Two-Time Columbia Scholastic Press Association Gold Medalist
Teens talk guns. . . pages 4-5 Sports MVPs . . . pages 20-21
InstaLakewood . . . pages 12-13
Vol. 3, No. 6
Lakewood High School -May 30, 2012
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A word from
SNN By SOFIA DAMOS SNN Editor in Chief
When you come into high school, nerves abundant, you think you know exactly where your life is headed and where you will be in four years. And the friends you walked in with are those you will walk out with. As a senior, taking the time to look back on how my life has changed in the past four years brings a nostalgic feeling. I’m not the person I thought I’d be four years ago, and that’s okay. My time here at SNN has helped to shape who I am and has given me tools to deal with the real world, preparing me for my journey outside of high school. You spend all four years wishing you were done with school, and then you get to the end and you realize maybe it wasn’t so bad after all. This is one of those times, but as they say, it’s time to pass on the torch to the new generation. I want to thank this year’s SNN editors for contributing to the paper to make it the best it possibly can be. Your input and talent has served to elevate SNN even further. Finally, I wanted to introduce the new editors for next year, all hard-working students who have made an impact on the paper this year and who will continue to next year: Editor in Chief: Kayla Garcia Managing Editor: Symone Brown Opinions Editor: Chelsea Helt Photo Editor: Leon Tomlinson Multimedia Editor: Alex Brackx Chief Sports Photographer: Rachelle Gaddy Copy Chief: Katie Blevins Copy Editors: Zoe Blair-Andrews and Caroline Dunning Design Editor: Scotty Schenck Entertainment Editor: Tristan Shuler Sports Editor: Devon Rogers Web Editors: Molinsea Elcius and Jessica Thornton Best of luck to all of you!
ALEX BRACKX | SNN
AMSET teacher James Kostka and gym teacher Michael Culbreath pull a fire truck on May 19 during the Pinellas Park fire truck pull at Walgreens, which helped raise money for bone marrow transplants. Kostka and Culbreath, along with other members from the Lakewood staff and football team received third place overall in the event. “Tiring, the experience was overwhelming,” said Culbreth.
On the web...
Check out the following multimedia stories on the Spartan News Network’s web site. Go to snntoday.pcsb.org and click on multimedia.
Corrections A story in the April edition of SNN said short Wednesdays will be ending but the possibility is still up for discussion by the school board and the teachers union.
* What are your plans after high school? By Ania Cooper and Sha’Kiera Williams
* Teachers and students talk about their favorite books. By Eric Wesley and Amy Tran
Chorus teacher Jacob Merrett’s name was misspelled in a caption in the April edition of SNN.
* Favorite high school memories. By Clarissa Bradfield and Tamara Williams
*There may be football in their future. By Anthony Lawrence, Romello Preseley, Yannick Taviere, Jaron Worthen, Raymon Cleveland and Sherice Johnson
Assistant principal Deb Fabrizio’s name was misspelled in a story about the Lake Vista pool in the April edition of SNN.
* What are you doing for summer break? By Thomas Barron and Lisa Diffendale
Junior Shaquem Griffin’s name was misspelled in a caption on the back page of the April edition of SNN.
* Teachers and students: What gets on their nerves? By Alex Bueno and Hunter Stewart * Seniors choose what song they would want to walk to. By Marilyn Parker and Tevin McCullough
* Lakewood Tennis team talks about the season. By Alex Backx.
Page 1 photo by Katie Blevins: Sunbeams shine over the lake in the outdoor classroom during second period on April 23. This photo was captured through the lens of a camera phone and filtered with the Instagram app.To see more Instagram photos, go to pages 1213.
Gabby Moore’s name was misspelled in a story about tattoos in the April edition of SNN. Also, she is a junior not a sophomore. Valedictorian Tahrell Jones applied and was accepted to Florida Atlantic University. A story in the April edition of SNN was incorrect on this point.
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Big plans for AMSET By KIMBERLY KOAGEL and KATIE DICKINSON SNN Staff Writers
A $15,000 grant has been awarded to the Academy for Aquatic Management Systems and Environmental Technology. The grant, which came from Progress Energy, was first given to the Center for Science and Policy Applications for the Coastal Environment (CSPACE), which is affiliated with USF. CSPACE then partnered with Lakewood, giving it a portion of the Progress Energy funds. “I am very grateful for CSPACE for thinking of us because it relieves a lot of pressure of trying to find money to take kids on trips and provide them with experiences outside of the classroom,” said AMSET coordinator James Kostka. The grant’s goal is to educate people about what they can do to clean and preserve water resources, he said. “I think it’ll be better because it will give AMSET a real-life experience for us to see how environmental science is used like in everyday life,” said freshman Harley
Waller. Kostka wants to use the money to fund field trips and certify students in SCUBA as well as teach powerboat and sailboat navigation and safety. He wants to buy supplies for agriponics, plants for aquatic restoration projects and purchase tools and supplies for the outdoor classroom. He is also looking into buying different species of goats to see which will adapt best, and into city ordinances to see if it is allowed. Kostka wants to use the goats to manage invasive species around the outdoor classroom. “Grant dollars may be used to purchase the animals, buy feed and build pens,” said Kostka. The money coming into the program also has an effect on the students. “(The grant money) is good for the academy. It brings new supplies and more activities,” said sophomore Nick Levy. - KC Shelton contributed to this story.
DEM’E DAVIS | SNN
AMSET’s outdoor classroom sits at the back of the school. Students use the outdoor space to learn abut the environment. Next year AMSET will receive a grant that will help start the new agriculture program.
Bright Futures scholars must volunteer more hours
Florida Academic Scholars Combined score of 1280 SAT or 28 on ACT; 100 hours; 3.5 GPA
SNN Staff Writer
Florida Medallion Scholars
By KAYLA GARCIA
Senior Rebecca Schnell volunteers for Bright Futures hours at Pet Pal Rescue in St. Petersburg. While there Schnell cleans cages, feeds and plays with the dogs and mops. She started volunteering in October 2011 and goes in once a week for four hours. “It’s fun; it’s just time consuming,” she said. By May 24, she had completed 92 hours of community service toward her 100 for the Florida Academic Scholars level. Schnell said if it wasn’t for the change in the Bright Futures requirements that went into effect this year, “I would have been done already.” This year students must work harder to achieve more volunteer hours, a higher grade point average and higher SAT or ACT scores for Bright Futures scholarships. There are three levels of Bright Futures scholarships. Florida Academic Scholars (FAS) requires 100 hours, Florida Medallion Scholars (FMS) requires 75, and Gold Seal Vocations Scholars (GSV) requires 30. (See box for all the requirements.) Last year the requirement for FAS was 75 hours. FMS and GSV had no required hours. Last year Florida Academic Scholars received $101 per credit hour while the Medallion Scholars and the Gold Seal scholars received $76 per credit hour. For
the next school year, the amount that will be rewarded per credit hour will be announced over the summer. Guidance counselor Celeste Thomas said increasing the volunteer hours isn’t a bad change, but the GPA and testing score increases could affect students. She said some students who have done “extremely well” in school may struggle because of the higher SAT or ACT score that is now required. The SAT and ACT scores were raised for FMS from 970 to 980 (SAT) and 20 to 21(ACT). “I don’t know if it’s too difficult (to achieve the required score). I just know it’s going to be more difficult for students,” said Thomas. The requirements will continue to rise for FAS and FMS until the 2013/2014 school year. Students must follow a process to begin logging their volunteer hours so that they will count for Bright Futures. First, they must get a form from their counselor. Then they must decide where they want to complete their hours. Thomas said there is a list of suggested places attached to the form, but where the students choose varies. “We get a lot of people who want to volunteer for the hospitals, but sometimes they have so many volunteers they don’t respond,” she said. After deciding where to volunteer,
Combined score of 1020 SAT or 22 on ACT; 75 hours; 3.0 GPA Gold Seal Vocations Scholars SAT score of 440 in Critical Reading and Math; 30 hours; OR ACT scores of English/17, Reading/18, and Math/19; OR CPT scores of 83 in reading and sentence skills and 72 in algebra; 3.0 GPA students must fill out the forms that explain their goals for the project. The volunteer work must help solve a social problem, such as homeless people. Once the form is filled out the agency must sign it. Then the student’s parent or guardian must sign. Finally, it is taken back to the student’s guidance counselor to be approved. Students may then begin logging their hours. Sophomore Andrea Vargas started volunteering May 14 at Teen Court, a place for students under the age of 18 to participate in a court system where they act as a jury member, defense attorney, or prosecutor. Vargas said she doesn’t mind the increase in volunteer hours because of what it gets her in the end. “It’s money I don’t have to pay for college myself,” she said.
Making college connections
By CAROLINE DUNNING and VICTORIA BISCHOFF SNN Staff Writers
During meetings at New York’s Columbia University from May 2- 4 with about 15 school officials, principal Robert Vicari worked his magic. Vicari was attempting to build a gateway to the university’s School of Engineering and Applied Science. “I want to create a pipeline between Lakewood and great colleges, universities and other post-secondary institutions. I want our Lakewood students to advance and lead successful lives,” said Vicari. This opportunity would allow students who are exceptionally academic, dedicated and hard-working to receive a “full ride” to Columbia University’s engineering program, meaning that tuition, room, board and supplies are all paid for, he said. “We try to open up as many doors of opportunity as possible for our students,” said Vicari. Vicari was assured several times that “they will make sure money is not a barrier – but this gift has to be earned through academic success.”
