Harvester News Issue One

Page 1

1 • Issue 1 • February 2024
Volume

VIRTUAL LEARNING ON SNOW DAYS ENDS

“This adjustment aims to maximize in-person learning and to ensure equitable access to instruction and student services for all students.”
-FCPS Office of Communications

In December, the superintendent announced the discontinuation of virtual learning on snow days implemented for the 2021-2022 and 2022-2023 school years. We didn’t have enough inclement days (five were needed) to use virtual learning for an extended period during the school years. Even though virtual learning was minimally utilized in these school years, students are happy to hear the change.

“Virtual learning has just ruined the experience of a snow day, in my personal opinion. Like, it takes away the fun of being at home and like, you know, you would want to go outside and do something, play in the snow. Well, you can’t do that anymore because of virtual learning,” freshman Muhammad Mughal said.

Some felt indifferent to the change citing the unlikely nature of ever having 6 inclement weather days.

“I don’t really feel anything. It hasn’t snowed in about a year, so the snow days don’t really happen anymore. So it’s kind of an issue that doesn’t need to be worked on,” sophomore Eliab Hailu said.

Opinions on the efficacy of virtual school days differed also among the students.

“I definitely think it was a good idea, definitely needed, but just, you know, it’s never gonna snow enough for that to happen,” sophomore Eliab Hailu said.

Snow days are appreciated by students as they provide a much needed break from the stresses of school, to some, virtual learning seemed to be a continuation of that.

“Definitely not a good idea, it took away the enjoyment of certain aspects of being home from school,” freshman Muhammad Mughal said.

The amount of inclement weather this school year brings remains to be seen but what is certain is that the short reign of virtual learning on snow days has come to an end.

FEBRUARY 2024 NEWS 4
Snow covers Hayfield Secondary. Photo by Rajvir Singh Staff writer Rajvir Singh School rock covered in snow. Photo by Rajvir Singh

MUSIC DEPARTMENT FINDS STRINGS ATTACHED TO SOAR

To many students, SOAR was a necessary time to complete work or do other necessary tasks. You were able to choose what to do, and in some cases, where you would do it. Sadly, there were many students who abused these privileges. With the start of the 2023-2024 school year, and the introduction of new principal, Dr. Darin Thompson, Hayfield would implement a new system for SOAR.

While it might be hard for everyone, this decision had a particularly major impact on the Music department. In past years, if you walked into the music hallway during SOAR 4, you would be greeted by the sounds of students in both middle and high school practicing their craft. Now, the department sits quiet as the students assigned to those classrooms for SOAR often don’t take any form of music.

Practicing after school isn’t an option for many students. The Marching Hawks are a 91 person ensemble who practice after school 4 days a week from the beginning of the school year till the end of October.

With a rigorous after school schedule, the Marching Hawks junior drum major, Sunya Supanklang, depended on SOAR to rehearse for his various fine arts.

“I am not a fan of the new SOAR system implemented this year. As a musician, being able to soar into the band room to practice and rehearse was extremely helpful for concerts and auditions. Along with band, I also used soar to complete assign ments in theater as well. There were many times where my group needed to rehearse a certain scene or finish up a project and needed meet during soar to do so. With having a lot of afterschool responsibilities, soar was pretty much the only time where I could prac tice and rehearse and not being able to do so anymore has been very stressful as audition season and assessment is coming up,” Supanklang said.

Another student who shares this belief is senior trumpet soloist, Nathan Howard.

“The new SOAR system prevents music students from being able to practice with one another in ensembles, since so many of us already participate in extracurriculars. [It makes] it difficult to organize time together after school,” Howard said.

Music students aren’t solely con cerned with the effect on the music department either. Junior Marcelo Malferrari also has concerns for the effectiveness of a shortened review time for all classes.

“As a system, it is trying to compensate for lack of soaring out by putting two different periods in one and having students swap between them after 45 minutes, and ironically, it’s worse. Some classes need a whole period for reviewing material, and only [having] the half period every so often to have any semblance of extra review time,” Malferrari said.

And the music department isn’t the only program to be negatively affected by these changes. Junior Arthur Alatis, as well as being active in the music department, is a member of the Hawk Writing

“I think that in some ways, the SOAR policy has benefitted attendance and hallway behavior during 4th period, but I genuinely think that it’s causing more harm than it is good. We still have hallway issues and attendance problems during other classes and passing periods, and it’s wrongly taking away privileges from people who

haven’t done anything wrong,” Alatis said. “It harms band and other fine arts and their abilities to practice, it harms tutoring programs like students unhappyWe want a definite answer to the problem that works for everyone, not a “temporary solution” with an unknown duration, leaving us in the dark about what comes “after”- if that ever comes.”

As a whole, students are unhappy with this decision. 42 students were surveyed, and 83% of students said they were unhappy with this system. Shockingly, 100% of students were critical of the new system in some way. Specifically, students highlighted the 45 minute split between classes as an issue, making it harder to focus on work.

As a whole, it is very difficult to find a positive opinion on the current use of gin the second has been no

Students are still unhappy, especially without soaring out.

