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JHT

John Hopkins Middle School St. Petersburg, Florida

J.HOP TIMES INSIDE

Order up!

Photo By ANTWOINE REID/J.HOP TIMES

How nutritious is the cafeteria food? Turn to page 7 to see what they’re dishing up!

Photo by SIERRA LEVY/J.HOP TIMES

Teachers are people too!

J.Hop teachers have hobbies outside of the classroom. To see how well you know your teachers, check out page 13.

Cover photo

Photo Illustration by HAILEY VAUGHN and JACQUEL WALLER/J.HOP TIMES

John Hopkins is a great place to B!

J.Hop has been names a “B” school, which is one letter grade up from last year’s “C.” Mr. Brown said it feels good to be the principal. “We’re working hard to do better,” said Mr. Brown. “John Hopkins Middle School is truly a great place to be.”

About us

The J.Hop Times is produced four times a year by journalism students. For more news on John Hopkins, check out the J.Hop Times online at: jhoptimes.pcsb.org

November 16, 2011


Page 2

November 16, 2011

Say, What?

Fact or FICTION?!

By TYRIK ROBINSON, LAVANTAI BLAKE, DEONDRICK WILLIAMS and DORIAN WILLIAMS

Fact: This story reveals the truth about rumors at J.Hop. See what our reporters found out.

Rumor: Mr. Green played pro football

Fact!

Photo by DEONDRICK WILLIAMS/J.HOP TIMES

Rumor: The cages under Building 5 were used to hold unruly students

Fiction! According to teachers, that rumor is not true.

“Personally, it would be a good idea, but parents and the district would get aware and you’d get fired,” said Coach Stretch, eighth-grade language arts teacher. Added Mr. King, seventh-grade science teacher, “It wouldn’t be fair. That’s just inhumane. We would hope that students came here to learn so we don’t have to do things like that.”

According to the source himself, Mr. Green played linebacker for the New Orleans Saints after playing at Dixie Hollins High School. He was motivated to play because “every kid’s dream is to play for the NFL. That’s the ticket.”

Rumor: Science classes don’t dissect animals anymore

Fact!

According to Ms. Trapani, seventh-grade science teacher, “It’s true that they don’t dissect animals anymore because they kind of narrowed it down to more essential topics. This all started when they started the integrated science classes.”

Photo by DEONDRICK WILLIAMS/J.HOP TIMES

Rumor: J. Hop might be getting a football or baseball team

Fiction! The last time John Hopkins Middle School had baseball and football teams was in 1968, according to Coach Starling.

The reason why we can’t have one is because of the district. They can only sponsor two sports volleyball basketball and track, according to Ms. Beasey, the principal’s secretary.

Students used to “dissect earth worms, Cray fish, sea stars, fish and frogs,” Ms. Trapani said.

ILF day? How do you feel about P FLIP By LARRY ADDISON and CHARLES ANTONGIORGI

Toma Karieviciute, 8th grade “I think flip days are actually pretty cool because it’s all like flippy.”

Byron Sanchez, 6th grade

“Good because I get gym first.”

Phelan Stover, 8th grade

Shahmad Muhammad, 7th grade

Aujonee Dunbar, 7th grade

“I think flip days are great because we can experience teachers at different times.”

“It’s good and bad because I have my good classes at the beginning of the day, but the day goes by faster.”

“Good because I get my favorite classes first.”


J.Hop Times

Despite arrests, staff and students feel safe By SARAH POHL

John Hopkins Middle School is in the spotlight again; a recent article in the St. Petersburg Times reported assaults on four teachers at J.Hop. Those assaults are among 12 arrests at John Hopkins this year, according to Pinellas County School records. The assaults involved a geography teacher, an EBD teacher, an ABC teacher and another teacher who wishes to remain anonymous. Mrs. Lynch, a sixth-grade geography teacher who was assaulted on Sept. 28, ended up with bruises on her arm when she was pulled out of the way by a student who was trying to fight another student. Mr. Brown, J.Hop’s principal, and Mr. Thurman, a campus monitor, arrived within five minutes and the student was arrested. “You do the crime, you will have to answer for your actions,” Mrs. Lynch said. In Mr. Shumilak’s EBD (emotional behavior disorder) class, a student was vandalizing school materials on Oct. 19. Mr. Shumilak said he put the materials away twice, and then the student shoved him. Mr. Thurman arrived within three minutes and handled the situation. The student was arrested. “It was a very brief interruption,” said Mr. Shumilak. “As soon as the student was gone, we picked right up where we left off.” Mr. Williams, one of the ABC (J.Hop’s in-school suspension) teachers, was assaulted on Oct. 13 as he tried to calm down an angry student. Then student threw a cement brick toward Mr. Williams, and hit him. He was left with a bruise and a cut on his left leg. Afterward, Mr. Williams said he was not mad. He

Page 3

Special Report felt sorry for the student who threw the concrete because he feels the student needs help controlling his emotions. He said the incident made him concerned for the other students’ safety. “…Students are my first priority,” he said. The fourth teacher, who requested to remain anonymous, was assaulted while trying to intervene during a fight in the cafeteria on Oct. 18. The student pushed the teacher and a campus monitor responded. The student was arrested. “I’m saddened more than ever that (the incident) occurred, and that teachers have to be subjected to this,” said the teacher who was assaulted. “This is not what we’re here for. We’re here to educate, nothing else.”

Middle school violence

The issue of violence surfaced two years ago at J.Hop when frustrated teachers sent a letter to the school board about discipline concerns. During the 2009-10 school year, more than 100 students were arrested at J.Hop. Last year the school showed improvement with a total of 57 arrests and the school grade rose from a C to a B. Mr. Brown said this year he thinks the school is on track to having fewer arrests than we had in 2010-11. However, as of Nov. 1 the school had the highest number of middle school teacher assaults, according to Pinellas County School records. Baypoint has logged three teacher assaults, Azalea two and Dunedin and Morgan Fitzgerald each logged one. According to Mr. Brown, J.Hop has had more teacher assaults because teachers were trying to prevent violence. “Most of the incidents that have happened were when they were trying to de-escalate,” he said. “Our teachers are really trying to work hard to provide a safe environment.” When it comes to Pinellas County middle school arrest numbers, Azalea Middle School has the highest number of arrests, 17, according to district records. John Hopkins Middle School and Baypoint Middle School have the second highest arrest numbers at 12 each. These

Graph by KAYLEE GROMOLL/J.HOP TIMES

are the numbers as of Nov. 1. Region Superintendent Rita Vasquez identified a reason she thinks fights happen. “What we are seeing is that more and more now, fights are happening in schools because kids have issues that happen in their neighborhoods where they live, and they are coming to school still mad at each other or upset about those issues,” she said.

Feeling safe at J.Hop

Despite the violence, teachers at J.Hop report feeling safe, including all of the teachers who were assaulted. Out of 46 teachers surveyed, 89 percent said they feel safe at school. “I’m not afraid of teaching,” said Mr. Williams. Most students say they feel safe, too. Out of 216 students surveyed, 61 percent said they feel safe on campus. “I feel 100 percent safe,” said seventh-grader Reynautica Williams. Mrs. Gist, a math teacher at J.Hop, said she feels safe “for the most part.” She said, “I just think there are a handful of students that need assistance. All of the attention is focused on those students, instead of the majority.” According to Mr. Brown, it’s not always easy to know why students fight at school. “Do I believe that students know

that they shouldn’t put their hands on teachers or anyone else on campus? Yes, I do. Why it happens? I don’t know. I wish we could put our finger on it.”

