards offer an incentive for teachers to push for academic achievement, but the source for monetary bonuses is essentially nonexistent due to economic conditions. And the plan is an expensive one. For merit pay to be successful, tests for every subject must be created to evaluate
student improvement. This entails the creation of over 300 tests to cover all secondary subjects, including electives, offered in Seminole County public schools. To validate student growth, both pre-tests and post-tests must be administered— devouring time and money. “The worst impact it will have is on the teacher salary structure,” Daniel said. “With no new monies being added, the current money available will be redistributed off to pay for the merit pay system.” But after signing the bill, Rick Scott endorsed his decision. “The teachers that are the most effective are the teachers that are going to do well,” Scott said. “It’s going to be nice for teachers because they know the people they’re going to be working with are going to be the best.” The plan also rids of the “last hired, ﬁrst ﬁred” policy present in many public schools and ends the impact of teacher seniority—teachers receiving more money for more years of instruction. A complex point system will be put in place to ensure that teachers at schools with different socioeconomic situations have an equal opportunity for merit pay beneﬁts. Bonuses will be given in the 2011-2012 school year for student improvement on FCAT scores and bonuses for classroom improvement will be initiated in 2014. Teachers who do not have FCAT test scores tied to their subject area are given the schoolwide average as a default indicator of merit pay beneﬁts, which also strikes a chord of concern among teachers. “The merit pay system is not only unfair, it isn’t really measuring what each individual teacher does in the classroom,” Daniel said. “If I’m going to be given FCAT reading and math scores, what difference does it make what chemistry I teach?”
Dr. Phillips protests anti-gay church Jem Mason
co-lifestyles editor estboro Baptist Church, known for its picket protests against soldiers and homosexuals, targeted “fag-infested, pervert-run” Dr. Phillips High School for a protest April 29. Scheduled from 6:50 to 7:30, hundreds of counter-protestors lined the streets by the time the Westboro members appeared. Hours after Westboro announced the protest at Dr. Phillips online, college student Ryan Burke created a Facebook event to organize the counter-protest. “This is not a pro-gay, pro-life or antiChristian protest,” Burke said. “This is a pro-community rally to strengthen the bonds within our city and show that we are a city of peace and compassion.” Over 2,000 Facebook users checked the ‘I will attend’ box to show their support, even if they could not make it to the event. “[We came out for] the chance to support the community and show that you can be whoever you want to be,” Dr. Phillips student Valeria Gonzalez said. “You should not be criticized for what you love or who you love.” Police ofﬁcers barricaded part of S.R. 439 to keep students safe and remained for the rest of the counter-protest to control the crowds. The six-lane road separated the hundreds of counter-protestors from
the three members of Westboro church, one of them a 10-year-old child. The reasoning behind Westboro church’s protests tend to be unclear; they have protested appliance stores for selling Swedish vacuums or funerals of people connected to views opposing the church. “I was expecting more protestors from the church,” security worker photo by jem mason Martha Kilmer said, “but I Students and faculty of Dr. Phillips High School line think it is great the students the street to show their support for the gay community. are getting together to groups also attended the counter-protest support each other.” Counter-protestors of all ages came to to demonstrate that religion and hatred did Dr. Phillips with creative signs and outﬁts not have to go together. “We feel strongly about [hatred towards to express their opinions. Two Boone High School students chose to show their support the gay community],” First Unitarian in another way; Alex Schelle gave counter- Church of Orlando member Louise Christie protest attendees colorful rainbow ribbons said. “We are a welcoming community and to get in the spirit, and Tana Hanberry have a lot of LGBT members; we approach these issues from love, not hate.” passed out t-shirts she made. The crowd slowly dissipated when the “There is no organization that created the counter-protest,” Hanberry said. “So I morning bell for Dr. Phillips rang and the thought it would be a cool idea to make and faculty and security ushered the students give out t-shirts for the counter-protestors back to the school campus. Everyone else stayed until the Westboro members packed because it would be a memorable event.” In addition to high school students up their signs and left, a cheer of victory and local community members, church from the crowd trailing after them.
SECME design wins first
launchers at the start of the year. They also staff reporter used several weeks to purchase supplies he SECME team won first place and build rockets to test. for their bottle rocket design in the “We had some frustration building it,” national competition in Alabama physics teacher and SECME club leader after placing first in three different Matthew Myrick said. “We went through categories regionally. The team, which a lot of different designs. Some failed had worked on their bottle rocket since miserably, but we just kept trying until we December, won the national title for the found something that worked.” technical drawing category. Watkins said that the team shared a lot “The bottle rocket did well in of funny moments while working together competition. But our strongest component with power tools or while testing their was our technical drawing,” junior Sara failed launchers. Watkins said. “One time [Mr. Myrick] drilled the lab The team was entered in several table instead of the wood board,” junior categories; besides the rocket launch Jackie Roberts said. itself, they were also SECME, the judged on their patch S o u t h e a s t e r n “We were really shocked design, technical report Consortium of Minority when we found out we and technical drawing, Engineers, is a science won nationals.” as well at the rocket’s club that participates in a -Sara Watkins design and originality. variety of competitions The regional at places such as UCF SECME competition and Universal City was held in February at Walk. The bottle rocket UCF. At regionals, the team placed first launch was the only competition that the in three different categories. Their scores club participated in this year. were submitted to the national competition The group consisted of five people. in Alabama. They received their results Roberts said that she enjoyed the in May, and they won first place for their friendships developed while in the club. technical drawing, a scale drawing of the “Sometimes after competition to components of their bottle rocket. celebrate we would order Pizza or Huey “To be honest, we were really shocked Magoo’s during lunch and eat together,” when we found out we won nationals,” Watkins said. Watkins said. “We didn’t really know what “I had a great group of kids this year,” we were doing, especially considering it’s Myrick said. “It was a small group, only just four girls and one boy.” five, but they worked hard and they meshed The team of five worked on their rocket well. I think a big reason for our success for three months, but had to build the was that we did work well together.” Sarah Casagrande
Justin Hughes • After he placed first and won $1000 in a regional competition in Winter Park against 18 other people, Hughes went to the English Speaking Union’s National Shakespeare Contest on May 2 at the Lincoln Center in New York City. photo by m atthew ne vera
• He has been acting since middle school; involved in five school plays from eighth grade through this year. • Hughes chose and performed 19 lines of a monologue from “Hamlet” at the school, regional and national competitions.