NEWS 5
Photo courtesy of Sam Jacobs Photo courtesy of Sam Jacobs
FEBRUARY 2024
Photo by Katerina Floros

YOUNG FEMINIST PARTY MAKES ITS WAY TO HAYFIELD

Feminism is defined as the advocacy of equality for all genders and sexes. Americans pride themselves on the fact that in our country, everyone is free and equal. If this is truly the case, then why is it that it’s the 21st century and the Equal Rights Act still hasn’t been ratified into the Constitution? This is not just a loss for women or queer citizens, this is a loss for everyone. While students at Hayfield may not think they can be politically involved due to their inability to vote, there are still ways we can take action.

Young Feminist Party is a chapter that is ongoing in Virginia. They focus on ratifying the Equal Rights Amendment while supporting and empowering young feminists and queer people. Past actions of this organization include responding to the publishing of the SCOTUS’ Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Center decision in late July 2022. Participants assembled outside of Chuck Schumer’s office in hopes of snagging a meeting (they did). That same month, members lobbied on Capitol Hill and at the White House.

In January 2022, GRVA filed two amicus briefs opting for the ratification of the ERA.

Young Feminist Party has also hosted walkouts in May 2022 for the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Center draft opinion. Over 5,000 students participated in this extremely successful walkout. Rania Baamrani and I got in contact on August 24, 2023, to make this Young Feminist Party chapter possible at Hayfield.

With a [Young Feminist Party] chapter at our very own Hayfield Secondary, I hope to share the importance of the Equal Rights Amendment which I’m sure can strengthen its significance across the nation.
- Rania Baamrani, 12

“I decided to establish a [Young Feminist Party] chapter here at Hayfield on account of my own passion for politics and desire to shape my own personal journey by expressing what policies I believe should be in legislation,.” senior Rania Baamrani said. “With a [Young Feminist Party] chapter at our very own Hayfield Secondary, I hope to share the importance of the Equal Rights Amend ment which I’m sure can strengthen its significance across the nation. Generally, I would love to use the opportunity as a way for me to hopefully fuel some moti vation and drive for politics for students at Hayfield!”

Meetings for [Young Feminist Party] would meet once a month with a new activity each week. Whether you’re a freshman or senior, there’s something for everyone. Members would engage in lobbying to express support for the Equal Rights Act, we may open up discussion on certain topics regarding feminism, or bring in guest speakers to comment on

If you want more informtion on Young Feminist Party, reach out to 1621786@ fcpsschools.net or 1553556@fcpsschools.

FEBRUARY 2024 NEWS 6
Senior Rania Baamrani and Sophomore Emily John son are the co-founders of Hayfield Generation Ratify

sport backpack stays perfectly organized.

day essentials to unique items , we uncover the stories behind the items that accompany Hayfield students on their daily adventures.

“The memorable thing in my backpack is my key because it has a picture of me when I was in kindergarten,” Freshman Daniel Lafarga said. “ I keep all of my papers in a folder and I always make sure that every folder has everything up to date.”

Some like to keep things simple in their backpack. Roqia Amini, who is a sophomore and she likes to keep things simple in her backpack.

“One thing in my backpack I have and everyone needs is hand lotion, because in winter our hands get dry and all my friends ask me for lotion,” Amini said. “I’ve been carrying my lucky charm pencil in my backpack since last year. I call it that because I feel like the pencil can read mind and write the answers on a test.”

“The must have items in my sport are shorts and basketball shoes. All my peers always borrow my phone charger and it’s the item in my backpack that everyone needs,” Ramirez said.

Laibba Feroozudin is a Sophomore, known for her meticulous organization skills, especially when it comes to her backpack. Laibba has some things to say about how she always tries to stay organized and it reflects her dedication to academic excellence and serves as an inspiration to her peers.

“I ensure that my backpack stays organized by cleaning it at least once a week or two. Every night I go to sleep I check the schedule. For example, if it’s an orange day I only take my orange day folders and notebooks and it’s white day I put my white stuff.” Feroozudin said. “My pencil has been in my backpack since last year because it was a gift from my best friend and it’s really adorable.”

Not all Hawks are the same though. While some shine on the stage, others shine on the court. Senior Andy Ramirez, not only brings a backpack to

Keeping your backpack organized is super important for students at school. It helps you find what you need quickly and stay on top of your assignments. As we peek into these bags, we unravel not just items but stories of discipline. An organized backpack leads to success both in the classroom and on the playing field.

FEBRUARY 2024 FEATURE 7

A SWIFT SHIFT

Hayfields reaction to Taylor Swift named Time’s 2023

Person of the Year

In December, Taylor Swift was named Time’s 2023 Person of the Year. She’s the first Time’s Person of the Year recipient to be chosen for achievements in the arts. Swift was also Person of the Year in 2017, when she was titled one of the “Silence Breakers” that acted as leaders of the #MeToo movement. This makes her the first woman to have been selected as Person of the Year twice.

People have many different opinions regarding her being named Person of the Year, her music, and her fame. Some people are die-hard fans and believe she deserved the award, others aren’t a fan of her and think the title should have been given to someone else, and some are indifferent.

about her and Travis, or about the Eras Tour, she was on everyone’s phones, and everyone’s minds. And I think yes- she deserved the Person of the Year award. She was able to build up herself and her music so much this year,” Sophomore Scarlett Forster said.

Swift started dating Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce in July 2023. Their relationship caused the NFL’s X (formerly known as twitter) bio to “NFL (Taylor’s Version), a reference to the title of her re-released albums. The NFL also changed their X header to pictures of Taylor Swift, however both the bio and header were quickly removed after fans criticized them for paying her too much attention.