Preventing violence

Mr. Brown said that in accordance with school board policy, the school only arrests students for fighting when they don’t willingly stop fighting. “We have a lot of kids who come to us and say, ‘I don’t want to fight, but I will,’” Mr. Brown said. Mr. Brown said the school has become stricter when it comes to violence on campus. Administrators talk daily over the intercom about following Trojan Pride expectations, which include respecting yourself and others. Another strategy the school uses to help students on campus is RTI, which stands for Response to Intervention. “For some students an intervention could be a special class they’re put in,” said Mr. Vasallo, the school’s magnet coordinator and assistant principal. “I think the key is to handle it correctly, and put students where they need to be… I don’t know what more an adult can do.” But the school can’t prevent everything, Mr. Brown said. “I think some of our kids come from some very hardened backgrounds where unfortunately they’ve learned to believe that violence is the answer, even though it’s not.” Mr. Brown wishes people would focus on the strong students, like those involved in our magnet programs and those who are doing what they are suppose to do. “One percent, that’s how many students got arrested. No one ever talks about the other 99%,” he said. “Unfortunately, that’s the way it is.” The entire newsroom 3 class and newsroom 2 reporter T’Shyra Johnson contributed to this report.

Graphs by KAYLEE GROMOLL/J.HOP TIMES

Editor’s note: The J.Hop Times counted the arrests in which both the offense and arrest happened on campus.


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November 16, 2011

Around J.Hop

Photo by SIERRA TAYLOR/ J.HOP TIMES

On Oct. 13, sixth-graders Dominique Harris, left, and Jimmy Richardson work on a worksheet in Ms. Dillard’s class. “By getting good grades we can be an ‘A’ school,” said Dominique Harris.

John Hopkins Middle School, a great place to ‘B’ By SARAH POHL

Over the summer, the Florida Department of Education announced John Hopkins Middle School received a B for the 2010-2011 school year, having improved from a C the year before. The school grade is based on students’ FCAT scores. “It’s a good thing, it’s definitely a good thing,” said J.Hop Principal Mr. Brown. “It’s something for our kids to brag about, and all year we’ll brag about it.” Mr. Brown thinks that the school improved because students with lower scores worked hard to improve. “The major piece was our level one and level two students. They blew the learning gains out of the water,” he said. “That’s because of their effort and the effort of the instructional staff. It was a collaborative effort. Everybody did their part.” Seventh-grader Kennedy Hower thinks the school grade went up because

students were given more opportunities. “Kids have gotten smarter over the past years because they learned more educational things in school,” Kennedy said. Students feel that the improvement will give our school a better image. Eighth-grader Keyonna Peterson said, “I feel great because people look at our school better.” Like the kids, the teachers are pleased with the improvement. Mrs. Gist, sixth-grade advanced math teacher, said, “I thought it was awesome; I was ecstatic.” Other teachers think that we can improve to an A next year. “We can become an A school. We can become an A school if the kids would come to school and get their behavior in check…I really think we can because it’s a good school,” said Reach teacher Ms. Dillard. The school will be rewarded with some extra money for being a B school. Staff at J.Hop will receive a bonus and some of the money will also be set aside for technology, Mr. Brown said. “It’s good to have our efforts put back into the school,” Mr. Brown said. “It’s a great accomplishment, I think, when you consider what our school’s gone through in the last years.” J.Hop Times staff Jazmon Arnold, Alexus Barnhart, Dialvin Brown, De’Qonton Davis, Latavia Nelson and Aaron Davis contributed to this report.

Photo by SIERRA TAYLOR/ J.HOP TIMES

On Oct. 13, sixth-grader Isaiah Davis sits at his desk in Ms. Dillard’s class in Building 5. “Turning in homework, doing your classwork and passing the FCAT we can become an ‘A’ school,” he said.

Sixth-graders get binders from AVID

By DAE’SHA CAMPBELL

All sixth-graders at J.Hop now have bi­g, blue three-ring binders to help keep them organized. As part of the AVID program, math teachers distributed the binders on Oct. 6. Implementing binders for the entire sixth-grade population will allow for students to start working on organization skills,” said Ms. Williams, sixthgrade math teacher. “It will also eliminate the use of multiple folders for each individual class, thus allowing students to have one binder for all subjects.” Students like that it helps them stay organized, Photo by RASHAD WILLIAMS/J.HOP TIMES but some complain about having to take it everySixth-grade student Nakaiah Brinson writes on top of her binder where they go. in Mrs. Gist’s third period class. “The binders are a good way to “I don’t think you should have to carry it around keep the work in order,” said Nakaiah. “Binders are a good tool if you don’t want to,” said sixth-grader Selena for all classes.” Ramires. The size of the binder is a problem for some. “It’s so huge it doesn’t fit in my backpack with all

the other stuff I have to carry,” said sixth-grader Rachel Potter. She does think it helps, but she worries about keeping everything in one place. “It can help you but it’s a big responsibility,” said Rachel. “If you have something important in it and you lose it that would be really bad.” Students were supposed to have them the first day of school, but the order from the warehouse came in late, according to Ms. Williams.

Photo by RASHAD WILLIAMS/J.HOP TIMES

Sixth-grade student Jerry Hedgeman works in his binder during third period in Mrs. Gist’s math class.


Page 5

J.Hop Times

Changing Times

Photo by DOMINIC ROSADO/J.HOP TIMES

On Aug. 29, seventh-graders William Benjamin, left, and Zachary Oliver wait in the seventh grade office for a schedule change. “It was overflowing,” said Ms. Webber, the seventh-grade guidance counselor. “There were a lot of students in the beginning of the week.”

New policies cause confusion By ALEXUS BARNHART

Kids running around campus, not knowing where to go. The media center packed with students with their faces in their hands. Long lines snaking through the cafeteria serving late lunches. The new flip days, schedule snafus and palm scanning caused a lot of confusion the first week of school. Schedule issues caused some students to miss classes the first week of school. The problems ranged from not being placed in the right classes to not having any classes at all. As dozens of students flowed into the media center to get their schedules fixed, the wait grew longer and it caused frustration. Seventh-grader De’aja Herring had to wait three class periods to get her schedule fixed. “I was mad and frustrated because it was taking too long,” she said. Eventually, the crowds thinned enough to allow for students to go to the grade level offices for schedule changes. Ms. Wilson, the seventh grade assistant principal in charge of the master schedule, said some students were without schedules because a lot of sixth-graders joined the magnet programs late in the summer. In September there was a second round with approximately 200 students receiving new schedules. This was because there were many classes with overflows. The maximum students allowed per

academic class is 22, for high school credit classes is 25 and for elective classes is 35. It was also because students were in the wrong reading classes, Ms. Wilson said. She said her biggest difficulty was “the incoming sixth graders and putting them in the appropriate reading classes.” She said she should have referred to the reading sorter during the summer. The reading sorter is given to her by the district, and it tells what reading classes each sixth-grade student needs to be placed in. “Sixth-grade students are required to take reading. However if students score a three or higher on the FCAT they only have to take it for a semester,” Ms. Wilson said. It took some time for the teachers and students to get used to reading class schedule changes. “It has taken quite a few weeks to adjust, but the students like reading. They’re coming to class and they’re enjoying it,” said Ms. Jackson, sixth-grade reading teacher. New palm scanners in the cafeteria also brought problems, like delayed lunch which caused students to be late to class. Students who didn’t get their palm scanned at Trojan Pride Day the Saturday before school started had to get them scanned them at lunch the first week. After the third day of lunch lasting an extended period of time, everyone’s hands were scanned and lunch was back on track. Principal Mr. Brown said the district decided J.Hop should have palm scanners in the cafeteria. “Originally they said once properly implemented, it would be faster, but I don’t know if they are faster,” he said.