• Hughes will be involved in three plays over the summer: playing Marc Antony in “Julius Caesar”, a role in “The Marriage Counselor” and a one act play, which he hopes will be performed at the district competition next year.
There is nothing good nor bad, but thinking makes it so. -Shakespeare, “Hamlet”
• This is Hughes’ favorite Shakespeare quote, because people are offended too easily, and he thinks that people give power to things that they should not by overreacting. compiled by sean donovan
FCAT, end-of-course exams online, not in written format Matthew Neveras
staff reporter ubble-in answer sheets, number 2 pencils, pocket-size calculators - for years these items have been used in a stereotypical testing environment. However, changes have been made to the standardized math exams that students take. While sophomores still take the FCAT math, freshman now take an Algebra 1 end of year exam. But the biggest change is that now both exams will be completely computer-based. The reason for the change, according to the Florida Department of Education, is that computer-based testing saves money. It also speeds up the time needed for tests to be scored and reported. This change left many students confused on how this would affect their scores and overall testing experience. “I’m used to the old-fashioned way of doing math with a pencil and paper,” freshman Katie Loveland said. “I don’t understand why it’s all of a sudden necessary to switch to it on a computer.” Students who took the electronic tests experienced many difficulties. Common problems were the computers froze, logged students out of the test or allowed extra time to load questions. “While it was nice taking a nap while I was waiting for the people to fix my
computer, it was annoying,” sophomore Jaymi Curran said. “I would rather it just work perfectly.” Instead of students taking the exam on the same day at the same time as in the past, both grades’ tests were scheduled during testing windows on different days. Sophomores took their FCAT test during the window of April 14-19 while freshman took the end of year algebra 1 exam during the window of May 6-20. Students got pulled out of class during their designated testing time to go and take the test. “The bells went off on schedule and I missed class,” sophomore Elaina Fohr said. “It was really frustrating.” Some administrators felt that the new form of testing was beneficial for students. “Because the standardized tests will now be computer-based, I feel like it is in the best interest of our students to get some experience testing on the computers,” assistant principle Barry Coleman said. “Another advantage is the fact that results can be obtained much faster than the traditional paper/pencil exams.” The legislature decided that this year would be a test-run of the computer-based testing. If they feel that all went well, then the computer-based testing will continue onto next year. All students and staff want now is for the mechanical problems to be fixed to ensure that the tests are reliable.
photo by sean donovan
Freshman Matilda von Kalm logs on to the computer to take the geometry endof-course exam. This was the first year that the tests were taken online.
May 25, 2011
s e v a w e h t h c Cat
For surfers, summer is all about the waves
or many, summer vacation means sleeping in till noon, but for surfers it is an opportunity to rise at the crack of dawn and get to the beach. Surfers see June and July as more time to practice, perfect and enjoy surﬁng. They say the best time to do so is before the sun has completely risen. Taught by her school friends, volleyball teacher Courtney Sandoval began surﬁng at the age of 14. Sandoval says she could not live without the very essence of water or the ocean for that matter. “I love being in the water,” Sandoval said. “Getting there really early, right when the sun comes up and being the only one out there, just, you and the ocean.” Freshman Sydney Egan also enjoys the peacefulness of simply sitting on her board waiting for a wave. Starting even younger than Sandoval, Egan caught her ﬁrst wave at the age of ﬁve, with the help of her dad, who taught her to surf so the family tradition could live on through her. Even without being raised on the board in the ocean, Egan believes anyone can learn to surf with enough practice, passion and dedication. “If a ﬁve-year-old and a 60-year-old can surf anyone can; I love how you can always keep retrying,” Egan said. “It doesn’t really matter if you ﬂip out on one wave
Sydney Egan has been surﬁng since she was ﬁve years old and has been enjoying it ever since. because you can just laugh at yourself and try to surf the next one; they just keep on coming and coming.” While students like surﬁng because of its universal appeal and the ability to keep trying, most of the popularity comes from the actual feeling they experience while riding the waves. “You can try to describe surﬁng, but nothing compares to actually surﬁng; everyone experiences it in a different way,” Egan said. “I love the feeling after you just
ﬁnished surﬁng a wave because you feel like you were almost ﬂying.” Sophomore Kinsley Winn loves the adrenaline rush she gets after she catches a good wave as well, but she also loves the feeling of tiredness after a long day at the beach with her friends. Winn knows that surﬁng only takes having balance and being able to swim, and from there it is all about practice. However, surﬁng can have risks. Winn knows ﬁrst-hand, as she twisted her foot
photo provided by sydney egan
and got a third-degree sprain surﬁng in shallow water. For these students, though, surﬁng is about falling and then getting back up again. “Even if you’re not good, it’s fun to just mess with a board in the water and have a good time with friends,” Winn said. Whether you are a stud or on the clumsy side, most surfers agree that surﬁng is deﬁnitely an experience worth trying at least once during a lifetime. “Surﬁng really is amazing,” said Egan.
Protective parents ﬁght Facebook frenzy Anra Diatzikis
updates, all the pictures I post, and things guest writer my friends write on my Wall.” oday’s world of technology is Students feel that parents take constantly evolving. This may seem protection to new extremes by reading text like advances into the future for messages, logging into Facebook accounts, most, but for some teens, it is an easy way and even listening in on conversations. for their parents to know everything they “My mom knows my Facebook are doing, saying and thinking. It is natural password and sometimes takes my phone for parents to away and reads strive to protect my messages,” their child as sophomore “I think that a parent reading their best they can, Nicole Denny kids’ messages is unfair because but teenagers said. “I hate high school is a time where kids strive for a sense that she does are supposed to learn through their of freedom. this because my experiences. If parents don’t let So when conversations must parental them have that trial and error period need to be protection come private.” of their life, they’ll never learn.” to an end? S o m e -Hayley Reboyro M a n y students, like students feel as sophomore if their parents H a y l e y are violating their privacy by having access Reboyro, believe that parents are not doing to all their conversations. Although many their jobs if they do not let their children teens do not want mom and dad to know have some freedoms. everything about their personal lives, lots “I think that a parent reading their kids’ of parents feel they must hear everything messages is unfair because high school is their children say in order to prevent them a time where kids are supposed to learn from getting into things like drugs and through their experiences,” said Reboyro. alcohol. “If parents don’t let them have that trial “I hate that my mom has a Facebook,” and error period of their life, they will freshman Molly Neilsen said. “Whenever never learn.” she logs on, she checks all my status But, parents just want to make sure their
child is safe, no matter what. Freshman Lexi Rossow believes parents can protect their children without invading their personal life. “My parents trust me; they know I am going to make the right decisions and not just go off and do something stupid,” Rossow said. “As long as you know your kid and you have faith in their good
judgment, there is really no need to know everything they talk about with their friends.” Ultimately, it comes down to the parent’s decision of how much privacy a teenager deserves. There is not much a student can do to get out from a parent’s protective nature, but learn to cope with the house rules.