Just a few months before this, Taylor Swift kicked off her Eras Tour in March of 2023. The tour’s goal was to pay tribute to the numerous albums she’s released throughout the years. Swift’s tour was able to increase hotel and tourism revenue, boosting the economy by 4.6 billion dollars. It was able to break the record for the highest grossing music tour of all time.

The Time’s Person of the Year is who the Time’s Magazine editors think was the most influential person this year. Whether for better or worse, Taylor has been in the public eye for over a decade, and has managed to stay relevant and influential in 2023. She’s also won numerous accolades including Twelve grammys, Artist of the Decade (2010s), forty Billboard Music Awards, and twenty-three MTV Video Music Awards.

Even though Taylor Swift has been a very important figure throughout 2023, that doesn’t mean that other people shouldn’t also be recognized for what they’ve done for the world.

“I feel like the people who should get Person of the Year are the journalists in Gaza that are risking their life everyday to document what’s happening over there, and they’re not getting any recognition,” Senior Abdelrahman Aly said.

One student on the other hand believed that there shouldn’t be a Time’s Person of the Year.

“I don’t think anyone should be Time’s Person of the Year, it’s too much competition, too many people have led multiple campaigns and done a lot of good stuff for the world,” Senior Adam Belayachi said.

TIME’S SHORTLIST

A few days before Time Magazine announces who the Person of the Year is, they release a shortlist of people who are in the running to be selected. This year there were nine candidates on the shortlist.

Some of these candidates included Hollywood strikers, Sam Altman, and King Charles III.

• The Hollywood strikers went on strike for 148 days and put a halt to the production of movies and tv shows. By doing this, they showed how labor unions can make an impact.

• Sam Altman, the CEO of Open AI, was able to make ChatGPT the forefront of the conversation surrounding AI’s influence on academia and media.

“I think she deserved it because she’s really like a good person, she’s really hyper and I feel like she brings out the best in everybody, and her music is likable to me,” Sophomore Courtney Long said.

Other students believed Swift deserved the award because of her relevancy.

“I think undeniably, whether you like Taylor or not, she was the most talked about figure this year. Whether

Swift has also managed to maintain a loyal fanbase called Swifties. One reason she’s been able to acquire this fanbase is because of her relatability.

“I do think her relatability has helped her a lot because I feel like as someone who listens to her, her music genre is so diverse, she has so many songs about so many different things, just songs about life and of course what everyone likes to say about boys, no matter how she goes about life she always has that sense of relatability,” Freshman Ciera Dorazio said.

• King Charles ascended to the throne after the death of Queen Elizabeth II, ending his time as the longest heir apparent in British history. His coronation caused many former colonies to reconsider their ties to the British monarchy.

Taylor Swift performs during “The Eras Tour,” May 5, 2023, at Nissan Stadium in Nashville, Tenn. (AP Photo/ George Walker IV, File)
FEBRUARY 2024 FEATURE 8
8,9.indd 2 2/29/2024 10:43:59 AM

For several months this school year, the Hayfield Fashion club has been working to put together a fashion show, the first in six years. Before the hiatus of what was once a tradition at Hayfield, the experience where an audience could see models on stage performing different sets with all kinds of outfits has produced some impressive Hayfield Alumni. Jecardi Sykes, once involved with Fashion Marketing and the Fashion Show at Hayfield, is now a top male model, walking on the runway for luxury brands such as Givenshy

“It’s 2024, all bodies and all shapes look beautiful, so this show should inspire others to chase after their passions, no matter what they look like,”

Senior Chelsea Asante, who modeled in the show, has drawn inspiration from Sykes. “If there is truly anything I learned from Jecardi, it’s [that] confidence takes you to the sky. He shows that you don’t need complex skills to be successful. Just be confident! And you’ll reach the moon,” said Asante.

“I like to be around people who think like me and have the same interests as me, so I took this as an opportunity to also make new friends while looking amazing.” Asante also added.

FASHION FORWARD

The Hayfield Fashion club didn’t just draw inspiration from former models; during the process of rehearsing for the fashion show, they inspired each other, key relationships being formed along the way.

“I was mainly inspired to participate because of my friends who I joined the fashion club with. The whole idea sounded really cool and it’s something I’ve never really seen or done before for a school club. My favorite part of the show was being able to show off some of my outfits to an audience, while also making new connections with people behind the scenes,” Genevive Ventura said, a junior who modeled in the show.

Asante also added onto this thought of becoming involved with a new group of people. “I feel like I am now a part of a family that I’ll have with me wherever I go,” Asante said.

While the Hayfield Club is a group of mostly like-minded students passionate about the fashion industry, individuality was also highly encouraged in the rehearsal environment. The models and the people behind the scenes of the fashion show all found it important to express themselves no matter their style.

“I think fashion plays a large role in expressing individuality at Hayfield because everyone has their own unique sense of style. I think you can tell a lot about a person by the way they choose to dress” said Ventura.

Tatum Pilla, a freshman who aided behind the scenes doing hair and makeup for the models also finds individuality to be an essential part of fashion.

“Fashion shouldn’t revolve around hate but on appreciation for your own style and that of others” said Pilla.

While the point of the fashion show was to show students different styles under the theme of the show, it’s clear that what went on behind the scenes can show students a lot more; that it’s ok to be themselves.