Another new procedure this year is flip days-days when students and staff carry out the schedule in reverse order. J.Hop has flip days every Tuesday and Thursday. “We have flip days because it gives the student and instructor a chance to see each other at different times of the day,” said Mr. Brown. A lot of students didn’t know where to go in the first few weeks of school because they had to remember their schedules backwards in order to know where to go on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Some students even went to the wrong classes. Sixth-grader Szeja Thomas said, “I don’t like flip days because they are confusing.” But some see a positive to the new schedule. Herschel Battle, eighth grade, likes going to seventh period first on Tuesdays and Thursdays. However he isn’t sure that it’s helping the school. “It’s lame because they want us to be energized, but it don’t make any sense because we’re still going to be sleepy,” he said. Some staff members changed their minds about flip days as the year went on. “No, (I don’t like flip days) not anymore, At first I thought it made a difference; seventh period was calmer. But my seventh period needs a little more help with calming down, “said Ms. Packard, eighth-grade science and health teacher. But Ms. White, an ESE teacher, thinks it’s helping. “The way it helps is it allows students to have a change from the same routine every day,” she said. Mr. Brown says things are looking up. “I think it’s gotten a lot better,” he said of the difficulties J.Hop had at the beginning of the year. J.Hop Times staffers Sarah Pohl, Tyler Holt and De’Qonton Davis contributed to this story. (Right) Palm scanners are the new addition to the cafeteria this year. They were installed to help students pay faster. Photo by LATAVIA NELSON/J.HOP TIMES

Photo by DE’QONTON DAVIS/J.HOP TIMES

Students are confused in the hallway outside Building 5 on Aug. 29 in the afternoon as they go to their first period class at John Hopkins Middle School. This year is the first year that J.Hop has had flip days, where the day starts with seventh period and ends with first.


November 16, 2011

Page 6

Around J.Hop they are, Mr. Vasallo and Mr. Latimore take care of it. “Each bus carries like 40 students, so we give about 120 passes a day for three bus tardies,” said Mr. Latimore. Some students don’t care about being late because they get passes. “My bus has been late three times. I get late passes, so it doesn’t really matter if I’m late,” said eighth-grader Samantha Som. But others are bothered by the late buses. “I don’t enjoy being on a late bus because I’m missing class time,” said Photo by T’SHYRA JOHNSON/J.HOP TIMES seventh-grader Brittani Marshall. Late buses aren’t the only reason Casey Williams, left, and Malik Bentley, right, walk toward the gym after the students are late to class. tardy bell on Sept. 27. Students who are late to class face the possibility of suspension. “If you’re skipping I’m calling the man, as in Mr.Thurman,” said “Usually students are in the ‘restCoach Starlling. room,’ but they are really late because they’re playing with their friends in the hallways. Also when they’re late I have to repeat instructions and they disrupt the class and they lose their class time,” said eighth-grade history teacher Mrs. Brace. By DIANA ROBLES and JASMINE JONES Eighth-grader Shala Joslin said she was late to Are you annoyed when your bus is late? Or do class because “I’m popular. I got a lot of friends. you like missing your first or seventh period? At They be coming like ‘Shala, Shala.’” least one bus is late to school every day and when Students did not say the amount of time between

Tic tok: buses, friends lead to tardies

School water fountains By NOAH MINOR

Around John Hopkins Middle School there are about four fountains in each building, and one outside. Eight are tall and 18 are short. Some are warm; some are cold. Mr. Morris, the head plant operator, explained that about half of the water fountains throughout the school are warm and cold because of the water coolers. When Mr. Morris wants to test to see if the water fountains are in working order he makes sure the power source is good, sees if the supply line is full and presses the handle to see if the water comes out. If the water is warm, he checks to see if the plug from the coolers to the water fountain is

unplugged or disconnected. Four of the major components of a water fountain are the handle, mouthpiece, water supply lines and the compressor. On a scale of 1-10, 10 meaning a lot, Mr. Morris said “about a 3,” for complaints about the water fountains throughout the school. Seventh-grader Dewhite Johnson said that to him the water tastes warm. The water fountain he goes to the most is “the one closest to me,” he said. Eighth-graders James Spradley and Cedric Beaton go to water fountains in Building 5 the most. When they get a drink of water from the water fountains in Building 5 they both said they feel “refreshed.” They both said they go to the water fountain in Building 5 because it tastes cold, and in general water fountains throughout the school taste warm or normal, they said.

classes prevented them from being on time. In fact, two reporters from the J.Hop Times proved that four minutes is enough time to get from one class to another. They went to Building 6 and walked all the way to Building 7 and it took them about three minutes and 30 seconds. Then they did the same thing, but they started from Building 7 to Building 6. They still completed the walk in approximately three minutes and 30 seconds. They did walk at a normal pace, stopping to say hi to a friend, going to their lockers, going through a big crowd of people and even walking down Photo by T’SHYRA JOHNSON/J.HOP TIMES and up the From left to right, Casey Williams, Tabitha stairs. Daniels, John Chielli and Darion Black play

Photo by DOMINIC ROSADO/J.HOP TIMES

(Above) The water fountain outside Building 4 is a favorite among students. It’s water is cold, and always available for those in Gym.

Photo By DEONTREY JAMES/J.HOP TIMES

(Right) The water fountain downstairs Building 5 near the boy’s bathroom is colder than the water fountain downstairs Building 5 by the girl’s bathroom. All the water fountains in the school are not connected, meaning some are colder than others.

in the hallway after the fourth period bell rang for students to get to class on Sept. 27. Students face consequences of lunch detail, ABC or out of school suspension, depending on how many times they get caught.


J.Hop Times

A Closer Look

Page 7

Photo by KENYA HOWARD/J.HOP TIMES

Photo by ANTWOINE REID/J.HOP TIMES

(Top left) Jim, “the cook,” smiles as he prepares lunch during second period on Oct. 13 in the cafeteria. “I worked in bakeries most of my life and I made a decision to work for the school system to give back to the community,” he said. (Top right) Ms. Green makes peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for lunch every day first and second period to prepare for lunch. (Right) During first period, Sylvia prepares to make the calzones for a la cart. She makes the calzones by hand every day. “No, it’s not hard. I make them in no time, the kids love them.” (Leftt) Fresh sandwiches are made every day by the cafeteria staff starting at 7:30a.m. until lunch time. Photo by KENYA HOWARD/J.HOP TIMES

Cafeteria investigation

By MIA BARTOLOMEI-NEGRON and GENESIS FELICIANO

Mystery meat, fake chicken and nasty fish. When it comes to cafeteria food, many students agree with sixth-grader Anna Paden, who said, “It looks really mysterious like I have no clue what it is.” But when the J.Hop Times went behind the scenes of the cafeteria, we found out they have foods that you can find in your own kitchen, like Dole fruits and Land-O-Lakes cheese. “It’s straight up good stuff,” said cafeteria manager Ms. Dew of the 1,000 meals they prepare each day. Some of the most popular items are made from scratch by cafeteria staff who come in at 7:30 a.m. to start cooking. The calzones are handmade everyday by one café worker. She makes the dough and then adds cheese and pepperoni to the inside. Most of the food in the cafeteria is healthy, said Ms. Dew Some of the low-fat and low-calorie items the cafeteria serves are low-fat milk and cheese, salads, veggie chili, farmer’s salad, fish sticks and max sticks (bread with cheese and dipping sauce). In the a la carte line, there are healthy options, too. “The chips are all baked, and there are only juices, not soda,” said Ms. Dew. However, students don’t always choose the low-calorie or low-fat options. Some of the most popular foods like the pizzas have 265 calories and 9 grams of

