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(Photo by Isabella Fu)

GUN VIOLENCE PREVENTION Read more on pages 8-9

Table of Contents 3 News

6 Features

The Staff Editors-in-Chief Copy Editors News Editor Features Editor In-Depth Editor Sports Editors Photo Editors Art Editors

(Photo by Bradford Siwak)

8 In-Depth

(Art by Katie Bry)

(Photo by Aaron Greenberg)

11 A&E

Business Manager Webmaster Writers

(Photo by Anya Tullman)

12 Sports

14 Opinions

Photographers (Photo by Carolina Alisio)

audrey wang w ART EDITOR

Our Policy Panorama is a monthly newspaper that strives to inform and entertain students, staff and community members and to uphold professional standards of accuracy and fairness. The publication hopes to engage the student body by eliciting dialogue among our readers. It aims to reflect the diversity of the population it serves and observes the journalistic principle of doing no harm. Panorama is produced nine times per school year by the journalism class of Ladue Horton Watkins High School at 1201 S. Warson Rd., St. Louis, Missouri 63124. The publication lab is located in Room 216, (314)-993-6447 ext. 5844.

Artists Adviser

Isabella Fu Aaron Greenberg Julia Biest Sasha Rice Sophia Li Lily Hauptman Katie Bry Glen Morgenstern Sam Shevitz Michael Burke Sophia Garland Audrey Wang Annie Zheng Michael Burke Max Baker Jackson Bry Connie Chen Ope Falako Alex Fu Mackenzie Hines-Wilson Joel Hsieh Felix Hu Anik Jain Grace Kim Parris King-Levine Malavika Kumaran Albert Liu Ryan Miller Adam Rush Katie Shaw Hope Shimony Bradford Siwak Hannah Suffian Anya Tullman Cindy Wang Carolina Alisio Claire Englander Jordan Ganzer Davina Lettau Rhiannon Rhoads Madi Ward Abby Yearout Claudia Zegel Jack Glon Simon Nguyen Aleesha Shi Sarah Semmel

Read more online at Follow @laduepanorama

Panorama welcomes and encourages letters to the editor. Please bring signed letters to Room 216. Panorama reserves the right to revise submissions as long as original intent remains unaltered. Cover design by Aaron Greenberg.

3 The annual senior One-Acts strike back panorama


Seasoned theater students direct their own skits

HEART TO HEARTw In “Bookends,” senior Stephanie Zhong and freshman Tori Campos practice their lines as Amy and Vivian, respectively. (Photo by Claudia Zegel)

connie CHEN news writer

"Bookends" Director: Senior Annika Schlesinger Cast:

Senior Stephanie Zhong as Amy Freshman Tori Campos as Vivian

Plot: One partner in a recently-broken-up re-

lationship seeks out the full truth from the other about what happened. What was the real reason, the actual catalyst to their downfall?


Freshman David Steiner as Frederic Freshman Trey Schwartz as John Senior Emilie Barrett as Val Sophomore Abigail Yearout as Avy Senior Zach Bush as Officer

Plot: A young boy thinks there's a monster

under his bed and has nightmares. His parents want him to grow up, but, at the same time, feel validated, so they go along with his story. “Rid of These” follows the events that occur as a result of this decision.

Bohnert take advice from senior Julia Kennedy. (Photo by Claire Englander)

"Check, Please"

"Love in the Evening"

Director: Senior Jamie Tao

Director: Senior Journey Smith



Senior Lydiah Russell as Girl Junior Gabe Deck as Guy Sophomore Will Carr as Louis Sophomore Rebecca Cunningham as Melanie Freshman Antonio Amore Rojas as Ken Freshman Julia Monsey as Mary

Junior Sahana Raju as Amelia Freshman Simone Liu as Auguste Junior Annie Heartney as Emerson Junior Levi Dyson as Finnegan

Plot: The skit follows the life of three sis-

marriage and happiness, but it can also go extremely wrong. “Check, Please” follows a group of blind dates that continuously worsen. Could anything good come out of this?

ters: Amelia, Auguste and Emerson. Auguste, the youngest sister, is struggling in choosing between her relationship with her boyfriend, Finnegan, and school while her two older sisters, Amelia and Emerson, have heartfelt discussions about their life choices.


"The Menace"

Plot: Dating can go really right and end in

"Rid of These" Director: Senior Jared Israel

STAGE BREAK w In “The Menace,” sophomore Luke Minkler and junior Katie

Director: Senior Margaret Moran Cast:

Sophomore Sunny Lu as Jamie Senior Annie McNutt as Rosie Sophomore Courvaun Hill as Robert Sophomore Will Carr as Mike Sophomore Celeste Liu as Jill

Plot: Jamie, a 25-year-old woman living with

her boyfriend Rob, is told that she is to take care of her younger sister, Rosie, a 23-year-old woman with autism. Rosie had been living with her mother at home, but recently, her mother has fallen sick and is unable to care for Rosie.