“Anyone can look good. Anyone can model.” Asante said. “It’s 2024, all bodies and all shapes look beautiful, so this show should inspire others to chase after their passions, no matter what they look like,” Asante said. “It’s 2024, all bodies and all shapes look beautiful, so this show should inspire others to chase after their passions, no matter what they look like,”

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Hsyfield Students Genevieve Ventura, Callie Boyd, Olivia Smith, Chelsea Assante, and Shahd Ahmed model for the fashion show. Photos courtesy of Troy Noche.
8,9.indd 3 2/29/2024 10:44:00 AM

HAYFIELD SOARS INTO

Editor-in-chief Jaslyn Truong

Halfway into the school year, everyone knows the “man with the megaphone”, who roams Hayfield with a big smile on his face. Dr. Thompson, Hayfield’s new principal, has taken his place as the head of Hayfield in a soaring stride.

On the first day, no one can forget seeing Dr. Thompson for perhaps the first time with a megaphone in his hand. The megaphone is Thompson’s signature and allows him to “establish a presence.”

He’s done this at all the schools he’s been principal for, and it leads to people talking and recognizing him as the principal.

“Megaphone man, that’s what they call me,” Dr. Thompson said.

Another thing Hayfield students will never forget is hearing Dr. Thompson’s inspirational morning announcements. He reveals that his speeches are “somewhat scripted”. Every morning Dr. Thompson looks for inspiration and gets the ideas of what he’s going to discuss that morning.

However there is one thing that is always the same in every announcement, the unique quote, “you’re brilliant, you’re phenomenal, you’re amazing.”

“It’s my thing because I wanted to speak like that to my students. I felt like

my students, my kids, you all, you all need to hear that you’re brilliant, phenomenal, and amazing,” Thompson said.

He further explained that especially as a father, he knows the importance of reminding kids how great and important they truly are.

“On a daily basis, from our peers, in the community, and sometimes in school, there is so much that can be downloaded into the mind of a teenager that they don’t hear a lot of positivity,” Thompson said. “Even if you’re a struggling student, just hearing that you’re brilliant, phenomenal, and amazing, you are going to live up to that expectation.”

From tardy sweeps to only entering through the front door in the mornings, Hayfield’s new administration under the leadership of Dr. Thompson has seen new implementations of policies. Although it’s still halfway into Dr. Thompson’s first year, he is not wasting time in pursuing the goals he’s established for himself and the school.

“Those goals revolved around providing our students with high quality instruction, a safe and supportive learning environment, and also having some processes in place for collaboration in place amongst our staff,” Dr. Thompson said.

Specifically, coming into Hayfield, one of Dr. Thompson’s main things to contribute to is school culture and climate.

“It’s that safe learning environment piece,” Thompson said. “ I know that coming in there were a lot of concerns about hallways, safety, and stuff like that. The preliminary feedback I’ve got from the staff and community is that people feel like they see progress.”

And it’s working. In a newsletter sent to Hayfield staff, Dr. Thompson provides data that reflects the improvement of heightened safety in the school.

“We’ve reduced hallwalking by like 60%. Physical altercation has reduced by double digits as well,” Thompson said.

Dr. Thompson did not come into being principal at Hayfield without preparing first. In fact, before the school year, he conducted “one on one interviews with about 80 staff members.” From those conversations it was clear that one of the main concerns at Hayfield in the previous year was safety of students which included hallwalking and fights.

“I knew right away before we can start talking about learning taking place, we have to address those things,” Thompson said.

FEBRUARY 2024 FEATURE 10
Hayfield’s new principal, Dr. Thompson, uses his megaphone in the Hayfield halls. Photo by Jaslyn Truong.

NEW ADMINISTRATION

When the implementation of new policies such as the tardy sweeps started occurring many were confused and some even skeptical as to why new things were being put into place. Dr. Thompson clarifies how he would address those who may not understand such new things.

“The biggest thing when you talk about efforts and launching things, you have to explain to people the why,” Thompson said. “Why is safety an important issue? There’s a lot of data points out there nationally in terms of what could happen. Especially in this day and time. But also there’s research that points to, when you have kids not in class, what is the impact on learning.”

As safety is the utmost priority from Hayfield’s new administration, there is justification as to why new policies are being established.

“There is a correlation: if kids are hall walking, then learning is not taking

place. And that [learning] is our primary goal. We want to educate children,” Dr. Thompson said.

Additionally, another important thing to “put in place” as being the new principal of a secondary school that has both highschool and middle school is “to have developmentally appropriate expectations” for both.

“We’re talking about a 13 year old versus an 18 year old,” Dr. Thompson said. “We put in place a number of developmentally appropriate expectations and routines. We put those in place on the middle school side.”

His magic recipe for ensuring his policies are not only consistent but successful is what Dr. Thompson calls the “21 day rule”.

“I have a 21 day rule: if you do something consistently for 21 days, it becomes a habit,” Thompson said. “We came into the year with the expectation

of no tardiness, being on time, and we were consistent about pushing that message along with tardy sweeps. Now it’s the norm.”

In his upcoming years as Hayfield’s principal, Dr. Thompson’s vision for Hayfield is defined by one word: excellence.

“When I say excellence I’m talking about everything that we do ranging from sports to activities to academics,” Thompson said. “That place where people will not leave this community and want to send their kids to Hayfield.”

He makes it clear that Hayfield will one day become the standard for all FCPS schools.

“I want Hayfield Secondary to be the flagship for all schools in this division for innovation, student success and learning,” Dr. Thompson said.