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Taking aim: Teens and guns
By KATIE BLEVINS SNN Staff Writer
School is the last place many people would expect to find weapons like guns. But since January, the national news has carried a number of stories about teens bringing guns to school. Here are just a few: • A Texas teen was shot and killed by police in January after he brought a pellet gun to school. • In Ohio a teen shot five students in February, killing three, when he opened fire in a high school cafeteria. • Three Kentucky students face charges after two guns and a knife were found during a random search on a high school campus in May. But incidents like those don’t only happen in faraway states. Stories of teens and guns can also be found close to home. In January, a Lakewood High School boy brought an unloaded BB gun onto the Lakewood campus. Another student saw the weapon in the boy’s backpack and reported it, School Resource Officer Lerric Boyd said. The student, who was caught and suspended, later told Boyd that he had forgotten to take it out of his backpack at home. Because the gun was unloaded, Boyd said he had options on the student’s punishment, which is why he was suspended, and not expelled. Finally, in March, local teen Nicholas Lindsey was convicted and sentenced to life in prison for the shooting and killing a St. Petersburg police officer. These cases put the topic of teens and guns at the forefront. So SNN wanted to find out just how much interaction students have with guns: Do they know anyone who carries a gun regularly? Do they know of anyone who has ever brought a gun to school? In February, SNN randomly surveyed 348 Lakewood students about gun use and activity on and off the campus. Here are our findings: • 17 percent of students said they knew a student who brought a gun onto Lakewood campus. • 31 percent said they didn’t feel safe at Lakewood. • 25 percent of those who responded – or one out of four students - said they know a teenager who “regularly carries a gun” (not necessarily on campus). • 40 percent said they have guns in their
Principal Bob Vicari:
“As principal, it is my job to provide a safe and productive learning environment for our students. I am concerned any time students report they feel unsafe. I want to encourage every student on campus to report incidents to our SRO, campus monitors, administrators or directly to me- immediately. We all know what could happen when people fail to report serious concerns. If you look at the incidents that have occurred throughout the U.S., many times someone knows (but fails to report) the situation in advance. There are some decisions in life that have powerful, life altering consequences. With 1,400 people on campus daily, I would be a fool to believe that we are aware of everything that takes place daily. We all need to be responsible, caring individuals. If you know of something serious that needs to be addressed, please let us know immediately. Life must be depressing for those who look back and realize that their actions could have prevented a tragedy.” houses, and of those, 44 percent said the guns were not locked up. • 61 percent of students said the adults they know who have guns have permits to carry them, while 14 percent of students said they know adults who carry guns without permits. • 38 percent of students say they have been taught to use a gun. When shown the findings, behavior specialist Maurice Heeren said “these statistics amaze (me).” “For a kid not to feel safe at school is terrible,” he said. Principal Bob Vicari agreed. He said in an email to SNN that the survey results should be “closely examined.” He also had some advice for students. “I want to encourage every student on campus to report incidents to our (school resource officer), campus monitors, administrators or directly to me - immediately. We all know what could happen when people fail to report serious concerns,” Vicari said.
SCOTTY SCHENCK | SNN
Why do you think teenagers carry guns? “Truthfully, I don’t know. Why bring a gun to school when you can’t shoot it in school? Why carry one on the streets? If you don’t put yourself in one of those situations, you won’t need one.” - 10th-grade male “I feel as though teenagers carry guns for two reasons: One to try to be rebellious and give themselves a sense of authority, and secondly to use it as a means of selfdefense.” - 12th-grade male “To protect themselves or either show it off to their friends and show it off to their enemies.” - 11th-grade female “Self-esteem issues and feeling overly abused and unsafe by those that bully them.” - 12th-grade female “For ‘protection’ from other gang members. To deal with people who they think disrespect them.” - 9th-grade male
“I believe they feel their own sense of protection. They carry guns believing that no one else can protect them. They have found a way of protecting themselves.” - 9th-grade female “Teenagers probably carry guns because it makes them feel powerful, because they do not feel safe or to rebel against society.” - 9th-grade male “To protect themselves from harm just in case someone tries to run up on them and they have to let them know what’s the consequence of running up on them.” - 9th-grade male “Protection or possibly fear. Not quite sure myself, but I’m sure if they did, they weren’t thinking clearly.” - 10th-grade male “Sometimes they get bullied and turn to weapons to fight back.” - 10th-grade female
- Project was reported by Sofia Damos, Zoe Blair-Andrews, Katie Blevins, Cierra Champagne, Kimberly McEntegart and Mariah Watts. Thanks to statistics and math teacher Anthony Diemidio for assistance compiling survey data.
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‘We’ve glamorized people carrying guns’ By ZOE BLAIR-ANDREWS SNN Staff Writer
Assistant Police Chief Luke Williams has served 26 and a half years on the police force, and has lived in St. Petersburg his whole life. Even with all this experience and time living in this city, he said the number of teens in possession of guns still shocks him. Williams - a long-time colleague of Officer David Crawford, who was shot and killed last year by a 16 year old boy - spoke to the eighth-period journalism class in February, answering questions about his experiences, his opinions and his advice for the future. How do you think teens get guns in the first place? “There’s a number of different ways that teens get guns. ...They find them, sometimes they steal them, sometimes they’re sold to them on the street for very cheap. ...(When I was young,) we’d fight, and we’d be done. ...Now people take things to a different level. ...In a video game you can always push the reset button, and go to a different day. But in real life it’s not like that.” Why do you think teens want to carry guns? “It’s been quite a while since I’ve been a teenager and I’ve never wanted to carry a gun…It’s a societal thing, with video games and movies. We’ve glamorized people carrying guns. ...I personally don’t understand the glamorous aspect of it.” What did you think when you heard it was a teen who was charged with shooting Officer David Crawford last year? “(The boy’s age) really didn’t make a difference; it was still a number of lives that were impacted by that one single action. ...There are families on both sides of the equation. ...I see it as a real tragedy for a young person with a lot of potential.” How does Officer Crawford’s death affect your view of teenagers while you are on the job? “I don’t view teenagers any differently; it would be wrong for me to do that. ...It would be wrong for me to say that because of the actions of one person, it fits everybody in that category. ...It’s just an action that a person took, that happened to be a teenager. Are more teens carrying guns these days? “I can only compare what I see now from what I believe to be true from when I was a teenager. It (teens carrying guns) was extremely rare; that’s not so true today…I see that there are a lot of kids that are in possession of guns and weapons. ...I think that as teenagers, that (my generation was) more cautious with things that we did. ...You all are
Assistant Police Chief Luke Williams has worked for the St. Petersburg Police Department for 26 years. He was a friend of the recently deceased police officer David Crawford. KATIE ATKISSON | SNN
exposed to a lot more than we ever were.” How are officers trained to handle teenagers if they suspect they have a gun? Is it different from how they handle adults? “When you’re being trained, you have to react to the situation, not to the person. ...Young people, just as well as old people, can cause you harm. ...An officer should not let their guard down, just because someone is young. ...If a person is coming in this room to harm you, the last thing I’m going to look at is the age of the person. ...If it’s a life or death situation, age doesn’t play a part in it.” What are some ways to prevent teens from having access to guns? “Adults need to take more of a responsibility. I think it’s an adult issue, because a kid can’t go in and legally purchase a gun. ...I think a vast amount of the responsibility is on the adults.” If teens have guns, can their parents/guardians get in trouble? “In some cases parents can get in trouble. ...If a teen goes out and commits a crime with a firearm, it’s their fault. Typically the parents aren’t charged unless it’s a case where a small child has been injured inside the home. ...(In those cases), I think that the penalty that the parents receive, is more mental than physical, just having to go through that.” What do you think of the current laws that give people access to guns? Are they too lenient or not? “I think that the laws are probably where they need to be. ...There is a constitutional right to bear arms the law can’t change. We can’t create any law that would take that right away. ...I don’t think that they (the laws) are too lenient.”
What will happen if you are caught on campus with a gun? You will get arrested, expelled from all public schools and you will have to do virtual school, said School Resource Officer Lerric Boyd. You can get 10 years just for possession of a gun, and you get 20 years in prison if you hurt someone with the gun. For killing someone you get life in prison, he said.
What should you do if you find or hear about a gun being on campus? The first thing to do is to get in touch with the SRO, facility or a teacher, Boyd said. Also let everyone know that there is a gun on campus and secure the area. If you see or hear about a gun being on campus but you don’t want to be a snitch write a note and give it to an adult. “It’s not about snitching; it’s about safety,” said Boyd.
SCOTTY SCHENCK and CHRIS DEISTER | SNN
- CIERRA CHAMPAGNE | SNN
news W e d n e s d a y, M a y 3 0 , 2 0 1 2 Importance of Politics
The political season arrives at Lakewood By SEAN CARTER and JULIA POHLMANN
SNN Staff Writers
he year 2012 is election year in the United States, which means the possibility of a new president and a national discussion of the policies and ideas involved in governing our nation. While many high school students can do little more than watch and discuss, the outcome of the elections will have a lasting effect on all students across the nation, and come four years from now, in the next election, most of those students will be 18 and ready to have their own effect on the outcome of the national race. SNN did a survey specifically of high school students to see how much they participate in and care about politics and what issues matter to them. Fourth period classes, including CAT, AMSET, CJAM and traditional classes, were randomly selected to participate in the survey. Four-hundred students were surveyed and of those, 356 were usable. Here are some of the results. (For more results, go to snntoday.pcsb.org.)
Thirty percent of students consider politics only slightly important, and 30 percent consider it important. Of the remaining, 27 percent of students consider politics either not very important, or completely unimportant, leaving only 12 percent of students who think that politics is very important.
Which political party do you identify with? Only 38 percent of students picked either Republican or Democrat. Of that 38 percent, 74 percent were Democrats (or 28 percent of the entire sample) and 26 percent were Republicans (or 10 percent of the entire sample). The majority of students, 57 percent, did not respond to this question, meaning they either skipped it or didn’t have a favored party, and three percent selected independent parties.