Photo by KENYA HOWARD/J.HOP TIMES

fat. Chicken patties are another popular item that the students like. They contain 392 calories and 17 grams of fat. Ms. Dew said that in order to try to get kids to eat healthy, the lunch line menu includes the choice of an entrée, bread, milk and as many different fruits and veggies as you would like. But a lot of times, students only eat from the a la carte line. Sixth-grader Abigail Altieri thinks that the calzones, pizzas and brownies make the a la carte line better than a regular lunch line because “in a lunch line, their food is older, drier and the same meals, but at the a la carte, it’s the same delicious meals that never get old.” “The most fattening things in the a la carte line are the brownies and cookies,” Ms. Dew said. Every day sixth-grader Alana Meeks eats a brownie, cookie and calzone from the a la carte line. She doesn’t think it’s very nutritious for her, but at the same time she doesn’t care. “I don’t like regular lunches; they’re just plain nasty.” Seventh-grader Joshua Pinson also eats a la carte daily. He eats a calzone and drinks blue Gatorade. He thinks it isn’t healthy for him but said, “as long as I could fit through the door, I’m good.” According to Nurse Henderson, middle schoolers should eat at least two fruits and vegetables for lunch daily. But when kids only eat at the a la carte, they most often get a cookie or a brownie. “Stay away from all that junk food. It’s not healthy for you,” said Nurse Henderson. Other students like eighth-grader Aaliyah Branch think that the variety of the cafeteria food is good. She said, “They provide juice, milk, salads, pretty healthy stuff.”


Page 8

Featu

Your teachers wanted to By MYESHA HALL and ROMESHA SMITH

Students may think that their teachers always wanted to be teachers. But that’s not always the case. Take Ms. Kolhoff, Mr. Williams and Ms. Marshall for example…

Photo by DOMINIC ROSADO/J.HOP TIMES

A student walks through the courtyard with sagging pants. Sagging is when your pants are below your waist and your under garments are exposed. “Sagging is mentality from prison,” said Mr. Green. “How you dress reflects how you behave. You don’t see people out on the street fighting in a shirt and tie.” they get out of the classroom that students break the rules, he said. “A lot of times kids do just enough in class, like they’ll have a jacket on, but out of class they’ll take it off,” Mr. Brown said. By SARAH POHL and Teachers say that they MYAH ALVAREZ haven’t seen any major probStudents at John Hopkins lems. “They’re pretty strict. break the dress code by wearUsually by the time they get ing sagging pants, off-theto me, they’re (problems) shoulder shirts, short shorts usually weeded out,” said and hats. Out of a small sample sixth-grade science teacher of 70 students that the J.Hop Mr. King. Sixth-grade reading Times checked, a little more teacher Mrs. Jackson agrees. than eight percent were break“(They’re) doing a pretty good ing the dress code after the first job of enforcing the dress period checks. code,” she said. Dress codes are enforced by Some students disagree. the teachers and administraThey say the enforcement is tors at J.Hop. The first period low. “I guess some of them will teachers are supposed to check get you in trouble and some of over their students to see if them won’t,” said sixth-grader, there’s a dress code problem. Ayanna Kinsler. If there is a violation, then the Other students think the students are sent to the office teachers are doing a fine job of to get a change of clothes or to implementing the dress code. “I ABC for the day. “We have a think they’re pretty good about system… we just try to keep it,” said seventh-grader Jack it simple. If we have to say Dunham. something, we do,” said J.Hop Teachers at J.Hop do not Principal Mr. Brown. have a set dress code, acHowever, there are still cording to Mr. Vasallo. Some dress code violations. Just by students believe that it is unfair looking down the halls, you to make students follow a dress see kids with hats and sagging code when teachers don’t. pants. “Aren’t they supposed to be The cause may be that the setting an example for us?” staff does not always carry out said Ayanna. the dress code checks, accordJ.Hop has the same dress ing to Magnet Coordinator Mr. policy as all other Pinellas Vasallo. “You can definitely say County public schools, acthat, because there are kids that cording to the Student Code I catch fifth period and no one of Conduct. Some students has said anything to them yet,” say that we should be thankMr. Vasallo said. ful for how much wiggle room Mr. Brown said the staff J.Hop’s dress code allows. isn’t always consistent and “I’m pretty comfortable doesn’t always follow through with the dress code,” said Jack. with consequences, so he tries “Last year I went to a fundato regularly remind them to mental school where the rules monitor dress code. “We often were a lot stricter, so I think the go on the announcements and students here should be grateful tell teachers to do a dress code with the dress code.” check,” he said. J.Hop Times reporter Tyler Holt But sometimes it’s when contributed to this story.

Students escape dress code consequences

On Se picture

Photo by ALEX PEREKHODKO/J.HOP TIMES

Ms. McIntosh pours liquid into a flask in her eighth-grade science classroom. Ms. McIntosh wanted to be a medical researcher when she grew up. Her dream was to cure a disease called Lupus.

Ms. McIntosh

Actua What Why watc joyed Why what Does angle

Actual Job: Teaching science What she wanted to be: Medical researcher Why she wanted to be a medical researcher: “I wanted to cure Lupus because a lot of AfricanAmericans were affected by it.” Why she chose to be a teacher: “I got the opportunity to teach a high school class in college, and I knew that was what I wanted to do.” Does she use any skills a medical researcher would use? “As a teacher I use inquiry skills, as well as data, to make decisions as it relates to the needs of my students.”

Photo by ALE

Mr. Gist

Actual job: Teaching math What he wanted to be: A weatherman Why he wanted to be a weather man: “I thought it would be interesting to study.” Why he chose to be a teacher: “Mrs. Gist talked me into teaching.” Does he use any skills a weatherman would use? “Yes, since you need Photo by ALEX PEREKHODKO/J.HOP TIMES to use percentages and On Sept. 30, Mr.Gist stands in front of the green screen pretending to be a measure increases and weatherman at the TV Studio at J.Hop. Mr. Gist said he always wanted to be a decreases.” weatherman. “I just thought it would be something interesting to do.”

On Sept. 29 her class in

On Oc she wa was M


Page 9

uring...

o be what?! Photo by WILLIAM KERN/ J.HOP TIMES

New guard rails sit outside J.Hop on Sept. 27. The rails were put in at the beginning of school to prevent parents from dropping off kids in the grass in front of the school.

New rails make walking to school safer

Photo by ALEX PEREKHODKO/J.HOP TIMES

By IMANI LASSITER and ELIZABETH WRIGHT

ept. 30, Mr.Williams draws a picture on the smart board in his classroom. The e he drew was Sebastian, the mascot for his college, the University of Miami.

Mr. Williams

al job: Teaching Math t he wanted to be: A cartoonist he wanted to be a cartoonist: “When I was younger I would ch cartoons. Then I started drawing. When I got good at it I end doing it and it became easy.” he chose being a teacher: “I enjoyed being with kids and it’s t makes me happy.” s he use any skills a cartoonist would use? “I use geometry and es.”

Ms. Marshall

Actual job: Teaching Language Arts What she wanted to be: A hair stylist Why she wanted to be a hair stylist: “I have always enjoyed doing hair, my own and friends. I also have hairstylists in my family; there are about six people in my family that do hair. Why she chose to be a teacher: “It (styling hair) really wasn’t my dream EX PEREKHODKO/J.HOP TIMES job. I thought teaching first and I could do hair on the side.”

9, Ms.Marshall holds wigs in Building 5.

Photo by KENYA HOWARD/J.HOP TIMES

On Oct. 25, Mr. King stands wrapped in wires. He said when he was younger he always wanted to be an electrical engineer. He thinks the best part about the job would be “getting to travel out of the country.”