CARRINGTON RETURNS AS ASSOCIATE PRINCIPAL

Assistant Principal Warren Carrington has returned to Hayfield after stepping away from his position in order to be closer to his family. Prior to his move, he worked at Hayfield for eight years. His position at South County and then later to Manassas City Public Schools has proved to benefit him, but has pushed him to realize how much he missed the community of Hayfield.

“Something that drew me back to Hayfield was the relationships that I have and the partnerships that I’ve built with staff to support students,” Carrington said.

He has many connections as well as support and resources that are beyond what he has experienced previously. He had no intention of leaving his last school at Manassas City but when given the opportunity to come back to Hayfield, he quickly accepted.

He was last here when the senior class of 2024 was just 7th graders knowing many of the students since they started going to Hayfield Secondary.

“I’ve seen so many students kind of turn it around from 7th grade and become productive citizens by the time they graduate from high school,” Carrington said.

Assistant Principal Carrington has strong student relationships that are un-

matched. His pride is in his students and what they make of themselves through his careful guidance.

“I was just contacted by one of my former students who just finished his PhD and it just really made me proud,” Carrington said.

Although Assistant Principal Carrington believes observation is the key to finding areas of concern in the school, he still has plans for Hayfield Secondary. He wants to get down to the baseline of students because they are the foundation of all schools.

Not only does he have expectations for the school but he also has high expectations for the students here at Hayfield. He believes that the students are the foundation to the school and the pride should come from them.

“We expect all of our Hawks to be a proud member of the Hayfield community,” Carrington said.

This school is not only his community but also clearly a part of his home. His career started with Hayfield and he has no plans of leaving anytime soon.

Staff writer Tatum Pilla
FEBRUARY 2024 FEATURE 11
Hayfield’s Associate Principal Warren Carrington smiles and poses for a photo. Photo by Tatum Pilla.

HAYFIELD TRACK TEAM’S MEET DAY ROUTINE

Staff Writer Kiara Repuyan

A few of the Hayfield Varsity Track and Field team was asked about their routine on meet days (competition days), as well as if their routine included good luck charms or traditions/ superstitions. Here is what they had to say:

Christopher Ham (11th)

“I love listening to goofy music before I run just to get relaxed. I don’t have any meet day superstitions, but on big meet days I have a headband that I wear with a skull and a heart, and that’s for states or nationals, so I guess that’s my meet day tradition. I would also say that my headband and my spikes are my good luck charms”

Sanaya Teklemariam (12th)

“I wake up and I make sure I look cute, and then I do my hair because it makes me feel more confident and I always make sure to grab a snack and my headphones. I have to listen to NBA youngboy on the bus before the meet and before I run, and I also make sure to bring my good luck charm, which is my lucky blanket, my white and black, fuzzy, lucky blanket.”

Abel Mesfin (12th)

“I make sure to take a shower before the meet so I can be refreshed and awake, and then I always listen to music, before and during the meet. When I first get to the meet, I just like to look at my surroundings and become present in the moment. Before I get called to run, I like to do my own separate warmup, I make sure to eat some fruit snacks and drink a lot of water. I don’t believe in good luck charms, if you work hard it will show”

Aja Johnson-Morgan (11th)

“The night before the meet, I make sure I have everything ready, and in the morning I always eat a quesadilla for breakfast, specifically with broccoli, chicken, and cheese.My superstition is that I always have to wrap my legs in plastic cling wrap the night before to make sure my muscles are recovered, and I also have to eat the same quesadilla recipe before I run, and grapes after I run. I eat grapes after I run because I did it one time and I PR’ed so I kept doing it after that, and then for good luck, I got a bracelet from a quinceanera and after I wore that I ran at states, so now I wear it all the time so I guess that’s my good luck charm.”

12
Photo courtesy of Victor O’Neill Studios

was younger and is one of my personal favorite cozy games

Unpacking

Streamers and cozy game enthusiasts blew this game through the roof last year, allow ing for a community to throw in simple and familiar games. The game follows the life of a young woman and the rooms she lives in through her childhood, college life, her first apartment, and after getting married.

childhood that my dad let me play on his old xbox. After dying from illness, Aurora wakes up in a fantasy world with the goal to save the Sun, Moon and Stars from an evil witch. Her journey is filled with emotional music and stunning visuals that in-

Loftia

Without being fully released yet, Loftia is a soft, solarpunk MMO that will be available to the public once it is fully finished. It will feature farming mechanics and exploring of the cozy world. Also promised are cute pet companions that travel with you. The developing team is very active with updates and newsletters on Instagram and Discord!

FEBRUARY 2024 A&E 13
Photo courtesy of Nintendo Photo courtesy of Best Buy Photo courtesy of Amazon Photo courtesy of Ubisoft

IS THE NEW

Editor-in-chief Neia Anne Javier Dizon

With the start of the new year, expectations for what’s trending always seem to be the “next best thing,” however, pop culture has decided to take this year in a nostalgic sense, resurging trends popular from 2024’s predecessor, 2014. The likes of the recent release of The Hunger Games prequel “The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes” and Ariana Grande’s musical comeback with her newest album “Yes, And” mirror the same obsessions that took over society back in 2014, the height of The Hunger Games franchise and the release year of an Ariana Grande album that holds some of her most popular songs to date. Also gaining traction due to the highly talked about 2023 film Saltburn, the “indie sleaze” aesthetic widespread in the early 2010s has begun its ascent in the fashion world. Social media has pushed the idea around this year, being the “new 2014.” Yet, the revival does beg the question, why bring back trends and media popularized from past years to 2024?