May 25, 2011
Teens ﬂock to EPICenter for faith, fun paper bag lunches to give to the HOPE guest writer Foundation. They decorated the bags with e aren’t your stereotypical pictures and messages of encouragement. youth group, not trying to World hunger awareness was their most ﬁt into a mold,” freshman recent event, entitled “Encounter: 30 Hour Taylor Fohr said. “We are just trying to Famine.” During this weekend, participants focus on Jesus, hence the title EPICenter.” did not eat for a total of 30 hours, and just The title is no lie; the EPICenter is focused on serving and worshiping. home to dodgeball games, the newest “The thing that I like about the whole gaming systems, pool tables, live music, experience was the realization that and a coffee bar where only high school most people go through this their entire students are allowed access. But behind all lives, which is pretty tough to swallow,” the fun, EPIC is a Christian youth group sophomore Lou VanSickle said. based on serving and worshiping. The group has also raised $2,000 for “When I ﬁrst started coming, [EPIC] World Vision, a company that provides showed me that there food and fresh water was more to life than to people in third “EPIC has taught me just waking up in world countries. about justice and caring the morning, doing “[EPIC] has taught whatever, going to me about justice and for the poor, and about sleep, and repeating,” caring for the poor, God’s heart for the poor.” Fohr said. “It made and about God’s heart -Ben Langevin God very real to me; for the poor,” senior it made love very real Ben Langevin said. to me, and it just made this world and why “While God promises to provide for all, I’m here very real.” sometimes he calls us to provide for each EPIC is open on Sunday nights at the other; what we do for each other, God does University Carillon United Methodist for us.” Church. They hang out for two hours and In the upcoming months, EPIC will be then listen to the worship message. hosting a mission trip called “Converge.” For deeper faith, students come on “It is a weeklong trip, here in the Wednesday nights for “Freestyle.” At community, all around Oviedo and Freestyle, members eat dinner together, Orlando,” Fohr said. “Converge is really gather in small groups, and have a chance neat, in the respect that most people tend to to really discuss their thoughts on the immediately thing of other countries, when night’s religious topic. they think ‘missions.’” Youth pastor Bobby Brooks says This “EPIC” youth group is for anyone that compassion is not just an emotion, who is willing to accept change, and it is a catalyst to action. Thus, members anyone that wants warmth and love. are constantly serving and giving back “I’m just hoping that EPIC comes to the community, whether they are off as a loving place where people can making lunches to deliver to the HOPE make mistakes and still be loved on and Foundation, doing yard work at retirement accepted,” Brooks said. “A place that cares communities, or washing cars to raise about the world and does something about money for world hunger. it, and most of all a place that is trying to EPIC recently put together 450 set their eyes on Jesus, with no standards.” Abbey Lacaillade
photo supplied by EPIC
(Top) The game room is open to anyone who attends EPIC. There are multiple televisions, video games, pool tables and lounge furniture. (Middle) EPIC helps out local churches with service projects, like the Nations Church and its back to school drive. (Bottom) After a week-long worship mission, EPIC members celebrate with a shaving cream ﬁght.
Virtual learning goes mainstream FLVS fast facts •
To sign up for FLVS, students need to contact Mr. Momary for permission, and then set up the desired course with their guidance counselors.
There are over 100 courses for students to take online.
Classes are available to take all year long.
FLVS is free to all Florida students.
Courses taken online are calculated into students’ GPA, the same as normal classes.
FLVS teachers are available for their students from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
guest writer atin Language, AP History, Psychology and Driver’s Education. These are just a few of over 100 courses that students can take online through Florida Virtual School. FLVS allows students to take classes either part time or full time, for credit retrieval or to take extra classes that do not ﬁt their schedules or to take classes that are not offered at their school. Sophomore Mary Allison Lambert believed the best way to get through her third year of Spanish was not at school, but rather online. “I learn more through this program. At sometimes it is more difﬁcult, but it is better for me. You are allowed to retake your tests numerous times with the teacher helping you through the questions,” Lambert said. Last year, Danielle Nuszkowski wanted something different so she could better manage her busy schedule. She took
English I, Geometry, Spanish I and Physical Education online. She came to school for Biology and AP Human Geography. “I was not sure if I would be able to get through Biology online with the dissections and constant labs; and with AP, I decided that it would be hard to take such a difﬁcult and fast paced class online,” Nuszkowski said. “The other classes I believed would be better suited for me if I didn’t take them at school.” Better suited did not mean easy, though. Nuszkowski had to adapt to the online class schedules and the inability to talk to teachers face-to-face. “Math I’ve always had a problem with and not being able to talk to a teacher daily made it more complicated,” Nuszkowski said. “However, English was better for me online than it was at school. The lessons on Florida Virtual School are ﬂexible for students with many extracurriculars. Lambert, a dancer with Unleashed, was able to schedule her class around her other commitments.
The program records the lessons so that students can view them whenever they have time. Nuszkowski was a member of the swim team while taking these courses. It beneﬁted her busy schedule and allowed her to get more rest. “It was difﬁcult to motivate myself to do my lessons; so if I procrastinated too much I would get far behind and have trouble catching up,” Nuszkowski said. “It was a balancing act that took some time to master.” Any student can register for this program. They do this by going to their guidance counselor and setting up the courses. If the principal approves they can register through FLVS.net. This program has some of the best nationally certiﬁed teachers that are available to their students whenever they need them. “I would recommend this program to anyone; it is set up to beneﬁt each person to the best of their ability,” Lambert said. “They offer so many classes and help me better understand what I am learning.”
could you last?
These students went a week without the most popular online destination, social networking sites. Would you have made it? Day 2
Not having Facebook on the weekend is even harder, because during the school week, at least I’m busy with homework. If you’re with friends and they take pictures and upload them to Facebook, you can’t see them.