Which issues are most important to you?
The majority of students, 62 percent, did not respond or had no favorite candidate. Of those who did respond, 78 percent (or 30 percent of the entire sample) preferred Obama, and 22 percent was distributed among the Republican candidates and, oddly enough, “Vermin Supreme,” a satirical candidate, had one more person selecting him than Rick Santorum.
In our survey we looked at what issues students found most important. We asked students to rank each issue (abortion, gay marriage, the Middle East, taxes, healthcare reform, education reform) from “unimportant” to “very important.” The chart (left) shows the percent of people who considered each issue “very important,”arranging them from the issue with the most people finding it “very important” to the least. The issue with the highest percentage of “very important” rankings was education reform, and the issue with the lowest percentage of “very important” rankings was the Middle East.
- Charts by Julia Pohlmann and Sean Carter, and graphics by Scotty Schenck.
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Mrs. Bates says goodbye By ATIERA HOPKINS SNN Staff Writer
School secretary Viola Bates, who worked at Lakewood High School for 30 years, changing the lives of students and staff, retired in late April. “I’m kind of sad she left, but I’m also happy. It’s like a break for her and it makes me feel like we’ve basically both graduated,” said her grandson, senior Demetrius Bates. “She’s changed my experience in high school because she made me a better student; she made me do the best I can.” Principal Bob Vicari said Mrs. Bates retired due to health concerns. “She was truly dedicated to Lakewood. She was caring, loving, and she was like a grandmother to everyone,” said Vicari. “I mainly miss her smile and her positive attitude.” Counselor Celeste Thomas said she and Mrs. Bates have had a strong bond over the seven years they’ve known each other. “She is an icon because she’s been here so long and generations have been able to meet her, she’s a stable force to the generations,” said Thomas. Mrs. Bates’ cheese grits and cake will be especially missed, Thomas said.
JESSICA THORNTON | SNN
School secretary Viola Bates answers the phone from her desk on April 13. Flowers and gifts are spread around her desk to celebrate her retirement after 30 years of work. “When she left I knew she was happy. She’s worked a lot over the years and deserves to relax in her golden years,” said Thomas. “She was always pleasant, never angry and always sweet.” Demetrius Bates said his grandmother is “loyal, ambitious and full of life.” “She’s indescribable in the best way possible. She was like a mentor to me, because she’s someone I can see myself and kids looking up to,” he said.
LHS alumni runs for School Board By DONNELL D. MIDDLETON and BARBARA NEAL SNN Staff Writers
Former Lakewood High School student Corey Givens Jr. is running for the Pinellas County School Board District 7 position. Givens, a 2010 graduate, said he considers himself a role model to the students at Lakewood High School. When Givens was at Lakewood he was president of his senior class and treasurer of the Student Government Association. He was an anchor on FastForward and Fox 13 Magazine, a member of Future Business Leaders of America and president of Big Brothers/Big Sisters club at Lakewood. “I always considered myself a leader not a follower. … (I) made the decision a while ago to make a difference,” he said. Givens said he thinks the other candidates are not qualified to represent Pinellas County. So rather than complaining, he entered the election, he said. “He is intelligent, respectful and a real gentlemen,” said nutrition and wellness teacher Faith Walker, a former teacher of Givens’. Givens said one of his top goals is to have more high school students take the College Placement Test, He wants to get more parents involved in the budget
process, establish more fundamental schools at the high school level and create more programs for students from socioeconomically challenged families. Givens said that if students have more positive black Special To SNN men as role models in the schools, there will be less crime in and out of the school. When Givens was in high school one of his mentors was Frank Peterman Jr. “Mr. Peterman was a personal mentor and taught me that for every person who says the job can’t be done, there are always two people saying that it can be done,” Givens said. Since his graduation, Givens received his AA degree from Florida State University, and currently is seeking a double major in mass communications and political science.
LATERIAN LATIMER | SNN
Sophomore Damari Hodges sits while care and prevention teacher Erika Miller shows sophomore June Flowers how to perform a knee test on March 13. Next year there will three new medical classes offered at Lakewood.
New medical classes coming to Lakewood By ALEXANDRA DORN and LATERIAN LATIMER
SNN Staff Writers
At least 50 kids have already signed up for three new medical classes that will be offered in the 2012-2013 school year. “We are starting to create more opportunities for students interested in the medical health and wellness fields,” said health teacher Erika Miller. These classes are progression classes, which means students must take them in order. By the end of these classes they will have learned about anatomy, diseases, disorders, injuries and wellness, said Miller, who is also the head athletic trainer. “The new health program is a good opportunity for kids to get another industry certification,” said principal Bob Vicari. The classes will be taught by Miller and students will earn certifications in cardiopulmonary resuscitation, automated external defibrillation, first aid and occupational safety and health administration. The three classes are health science 1 and 2, and health and wellness. In health science 1 students will learn about anatomy, diseases, disorders and injuries to the body and will receive their certifications. health science 2 will consist of learning about legal and ethical issues, emergency situations, infection control, employability skills and health careers. In health and wellness students will learn about exercise and fitness plans and athletic injuries. They will also renew their certifications and prepare for the American College of Sports Medicine Exam. Sophomore Isaiah Wynn signed up for the classes because he wants to become an athletic trainer and enter the sports medical field. “I thought it would be a head start to getting into the program (sports medicine),” said Wynn. According to Vicari, Lakewood isn’t getting an actual medical program since Boca Ciega has its own medical program, and he doesn’t want the two schools to compete for students. However, he said his goal at Lakewood is to create “wall-to-wall academies where every single kid that comes into school (will) have something they can associate with.”
features W e d n e s d a y, M a y 3 0 , 2 0 1 2 A journey into a different time This summer two Lakewood history teachers will retrace the route of the Freedom Riders. By BRITTANY JACOBS and BROOKE SKINNER SNN Staff Writers
n 1961, a group of civil rights workers used the “Freedom Riders” as a tactic to desegregate public transportation in the south. The Freedom Riders were people, white or black, who wanted to test a new law outlawing segregation in transportation terminals by riding interstate buses through the south where racism was common. They were met with protests and violence, but ultimately were successful. Now, on a quest to learn more about the experience of the Freedom Rider’s trip, Lakewood American history teachers Haley Forsyth and Stuart Wilmarth will retrace their steps. “It’s a great opportunity,” said Wilmarth. "History freaks really enjoy this type of thing.” Forsyth and Wilmarth will travel along with other Pinellas County teachers, middle school and high school, a few of the original freedom riders and Ray Arsenault, the University of South Florida professor of southern history, who will be their guide.
They will be following the trail of the Freedom Riders, starting on June 11, for two weeks. The Teaching American History grant will cover the cost of the trip. However, they will not be retracing the entire route from Washington to New Orleans; instead they are concentrating on the historic sites in Alabama, Georgia, Tennessee and Mississippi. “We have had many wonderful experiences, especially listening to the testimony of civil rights movement veterans,” said Arsenault. “The trips have exceeded our expectations, because of the generosity and openness of the people we have met along the way.” The first Freedom Rider trip took place on May 4, 1961, with 13 riders: seven black and six white. It was led by the Congress of Racial Equality director James Farmer. The plan was to travel through Virginia, the Carolinas, Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi, ending in New Orleans, La. They experienced a wide variety of violence from whites who protested the
cause. However, it also attracted lots of media attention and several hundred more people volunteered to join. In September 1961, the Interstate Commerce Commission made regulations to enforce desegregation in all bus and train stations. “The story of the 1961 Freedom Rides is an empowering saga worth remembering, and spending time with some of the people who changed the course of American history back in 1961 is a wonderful opportunity and a potentially life-changing experience,” said Arsenault. The Freedom Rider tours have been around for seven years. They started out for students attending Stetson and the University of South Florida in St. Petersburg. The ultimate goal is to learn more about what actually happened and where it took place. It’s a learning experience, but instead of being for students this time, it’s for teachers. The teachers attending receive college credit, along with an unforgettable historical experience. “(I hope to get) the most out of this trip
The tour will start in Atlanta and travel through Anniston, Ala., Birmingham, Ala., Nashville, Tenn., Memphis, Tenn., Meridian, Miss., Selma, Ala., Montgomery, Ala., and then back to Atlanta. that I can bring back to the classroom,” said Forsyth.
First-time teacher starts in the fast lane By SCOTTY SCHENCK SNN Staff Writers
MADELINE GLASSMAN| SNN
Jacob Merrett, middle, helps out sophomores Joanna Hood, left, and Ernest Brown during fourth period keyboarding class on May 16.