“[It’s relevant to] how fast times are changing, with how much people are going through and current circumstances in the world,” junior Joey Ouellette said. “Certain people miss a point in their lives where things were simpler.”

Other Hayfield students also agreed that bringing back prior years, like 2014, has helped cope with the “coming-ofage” feeling many high schoolers experience, significantly distorted after virtual schooling and the COVID-19 Pandemic.

“A lot of people grew up too fast and are now looking to old trends to relive their childhood,” senior Rania Baamrani said.

Although most students at Hayfield were too young to experience the “2014” that many refer to today, social media plays a heavy role in presenting the aesthetic to society. For example, Kylie Jenner’s recent post on TikTok, garnering 5.2 million likes, has the caption “heard its 2014 vibes this year” paired with a video of her pink hair, a call back to the different colors she would dye her hair during that era.

“When I think 2014 aesthetic, I remember Kylie and Kendall [Jenner],” Baamrani said. “So much of that was romanticized; the 2014 aesthetic was inaccessible for a lot of people because of how it actually cost to even be like one of those Tumblr girls,”

In 2024, however, with the rise in accessible consumerism, like next-day shipping, social media marketing, and much of the generation who were children during the 2010s having their own money now, teenagers have become influenced more easily.

“We’re advancing so quickly, and everything [is]changing so quickly people are appreciating what [2014] was for its time,” Ouellette said.

Doc Martens and highly saturated filters aside, it is evident that 2014 will not just run its course physically but also mentally. The happiness and nostalgia that was experienced during that time playing a crucial part in its resurgence.

Of course, we are still in the early months of this year, but if January’s trends mimic how the rest of the year will play out, it offers an exciting yet eye-opening preview of what’s to come in 2024.

IMAGE DISTRIBUTED FOR TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX - Leven Rambin, Douglas Smith, Logan Lerman, Alexandra Daddario and Brandon T. Jackson seen at Twentieth Century Fox and Fox 2000 Present ‘Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters’ special fan screening, on Wednesday, July, 31, 2013 in Los Angeles, Calif. (Photo by Eric Charbonneau/Invision for Twentieth Century Leah Sava Jeffries, from left, Walker Scobell and Aryan Simhadri pose for photographers upon arrival at the premiere of the television series ‘Percy Jackson and the Olympians’ in London Saturday, Dec. 16, 2023. (Photo by Vianney Le Caer/Invision/AP) Singer Ariana Grande poses for a portrait at the Four Seasons Los Angeles At Beverly Hills on Tuesday, Aug. 19, 2014 in Los Angeles, Calif. (Photo by Omar Vega/Invision/AP) Actors Josh Hutcherson, from left, Jennifer Lawrence, Liam Hemsworth and Donald Sutherland attend a special screening of “The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2” at the AMC Loews Lincoln Square on Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2015, in New York. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP) Tom Blyth, from left, Hunter Schafer, Rachel Zegler and Josh Andres Rivera pose for photographers upon arrival at the World premiere of the film ‘The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes’ on Thursday, Nov. 9, 2023 in London. (Vianney Le Caer/ Invision/AP) Jacob Elordi arrives at the premiere of “Saltburn” on Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2023, at The Theatre at Ace Hotel in Los Angeles. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP) Archie Madekwe arrives at the premiere of “Saltburn” on Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2023, at The Theatre at Ace Hotel in Los Angeles. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP) Barry Keoghan arrives at the premiere of “Saltburn” on Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2023, at The Theatre at Ace Hotel in Los Angeles. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP)
FEBRUARY 2024 A&E 14

DIGITAL CAMERAS ARE HAYFIELDS

LATEST OBSESSION

Editor-in-chief Neia Anne Javier Dizon

In the Hype Squad at football games, backstage during the school fashion show, or hanging out with friends outside of class, digital cameras have recently been a common occurrence for students documenting their lives at the Hayfield.

“We spend so much of our lives on our devices,” senior Mia Fernald said. “I think a lot of people prefer cameras because they’re something that doesn’t take them away from a moment or experience.”

The younger generation isn’t shy of resurging old photography elements. In recent years, the Polaroid and disposable cameras have been made popular again through social media. Even through our phone cameras, filters have shown to be an alternative to obtain the nostalgic, vintage feel. However, now, people are veering away from those options as digital cameras take the spotlight in the photography world.

“Digital cameras are more aesthetically pleasing rather than normal phone cameras,” senior Shahd Ahmed said. “I like how pictures “pop” more with digital cameras.”

Others feel that these cameras enhance your look rather than a phone camera. “iPhone cameras capture every little crevice on your face, and digital camer as are blurry; I think I look better like that,” Senior Isabel Gallardo said.

The aspect of the end product is also an attractive quality. Unlike disposable cameras, where after taking photos, you have to send them back to process the film, or with polaroids, where there is one copy of the photo, digital cameras are easily transferable to the phone, making for sending to friends and posting on social media a stress-free process. They eliminate the need for

keeping the original charm and integrity. In all, allowing for instant gratification for the user.

“It’s like an art form for a lot of people, and expressing it on social media is a great way to showcase the beauty in how one sees the world,” Fernald said. Many find themselves drawn to digital cameras as they’re cost-effective too. Vintage cameras, like Polaroids, can cost up to $70 without film. For some, digital cameras are passed down from their family members, leaving no cost to the item.