Mr. King

Actual Job: Teaching science What he wanted to be: An electrical engineer Why he wanted to be an electrical engineer: “It was just a thought and something that interested me at the time.” Why he chose to be a teacher: “I chose to be a teacher because it gave me a chance to inspire young minds.” Does he use any skills an engineer would use? “We use some of the process of scientific inquiry.”

Ms. Kolhoff

Photo by ALEX PEREKHODKO/J.HOP TIMES

ct. 20, Ms.Kolhoff sits at her desk like she would if as the ambassador for Spain. Being the ambassador Ms. Kolhoff’s childhood dream.

Actual job: Teaching Spanish What she wanted to be: An ambassador Why she wanted to be an ambassador: “In sixth grade we started learning about the United Nations and that’s when I learned that an ambassador was someone who represents one country but is from another country.” Why she chose being a teacher: “The reason I chose to be a teacher is because it’s where I felt I belonged and I loved being a teacher when I lived in Chile.” Does she use any skills an ambassador would use? “I do use some of the skills in a way because I represent my students to the school board and county.”

Walkers are now a little a safer when they come to school. At the beginning of the year, school administrators decided to put railings in front of the school on the pavement directing cars toward the car circle and orange cones blocking the front parking lot. Last year parents who didn’t want to drive around to the back of the school where the car circle is would pull into the grass where students walk. “With the railings there, they can’t do this anymore,” magnet coordinator Mr. Vasallo said. Now students can feel safe and not worry about getting hit by cars. “They are a good safety feature; they give a divide between the cars and the students when they walk,” said Mrs. Williams, sixth grade teacher. “When I’m walking some parents be speeding and with the railings I won’t get hit,” seventh-grader Autumn Deveo said. Parents say it helps them too. Mrs. Knaust, a parent at the car circle, said, “I feel more comfortable, because it makes it easier to know where I’m going.” Mr. Green, a campus monitor who regularly monitors the car circle area, said the new railings make the school a safer place.“When there is a lot of traffic students won’t have to worry about getting hit.”


Page 10

November 16, 2011

Around J.Hop

Teachers teaching new subjects By SAM HERMAN

A smaller student population and new rules about class size limits mean many former elective teachers are teaching new subjects. State law mandates that only 22 students be in each academic class. Because of that, and a decrease in the number of students at J.Hop, the school was going to lose some elective teachers. In order to stay, many were assigned new subjects. In fact, six different teachers were assigned to new subject areas this year. “We kept those teachers on campus. They wanted to stay on campus, so we had them certified in other areas so they could step up,” Mr. Brown said. “We were very fortunate to keep them.” Mr. Allen is teaching two periods of intensive math in addition to steel drums this year. This is his first time teaching an academic class in school. He said that he likes that intensive math is “different… and it comes with a prewritten curriculum.” He dislikes that “there are no out-of-school events like there are with music.” He is certified in middle grades integrated curriculum, which means that he is certified in teaching any subject in grades 6–8. Ms. Payne is now the only one teaching computers this year, because former computer teacher Mrs. Lynch now teaches sixth-grade geography. The school needed a new geography teacher, so Mrs. Lynch stepped up to the plate. She said the class is going well, but she said it is “not in my comfort zone.” It allows her to “see a student from a new perspective.” With an elective, they want to take the class, but with an academic class, students are required to take that subject. Sixth-graders come to J.Hop from many different schools, where

sometimes social studies is taught at a different pace. “It’s difficult trying to get everyone on the same level,” Ms. Lynch said. Like Mr. Allen, she is certified in middle grades integrated curriculum. Mr. Sakiotis, a technology and, as of last year, TV production teacher, added a third subject to his schedule this year. Like Mr. Allen, he is teaching intensive math. A number of intensive math teachers left the school or were assigned differently this year, so Mr. Sakiotis was assigned to teach the subject to sixth-graders at J.Hop. He says that he likes to teach anything “involving math, science or technology.” He Photo by SIERRA TAYLOR/J.HOP TIMES looks at teaching this third subject as a Along with teaching steel drums, Mr. Allen now teaches intensive math. He does new challenge that helps him become a this to fill in for the lack of teachers at the school this year. better teacher. J.Hop Times reporter Tyrick Baker contributed to this story.

Photo by KRYSTA MUHLENDYCk On top of teaching exploring technologies and TV production, Mr. Sakiotis is now teaching intensive math in room 2-101. “It’s a challenge, and challenges are good because they keep you thinking,” said Mr. Sakiotis. “Whenever you’re assigned a new subject it makes you reflect and look at your teaching practice.”

Photo by DAKOTAH HAAS/J.HOP TIMES Mrs. Lynch teaches in her new geography classroom in Building 7. Last year Mrs. Lynch taught computers, but this year she teaches geography. “I enjoy teaching the kids about the different cultures around the world,” said Mrs. Lynch.

Magnet Focus Spotlight

Seventh-grader Gabbie Haight, front, and eighthgrader Gianna Tsesmelis, read aloud in their drama I class while practicing for an upcoming event. Students in Ms. Hosey’s drama class have the opportunity throughout the year to showcase their talents on stage.

Students practice drawing flowers by measuring paper with a T square in Ms. Smith’s art class on Oct. 12. “We’re learning how to measure with a T square,” said Ms. Smith, the art focus teacher. Measuring with a T square helps create borders for the students to follow.

Students in the dance 1 Focus class stretch during warm up. “Lengthen those legs, and point those toes!” said Mrs. Berry, the dance focus teacher. Students in dance practice for two periods a day. Photos by ALEXANDRA MORELLS/J.HOP TIMES


Page 11

J.Hop Times

Around J.Hop

Photo by KEVON BUXTON/J.HOP TIMES

Mr. Blowers watches his students Toma Karaleviciute,left, and Jazmayn Gale as they play an Improv game in his drama 3 class on Sept. 27. “Improv is fun for me to observe because I never know what my students are going to say,” said Mr. Blowers.

The new drama teacher By DE’JANIQUE BURDEN and LAZARRE LESTER

There is a new drama teacher at J.Hop. His name is Mr. Blowers. He has been acting since he was 13 years old. He has performed in many plays including Every

Man, No Exit, Clue the Musical, The Sound of Music and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. He used to work as an adjunct theatre teacher at Dutchess Community College in New York. “I came to Florida because of the weather, and I grew up here and wanted to be near my family,” he said. He also wanted to work with middle school age students. So far, Mr. Blowers is impressed with J.Hop’s drama students. “We can do a lot of things this year because of the talent in the program,” he said. He said even though the students at the community college were older, the students here get more opportunities to be on stage.“There are more productions here and longer days,” he said. Mr. Blowers said the most challenging part of working at J.Hop is “the hectic schedule and its very full calendar.” When asked what he likes to do in his spare time, he said, “What spare time?” The easiest part of working at J.Hop has been getting to know the students, he said. Ms. Hosey, who has been teaching drama at John Hopkins for 12 years, likes Mr. Blowers’ personality, and she said they work well together. “He’s a great partner,” she said.