Helping with concerts, buying needed equipment, starting a steel pan band and student orchestra are not always things first year teachers are willing to take on. However, when Jacob Merrett arrived at Lakewood this year, he did all of these things and more. This is the first year Merrett has ever taught and that’s why he is taking the school by storm. “My goal in teaching is not to make you into the next Liberace,” said Merrett. “My goal is for you, the student, to find enjoyment in music.” Merrett, who teaches guitar, keyboarding and chorus, went to Florida State University and received his bachelor’s degree in music education along with a certification for piano pedagogy. In college he helped with sound productions, which gave him the experience to help with Lakewood drama club productions and concerts. He said he enjoys teaching guitar because “it’s just really interesting.” However, because he is a pianist and is certified in piano instruction, he likes teaching keyboarding and can write the curriculum himself. Along with band teacher Michael Kernodle, Merrett said he is working to “build an expectation of excellence” in the Lakewood music program. He and Kernodle have the same planning period, which allows them to brainstorm about concerts and performances. “He’s (Merrett) a great asset to the music program here at Lakewood,” said Kernodle. He said Merrett not only brought back the chorus class, but he also got equipment for the guitar and keyboarding classes. He started a steel pan band and a student orchestra, which meets after school on Thursday. The orchestra may not
have many consistent members, Merrett said, but he believes they have a strong core. Merrett raised money to buy guitar racks and keyboardMADELINE GLASSMAN | SNN ing stands to hold the Guitars hang on new racks in Jacob instruments. So far his Merrett’s guitar closet on April 27. students have had two Organizing the student guitars was performances. Howone of the many improvements Merever, there is a keyboarding concert today rett made this year. at 1 p.m. and a guitar concert tomorrow at 7 p.m. Sophomores Taylor Peterson and Sebastian Digeronimo said Merrett is a good teacher. “I like that he’ll give us instruction, but then let us work,” said Peterson, who takes keyboarding. Digeronimo says that he has good ideas for the music program. Merrett even started a music honor society at Lakewood that Digeronimo is a part of, the Tri-M Music Honor Society. Peterson is glad that Merrett has used fundraisers to get new supplies. Merrett strongly believes that if students work hard in their music-based classes, they will be more likely to work harder in their other classes. Eventually, he said, the goal is independence. “I feel like I’m just doing my job,” said Merrett.
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Lakewood Lovebirds By KRYSTAL IVY and MELISSA DONES SNN Staff Writers
You hear about them, see them in the hallways, but do you know their stories? Seniors Taryn Schlather and Chris Huber, Robert Houttuin and Mikayla Borden and juniors Sache’ Davis and Gary Sherman have all been dating for over a year. Here, each couple shares their story. TI’LISEA BARNES | SNN
Seniors Robert Houttuin and Mikayla Borden embrace on a bench at Lakewood High School on May 9. They have been together for over a year. Robert Houttuin and Mikayla Borden have been dating for a year and four months and met in drama club. Their anniversary date is 1-1-11. Houttuin cut a heart in a cinnapie, dough topped with cinnamon filling and brown sugar, drizzled with white icing, and wrote “Will you be my girlfriend?” in the box and handed it to her at 11:59 while working at Papa Johns on New Year’s Eve. “It was cute. I loved it,” Borden said. Their first date was at the movies and they went to the playground and got hot chocolate. “It was so long ago,” Borden said. Their relationship is goofy and fun but they are always serious. “I don’t really socialize, because all I really want to do is hang out with her,” Houttuin said. “I make her laugh and she makes me laugh.” When they go through difficult times they talk it out. “It’s never a big deal when you argue about the little things,” Houttuin said.
Juniors Gary Sherman and Sache’ Davis have been dating since the ninth grade. Their anniversary is 10-12-09. They met in school through one of Davis’ friends. He is a football player, and she is a majorette in the band. When people see them together during school they say, “Aww, look at you guys,” said Sherman. Davis and Sherman both consider their relationship to be goofy. “We are always laughing and he’s always making jokes,” said Davis. His favorite thing about her is her smile. Even though they are juniors, they plan to be together after high school, but they do not think they will go to the same college.
TYLER HALL-HOLCOMBE | SNN
Long-term senior couple Taryn Schlather and Chris Huber were crowned Lakewood’s prom queen and king on April 27 at the Coliseum. Chris Huber and Taryn Schlather have been dating two years, since May 22, 2010, when they were sophomores. They met in ninth grade in Algebra 2. “I got help in math from him, it’s so cheesy,” said Schlather. For their first date, they went to Bonefish Grill and then went to the park together. Now when people see Huber and Schlather, they find it natural. “They’ll see me with Taryn, and they’ll see Taryn with me,” Huber said. “It’s just normal.” Schlather describes one incident when they encountered a random woman on the street calling them “lovebirds.” Their parents accept their relationship together. “They love him. They love us. They really trust him. They’re not skeptical about it. They’ll be like ‘Okay, Chris is going’,” Schlather said. “It’s just routine. It’s been so long, it’s normal,” said Huber. The couple feels strongly about their relationship and even describes it as flawless. “It’s pretty much perfect. We’re like best friends, too, so it’s good,” said Schlather. They are not going to the same college. He’s going to University of Central Florida, and she’s attending University of South Florida - St. Petersburg - but they believe they will work the long-distance relationship out. “I think we’ll be fine. It’s a two-hour drive,” said Huber. “We’ll see each other on the weekends.”
ALEXANDRA ISON | SNN
Juniors Sache’ Davis and Gary Sherman hold hands on May 21 at Lakewood High School. They have been dating since October 12, 2009, over two years.
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What’s next: Life after high school By SABRINA SCHMIDT and LAUREN HASTINGS SNN Staff Writers
High school is a rite of passage for teenagers across the nation. As the teens of Lakewood pass into adulthood they now have to answer the question: What’s next? For some of the seniors the road ahead includes aspiring to be a Koi farmer, an FBI agent, and an underwater welder, as well as more conventional occupations such as engineering, dentistry, and medicine. From going to college to working, to serving our country, these students have a journey ahead of them. SNN asked 198 seniors what their plans were for when high school ends. The survey was passed out to all senior
English classes. The survey asked students about their plans: working, going to college, taking a break, going into the military or doing something less conventional once they finish high school. Eighty-nine percent of seniors plan to go to college after high school but only 73 percent have either applied to or been accepted to their school. The most popular schools include University of Central Florida, St. Petersburg College, University of South Florida, University of Florida, Florida Agriculture and Mechanics University and Florida International University. While most seniors are staying
in state, a significant number of students are leaving the Sunshine State for college. Twenty-five percent of seniors say that they are going to work after high school. Thirty-one percent of seniors already have a job, and 21 percent say that they are going to keep that job after high school ends. Overall, seniors seem happy with their decisions: 81 percent of seniors say that they are satisfied with their decisions. Only two percent are unhappy, and 17 percent are unsure of how they feel.
SNN asked seniors: What would you put in a senior class time capsule?
Quotes compiled by Harley Waller and Ariel Ward | SNN
“I would write a note to myself detailing my plans for myself, then I’d go back and see how I’ve changed from the past.” –Bernard Marger
“I would put Mr. Ganchou’s signature in my time capsule because it’ll be worth millions … in about three million years.” –Dillon Buffone
“I would put canned foods. A lot of them. Canned foods that can survive for 30 years. Whoever finds it has a lot of food, and if I ever found it I would have a canned food feast. What if a zombie apocalypse happened? I would be prepared!” –Zubin Kapadia “My cheerleading uniform. Because it’s like basically the only thing I did here, and something fun for me to do. Something fun for me to remember.” –Jade Franklin
What music would you walk to?
Pomp and Circumstance is a classic. At every graduation, the song is played and graduates stroll across the stage with a smile as they accept their diplomas. But do students consider the song a classic or cliché? SNN asked the graduates: What song do you really want to hear? Dante Fowler: Know the Name by Swagg Kid J “I’ve been through a lot of stuff. The song basically it’s saying you made it and all (of you are) haters. Just making it through all the hard and tough times that I’ve been through and just being able to go to college and basically start a new life.”
Branden Whobrey: Shot for Me by Drake “It keeps saying over and over that I made it, and graduation, everyone said it wasn’t going to happen but it did so I made it. The whole song represents me. There’s a lot of stuff going on in my life, but through it all I still have my academics, and I’m graduating.” - Quotes compiled by Tevin McCullough and Marilyn Parker. For more responses from seniors, go to snntoday.pcsb.org and click on multimedia.
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Teachers with style
By CHELSEA HELT and DEVON ROGERS SNN Staff Writers
The teachers at Lakewood High School are not lacking personality or diversity. They come from many different walks of life, and teach in many distinctive styles, but have one goal in mind: to educate the Spartans. We polled Lakewood to see which teachers have the most effective teaching styles paired with their personality. We asked students to rank their favorite teachers based only on their personality and the effectiveness of their teaching style. Our goal was to determine the most effective teaching style for Lakewood Spartans. These three teachers rose to the top.
BASIL ROLLE | SNN
McIntosh teaches with a one-on-one style, as she is here with students Aaron Heron and Marilyn Parker to make sure that all of her students are actively learning. “You’re more tuned in because there’s so much excitement and such a positive atmosphere…It never gets old,” explains sophomore Ivan Summers Jr. That positive energy creates the ideal learning conditions for many of her students. Her energy level and age allow her to relate to her students in a way that many other teachers cannot, Summers said. McIntosh does not only teach her students reading strategies, but also imparts valuable life-long lessons to live by. “No matter how down you’re feeling, there’s always a positive side to things,” said Summers.
MARIAH WATTS | SNN
The engineering class is the brain child of teacher Ness, who also teaches physics I honors. The love and devotion for science is shared by both students, and teacher. “He shares our enthusiasm for what we’re learning,” said junior Ian Van Stralen. Ness’ sarcastic and witty personality is what makes his class unique and enjoyable for many of his pupils. While he may have a great style to his teaching, Van Stralen would like to see that style carry over into his closet. “He really ought to wear something other than a black polo for once.”
DEVON ROGERS | SNN
Squarciafico–Volz, commonly called Mrs. S, approaches learning in a unique way. Mrs. S uses her humor to engage students in world history and Advanced Placement psychology. Her ability to create jokes portrays the subject matter in a new light. “She’ll go into further detail so we actually know what we’re writing about, instead of just writing down chicken scratch,” said junior Cassidy Conover, a former student of Mrs. S. It is this attention to detail and humor that leaves a lasting impression on her students.