“One is from 2005-06, and another is from the 2010s; they were originally my father’s camera, and he gave them to me,” Ahmed said. Online, they’re a cheaper alternative to their competitors.

“I actually got mine from Ama zon,” Fernald said.

In an age that promotes the use of modern technology, Hayfield students have found digital cameras to be a better way

to capture high school memories

“Our generation is really conscious about being stuck on our phones,” senior Emily Shepherd said. “And we’re trying to stray away from that,”

“I’ll typically use my digital cam era if I’m going out with friends and don’t want to have my phone out,” Fernald said.

To conclude, digital cam eras have become more than just a trend in photogra phy– they rep resent a conscious effort of Hayfield students to

ber to stay present.

A&E 15
Courtesy of Mia Fernald remem- Left to right: Asmaa Badreldin, Shahd Ahmed, Zoe Toomer Photos by Neia Anne Javier Dizon Courtesy of Shahd Ahmed Photos by Neia Anne Javier Dizon

Social justice through the screen TIKTOK ACTVISM

A lot of trends have been surfacing around the world on Tiktok. Dance trends, memes, relatable content, and filters. In particular, there has been these two filters that tons of people have been using online.

A watermelon filter. People have posted videos using this filter to both spread awareness about the ongoing situation in Palestine, and persuade others to make videos with it as well to support the civilians in danger. The reason users on TikTok have been amassing this filter is because the creator of the filter has assured and verified that she’ll fund 100% of the revenue to Palestinian civilians in need.

Another filter being used is called “Effect for Congo”. All you have to do to use this filter is just record a video (it could be posted privately) and nevertheless the filter will get revenue. And, like the watermelon filter, the creator of this particular filter would donate 100% of the funds to Congo.

Others are slideshows, music, donations, etc. These types of videos get so much attention from all over the world and have the same purpose which is to spread awareness.

Tiktok is an incredibly popular app

that almost everyone in Gen Z has. Unlike news shows and media outlets, there’s no filter or bias to crucial information like this. TikTok is perfect to spread awareness about these human rights issues around the world as the younger users on the internet are exposed to it.

“Most of the youth in this generation are on Tiktok almost everyday. You don’t see people our age going on sources like CNN or Fox News,” junior Rishad Duary said.

The younger generation in today’s world seems to be more proactive and passionate about these topics than adults. Although a lot still watch the news and media, more people are on their phones just watching Tiktok in their general free times. People could scroll through TikTok almost anywhere and generally have the most screen time on that app. The media tends to cover topics they’re ALLOWED to cover, Tiktok is more of a user generated platform and has no filter or censorship to information spread on the app. The app is more structured on people that use it, rather than the

FEBRUARY 2024 OPINION 16
Photos by Suha Hussain

In a perfect world, the questioning of whether or not digital activism is beneficial wouldn’t even be an argumentative talking point. Why should it? With the click of a button, a passionate voice could be projected onto the screens of many. It’s a no-brainer; who’s to argue against awareness? Who am I to criticize a platform that gives minority voices a space where they can be heard? Unfortunately, we can’t trust things at face value- no matter how enticing the hypotheticals sound. History has shown us time and time again that online platforms, such as social media, aren’t this haven for justice and credited news in politics. It’s a place where anyone can say anything, and with enough likes, can catch on regardless of fact. The internet is a place where everyone’s an expert, with and without citation. While this may not be true for every nonprofit organization behind the scenes, ultimately, digital activism is a poison hiding behind our screens with a positive facade and good intentions; its determinants lie in its distortion of view and passive trends.

by Dave Pell is a liberal nonfiction book that recaps the never-ending news stories from 2020. Pell grew up on news channels making his book an informative composite defining the part social media played in politics in the last decade.

Pell quotes McCay Coppins from the journalist website “The Atlantics.” McCay had made an experiment on Facebook where he curated his algorithm to conservative profiles and pro-Trump accounts to mimic a feed the average Republican would get.

“‘What I was seeing was a strategy that has been deployed by illiberal political leaders around the world. Rather than shutting down dissenting voices, these leaders have learned to harness the democratizing power of social media for their purposes- jamming the signals, and sowing confusion. They no longer need to silence the dissident shouting in the streets; they can use a megaphone to drown him out. Scholars have a name for this: censorship through noise,’” (Pell 38).

Digital activism distorts facts and offers up so many various stories as truths, that the reader is bound to pick the wrong one. Don’t get me wrong, there’s a difference between a differing view of subjective opinion and certainty. I don’t mind if you prefer chocolate over vanilla, but if you’re trying to argue that chocolate ice cream tastes like mint: we’re going to have a problem. “Please Scream Inside Your Heart,”

Coppins’ findings regarding activism prove that the internet is becoming a weapon. A way to persuade a user to vote, just as a speech might’ve done in the past. But what about users such as you and me? Say I read something on Instagram that was shocking, say it had a sentence or two with little context, but enough to be enraged or sorrowful, all with an aesthetic drawing to tie it together. What if I told you that without the context that the post is based on, the entire story changes and the post

loses its merit? Of course, this is social media, and legitimacy is defined by that verified check next to a profile. So I share it online and a couple more people decide to repost, and so on. I don’t think I have to explain why this is detrimental.