Raytoven is Dead By TYLER HOLT

Raytoven, Ms. Trapani’s guinea pig, hadn’t been at school for a week before he died. Raytoven was named for Ray Charles, a singer who is blind, and Beethoven, a pianist who was deaf. The guinea pig had that name because Raytoven himself was blind and deaf. “Very sad,” said Ms. Trapani about the death of her beloved guinea pig. Raytoven died from a respiratory infection. Students were really getting to know Raytoven before he passed, but now it’s too late to get to know him anymore. After Raytoven went home sick, seventh-grader Cynthia Vanleeck wrote him a note that said, “Get better so I can hold you.” Two days after Cynthia gave the note to Ms. Trapani, she found out Raytoven had died. When seventh-grader Brandalynn Collins found about Raytoven’s death she said she was “sad because he’s a guinea pig and a cute guinea pig.” One student from Ms. Trapani’s class asked to have a memorial service for him. But Ms. Trapani said no because she had already buried him in her back yard and she just wanted to move on. Ms. Trapani had noticed he was sick, so she took him home and he died there. Ms. Trapani got Raytoven when her daughter, a vet at a Pet Smart, asked her if she wanted Raytoven. Her daughter gets all pets that have special needs.

Getting to know you By LATAVIA NELSON and SIERRA LEVY

The J.Hop Times caught up with some of the new teachers to find out more about them. To view all of the interviews, visit: http://jhoptimes.pcsb.org.

Photo by LATAVIA NELSON/J.HOP TIMES

Mr. Travis Mesman: Dance

JHT: Why did you become a teacher? Mr. Mesman: “Because I had really great teachers over the years. Those teachers have inspired me to pass on the precious knowledge to the future dancers of this world.” JHT: What do you like to do in your spare time? Mr. Mesman: “Practice dancing and the other is listen to music, all kinds of music. I hang out with people who like to do circus arts.” JHT: What is the most challenging thing about being a teacher at John Hopkins? Mr. Mesman: “Being new is challenging. I have a lot to learn about teaching this age group.” JHT: What is your favorite thing about being a teacher? Mr. Mesman: “Seeing the product of my work and knowing that lessons have been learned.”

Photo by DAHLIA BOONE/J.HOP TIMES

Ms. Forte: Math

Photo by SIERRA LEVY/J.HOP TIMES

In August, students in Ms. Trapani’s first period class pet the class guinea pig Raytovan. Ms. Trapani brought Raytoven in as the class pet at the beginning of the year. Raytoven died.

JHT: Why did you become a teacher? Ms. Forte: “I had a social studies teacher that was the best and after that I just wanted to be a teacher.” JHT: What do you like to do with your spare time? Ms. Forte: “I like to do food. That’s what I like to do -- just cook!” JHT: What is the most challenging thing about being a teacher? Ms. Forte: “Dealing with the different personalities.” JHT: What is your favorite thing about being a teacher? Ms. Forte: “Seeing my students become productive workers.”


Page 12

November 16, 2011

Style and Entertainment The Beat: music facts and top hits

CHUCK TAYLORS

By BRANDON GARCIA

Did you know....

Lil Wayne does not like that name? Just call him Weezy F Baby or Weezy for short. (ask.com) Lil Boosie has diabetes and has to give himself insulin injections in the stomach three times per day? (Wikipedia.org)

WakaFlocka was taken under Gucci Mane’s wing, and was added to his Brick Squad collective, which also includes OJ Da Juiceman, Frenchie and Wooh da Kid? (Wikipedia.org)

As of Oct. 28, according to Billboard.com, the top hits were:

Rap Top Five 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Photos by ANTWOINE REID Seventh-grader Marquel Kittles stands in the eighthgrade hallway and shows off his one high-top and one low-top converses. Chuck Taylors are a new style at J.Hop this year. “I did high-top and low-top because no one did that before,” said Marquel. Some students at J.Hop do mix- match with different colors. Seventh-grader Marquis Brinson shows off his mix-match Converses during second period on Sept. 27. “Man my swag is so sick,” said Marquis. Eighth-grader Jordan Shorter shows off a different type of Chuck Taylors called Converse. “You don’t see people with them, and those look better than Chuck Taylors,” Jordan said.

Headlines Drake She Will Lil Wayne featuring Drake Ni**as in Paris Jay Z & Kanye West Marvin & Chardonnay Big Sean featuring Kanye West & Roscoe Dash I’m on One DJ Khaled featuring Drake, Rick Ross & Lil Wayne

Rock Top Five 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

Someone Like You Adele We Found Love Rihanna featuring Calvin Harris Moves Like Jagger Maroon 5 featuring Christina Aguilera Sexy And I Know It LMFAO Pumped Up Kicks Foster The People

Hair matters

Kelly Hannigan 6th grade Q: What do you like about your hair? A: It’s my life, I love my hair and it is the main thing I care about. Q: What do your friends like about your hair? A: I guess it’s because it’s silky.

Joji Watters 8th grade Q: What do you like about your hair? A: I like the way it looks and its fun to flip around. Q: What do your friends like about your hair? A: It’s amazing and fun to play with.

Natyasha Howard 6th grade Q: What do you like about your hair? A: Because it’s soft and smooth. Q: What do your friends like about your hair? A: It’s long.

Ben Chiudina 7th grade Q: What do you like about your hair? A: Girls like it. Q: What do your friends like about your hair? A: It’s attractive.

Bella Robison 7th grade Q: What do you like about your hair? A: It’s awesome. Q: What do your friends like about your hair? A: It shows a lot about me.

Requon Williams 8th grade Q: What do you like about your hair? A: Its short, and classic. But his friends don’t like his hair!

Photos and reporting by DEVON WARE and JAY GANNI/J.HOP TIMES


Page 13

J.Hop Times

Undercover teachers

Teacher Spotlight

By MYAH ALVAREZ

Teachers don’t just sit at home and grade papers. They have hobbies and second jobs. One teacher used to be a photographer for the St. Petersburg Times. Another used to be in a band. One teaches yoga, one has her own hair product and another sells peanuts at Tropicana Field.

Ohmmm Coach Lundin teaches yoga at Lifestyle Fitness three times a week. She said she does it because “I have tight muscles.” It helps her stretch. In yoga class they practice balance, strength and meditation. She said she sometimes does it to let go of stress. She also runs in marathons. She completed one on Oct. 9 in Chicago. She came in 33,000 out of 48,000 runners.

Photo by SIERRA LEVY/J.HOP TIMES

(Left) On Sept.27 Coach Lundin stands outside the gym doing tree pose during first period. She does yoga after school.

Rock on! Mr. Thurman, one of our campus monitors, plays the keyboard and was once in a band. He played gospel music in a band called “Heaven’s Gate.” He performed in local community churches. He joined the band in 1990 and stopped in 2000, but he still does shows every now and then. Mr. Thurman said that in third grade he found a passion for music. He also said that music has helped him at J.Hop. “It keeps me peaceful, and it keeps me in a good mood with the kids, because I sometimes need the strength of the Lord to help me with the kids,” Mr. Thurman said.

Photo by ANTWOINE REID/J.HOP TIMES

Mrs.Serne, 6th grade language arts teacher, takes a self-portrait on Sept. 29th. She was a photographer for the St. Petersburg Times. “I enjoyed doing it. I like the art of composing pictures,” said Mrs. Serne.

Oh, snap! Ms. Serne, sixth grade language arts teacher, was a St. Petersburg Times photographer for 15 years. “It was very exciting, because I got to meet lots of different people every day,” she said. She did a lot of different stories. As a photographer, Ms. Serne traveled to Hollywood California to cover a story for the newspaper about Scientology. She also covered some sad stories. “I did a story about AIDS. I found a young couple who had AIDS with a child; I followed them around for about three years. And they (the parents) eventually died, and then someone adopted the child because of my story.”

Snacks anyone?