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Photos by Alexandra Bueno, Chelsea Helt, Clarissa Bradfield, Julie Smith-Frazier, Katie Blevins, Leon Tomlinson, Mariah Watts, Sherice Johnson, Marsela Sulku, Hannah Carlson, Destiny Johnson, Laterian Latimer and Sacaree Wright
gram. DESIGN BY KATIE ATKISSON
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Do something with your summer Ladies and gentlemen, it is that time of year again - summer - the glorious time for letting go of all your academic worries, giving no caution to the weekday curfew and catching some much needed rays. Summer is a time, however, that we see many students wasting. Being the helpful Spartan News Network (SNN) that we are, we would like to dole out advice from our own beach pails. While summer is fun for many, it can also be boring for a good few of us. But that’s okay - we have ways to combat that boredom. If, for whatever reason, you find yourself bored during the summer, or at odds with the world, we have some ideas that can help relieve said strains: • Get a summer job • Get a volunteer gig • Join/start a movement • Work for a presidential campaign • Start a band/music group • Study for SAT/ACT’s • Write a novel
All we’re saying is don’t let your summer go to waste. There are so many things out there to do. There is no need for anyone to come in and complain about how they had no fun and did nothing productive over the summer. But we’re not done fussing over summer just yet. SNN implores its readers to stay safe this summer. With the current state of affairs within the Union, the last thing Lakewood needs is for some student to go and get hurt. Make smart decisions over the summer. Stay away from wild parties; Stay away from drugs and alcohol; Do not jay-walk; Do not mess with anyone with a gun; Just stay safe. We would like to see all of you back here again, except, of course, all our graduating seniors. You guys can stay home. - This editorial was written by Zubin Kapadia, SNN Opinions Editor.
Give lunch privilege to seniors
Dear Editor: I do not agree with Katie Dickinson and Kim Koagel’s column,“It’d be grape to lettuce leave campus, peas!” (SNN, April 2012). They implied that all students should be able to leave Lakewood for lunch. I do think seniors should be able to. It’s unfair that even students who are 18 cannot leave campus for lunch when they are responsible enough to have a car! It would be fine if freshmen or even sophomores cannot leave school, but at least seniors should be able to. -Twee Mac, 9th grade
Thanks for the great work, SNN
Dear Editor, I just wanted to let you know that I really enjoy reading this newspaper. It has all the information I need to keep track of events. Plus it lets me find out the most interesting things about my fellow classmates. The real reason I am writing to you is to thank you for all the hard work you do! Thanks for the great photos and making the SNN look so amazing. -Jelena Paravinja, 10th grade
Share Your Opinions
Letters to the editor should be sent to email@example.com. They should concern an opinion on a featured editorial or news story. They must be signed, accurate and at most 150 words. Letters may be edited for taste, length and grammar.
New hallpass system is reasonable
Dear Editor, There is nothing ethically wrong with the new hall pass system. Five minutes is more than enough time to walk to the end of a hallway (in most cases), use the bathroom and get back to class. There are cases where more time is and should be allotted - for example, students in the 700s, the portable and C-Wing. With the exception of C-Wing all of those places have more time. If you do have a medical condition that affects your urinary tract and “Big Brother” comes looking for you because you are taking too long, you could inform “Big Brother” of your condition and measures could be taken to ensure you get plenty of time to do your business. Ultimately, the new system is to prevent the 10-minute pottybreaks, and if you are 30 seconds late getting back to class, no one is going to get on your case. -Andrea Vargas, 10th Grade
Phobia or OCD?
Dear Editor: Julie Smith-Frazer and Carlollee Bryan wrote about freshmen Kimberlee Bryant having a phobia of odd numbers. Kimberlee in my opinion does not have a fear of odd numbers. A phobia is defined as: an extreme or irrational fear of or aversion to something. Bryant said if her radio was set to an odd-numbered volume, she would have to change it to an even number. Rather than being a phobia, I may classify Bryant’s problem as a minor case of OCD. -Vikash N. Singh, 9th Grade
Staff Editor-in-Chief: Sofia Damos Managing Editor: Julia Pohlmann Designers: Chris Deister, Katie Atkisson Multimedia Editors: Katie Atkisson, Madeline Glassman Entertainment Editor: Symone Brown Online Editors: Molinseai Elcius, Jessica Thornton Web Technician: Lauren Hastings Opinion Editor: Zubin Kapadia
Code of Ethics
Serve others, not yourselves
Dear Editor, I thoroughly agree with the editorial by Zubin Kapadia regarding activism. There are a lot of students who do little to no active service. This generation isn’t used to protest. Little notable political-social change has gone on since the mid 1900s, besides the advent of the internet and an increased general awareness of its usages and influence. The internet has the potential to connect people all over the world, spread awareness and give knowledge to billions, but it only is worth something if you eventually power-off your screen and remember that we should be people in service of people, not in service of ourselves. -Nia Cumberlander, 10th Grade
Spartan News Network
As journalists for the Spartan News Network, we work together as a community with respect, professionalism, accuracy and curiosity. We collect information and dig deep to get to the bottom of the most current events to produce and distribute hard-hitting and honest news to the Lakewood community in a timely manner. SNN is an open forum that strives to accurately report a balanced and truthful depiction of the news while remaining objective. Our main goal at SNN is to build and maintain trust with the people, to give a voice to the voiceless and to succeed at not just painting the picture, but telling the story behind the art. SNN is produced by the students of Lakewood High School. 1400 54th Ave. S St. Petersburg, FL (727) 893-2916, ext. 2163 SNN is printed by Lakewood’s business partner, the Tampa Bay Times.
For more news, go to the SNN web site:
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Sex and violence: the great bias By TRISTAN SHULER
SNN Staff Writer
Parents of America, I am disappointed. The views I see represented by the masses seem to point to a need to shelter the “children” from the very means to further our species, and a complete ignorance of the violence that already plagues mankind. The issue I am referring to is the fact that the phallus of the Statue of David has to be censored in my history class, yet Modern Warfare 3 was the bestselling game of all time, with more 12 year olds online than you can shake the proverbial stick at. Indeed, it seems that it is socially acceptable for a pre-teen to shoot someone full of holes and yell
profanities online, yet an exposed penis will wreak havoc and cause a biblical apocalypse. If I may, here is a confounding example of what society’s acceptable violence causes: The most recent and relevant is the Norwegian trial of Anders Breivik, who last summer killed 69 teenagers at an island youth retreat. He said that he practiced his aim and desensitized himself by playing the videogame Modern Warfare 2. During the promotion of Modern Warfare 3 at a Modern Warfare 3 VIP party in Amsterdam, Dutch adult film actress Kim Holland was uninvited when Activision (the game’s production company) discovered her profession. She was quoted as saying: “People murdering people
is neat.…but love-makers are dirty?" Activision did not respond to her statement. In conclusion, I ask you, the reader and any parents who may be reading this, when has an awareness of the human body and its functions ever harmed anyone and do you want your child, online being desensitized to guns, bombs and blood? It seems to me that a trip to a museum with statues from the Grecian period that may have nude figures would be preferable to a reenactment from the Vietnam War.
You only live once – really?
Drake wrote a hit single called The Motto featuring Lil Wayne. Released in November 2011, its message: You only live once. Since then it has sparked a controversy among teenagers. By BRIAN DOZIER
By CLARISSA BRADFIELD
SNN Staff Writers
YOLO means “You Only Live Once.” To some teenagers it’s their motto. It means you should live up all your days on earth like it’s your last. Lots of teenagers take this saying seriously and are even getting the saying tattooed on them. I agree with this message. I try to live all my days to the fullest, especially while I’m young because you only get older. Rap artist Drake says YOLO means stop fearing the consequences of your actions. I think that people opposed to the YOLO message might say it is for people who think the decisions they make now won’t affect them in their future. For example, people say teenagers shouldn’t get tattoos because they may regret it later, but I say go ahead and do it if that’s something you want because you only live once. YOLO is very inspirational and is deeper than people think. Some adults probably just see it as a joke and as a saying that teenagers use as an excuse to act wild and do stupid things. However, it is something that should cross your mind when you have second thoughts about doing something you usually wouldn’t do. Don’t have second thoughts - just do it, because You. Only. Live. Once.
SNN Staff Writers
HARLEY WALLER | SNN
“You only live once: that’s the motto … (YOLO) We ‘bout it every day, every day, every day.” - Drake
“YOLO!” This is the abbreviation for “You Only Live Once.” Thanks to Drake, this is the new fad. You post something stupid you did this weekend on Facebook or Twitter; give it a hash tag with #YOLO, problem solved... but not really. Thank goodness Drake said it, because before The Motto I was definitely under the impression I had nine lives like a cat. Now that I know, however, I’ll be sure to make spur-of-the-moment decisions that I’d regret, but that doesn’t matter ‘cause YOLO. Teens use this phrase as an excuse for anything and everything they can. It’s an excuse to be irresponsible and do things they normally wouldn’t. The fact of the matter is, what you do now does affect your future. What you post on Facebook, Twitter or any other internet site will probably be seen by colleges and future employers. You’ll regret that stupid picture you posted while in high school. What goes on the internet never REALLY gets deleted; everything leaves a digital footprint. YOLO shouldn’t be a reason to live for the moment. It should be a reason to live to make the biggest impact in the world you can. To live the best life you can, not the craziest. The trend will fade soon, I hope. However, the need for attention never will. Drake will release yet another hit and everyone will hop on the next bandwagon.
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Herring’s hallways Two SNN students follow the behavior specialist around to find out about his typical day.