Furthermore, digital activism has become trendy. It’s become something that makes you feel good about yourself when you repost a black screen or about a war. That is to say, however, some nonprofit organizations, such as Generation Ratify, National Geographic, and TED Talks, use social media to evoke real change by raising money for various causes. I don’t think I can talk about self-serving acts without recognizing the good that so many have done. There’s a word for this kind of passive repost: slacktivism. There are so many instances of this type of activity, but the Black Lives Matter movement in 2020 was especially prominent. Divya Shanmugam from Canton Repository writes “Trends like “Blackout Tuesday” trivialize pivotal social issues, which perpetuates similar injustice. Social media activism is most effective when users can educate other users while also encouraging them to directly take action in their own communities. Instead of using the convenience of social media activism as an excuse for failing to make a real difference, the next time you post about a social or political issue, ask yourself: Is this the most effective way I can

FEBRUARY 2024 OPINION 17
In this June 5, 2020, file photo, Shawna Ventimiglia from Manhattan Beach holds a sign in support of a local group of surfers during a traditional paddle out ceremony in Hermosa Beach in support of Black Lives Matter over the death of George Floyd in Los Angeles. Black Lives Matter has gone mainstream — and black activists are carefully assessing how they should respond. (AP Photo/Richard Vogel, File

HAYFIELD LATIN, A NOT SO DEAD LANGUAGE

Ms.Ghosheh and the community have helped make me a better student,” Freshman John Pettit, who has been in the Latin program for three years, said, “She makes it a fun class and helps make This article just further demonstrates how impactful the Latin program continues to embrace ideas of inclusion and helping every student reach academI encourage you to think about someone is talking about an accomplishment reached by the school think about

Hayfield Certamen trophies over the years Photo courtesy of Ava Saunders

BREAKING STIGMA, BUILDING STRENGTH

In recent years at Hayfield Secondary, the administration has found itself intertwined in a very prevalent issue: the mental health crisis its students are dealing with.

In recent years at Hayfield Secondary, the administration has found itself intertwined in a very prevalent issue: the mental health crisis its students are dealing with. Many Hayfield students and staff feel like this issue isn’t being handled in the best way that it could be. Many don’t know it’s handled at all.

At Hayfield there are resources available such as a school psychologist, a social worker, counselors, and school resource officers, but many students don’t know about these. It’s clear that there is a missing link between the help being provided to students and the help students are actually receiving.

Notably, the challenge of mental health in schools is highlighted by Hayfield’s approach to handling these challenges. Despite the growing awareness of mental health on campus, with clubs like Hawks Minds Matter, administration is struggling to advertise resources for its students. In fact, for a school with a student body of thousands, many still are unaware that there is a trained school psychologist to talk to students. Shouldn’t this resource be readily shared? Additionally, students that attend Hayfield

because their parents are in the military, might not know that there is a counselor specifically devoted to aiding in the transition from one area of the country to another. Wouldn’t our students benefit more from this resource if they know about it?

classes. These slides are often very outdated and reused, and don’t account for more recent reasons why a student may be having issues. They’re so cliche that most students don’t even watch the lessons, which is why the communication of mental health resources needs to be improved.

Unfortunately, there is a growing stigma around mental health, but it is a real problem that needs real solution. Because of how these situations are handled, Hayfield students feel misunderstood when attempting to seek help. This keeps a culture of silence rotating around and around, rather than alleviating the problem.

Clearly, we cannot afford to overlook this issue at Hayfield any longer. At a certain point, the administration needs to examine a better way to get information about mental health more circulated around Hayfield. It’s costing us a lot as a student body and community to be uninformed any longer.

Another example of poor communication in mental health education can be seen in the SEL lessons put on during SOAR

A man paints a mural of a giant moon over mountains during construction of University High School’s Well Space in Irvine, Calif., on July 28, 2022. When school starts, the room is to be staffed full-time with a counselor or mental health specialist.
FEBRUARY 2024 OPINION 19
(AP Photo/Eugene Garcia)
Student Mental Health Resource Feedback We’d love your input!

How to deal with a breakup

Have you ever felt like your whole world was ending after a breakup? Or you just weren’t motivated at all and gave up everything after being broken up with? Me too. Break-ups are a termination of a relationship and can happen over any little thing. In high school most teens depend on other people to make them happy or feel more empowered when they are in a romantic relationship. Suddenly, their relationship comes to an end and their whole world stops and they fall into a deep depression not feeling motivated at all.

“It took so much out of my life I feel like I missed out on so much because I wasn’t motivated to be included in anything at all. I was depressed for a long time.. Looking for different ways to get over it and different things to do to dig out of that deep hole,” Senior Nia Williams said.

How can we avoid or get through this?

“After a break I would recommend listening to music and watching inspirational videos. Watching inspirational videos after you get out of a relationship would push you to become a better version of yourself,” Senior Jilly Recoma said.

Sometimes after relationships highschoolers tend to go through a mini identity crisis. Having the sudden urge to change something about themselves physically like dying their a different color or getting a new piercing or tattoo. Allowing them to regain a sense of control of their lives again.

“Changing my hair color and getting my nose pierced really made me feel so much better after I got out of my 2 year relationship. It felt like something I never knew I needed,” Senior Mckayla Dwyer said.

How has your most recent breakup affected your life/ mental health today?

“Being in a relationship every year since 8th grade. My ex was in my daily routine. So when we broke up It really affected my life because I had to remake a whole new routine,” Senior Jaida Lee said.

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