I feel like I’m missing out on where everyone is and what they’re doing because I’m Facebook MIA. I can’t believe I actually have the willpower to just not log on. I didn’t think I was addicted to Facebook, but giving it up is sort of difﬁcult.
As the week has gone by, it was hard at ﬁrst, but now it’s easier to adapt to life without social networking. It’s not as big of a deal as it was that ﬁrst weekend without.
I learn nology it’s eas time s screen lesson netwo for spe
“ ” “ ” Anna Diatzikis, freshman 2 hours a day on Facebook
when i got home, i ended up cleaning my room out of boredom, instead of logging onto facebook. -natalie castle
Natalie Castle, freshman 5 hours a day on Facebook
Usually as soon as I get home, I turn on my computer and log onto Facebook. I realized I couldn’t do this and I had no homework on the computer, so I didn’t even turn it on. It threw off my routine.
I miss Facebook! I didn’t have homework or any after school activities today, so I was extremely bored. Facebook truly does take up a lot of my time.
I’ve noticed I have got a lot more done lately and am not distracted by constantly clicking Home to refresh the News Feed. It’s been a whole week and I’m still not used to not having Facebook.
i even kept a sticky post-it note on the screen just in case i forgot-which almost happened. -maria morales
Shivan Vyas, junior 1 hour a day on Facebook
photos are proﬁle pictures taken from facebook
Today seemed unusual, no update to complain about school or the week that lie ahead. No Facebook seemed like a break of habit, but I made it through. It is getting easier day by day to not think about Facebook when I’m on the Internet.
What’s Facebook?! Strong as ever! Faceboook has not broken me or made me sad. Today, I honestly never thought it has been a week since I last logged ont o Facebook. Time is so much more abundant.
At ﬁrst, I suffered from what I call Bipolar Facebook disorder. After a couple of days, it really didn’t bother me at all. I had learned how to avoid Facebook and not even think about it. I truly realized how much time is wasted going on Facebook.
I learne part of though or say. what’s takes u but also be doin
May 25, 2011
illustration by sabrina chehab
ned that with all the techy we’re exposed to today, sy to spend far too much staring at a computer n. I think an important n I’ve learned is that social orking shouldn’t substitute eaking face-to-face!
ed that Facebook is f my daily routine, even h I have nothing to post I rely on it to know happening. It not only up time when I’m bored, so when I really need to ng other things.
the networking monster
Students addicted to social networking craze Robyn Smith
managing editor hen most teenagers get home, they head straight to the computer. As soon as it turns on, they open the Internet and direct it toward their favorite social networking site-- most often Facebook, Tumblr or Twitter. Once logged on, students can use these websites as a means to contact their friends, both past and current. While social networking sites make it easy for students to stay informed of what is happening among their peers and within their community, they also help teens stave off boredom. “The best part [of social networking] is all the cool things I see,” sophomore Drew Haas said. “On Tumblr, for instance, people reblog a whole bunch of cool stuff and it’s entertaining.” The biggest reason for social networking use, though, is how addicting it is. Once students start to use it, they become hooked. Social networking makes private lives public, so users can know more about other people than they would without it.
“People use [social networking] so often because it becomes addicting to have the power to peer into someone else’s life,” junior Alyssa Latrobe said. “Before Facebook, no one would care who is ﬂirting with who or what song someone is currently obsessed with, but now we spend hours upon hours looking through the photos of our best friend’s brother’s ex-girlfriend.” However, there are some students who choose not to partake in the trend. Students make this decision for various reasons, often because social networking sites waste time or because they are a substitution for actual quality time with people. “Facebook is just another way to project an image of yourself that’s not real,” junior Brad Baker said. “It’s just another medium through which you have to impress people.” Many teens say that once they log on, it is hard to log back off. Social networking’s notoriety as a timewaster is a common dislike. Students believe that they are less productive at home or with schoolwork because they spend so much time online.
“[Social networking websites] are so addictive,” Haas said. “My mom’s like, ‘Do homework, Drew!’ and I’m like, ‘Okay,’ but I’ll be on Tumblr and I won’t do my homework.” However, some students are not able to decide for themselves whether or not to use social networking sites. Some parents forbid them from using these websites in order to protect their privacy or to keep them from becoming too dependent on the Internet. “Although my parents can be sometimes strict, their reasoning for not allowing me to use social networking sites is justiﬁed,” junior Michael Scimeca said. “They believe that social networking sites will detract from my schoolwork and suck me into trivial school gossip.” According to articles like Newsweek’s “Here’s Looking at You, Kids,” teenage caution and inhibitions have decreased due to more time spent on the Internet or on social networking sites, supporting these parents’ fears. In addition, increased time on the Internet or on social networking sites means less time interacting face to face.
This could potentially decrease one’s ability to recognize facial expressions or actual emotions. Adults also feel that lots of online activity can increase cyberbullying, a problem with the teen generation as it leads to depression and increased chance of suicide. “The worst part of Facebook is the passive ways which it can hurt you,” Baker said. “You can see people doing something else that they didn’t invite you to, causing you to feel bad.” Over 73 percent of teens use social networking sites, according to a 2009 study by the Pew Internet Research Institute, meaning that, despite the drawbacks, students still favor these websites for the entertainment and beneﬁts they provide. In the technological era, social networking is central in teens’ lives. “[Social networking] is a good way to connect with people on a more personal level, because sometimes as humans we shy away from the things we need to say in person,” junior Christina Hunziker said. “It’s easier to say them on the Internet.”