By JALISSA JORDAN and TRACY JOHNSON SNN Staff Writers
At 7:05 a.m. behavior specialist Maurice Herring walks through Lakewood High School’s double doors. “Soon as I touch ground … when school starts is when my day begins,” said Herring. On a typical day Herring, 35, has many duties: monitoring students’ progress in school, monitoring discipline and monitoring hallways. Trying to get kids to class on time is one of his main priorities. So he goes to his office, grabs his walkie talkie and monitors the area in front of the Intervention Center. Trying to get kids to think logically instead of doing the first thing that comes to mind is one of his most difficult task at work, said Herring. “Instead of doing the first thing that comes up, I want (the students) to use the analyzing process,” said Herring. At 9:20 a.m. Herring is at his desk completing a mentor list for incoming freshmen next year. “Keeping them on track and (trying) to eliminate some of the mistakes fellow freshmen have made,” said Herring, is the main goal of these mentoring lists. Later that day at 9:37 a.m. Herring talks to a student about a referral she had received. “Kids at Lakewood seem to get off track and, while off track, it leads to discipline issues before they seem to get back focused,” said Herring. Herring attended college at Bethune Cookman University and then attended Nova Southeastern University. Before Lakewood, he worked at Riviera Middle School
for three years as a behavior specialist. After Rivera Middle School shut down Herring was transferred to Lakewood. At 9:53 a.m. Herring and more administrators discuss a camera shot of students leaving school. Herring and the administrators then get two students out of class and question them about their whereabouts. School Resource Officer Lerric Boyd characterizes Herring as BARBARA NEAL|SNN “caring” because he has a general Behavior specialist Maurice Herring contacts faculty on his walkie talkie concern about students’ behavior in front of the front office on April 20. and success. three of the hall monitors so I gave up,” said Cooper. “He “He works with the students has changed the way I dress and think about school,” she to get them to where they need to be,” said Boyd. Boyd said. helps Herring by also handling behavior issues. The day winds down, and one of the final talks Herring Lakewood principal Robert Vicari has known Herring for two years now. When Vicari met Herring he was a math has is a long conversation with his colleagues. “I feel they support me, we converse and decisions are made,” he said. teacher at Lakewood. He later promoted him to behavior At 2:05 p.m. Herring’s last duty of the day is to open specialist, due to his good relationship with the student the student parking lot gates for the students to be released body. at the end of the day. Then he waits for the parking lot to “I support him; we have weekly meetings, which conclear out and locks its back. sist of plans and coming up with decisions,” said Vicari. “I wouldn’t change my job for anything,” he said. “I Freshman Ania Cooper said when she first met Herring love the kids and the faculty around me.” he was “all down her back” for dress code reasons. “I always tried to avoid him, but I never could dodge all
Card games take over bathroom break By STRADO VUKADIN and ELIAS VILLARREAL SNN Staff Writers
Photo Illustration by ELIAS VILLARREAL |SNN
Sophomore Mike Ferrandiz said he used to make $100 a week playing Tonk. “When I used to play, I made a rack a week,” said Ferrandiz, using a slang term for a stack of money. The problem is that administrators are getting sick and tired of walking into bathrooms and watching students gambling over a card game. “Gambling in school is against the law, period,” said Officer Lerric Boyd. There have been 10 referrals and two suspensions over Tonk since August 2011. All of these suspensions are males, because they have never caught a female playing Tonk. If an administrator catches a student playing Tonk, he would first confiscate his cards, and give him a warning. If the administrator catches the student playing a second time, he would get suspended, and if done a third time the police would be contacted. “It seems like an addiction,” said Boyd, who has a drawerful of confiscated cards. Most Tonk players start up at home, over a friendly game. Eventually they get a lot of experience and start to gamble to make some money off of it. The experienced Tonk players target rookies to the game, for an easy profit. The objective of the game is to empty your hand of cards as soon as possible. Some Tonk players do not gamble at all; they just play for fun. “It is a phenomenal game that requires strategy, and I always have fun,” said sophomore Michael Growney. These players think it would be fair if administrators only punished students who gamble during their Tonk games. “Tonk is a mind-stimulating game. It shouldn’t be illegal in school, unless you are gambling,” said Growney.
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One Direction: Two views
Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test: It’s a ‘rad read’
Some people love them. Some hate them. Here are two looks at the popular boy band One Direction.
By RYLEY BAKER SNN Staff Writer
By RODNEY NELSON and SARA EDWARDS SNN Staff Writers
One Direction is a British-Irish boy band that gained popularity on the show The X Factor. Niall Horan, Zayn Malik, Liam Payne, Harry Styles and Louis Tomlinson originally auditioned indiJASHAY WILLIAMS |SNN vidually until Simon Cowell thought that the combination of their voices would gain fame. They signed Cowell’s record label Syco Records after being formed and placing third in the seventh series of The X Factor and later signed with Columbia Records in North America. SARA EDWARDS: Late last year, I declared that I didn’t like One Direction because they suddenly started showing up on my Tumblr dashboard and Twitter Feed randomly. I didn’t know who they were or what genre of music they were, I just didn’t like them. When I got tired of seeing everyone talk about them, I gave them a shot. So I looked them up, listened to a song, and found myself listening to their whole album. There are more than several reasons why I like One Direction. First, the accents. Do I need to further explain? Accents just win over everyone automatically, no lie. Especially strong British accents, just another thing many people find attractive, including myself. Enough said. Second, they’re attractive. There are hundreds of bands out there, and One Direction is one of the few in which every member is good-looking. That was probably the main reason why I acknowledged that I didn’t like them beforehand. But when I scrolled through photos of them I was just thinking,
“Seriously? Why are all of them gorgeous?” Looks aren’t everything, but they are a bonus. Another reason why I love the guys of One Direction is because they have great voices. They’re all different, which is great because who would want a band full of the same singing voices? Last, they are five awesome and comical guys. While they were on X Factor, they’d upload weekly video diaries to YouTube. They weren’t just the normal videos updating you on the latest news; they are utterly random and humorous. They are probably the most humorous people that I’ve ever heard of. RODNEY NELSON: One Direction is a group of notalent losers between the ages of 18 and 20 with fans who are on average 13 years old. They are the most overrated group ever. They have one popular song and now all of a sudden they are “the best group ever”? Actually, they have plenty of songs but people have never heard of any of those besides What Makes You Beautiful. One reason I don’t like them is that they’re totally manipulating their target audience of insecure teenagers with their lyrics. In What Makes You Beautiful, for example, they say, “You're insecure, don’t know what for.” Second, their lyrics are not very creative. They sing the same words over and over again, because they don’t have the talent to come up with their own. One Direction does not always write their own lyrics, and their lyrics are very cliché. One Direction doesn’t have real talent; it’s all studio noise. They sound like a bunch of auto-tuned kids. They don’t have real talent. They can’t be a band because they don’t know how to play any instruments. . Finally, I don’t have any problem with pop music - just not the way they do it.
The first time I read this book, published in 1968, I found myself unable to put it down even for a second. Author Tom Wolfe does a fabulous job creating a chronicle of the 1960’s hippie movement, tackling the cultural icons of that era. The book describes Ken Kesey’s experiments with LSD, as well as Kesey’s marijuana bust and the nuFarrar Straus Giroux merous acid tests that were held throughout the ‘60s The acid tests were mass gatherings of the hip folk where guests unknowingly took acid. Wolfe does a great job documenting the vibes on the bus, what they call the “synchronization” of all the Pranksters in every moment. This is a rad read because it tells you a lot about the effects of LSD and you really get to know the characters and what the ‘60s scene was like. I read this book twice because I didn’t fully understand the chapter in which a young girl explained her first acid trip. The book makes you feel like you are one of the Pranksters, or that you’re actually at the Trips Festival, a three-day event that featured the Grateful Dead. After one of Kesey’s marijuana busts, he decided to hide out in Mexico, and the Merry Pranksters split up. However, society was already turned on to psychedelics. The revolution lived on; psychedelic drugs even influenced music in this time. I think it’s safe to say Kesey and the Merry Pranksters played a rather large role in shaping the whole hippie era. So, if the hippie generation is your thing, groove on this book. If you can’t dig reading, see the movie. Either way, become knowledgeable of how psychedelics shaped the ‘60s.
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Super spots for tasty treats
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The Cuppy, one of the favorites at The Cupcake Spot, 405 Central Avenue in St. Petersburg. It’s a strawberry cupcake with vanilla bean buttercream icing and topped off with a sour cherry ball.
Paciugo’s Gelato and Cafe By MARSELA SULKU and NASTASSJA SIELCHAN SNN Staff Writers
I scream, you scream, we all scream for … gelato? Paciugo’s Gelato and Café is one of the most popular gelato places in town. Out of 44 franchises in the country, Paciugo’s, at 300 Beach Drive in downtown St. Petersburg, is the number one store in the whole country, said store manager Brad Augustine. Paciugo’s is a cozy café with friendly people. Thirty-two unique flavors of gelato are served each MARSELA SULKU|SNN day, the most popular flavor being fondente, a rich chocolate flavor. Gelato, an Italian-style ice cream, An employee at Paciugo’s scoops is a healthier alternative because it has less fat and cappuccino-flavored gelato in a cone. Paciugo’s has about 250 calories. flavors available. “We don’t change out the flavors,” said Augustine. “I changed two today and that’s about all I can get away with ‘cause people will come from Tampa over, and if their flavor isn’t here they get a little upset.” Paciugo’s Gelato gets numerous visits and sells more than 18,000 cups of gelato each month. Gelato prices range from $3.99-$5.55. Gelato costs a little more than ice cream, but it’s definitely worth it. “Paciugo’s is an amazing, family friendly café. I love coming here,” said a long-time customer Kathryn Snow. It’s open every day. In addition to gelato, sundaes, coffee, pastries and soft drinks are also served.