Coach Moraniec sells peanuts at Tropicana Field. He has been selling them since 1999. He said it helps him earn extra Photo by ANTWOINE REID/J.HOP TIMES money and he likes to interact with the fans. the amount of Ms. Maxwell-Bicknell shows off her own hair product line that she makes in her free time. money he makes from this second job varies. “It depends on how crowed the stadium is,” he said. If there are a lot of people in the stadium he usuMs. Maxwell-Bicknell, an EBD ally makes around $250, but if teacher, makes her own hair products. not then, around $150. He says Her product is called “Lisa’s Hair Growth Scalp Formula.” She started 25 walking around the stadium years ago and makes 100 jars at a time. selling peanuts is “physically demanding.” “I have to go to a lab. I get all of my products together... I use coconut oil,” Photo by SIERRA LEVY/J.HOP TIMES Photo by DE’QONTON DAVIS/J.HOP TIMES she said. She sells the grease online for On Oct. 19, Mr. Moraniec in the uniform he Mr.Thurman plays his keyboard that’s next to his desk $8. wears to the Rays games. Mr. Moraniec is a

Stylin’

in his office in Building 5 on Oct. 21.

vendor at Tropicana Field.


November 16, 2011

Page 14

Our Response to the St. Petersburg Times

What students think

Newsroom and language arts students responded to the Oct. 21 St. Petersburg Times article “John Hopkins Middle School battery arrests revive concerns about teacher safety.” All of these letters were submitted to the St. Petersburg Times.

A great place to be

Dear Editor, We here at John Hopkins Middle School listen to our Principal Mr. Brown every day tell us that “John Hopkins Middle School is a great place to be!” As students, we not only acknowledge that message, but we enforce it. We don’t enjoy hearing about how bad our school is, and Mr. Brown makes sure we know that J.Hop isn’t horrible. Also, we as students make sure we try to keep our ratings up. What school have you heard about that doesn’t have disciplinary problems? One thing I have noticed is that there are more stories (in the St. Petersburg Times) about J.Hop than any other school, and most of the stories are negative. What about Bay Point, Madeira, Medowlawn or even Thurgood Marshall? The article is one-sided; there were no quotes from the students’ point of view, or even teachers. Would I come to J.Hop everyday if I didn’t like it? No, because I live nowhere near here, but I love it. I wouldn’t change a thing at J.Hop, because if it changed in any way, would it remain a great place to be? Hailey Vaughan, 8th grade

We’re making progress

Dear Editor, I’m really irritated with the fact that in your story about Johns Hopkins Middle you’re picking on one school. It’s not fair to the faculty or kids. Before you write about us, you should spend a day in our shoes and realize we are not a bad school. It’s just a few rotten kids who don’t want to learn and they try to create problems. Mr. Brown is an amazing principal and he is truly trying. Most all kids follow the rules and the faculty is enforcing them as best as possible. He turned this school around and he is trying to keep it turned around. My mother used to tell me that you have to have a problem to create a solution, and I think that applies right here. All schools need improvement, so why not show our progress instead of our problems? Genesis Feliciano, 7th grade

We’re not the only ones

Dear Editor, Before I came to John Hopkins Middle School, I was at Tyrone Middle School, and there was way more trouble there than there is here. This article just showed there are groups of kids that start something that doesn’t need to be started. I believe the only way to make up for this rude article is to explain the good things that happen at my school. At John Hopkins I have felt way safer than I did at Tyrone. That’s why I believe that it wasn’t a good idea to do an article that made John Hopkins seem so violent. All schools have issues but John Hopkins isn’t the one with the worst problems. Peyton McGuigan, 8th grade

Keep it balanced

Dear Editor I thought some things in the article were pretty false and exaggerated. You made a couple of good points about the school, but I think you put more negative things than positives, so it wasn’t a fair balance. I didn’t think the article was a true representation of J.Hop. We have so many programs and opportunities that are offered here that many schools don’t. We have a lot of positive things. I think John Hopkins should have more resources, such as a school therapist to work out anger management problems and a mediator to work out conflict between students. But punishment isn’t always the answer. Kendrick Auty, 8th grade

A perfect place to be

Dear Editor, First of all, to get something straight, John Hopkins Middle School is a GREAT place to be. That’s our motto and it rings true every day. So you can say whatever you want about our school, but the students and teachers at the school know that we are talented in our own ways. I bet if you spent one whole day here you would absolutely love it to the point where you wouldn’t care about the hate and discontent going on at this school. And you would love the happiness and academics that go on here. So what, we had some fights; that doesn’t make us a horrible school. Because not everyone gets into a fight, just some people. That doesn’t mean you should call us a “bad” school. One more thing, do you ever talk about the good things? Like we had a car wash just last Saturday to raise money and awareness for breast cancer. So you see, editor, we’re not a bad school. We’re a wonderful school and John Hopkins is a perfect place to be. Faith Tinsley, 6th grade

There are positives, too

Dear Editor, After reading today about John Hopkins Middle School, I feel you are trying to say our school isn’t a good school just because it has fighting. But that doesn’t have anything to do with the school being bad. That’s just the students that don’t care about the school and don’t care what people are going to say about it. I think that you just put the negative things about our school, and no positive things. We have a lot of positive things in our school like groups such as Multicultural Club, Girlfriends and many others. We have a performing arts program with drama and dance. As a John Hopkins student, I feel like we are the only school always in the newspaper, but there are fights at other middle schools, too. Our school has come up a lot. We went from being a C school up to a B school in one year. So if you want to talk about our school, please talk about the positive things we have. Imani Lassiter, 7th grade

Look at all the good

Dear Editor, I don’t see why you’re writing bad things about our school. Our school is a great place to be. Look on the bright side: on Wednesdays in October, everybody wore pink to show that we care and want to help cure breast cancer. We did a car wash on Oct. 22 to help raise awareness of breast cancer. Come count and see how many kids made Honor Roll and Principal’s List. I know that we aren’t the only school that fights. I know there are other schools. So can you write something good about us? Keosha Compton, 6th grade

Don’t let a few rotten ones spoil the bunch

Dear Editor, Our school motto is “John Hopkins Middle School, a great place to be.” I think it is a great place to be. Just because we had some fights doesn’t mean that all students are bad. Most of the whole school is good and only some people are bad. We are like a bunch of bananas; most of us are yellow and only some are green and rotten. The green ones have not had time to be nice and make friends. We are all as one. If you don’t believe that this is a good school, go ask Megan Fox. The population at this school is a little more than 1,000. If you talk to almost every student in this school, almost everyone would say this is the best school ever. I just had my very first drama show on Oct. 15, and it was the best show ever. There were no problems, and I had the best time of my life. I want you to come to our school, and come to my class and see for yourself. If you don’t believe me, my name is Grace Elliott. Ask for me. Grace Elliott, 6th grade


J.Hop Times

Page 15

JHT Staff

The J.Hop Times is produced four times a year by students at John Hopkins Middle School.