Foreign language needed earlier Mehak Rahman
Hagerty High School
3225 Lockwood Blvd. Oviedo, FL 32765 Telephone: (407) 871-0750 Fax: (407) 871-0817 Email: hhsblueprint@gmailcom
The Blue Print is a studentproduced newspaper published six times a year in which the student editors make all content decisions. The newspaper belongs to the National Scholastic Press Association and the Florida Scholastic Press Association. Opinions expressed within the newspaper do not represent the staff’s view as a whole, and do not reﬂect the opinions of Seminole County Public Schools, the school board, or Hagerty High School’s administration and staff. Some material courtesy of American Society of Newspaper Editors/MCT Campus High School Newspaper Service. Letters to the editor are encouraged, but cannot be anonymous. Please submit to email, Brit Taylor’s staff mailbox or to room 6-201. For more information about advertising in the paper, please contact the staff via one of the methods listed above. We reserve the right to reject any advertisement. Principal Sam Momary Adviser Brit Taylor Editor-in-Chief Kaitlan Aries Managing Editor Robyn Smith News Editors Sohani Kasireddy Justin Moser Lifestyles Editors Sabrina Chehab Jem Mason Opinions Editor Kait Moorman Sports Editors Jacob Calloway Scott Strauss Graphics Editor Jacob Calloway Photos Editor Jem Mason Business Manager Kristin Krawczyk Staff Reporters Sarah Casagrande Sean Donovan Meagan Galczak Matthew Neveras Mehak Rahman Sam Salinas Jack Schwartz
alk into any Spanish class at a typical high school and you will ﬁnd teens trying in vain to roll their r’s and get their accent just right. But high school might not be the best time to start learning these things, and if kids were to start earlier they might have an easier time. The idea of having children exposed to foreign languages at a young age has been argued at every level of education. However, a proper consensus has not been formulated. Incorporating a second language into the lower level venues of education would help students in the long run who will take language classes in high school. A study done by the Center for Applied Linguistics stated that countries where students began learning their second language in elementary and middle schools showed higher levels of proﬁciency. The prevalence of Spanish in society today makes it considerably easier to ﬁnd teaching resources and qualiﬁed
instructors and makes the expansion of foreign language programs throughout all levels of school all the more important. Arguments which claim that introducing a second language to children early on in their schooling may interfere with the mastering of English as their ﬁrst language are moot. Education research analysis reports from an Illinois school district assert that students who learn additional languages at an early age develop a stronger understanding of English and consistently receive higher scores on standardized tests in comparison to students that do not have any exposure to foreign languages. In addition, young children have an increased receptiveness towards linguistic skills. This means that it is considerably easier for young students in elementary school—and even middle school—to learn a forein language. Due to the increased ability to learn language at a young age, students who begin to learn a second language early on will have a much deeper understanding of both English and said foreign language. This additionally means that those
students would perform much better in that foreign language class later on in their schooling career. The decision to integrate a language program at a school is generally decided at a district level. Budget cuts are a major reason why foreign languages are not taught at most elementary schools. To achieve extra funds for academic programs, students must consistently receive higher scores on standardized tests in comparison to students that do not have any secondary language exposure. The schools that teach these students are having their funds slashed for lower test scores because their students are performing worse. This is counterproductive. The system of rewards being given to schools that achieve higher scores is being undermined by the same system when it cuts funding to schools that do not perform as well. A program that offers languages early in elementary school would not only beneﬁt the school ﬁnancially but it would also set children up for future successes through the exposure of culture and foreign linguistics.
Driver’s ed should be required Sarah Casagrande
such high risk. staff reporter Although teen drivers need at least 50 hours on the road, there are no driver’s license means more requirements for driver’s education or than the ability to drive a any other sort of instructive class. This car. It is a rite of passage; means that anyone with a license can the freedom to go anywhere without teach a teen how to drive. Parents who parents. A driver’s license is one of the teach their children how to drive tend to steps towards adulthood. be more nervous than an instructor, and But a lack of experience or focus on often teach them in parking lots or on the road can have serious consequences. rural roads which lessens trafﬁc risks but According to the Rocky Mountain does not teach teens how to drive safely Insurance Auditors Association, the or in situations commonly experienced on number one cause of death among 15 to the road. 20 year olds nationally is motor vehicle Driver’s education classes not only crashes, with over 2,700 fatalities in 2008. With such high statistics, teens need more allow teens to practice on the main road, but also teach them how to be safe drivers. instruction and education than what is They coach teens on how to use rearview currently required. Driver’s education mirrors, watch their speed, and how to classes should be necessary for a license, identify different trafﬁc signs. Many of the instead of an option that only some teen cars used for driver’s education are small, drivers choose. easy to turn, and have an emergency brake One of the reasons why teens suffer so the instructor is much more relaxed from such high crash rates is because of than an uneasy parent. a lack of maturity, which is Another beneﬁt of driver’s education shown when teens engage classes is insurance. Since teenagers have in risky practices such as such high crash speeding and tailgating. rates, According to the RMIAA, 31 percent of teen crashes involve alcohol. The state of Florida requires teens who apply for a license to have a valid driver’s permit for at least a year and log at least 50 hours of behindthe-wheel practice under the supervision of a licensed driver, but it is not enough to keep teens safe when they are at illustration by sarah casagrande
insurance premiums for ﬁrst-time drivers are extremely high. According to CarInsureanceRates.com, insurance companies double customers’ rates when their children reach the age to drive in some states, whether they have a license or not. However, companies tend to give parents lower rates if their child has a certiﬁcate that shows they completed a driver’s education class. Many people who don’t take driver’s education claim that it is too expensive. While private, one-on-one classes can cost up to several hundred dollars, there are plenty of cheaper alternatives for teens to use. Some public high schools offers summer classes for free, and even online classes or simulators are available for low fees. The reduction in both driver risks and insurance premiums make the classes worthwhile in spite of the cost. According to insurance company statistics, out of every 100 teen drivers, 28 of them will be involved in a car accident, 13 will be injured, and one will be killed. For teens, a driver’s license is seen as a right. Many do not realize that when they are in control of a 2,000 pound vehicle at 60 miles an hour, they have to be responsible. Driver’s education class should be necessary in order to obtain a license, as it teaches teens not only how to drive, but also how to stay safe.
Our view: Merit based salaries will do more harm than good. Events in the last several years have left Florida’s education system in a weakened condition, unable to handle any more blows or burdens. The staff believes that the new merit-based teacher salaries will be the proverbial straw that breaks the camel’s back. New laws have been enacted that will base future teacher salaries on student improvement. In addition, a points system has been incorporated that balances out socioeconomic situations so that teachers will have equal opportunities for beneﬁts. In spite of its lofty goals, this newly implemented
system will do more harm than good. Taxes have been slashed, causing budgets and nonessential programs such as art and athletics to be trimmed. Due to underfunding Florida school districts are extremely short on money and do not have the monetary resources to implement the beneﬁts that the system promises. The beneﬁts are supposed to be given out based on student improvement on the FCAT until 2014, when merit pay—based on subject-speciﬁc standardized tests— will be implemented in its entirety. With meager funds, schools cannot generate the improvements that this
system demands. In addition, doling out beneﬁts based on student improvement will only lead to lower standards in order to mimic true improvement. Standardized tests will be created to measure improvement in classes outside the core subjects, compounding fears that teachers will be forced to “teach for the test” and that education will yet lose more of its meaning. There is a reason that meritbased salary is so unpopular in the teaching community. The abuses done to the education system simply cannot be endured.