Candy Kitchen By SHANIECE MATHEW and MAE PEMBERTON
The Cupcake Spot
SNN Staff Writers
By SHANIECE MATHEW and MAE PEMBERTON SNN Staff Writers
With a variety of 18 cupcakes, you’re sure to get what you want at this sweet shop. The Cupcake Spot, 405 Central Ave. in St. Petersburg, opened its doors to the public in January 2009. The Cupcake Spot has all kinds of cupcakes from the Chocolate Elvis, which is the most unique flavor, to the Red Velvet, which is the most popular flavor. The store also has seasonal cupcakes, and the Key Lime cupcake is out now for the summer. Two workers, Zach Harter and Spencer DeHaven, bake all the cupcakes every morning. “I’ve always enjoyed cooking. I’ve had worse jobs, but we love baking,” said DeHaven. Harter’s favorite cupcake is the Berry Squared cupcake, and DeHaven’s favorite is the Better Thans. The media spotlight was on the Cupcake Spot several times because of its tasty treats, especially for the Better Thans cupcake, which is a chocolate chip cupcake with either chocolate ganache or cream cheese and chocolate chip icing. We had several favorites when we visited, including the S’mores cupcake, the Buckeye cupcake, which is a chocolate cake covered in peanut butter buttercream and topped with a dollop of chocolate ganache, and of course the famous Better Thans cupcake, but with chocolate ganache. The cupcakes were very moist, but the icing was a bit too sweet, depending on your liking of sweetness, but still very tasty. They were also well decorated and looked like they were just baked. So, if you’d like a one-of-a-kind sweet indulgence, head on over to the Cupcake Spot.
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If you’re in the mood for a variety of sweet indulgences, or want to try candies from back in the day, then this small, candy wonderland is the place for you. Candy Kitchen, 13711 Gulf Blvd. on Madeira Beach, originally opened in 1950 and is still standing in that same spot today. Although the store sells all kinds of candies, it is best known for its home-
made fudge, ice cream and nostalgic candies. Even though the store is tiny, there’s a lot that fits in it. From the ceiling to the floor, and wall to wall, this candy market has every kind of candy, ice cream and chocolate you want. Employee Jenny Leigh has been working at candy kitchen for six years now, and says she loves every bit of it. “It’s family oriented, and fits my schedule,” says Leigh. One interesting part of the shop is all the signatures on the ceiling. Candy Kitchen started a tradition that for the “new millennium” they would allow customers to sign the ceiling. Customers also get involved by donating their Pez sticks for display on the shelves. Aside from the enormous amount of candy, the ice cream there is quite delightful and interesting. They have everything from traditional popular chocolate and vanilla, to exotic coconut, cherry vanilla, black raspberry and caramel apple cheese cake. We tried the ice cream and we must say, it’s the creamiest and smoothest ice cream we’ve ever eaten. Not too sweet, just perfect. Once you come out of the shop, you must visit the bathroom, which is covered in candy wrappers form floor to ceiling. So the next time you’re seeking an exciting candy experience, give Candy Kitchen on Madeira Beach a try.
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‘Battle Royale’ and No light for Dark Shadows ‘Hunger Games’ fight to the death By TRISTAN SHULER SNN Staff Writer
By CHELSEA HELT SNN Staff Writer
The parallels between Battle Royale and The Hunger Games are obvious. If Battle Royale and Twilight had a child, The Hunger Games would be the result. Hunger Games author Suzanne Collins took the basic story line of Battle Royale and sugar coated it with simple fifth-grade level language and a lot of romance to appeal to a mass market. The Hunger Games has been dominating our pop culture for months and for Takami to get near to no recognition for his amazing piece of literature is unbelievable. The Hunger Games will never be able to reach the ranks of Battle Royale. Koushun Takami’s Battle Royale is set in a semi-fictional fascist country called the Republic of Greater East Asia, which seems to be a combination of North Korea and Japan. Every year the government chooses a class of children to be placed on an island and forced to kill each other. Before the students leave ground zero they are equipped with a 100 percent waterproof and shockproof necklace that monitors pulse and location and is comprised of explosives, given a survival kit filled with food, water, a map of the island, a compass, and a random weapon that can range from a machine gun to a rusty fork. They are also informed of the various rules: You must not go into danger zones (locations on the island that continue to increase in number and size as the duration of the Battle Royale continues), you must not swim off the island, and you must not attempt to take off your necklace.
If any of these rules are broken, your necklace explodes. And if someone is not killed every 24 hours then everyone’s necklaces will explode. The novel intimately follows 42 students (21 girls and 21 boys) as they deal with their Ohta Shuppan minute-by-minute hardships and warfare among each other. The novel focuses in on three students: Shuya, a teenage boy with a passion for guitar and American rock ‘n’ roll; Noriko, Shuya’s quiet and innocent love interest; and Shogo, the loner of the class. These three eventually become allies. Takami created a truly amazing dystopian book. He analyzes the psychology behind nearly every one of the students’ creative yet realistic deaths, references Bruce Springsteen’s music throughout the book and includes just the right touch of romance all while conveying a political message attacking a form of government. It is a nearly perfect piece of work with countless dimensions within it. My only complaint is the Japanese names are a little difficult to keep track of.
For a movie based on a soap opera from the ‘60s, Dark Shadows can pride itself as being just as confusing as a film made in the ‘90s, The Matrix. The plot is not the issue, although the exact primary want of the protagonist seems to waver. The issue with this film is that the genre freely jumps around from horror to romance to drama to comedy and back to romance. In TV commercials the movie bills itself as a comedy, but it’s only real comedic value is the culture shock and unfamiliarity the main character, Barnabus Collins, has to deal with after awakening in the 20th century. Actual jokes are few and far between and are all primarily sexual. The few moments when the movie addresses Barnabus’s vampirical “needs” happen off camera and are just hokey. All of the adult actors deliver great performances and the special effects are
wonderfully done. The protagonist (Johnny Depp) and the antagonist (Eva Green) square off fantastically with witty banter flying back and forth like the Luftwaffe. The nod to the werewolf from the original series comes far too late in the film to deliver anything other than a “what was that about?” With a wonderful soundtrack from the ‘70s and even with an ending you will see coming a mile away, Dark Shadows is worth the price of admission. Just don’t expect any Oscars from this tribute that could have gone a lot worse.
21 Jump Street is hilarious By SYMONE BROWN SNN Staff Writer
Funny man Jonah Hill and heartthrob Channing Tatum join forces to make one of the funniest action comedies of the year. 21 Jump Street, directed by Phil Lord and Chris Miller, is a must-see, ridiculously hilarious film. The movie is based on the ‘80s television series 21 Jump Street. The show and the film share the same concept: youthful-looking cops go on undercover missions in high schools and colleges. The original show had a four-year run, airing over 100 episodes. Johnny Depp starred in it during his early career. He also makes a small appearance in the film. The 2012 remake is centered on the endeavors of slacker/rookie cops Schmidt (Hill) and Jenko (Tatum) during their undercover assignment, 21 Jump Street. Their mission is to discover the new synthetic drug phenomenon and put a stop it. They must pose as high school students to get the job done. The duo will do anything and everything to infiltrate the drug ring and bust the suppliers while surviving this quirky high school. 21 Jump Street is an outrageous, Bad Boys-esque, laugh-out-loud film. It pokes fun at today’s new fads. For example, the high school popular kids aren’t good-looking jocks and gorgeous cheerleaders, they’re hipsters. Tatum and Hill make the perfect brains-andbronze pair. Together, they make this film a good one.
Jack White album a must-have for blues fans
By TRISTAN SHULER SNN Staff Writer
Jack White’s newest piece of work is in fact, a piece of work. Hitting far off the mark of what one would expect from a Jack White solo album, it can be described as the best breakup record of the 21st century. Soft bluesy tracks perfected by a backup band Third Man Records of all-male or all-female musicians with the occasional harp and bass thrown in decorate the album seamlessly. The invocation
of the hard rock tracks like Sixteen Saltines and I’m Shakin are rare but give the album the push to keep listeners from dropping their headphones. White, the eccentric musician oft thought of as the next Jimmy Page, is known best for his work as the guitarist and vocalist for the band, The White Stripes. His other famous groups include the two super-groups: The Raconteurs and The Dead Weather. On his solo project, Blunderbuss, the most interesting track on the album is without a doubt Freedom At 21. The track has a twangy beach-rock guitar riff with White
singing at such a tempo he actually ends up rapping at the climax of the tune. The rest of the record is filled with mild-mannered tracks mainly in the form of mourning love songs and regret-filled piano ballads. The single, Love Interruption, may be irritable at first, but a few more listens will have you humming along with the chorus. The album as a whole may seem a bit too soft or slow to a casual Jack White fan, but in reality it is a return to his true music genre, blues. This album is a must-have for any blues or Jack White fan.
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Most valuable spartans Flag football
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Football coach Cory Moore chose quarterback Tracy Johnson, junior, as this year’s MVP. “He’s a good leader on and off the field, with a good work ethic, and (he) exemplifies what we stand for as a team,” said Moore. “It’s a big accomplishment. I put in a lot of work in my off season with my receivers,” said Johnson.
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Basketball coach Anthony Lawrence chose forward Jacobi Boykins, a sophomore, and junior Shabazz Waller as the MVP. “Jacobi was athletic, did a lot of things for us … and he’s only a sophomore,” said coach Anthony Lawrence. Boykins said he is optimistic about next year. “I feel (we’ll do) better than we did this year, all the way to states,” said Boykins.
Junior Avni Agrawal, was named MVP for the 2012 Lakewood tennis team by the team and coach. “I’m proud of myself for being MVP two years in a row, and I plan on being MVP next year,” she said. Agrawal practices over the summer and after school nearly every day, and tennis coach Brian Taylor can tell that it pays off.