Newsroom 3 Block Periods 1- 2

Editor-in-Chief: Sarah Pohl Assistant Editor: Mia Bartolomei-Negron Photo Editor: Kenya Howard Assistant Photo Editor: Sierra Taylor Reporters: Alexus Barnhart, Romesha Smith, Myah Alvarez, Tyler Holt, Myesha Hall, Genesis Feliciano Senior Photographers: Antwoine Reid, Dominic Rosado, Alex Perekhodko, De’Qonton Davis, Sierra Levy, Latavia Nelson

Newsroom 2 Period 3

Reporting editor: Jakia Wilson Photo Editor: Quanasia Ware Editorial Editor: Brandon Garcia Reporters: Kendrick Auty, Lavantai Blake, De’Janique Burden, Daesha Campbell, Chelsey Chen, Samuel Herman, Imani Lassiter, Peyton Mcguigan, Keith Miller, Aaron Parrish, Ashton Taylor, Elizabeth Wright Photographers: Larry Addison, Charles Antongiorgi, Jacob Bailey, Dahlia Boone, Kevon Buxton, Artiz Flowers, Dakotah Haas, George Holloway, T’Shyra Johnson, William Kern, Krysta Muehlendyck, Rashad Williams

Newsroom 2 Period 4

Reporting Editor: Jazmon Arnold Photo Editor: Hailey Vaughan Reporters: Greg Accola, Dialvin Brown, Violet Byrd, Jasmine Jones, Marquez Landers, Noah Minor, Diana Robles, Destinyi Watkins Photographers: Jordyan Downing, Jay Gani, Deontrey James, Lazarre Lester, Jalen Middleton, Alexandra Morells, Kelsea Walker, Jacquel Waller, Devon Ware, Brittany Weddle, Deondrick Williams, Dorian Williams

Newsroom 1 Period 6

Lataria Adams, Daysia Al-Amin, Michael Babers, Timothy Baptiste, Allison Battaglia, Zachary Botham, Bailee Campbell, Luna Clark, David Fitch, Timia Fonville, Guy Freeman, Damien Harris, Breonte Hyman, Nuriyjha Jackson, Amber Lemire, Alicia Lopez, Veronica Marcano, Jealiany Ortiz-Ruiz, Anna Paden, Deshayia Pennington, Zaniah Perry, Jordan Pompey, Jacob Roeser, Qeara Smith, Anthony Solarte, Rafael Tabera, Vinson Melvin, Miashia Walker, Destiny Watts, Lorenzo Webb, Dante Wilkenson, Paris Williams, Destiny Young

Opinions

A message from the JHT editor

When the newsroom 3 class was first shown the Oct. 21 article from the St. Petersburg Times about violence at J.Hop, many questions began to form. Did we actually have that many fights? Who were the teachers that were assaulted? What happened to them? Thus began an incredibly stressful project, as we asked ourselves this question: What could the J.Hop Times uncover? After the strong SARAH POHL feelings began to boil down and the rhythm of the newsroom began to flow, the pieces started falling into place. We produced coverage of our own, which you can read on page 3 The St. Petersburg Times had presented the facts in a negative light, and when we asked teachers, they revealed a different picture than what the Times presented. We checked out the facts and discovered some shocking numbers—J.Hop does not have the highest number of student arrests in the district; Azalea has the highest number at 17. We have the second highest number; Hopkins and Baypoint have 12 arrests each. All of the interviews, records and surveys we gathered were painstakingly put together into one monster of a story. See how much we love our readers? This is determination, people. When the story was finally off to the press, the newsroom could breathe again (sigh, I believe that because people depend on the news, journalists should try a little harder to be accurate and truthful. Luckily, the J.Hop Times is here to un-cloud the complicated issues that affect our school.

Sarah Pohl, editor-in-chief

Newsroom 1 Period 7

Delrick Baker, Darius Barlow, Ronald Britt, Kenshara Calhoun, Bianca Collins, Zhain Crawford, Nathan Glass, Nick Heck, Travis Jones, Zachary Kennedy, Alexandriah Lawson, Tyrik Long, Zauria Mixon, Sarah Nouri, Kyrsha Page, SirElliott Roberts, Steven Roberts, Garret Shipman, Veronica Sierra, Samariz Soto, Faith Tinsley, Jalynn Williams The opinions on this page are the opinions of the writers who try their best to get all sides of an issue before writing.

Here’s how you can be heard

Write a column or letter or draw a cartoon (keep it clean, no profanity or name calling.) Spell and fact-check your work. We reserve the right to correct any factual or grammatical mistakes. Sign your work and bring it to the newsroom, 5-113. Note: There is no guarantee your work will be published. Journalism teachers: Jennifer Butkus, Luanne Dietz, Lottie Watts Newspaper designer: Kim Kenda Journeys In Journalism coordinator: Cynda Mort Program development/marketing consultant: Jaye Ann Terry Journalism advisory board Gelareh Asayesh (founder/St. Petersburg Times liaison, Journeys in Journalism), Barry Brown (Principal, John Hopkins), Stephen Buckley (Dean of Faculty, Poynter Institute), Beth Casey (attorney, Jenkins & Kaiser, P.A.), Ron Ciranna (Assistant Superintendent, Human Resources, Pinellas County Schools), David Cook (Manager, TV Operations, Pinellas County Schools), Kathryn Cox (Director, Corporate Relations, Juvenile Services Program), Goliath Davis III (community volunteer), Stacey Endicott (Assistant Principal, Melrose Elementary), Krystle Fogarty (Center for the Applied Liberal Arts, Eckerd College), Leslie Gilchrist (John Hopkins parent), John Just (Assistant Superintendent, Management Information Systems, Pinellas County Schools), Gretchen Letterman (Editor, St. Petersburg Times tb-two* and Chair, Journeys in Journalism Advisory Board), Shrimatee Ojah-Maharaj (Manager, Planning and Economic Development/Business Assistance, City of St. Petersburg), Christine Porter (Principal, Melrose Elementary), Norm Smith (Associate Dean/Director of Center for the Applied Liberal Arts, Eckerd College), Robert Vicari (Principal, Lakewood High), Michael Vasallo (Assistant Principal, John Hopkins Middle), Nancy Waclawek (Director, St. Petersburg Times Fund)

John Hopkins Middle School

701 16th St.S, St. Petersburg, FL33705 727-893-2400 Principal: Barry Brown Assistant principals: Christina Fields, Michael Vasallo, Nicole Wilson

Cartoon by DEONTREY JAMES/J.HOP TIMES


Page 16

November 16, 2011

Principal Personality hopper

New to Hopper? Join today!

Mr. Vasallo is the official voice behind the Twitter site for John Hopkins Middle School Center for the Arts, Journalism and Multimedia

Date

Name Period

Reporting and Photography by CHASE LEWIS What’s happening

Timeline @Mentions Retweets MrVasallo John Hopkins MS

It’s lunch time #HalfwayThroughTheDay 12:45 pm

MrVasallo John Hopkins MS

I’m walking two girls to get their #lunch because they didn’t eat yet 1:03 pm

MrVasallo John Hopkins MS

Checking out my three tables I’m in charge of in the cafeteria 1:05 pm

MrVasallo John Hopkins MS

Trying to find out why a group of students are late to #lunch 1:17 pm

MrVasallo John Hopkins MS

Time to throw away some trash #TheseKidsAreMessy 1:23 pm

MrVasallo John Hopkins MS

Reminding late students about the rules and consequences of showing up late 1:25 pm

MrVasallo John Hopkins MS

That’s the bell! Trying to get students to class on time #TardiesLeadToReferrals 1:38 pm

MrVasallo John Hopkins MS

Writing an e-mail to a teacher to prepare for an observation 1:56 pm

MrVasallo John Hopkins MS

Journalism students showed up to ask me questions #They’reGood 2:16 pm

MrVasallo John Hopkins MS

At my spot outside Building 5, ready for class changes 2:30 pm

MrVasallo John Hopkins MS

Taking a break. Chatting with @Ms.Wilson for a minute about the Rays game.#GoRays 2:53 pm

MrVasallo John Hopkins MS

Walking to the clinic to deal with a conflict involving two sixth-graders 3:46 pm

MrVasallo John Hopkins MS

Taking the students to my office #WeHaveToGetToTheBottomOfThis 3:49 pm

MrVasallo John Hopkins MS

Get Ready. Fire drill in one minute #WalkingToTheFlagPole 4:08 pm

MrVasallo John Hopkins MS

We made it through the day. Time to read the afternoon announcements #JohnHopkinsMiddleSchoolAGreatPlaceToBe 4:12 pm

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