May 25, 2011
students be allowed to Back Talk:Should choose their own summer reading?
“Mandatory summer reading undercuts the assignment’s fundamental purpose. But if teachers allow students to chose their own books, this problem will be solved.”
“Mandatory reading assignments have an important purpose: to help students grow intellectually and creatively through not only written work, but also in-class discussions.”
- Justin Moser
co-news editor ust as everybody is working for the weekend, every student is working for the summer, the time of year free from the typical school routine. But in a bid to keep students academically engaged over the two and a half month break, summer homework is assigned so that students hit the ground running when they return in the fall. Reading assignments are a staple for summer homework. These reading assignments usually require students to read a book and complete a related task. However, students rarely have any say in what reading materials are assigned. Summer reading’s purpose is not just to keep students academically engaged over break. It is also meant to encourage students to be proactive in their reading, take the initiative in their education, and foster a habit of recreational reading. However, students often do not enjoy the reading material. Because of this, summer reading drives students away from recreational reading instead of toward it. Mandatory summer reading undercuts the assignment’s fundamental purpose. But if teachers allow students to choose which books they will read during the summer, this problem will be solved. Only through summer reading assignments that allow students to choose their own reading material can summer reading fulﬁll its purpose. Unfortunately, if open choice summer reading is adopted, assignments would be harder to give because students will undoubtedly choose different books to read. This may be one of the stronger arguments for opposition to open choice summer reading. However, the beneﬁts outweigh the shortcomings. The ﬁrst few weeks in English classes are usually spent on discussions, tests, and additional assignments about the summer reading. This cannot be the case with an open choice summer reading assignment. However, nothing is really lost because much of these assignments are simply busy work. Because of that, English classes can make up for time that they would have
- Sam Salinas
spent on assigned summer reading activities. During this small span of time at the year’s beginning, an English class could easily ﬁt in a smaller unit or book, or do other productive class activities that would have been spent on summer reading. As for the summer reading itself, simple alternatives can be offered instead of mandatory reading material and its accompanying assignments. A generic set of questions could be given to go along with the reading material that the students choose. To a student, these questions would be viewed as no different than what would usually be assigned. However, because the book would be the student’s own, these questions would carry more interest. Another argument that opposition may take is that students are naturally inclined to take the path of least resistance and choose an easy book for summer reading. This potential problem is easily remedied. Part of the summer reading grade could be based on whether the book is sufﬁciently challenging for the student or has a certain reading level. Or students could be required to choose their reading material before the school year ends and have it approved by the teacher. If neither of those options is sufﬁcient, perhaps both sides of the argument could compromise. Students could be offered a large list of summer reading material to choose from. This caters to a wide variety of tastes, helps preserve the academic integrity of summer reading and provides for more focused assignments. In any case, it is much more preferable to alter summer reading assignments and give students the choice in reading material that they deserve.
Tell it like it is
a student at all. They already know the book from the inside out, and if it was the book that they picked for the open choice assignment, it would be a waste of not only time but effort. Assigned reading gives students direction, and helps teachers get on track for the new school year. In addition, these assigned readings give more structure to a class. It is difﬁcult to tell whether a student has a clear comprehension of what they have read if they have been given free reign over what book to choose. Mandatory reading assignments have an important purpose: to help students grow intellectually and creatively through not only written work, but also in-class discussions. If every student in a class of 25 had each read a book of their choice, both ﬁction and non-ﬁction, meaningful discussions would not be able to take place. A simple assignment of general questions for a book of choice does not help students learn. To the students, it is just another assignment to ﬁnish a week before school begins. With assigned reading, teachers can create assignments that go along with the book to further their students’ understanding of what they are reading. Although it is extra work over the summer, students can beneﬁt greatly at the start of the new school year with mandatory reading. Teachers most likely assign books that will be relevant to what will be taught in the ﬁrst semester so as the students read, they will be more familiar with the material. Children may beneﬁt more from open choice, since they are still young and need more motivation to read and expand their knowledge. However, high school students must be aware that mandatory assignments have been set in place for their beneﬁt, not their downfall. Once senior year has ended, the next step is real life. In real life, summers do not consist of days at the beach, movies on Friday nights and complete freedom. Assigned reading prepares students for the real world, whether or not they are up to the task of taking on more work with mandatory summer reading.