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Coach Eric Ventura picked junior Sydney Taylor-Heyward as his MVP. “Not only is she extremely talented, but she is dependable and a hard worker,” Ventura said. Ventura is happy Taylor-Heyward is returning next year, and Ventura believes that they will have a good team next year. TaylorHeyward was pleased when she learned that Ventura had picked her as the top player. “I was just one of the people that never quit,” she said.
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Girls basketball coach Necole Tunsil chose forward Kasey Drayton as MVP for the team. “Pretty much she led us offensively and defensively and she was a big leader on our team this year,” said Tunsil. “I feel good,” said Drayton, a junior. “I think we’re gonna do pretty good . Hopefully we’ll get back to states,” she said about next year.
Berkley Whaley was an MVP on and off the court this year. Whaley got a full-ride scholarship to the University of Florida for volleyball and left Lakewood in January for Gainesville. “She was a great worker, and she had unbelievable athleticism,” said assistant coach Jovanie Aponte. Whaley lead her team to the regional finals. “The team will definitely miss her. We won’t be the same, but I think we have a good chance of making it to regionals again,” Aponte said.
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Golf coach John Toronski decided to let the team decide MVP, and sophomore Lance Smith was chosen because he’s reliable and has good character. “I had consistent scores throughout the year, and I guess the other students thought I was the best one,” said Smith.
- SNN Staff Writers Elijah Flewellen, Owen Dyches, KC Shelton, Amelia Alberts, Dre Walker and Sara-Kay West conributed to this story.
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Track and field coach Anthony Snead chose sophomore Devontae Persha as this year’s MVP for the track team because he broke the 800-meter record by two seconds, coming in at 1.57. “I think it’s a great honor,” said Pershay, who runs the 800m, the 4X8 and the mile and competes in the high jump. “I’m very happy.”
Coach Anthony Snead chose Sharell Keys as MVP for the girls track team because “she broke her own record” in the 100m dash with a time of 12.03, he said. “I work hard enough. He (coach Snead) always tells me ‘hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work,’ ” said Keys.
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Baseball coach Jayce Ganchou chose shortstop and pitcher Cornelius Copeland, junior, for his MVP. Copeland led the team in home runs with two. “When you have a very, very, very good player, you call him a 5-tool player. He can hit, he can hit for power, he can throw, he is fast, and he has leadership,” Ganchou said. “It’s one of my best seasons so far. I worked really hard and it paid off,” said Copeland.
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Coach Hayley Forsyth chose sophomore Mariah Watts as this year’s MVP. “Skill wise, Mariah Watts had the highest batting average. She has a very good (earned-run average) as a pitcher, and she leads by example,” said Forsyth. “It’s a real honor to be MVP,” said Watts. “(It) shows that hard work pays off.”
Senior Josh Conradi was a standout on the swim team, getting Coach James Kostka’s MVP nod. “Josh led the team in and out of the water. He was courteous and polite, and helped with all the team functions,” said Kostka. Conradi reached the regional finals for swimming this year. “I think it’s an honor to be named the swim team MVP. I felt that I was a good swimmer and extremely helpful,” Conradi said.
Senior Madalyn Golightly led the dive team, placing in the top 10 at the statewide diving competition. “I think I received the MVP award because I’m a good team player and I contributed a lot,” said Golightly. Coach James Kostka said losing Golightly will be hard. “It is hard to match her skill and aptitude.We hope to continue to build the dive team so that Madalyn will not only leave behind a legacy, but also serve as a keystone from which we shall build,” said Kostka.
Senior Steven Doyle was named MVP for boys’ soccer by coach Matt Gorny, who described him as “a leader, strong and a smart defender.” Doyle said, “I’m really proud. I worked my way up and am happy I got this far my last year.” He started his sophomore year as a team manager and got to practice with the team but didn’t get to play, and by his senior year he moved up to sweeper and team co-captain.
Senior Katy Lally, who is a sweeper and forward, was named MVP for the second year in a row. “I wasn’t surprised to get MVP because I worked really hard and got it last year,” said Lally. She will be playing soccer as a walk-on at Florida Atlantic University. She said she wishes the best to her team. “I hope I left them with a better sense of team. Work hard and try hard every day,” said Lally.
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Moore takes no breaks By JALON EDWARDS SNN Staff Writer
Lakewood head football coach Cory Moore will be busy this summer – including a stint working for the Jacksonville Jaguars. Early in the summer, Moore will travel to three universities, working as an offensive coach: on June 5 he will be at Florida State; on June 12 he will be at Notre Dame University; and on June 16, he will travel to University of Alabama. Then Moore goes to Austin, Texas, on June 18, where he will be the linebacker’s coach for the USA football team. Finally, on July 25, Moore will go to Jacksonville to intern as the assistant special teams coach for the Jacksonville Jaguars. Moore played in the National Football League for the Minnesota Vikings and has always wanted to coach at the NFL level, he said. “This is my journey … or quest to be-
coming an NFL coach,” Moore said. Moore will not get paid while he works for the Jaguars, but he said getting experience is worth more. Moore said his family will not attend, and his living and food expenses will be covered by the coaching program. Moore will be out for parts of Lakewood football practice in July and August, but other coaches will cover for him, he said. “I think he will come back with different (ideas),” Lakewood wide receiver Rodney Adams said. Adams, a junior, will also be in Texas to play in the USA vs. the World football game, and will be in Austin from June 26 to July 8, training at the University of Texas. -SNN Staff Writers Katie Blevins and Ben Effiom contributed to this story.
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Coach Cory Moore coaches spring football practice on May 14. This summer Moore is lined up to help coach the Jacksonville Jaguars. “I think it’s a dream come true; it’s really a blessing. I mean I got an opportunity that most high school coaches never get. I’m really excited,” said Moore.
New year comes with new test for athletes By TONY O’NEAL SNN Staff Writer
In the summer of 2012 Lakewood coaches will get a breath of relief when the athletic program brings ImPACT into play. ImPACT stands for Immediate PostConcussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing. According to impacttest.com, it is a test that determines if a player has recovered enough to return to playing a sport after a concussion. ImPACT, which was created by doctors Mark Lovell and Joseph Maroon, assesses a player’s attention span, working memory and reaction time among other things by comparing an individual’s original “baseline” test results to their post-injury results. All athletes will get a first test, the baseline test, before they start their season, said health teacher and trainer Erika Miller. Then if a student receives a head injury, he or she will get a second test. It will be compared to the first to determine whether a student has recovered from a concussion. They both give a coach the knowledge to let a child play or not, said football coach Cory Moore.
“It’s a good test. It takes pressure off of all the trainers,” Moore said. Miller decided to bring the test to Lakewood because of all the media attention and long-term effects of concussions. Lakewood is receiving the ImPACT for free for one year from Dick’s Sporting Goods, but after that the school will have to pay $500. Dan Reaves, a defensive back for Lakewood’s football team, got a concussion during practice this year before the season started. Because of the injury, he said he chose not to play the season. He thinks the ImPACT test will benefit athletes. “It’s good because it will help determine if you have a concussion, because you don’t want to get hurt more,” Reaves said. -SNN staff writer Katie Blevins, Nastassja Sielchan and Brooke Skinner contributed to this story.
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BoSox fan in Rays’ land
By OWEN DYCHES SNN Staff Writer
“Beasts of the East” and “9=8”. Anywhere you go in St. Petersburg you’ll see these slogans on t-shirts. These shirts are worn by Rays’ fans, promoting their “winning” ways. Most people in the area wouldn’t mind these shirts, except Red Sox fans. I was born in Boston, so you can expect that I’m a fan of all the city’s teams. I’m not trying to trash all the Tampa Bay area sports teams here – oh, wait, yes I am - but I really only have to worry about the Rays. The Red Sox and unfortunately the Yankees dominated the American League East for the first eight years of the Rays franchise. The Rays first winning season was when they changed their colors and name. They wound up making the playoffs that year, and reaching the World Series, ousting the Red Sox in a close game seven win. The thing some Rays fans don’t realize is that the Rays only won a single game in the World Series. Congratulations. After witnessing the Sox first World Series in 86 years during the 2004 playoffs, Red Sox nation felt invincible. Three years later, we swept the Rockies to win our eighth World Series. After we lost the American League Championship Series to the Rays, we struggled for the next couple of years. In 2011, we were nine games up on the Rays for the Wild Card spot in the playoffs, heading into the pivotal month of September. The Red Sox wound up going 7-20, suffering the biggest collapse in Major League history. On game 162, the last game of the regular season, magic happened for the Rays. The Sox lost to the Orioles in extras, and Evan Longoria went deep to vault the Rays into the playoffs. Now, it’s an obvious fact. The Rays made the playoffs, Boston didn’t. But if you think about it logically, the Rays still had to mount a huge comeback. They didn’t win the division. And if you think about it, the Rays almost didn’t even make the playoffs. The Red Sox fired long time manager Terry Francona because he couldn’t control the team, as some of the players were eating chicken and drinking beer in the clubhouse before and after the games. With the absence of a great manager, the Sox decided to hire Bobby Valentine. So far, the Rays are in________ place, behind the _____. The Red Sox are in ______ place. The only problem I have with Rays fans is how excited they get about one little thing. The Rays swept the Yankees to begin the season 3-0. They took to the message boards the next day talking of a World Series appearance this year. After three games. A little pre-mature, no? It’s still a very, very long season. And history shows that the Rays tend to struggle more in the months of June, July and September. So, Rays fans, let’s wait a little longer before we start buying our World Series tickets.
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Outdoor classroom, Feb. 29
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Spartan field, Sept. 2, 2011
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James Kostka’s room, Feb. 22
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Lakewood High School, Jan. 31
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Spartan field, Feb. 16
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Spartan field, Nov. 16, 2011
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Swim practice, March 15
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Lakewood High School, Sept. 26, 2011