“No, if students had the choice, they would pick lame books and wouldn’t get good literature to read.” - JoJo Puccio-Ball, 12
“Yes, because students would choose something they would like to read.” - Brittney Lear, 11
“Yes, because studets would be able to pick books that apply to them.” - Jamie Gnan, 11
Sam Salinas staff reporter dulthood— truly the point of no return— arrives at the high school student’s door in no time at all. With the end of adolescence comes the beginning of what real life tastes like. This means no summers off and rarely any free time. So, why should a high school student’s summer be any different? Summer assignments do not overwork or overstress students, since they have a whole summer to complete them. One of the more “stressful” assignments would be the mandatory reading of assigned books for all English classes. Work like this helps students’ minds expand as they make their way to adulthood. If left to their own devices and given an open choice, students’ academic growth would remain stagnant. Out of summer assignments, which often include math and history, reading assignments seem to take up the most time. Each year, the same dilemma usually surfaces about whether summer reading should be assigned, or if students should be given an open choice about what they want to read. Complaints most commonly entail how students are not given the free time they deserve, and that they are overworked, stressed out and need a break. In reality, this behavior is just teenagers being teenagers. No high school teenager wants to work during summer after they have already spent 180 days dedicated to their school studies. If given an open choice option to choose a random book, they would either never read it or would not take their assignment seriously. For example, choosing a book from the Harry Potter series after having read it more than seven times would not help
“Yes, the books that teachers pick for students to read are usually horrible.” - Jordan Reid, 10
“No, teachers know what kids need to learn by reading certain books. - Alex Stack, 10
“No, students would just pick easy books to read.” - Kaitlyn Preston, 9
Scott’s Say Summer football heats up team Sean Donovan
Inspirational coaches make the difference Scott Strauss
co-sports editor egardless of the sport or the level of play, a team’s talent is not the only factor that determines their success; rather, the quality of coaching dictates a squad’s performance on and off the ﬁeld. While the performance is generally credited to the players, the team’s triumphs are the coach’s responsibility. A team with prime players can never reach its full potential with mediocre leadership. Sush as when all-star coaches like Urban Meyer lose their passion, the team suffers. The raw talent of the team cannot make up for the poor leadership; the peak potential can never be reached. Although a strong skill set will help lift the team’s performance, a team’s attitude, motivation and feelings toward the game are controlled by the coach. If under poor leadership, the team’s morale will suffer; it is imperative for a leader to not only lead a team and demand respect, but give the players a motive. “Coaching isn’t a great mystery. It’s just hard work, determination, and inspiration at the right moment.” This quote by Bob Zuppke accurately sums up what a coach should be like. A coach should make the sport enjoyable. This means giving players an incentive that keeps them going throughout a grueling season. Whether it be eventual success or a reason to go out to practice on a daily basis, the need to create teambased motivation is more important than anything a coach can do to increase the success of the team. Enthusiasm to play not only keeps players from losing interest in the game mid-way through their high school career, but it also adds to the way that the team will perform. Poor examples of coaching are evident at all levels of play. Bobby Knight, while hailed as one of the best college basketball coaches in history, has been accused of assaulting players and violently promoting his ideas. These old-school types of techniques are still found today in high school athletics, with coaches using ridicule and embarrassment to punish poor performance or lack of effort. This method just decreases player motivation and leads to a higher team dropout rate. Extra running or a positive, constructive criticism is a far more effective way for a coach to handle an issue with a member of the team. Positive coaching techniques are evident over many years – increased player performance and an increase in players coming out to play are evidence of this. The varsity boys basketball team, a team, headed by Coach Kohn since the school’s opening, has never known anything but success. Remaining calm on the bench has always been a staple of Kohn, and instructing players rather than raging and yelling has proven to be an effective technique. Kohn’s unique and smooth coaching style led to the best season in the basketball team’s history. Coaching techniques vary across sports and schools, but the methods that work are seen in all places where a successful program has been established. Coaching affects the performance of a team just as much as the player talent does, and with second-rate leadership, success can never be achieved.
he bridge between spring and fall football is an eight week period of blood, sweat and determination. It is a time where the team works together to figure out how to succeed in the season. During this time, the team goes through rigorous drills. The JV and varsity squads practice together while the freshman squad practices on their own to learn the system. All three teams work on plays for the upcoming season. “There’s nothing brand new,” head coach Nate Gierke said. “Like they say: if it ain’t broke, don’t ﬁx it.” To get to the summer session, four photo by dave rudd weeks of spring practice will culminate with the spring game, a 7 p.m. Friday Rising senior Riley Tarr waits for a play to start while he plays his corner position. contest versus Lyman. This is a rematch The structure of practice and workouts for them to learn the position and to keep from last year’s game, which ended in will also be the same. Although some up their agility and strength for the fall a tie. In the spring game, 98 players will players left the team, there were also many season. Other players are preparing for the be suited up for the game. Players will players who joined. season in a more personal way. be tested at their new position, but the “I’ve been hitting the weight room a lot “Regardless of the players who left and question remains as to who will replace Jeff came, we were going to make changes,” more,” rising junior Koy McFarland said. Driskel at the quarterback position since Nate Gierke said. “It’s because we’re a “I’ve been keeping myself healthy and his backup, Austin Nagel, is graduating different team than last year.” drinking lots more water.” as well. The proposed quarterback for New coaches have arrived as well. A Not much will change within the team next season is Lucas Wainman, who had itself. In many cases, last year’s backups majority of the old coaches, such as Tim previously played the quarterback position will ﬁll starting spots. Most other positions Dycus, Zac Carter and Phil Casesa left but has spent the last few seasons at punter. have yet to be determined: players must the program to join other schools such as During the summer the JV and varsity ﬁght for every spot on both sides of the Seminole. The most notable acquisition squads will practice every day, with Filthy ball, particularly offense, where there is the to the staff is Nate Gierke’s brother, Jeff Fridays beginning at 6 a.m. every Friday least amount of returners. Gierke, who has been hired to become the during the eight weeks. This time may “I like my position,” lineman TJ Black new linebacker coach. He replaces coach be used for the team to get to know each said. “I’m perfect for it.” Vinnie Siciliano. other. Some of the core group have played “My brother and I are going to put our The summer practices will allow for together for a long time, some since the position changers to familiarize themselves ideas together,” Nate Gierke said. “We’ve early days of Pop Warner. to their new place. Drills will be utilized got a good background in training players.”
Oviedo hammered with sanctions Jack Schwartz
staff reporter viedo High School is well known for its athletics. Its wrestling team alone has won ﬁve state championships in the past eight seasons. However, recent allegations of cheating have put these athletes on the bench. After a three month long investigation, the Florida High School Athletic Association determined that the school had been recruiting and cheating, in both wrestling and volleyball. A Seminole County investigator accused the Oviedo programs of “winning at all costs.” The investigation started with reports of the volleyball team recruiting players from other areas; however, investigation did uncover one player from the girls’ varsity volleyball team who was recruited, but most of the controversy came from the wrestling team. Former Oviedo wrestling coach J.D. Robbins sent his side of the story in an e-mail to Oviedo wrestling parents and the Florida JET wrestling club. “None of my wrestlers or my assistant coaches or myself did anything inappropriate or illegal,” Robbins said within the e-mail. “This simply boils down to Seminole County and Oviedo High School looking for a scapegoat for all of the ﬁnes and the charges that were levied against them.” Oviedo was slapped with a ﬁne of $57,000. The school plans to take the money out of the athletic program with ticket sales and fundraisers. The ﬁne was placed on the school after numerous FHSAA rules were discovered to be broken by both teams. The wrestling team was charged with recruiting several wrestlers, and allegedly allowing ineligible wrestlers to participate. Some of these wrestlers were housed in an assistant coach’s home, so they would appear eligible to attend Oviedo. Many
people and schools in the area are asking the question, how can things like this get past the schools? Wes Allen, Oviedo’s athletic director, said in interviews that he had no knowledge of any recruiting. Robbins, along with an assistant coach, and head varsity volleyball coach Chad Long, were ﬁred from their coaching positions. Allen was simply asked not to return to his position in the following school year. The Oviedo volleyball team has proved to be stiff competition for the girls varsity team. With their head coach being ﬁred, the team will have to make some changes. “They had one of the strongest coaches in the state,” head volleyball coach Corey Radford said. “Oviedo will suffer having lost him as a coach.” Radford, however, was not surprised with the circumstances at Oviedo. The volleyball team felt that Oviedo was taking part in recruiting. “He just seemed like that kind of person. He was always really aggressive during matches,” Radford said. The wrestling team has never won a team duel against Oviedo. Although the Lions will still be able to participate in the regular season, they are not allowed to participate in any post-season competition, including the state and district tournament,
for three years. The school wrestling team placed fourth at conference this past season, behind Oviedo. These allegations, if true, may have played a major role in their performance at these tournaments. “It’s hard to say what the outcome would have been; they’ve always been impressive,” head wrestling coach Isiah Cabal said. The Oviedo wrestling team has “dominated” the state for the past eight seasons. Now that they will not be able to compete in postseason events, competition will change for local teams. “I’m not surprised that they were recruiting at all,” junior wrestler Alex Wiggins said. “They’re the hardest team we faced all season.” After the negative press, Seminole County administrators will be keeping a watchful eye the athletic programs around the county. They plan on doing their best to prevent situations like the one at Oviedo from repeating. “If the adults had done with what they were supposed to do, there would be no student in this situation,” Seminole County representative Walt Grifﬁn said in an interview with the Orlando Sentinel. “Students did not do this on their own. I’m upset with the adults.”
May 25, 2011
Injuries, inexperience end lax season early Jacob Calloway
inishing their season with a loss to rival Oviedo in the district playoffs, the boys lacrosse team prepares for the nine month off-season that lies ahead. The team ended the season with a 7-10 overall record. Last year’s team had 17 seniors and only eight combined freshmen, sophomore and junior players. This year’s seniors had the obstacle of overcoming a young and inexperienced team with only a handful of returning players. The lacrosse program started the season strong at 7-2, with losses only to Timber Creek and a 13-14 overtime loss to Apopka. A mid-March 15-9 loss to Lake Brantley— who won districts, regionals and lost only to Lake Highland Prep in the state semiﬁnals— created a turning point in the team’s season. The loss to Lake Brantley started a six-game losing streak that would last until April 7 with a 14-1 win against Lyman. With only seven returning players, the program had to alter their usual game plan, which was successful in the past. “Each year we have to play to our strengths; in years past, we were a dodging and shooting team with a very experienced defense,” head coach Mark Ayad said. “This year we had more of a balanced offense, with a brand new defense so we had to change how we play completely.” The team this year was hindered by inexperience, a problem most programs have with their junior varsity team. Most varsity players have at least a year or two of experience playing together, where they learn how to play to each other’s strengths. This was not the case.
photo by dsp
The boys varsity lacrosse team huddles for a break after a rainy game against Bishop Moore. The team was defeated 6-8. “I think our biggest weakness was our age and inexperience,” Ayad said. “When all our talent gets used together and everything clicks, we will be a good team.” To add insult to injury, the season was plagued with injury. Senior Mark Renner tore his ACL in the fall before the season started, and had to become team manager his last year after playing for three years. Starting defensemen sophomore Frank Cullen fractured the growth plate in his wrist in the beginning of the season, and starting attackmen sophomore Andrew Bonnie fractured his scapula midseason.
With this year’s season already in the books, the team can now focus on what is on the horizon: next season. After enjoying a break following the last game of the season on April 20, most of the returning members have already begun practicing for the summer season. The program does not run a special summer season team, leaving players to choose either: B.A.M. Lax, Possum’s Lax, Joker’s Lax or Team Florida, all local club teams. With most players disappointed with the team’s record last year, some players are taking personal responsibility to ensure
that the team does how have a similar outcome next season. With much of the team returning for the future season, there is room for improvement and lots of time to get better in sync. “What I plan to do to be a better player next year is stay more focused and take things more seriously, not just in season but while preparing for season too,” sophomore Dominick Galluzzo said. “I have nine months to prepare for next year, and I understand just how valuable that time is now, and I don’t want to waste a minute of it.”
Heart Artist of the
Next year’s group of advanced placement portfolio artists are driven by a passion and enthusiasm for the visual arts, and use various media as a creative outlet to make their pieces.
Alex Cox Andrew Ashby Jay Gehret What’s your favorite medium to work with? Wire, because it stays still and doesn’t change easily. My hands feel more muscular and I’ve gotten calluses; I could probably break your hand. What is the strangest thing you’ve used for inspiration? Theater. During Sweet Charity, I was lights and sounds for the musical. How often do you create things in your free time? If I’m not doing a 3D sculpture, I’m on my tablet sketching or looking up a new idea. What is the best thing anyone has said about your art? “How much?” And people asking what I see for my future and what not.
What about art is so attractive to you? You can make things that aren’t possible a reality. What are your future ambitions? I hope I can freelance without having to worry about money. What are important themes in your art? Emotions; art can’t just be something, it has to mean something. What is your favorite medium to work with? Water color. Why did you decide to be involved in AP Portfolio next year? It helps build my portfolio for college, and I enjoy having two hours of art during school.
What is the strangest thing you’ve used for inspiration? I use things most people consider disgusting. You don’t want to know. What is your best work? A planet made of ﬂesh and organs that I drew on paper. How often do you create things in your free time? I doodle a lot if I have a piece of paper in front of me.
What kinds of shows and competitions have you been involved in this year? I was in the Sanford Trust art competition. We had to draw a building from Sanford; the theme was to “keep the building and Sanford alive.” If you were given a billboard on I-4, what would you put on it? Something inspirational and corny, like butterﬂies. I’d make a theme that’s about appreciating the little things in life.
What are your future ambitions? I like art and I plan on doing it in my free time, but I would rather have a career in culinary arts.
What is the best (or worst) thing anyone has ever said about your art? When I was little, I told my dad that I wanted to be an artist. He told me that they never made any money, and that depressed me for some time. But, later on, as I got older and he saw how good I was at it, he changed his mind.
If you were given a billboard on I-4, what would you put on it? A picture inspiring people to help charities.
What are important themes in your art? Deﬁnitely lots of colors. I like to do happy, lively art, not depressing images.
What’s your favorite medium to work with? Mechanical pencils or pen and paper.