Director: Senior Julia Kennedy Cast:

Junior Katie Bohnert as Dani Sophomore Luke Minkler as Jasper



eng w A

annie zh

Take 2

Plot: After not seeing each other for a while,

two young adults, Dani and Jasper, meet once again in the airport. They had been friends and acquaintances back in the day and “The Menace” follows their conversation in which they catch up on each other’s lives and ask each other about the reasons behind their past actions.


Wait for it:



Ladue theater and choir students go see the hit musical “Hamilton”

der Hamilton, who was an advisor to George Washington and later became a leader of the connie CHEN Federalist party. Additional benefits of the field news writer trip included the opportunity for students to get to know each other better. hoir and theater members jumped on a bus for “Both of the choir classes [went], and a field trip April 4. Their destination: Chicago. so usually in choir you are only really good They were off to see the hit musical “Hamilton.” friends with your section, but now you get to The choir made the plans last year for this Chicago go mingle with the other sections and the other trip. The 360° Chicago observatory atop the John Hanclasses,” LaMore said. “It is a really great way cock Center, Chinatown and the Magnificent Mile were to increase our strength as a group.” just a few places the students visited. They were excited The students had to pay to see the live musical. a fee close to $200 for the “Last year, we all chose “Hamilton” is a more interesting way tickets. The school provided Chicago because it is pretty easy to get to,” senior to describe Alexander Hamilton’s some money for transportation Donna LaMore said. “There history in a way that everyone can and part of the ticket expense. TILTING TEENS w The students visit the 360° Chicago observaOverall, most people thought are a lot of things to do engage [in] and enjoy. tory before seeing “Hamilton.” (Photo by Bradford Siwak) the price was worth it. there, and a lot of people freshman Allison Rea “‘Hamilton’ is a very new and imporare willing to go. Especially Lowery wanted to go on a trip to Chicago because tant musical,” Lowery said. “It has many when [choir teacher Tom] he believed that it would benefit students. He thought different influences in it, and it incorporates hip-hop and Lowery mentioned the possibility to see ‘Hamilton,’ we experiencing “Hamilton” would increase the students’ rap into a musical that’s actually set in a time period of all wanted to go.” excitement and enthusiasm for learning because of the the 1700s of our Founding Fathers. It’s historical in the Lowery originally bought 40 tickets. He gave choir musical’s modern perspective on one of America’s foundsense that it’s broadening the spectrum of the musical students the chance to sign up for the trip first. Because ing fathers. The musical is famous for its infusion of theater genre.” he still had more tickets, however, he let theater students hip-hop in its songs. Usually, the choir goes on a field trip every three or sign up as well. “If I can provide an experience for students to see four years, but this year was different. Because so many “Tickets are expensive if you try to buy them on your something that they are really excited for, it’s going to people demonstrated their interest “Hamilton,” the choir own,” Lowery said. “I am on a mailing list, so when make them happier students,” Lowery said. “They are decided to see the musical in Chicago this year. group tickets become available, I get emails about them, going to be more interested in our class and the things “‘Hamilton’ is a more interesting way to describe and that’s how I got the tickets.” we do, and they are going to grow as a group of students. Alexander Hamilton’s history in a way that everyone can The students learned about American history because They also make more lasting and close friendships when engage [in] and enjoy,” freshman Allison Rea said. “Hamilton” covers the work of founding father Alexan[they] spend more time with people and travel.” h


Ladue students participate in German Day German speakers show off their language skills


adam RUSH news writer

wenty Ladue students attended German Day at Washington University in St. Louis April 6. The festivities were open to all levels of German students and involved more than 18 schools from Missouri and Illinois. Competitors participated in spelling bees, trivia games, scavenger hunts and more. German teacher Debbie Lund has approximately 80 students enrolled in all her classes. While she could only take 20 students from her classes to German Day this year, she felt grateful that they were able to attend. “I enjoy going [to German day with my students] every year,” Lund said. “A spelling bee sounds kind of lame, but in fact, students get pretty excited when they do well and advance

in the bracket. Other universities do similar things in other cities and with other languages. It’s a way of supporting the learning of languages other than English.” Lund first went to German Day as a graduate student at WashU. She began to assist with German Day, and she has been back with her students every year since she first started working at Ladue. “As a teacher, it is a chance to see other area German teachers and witness the achievements of their students,” Lund said. “[You also get to see them] in skits, posters, spelling, poetry recitation and video production.” Senior Luke Biernbaum attended the event this year for the first time. He had heard about German Day during freshman year and didn’t want to miss his last chance to participate.

“I’ve still been busy this year, but I realized I should go ahead and take this opportunity since it’s my last year,” Biernbaum said.

and there’s a winner for that. There’s also a German spelling bee that you participate in with your school, and then the trivia game [was] new this year.” According to Lund, German Day helps students get a sense of their progress in the language. Lund’s favorite part about German is exposing her students to new experiences, and she sees German Day as an ideal opportunity to do so. “For students, it is a chance to compete with annie zheng ART EDITOR Biernbaum chose other German skills in fun the spelling bee as his German ways and interact with other Day event this year because he students of German,” Lund said. had never participated in one “Acquiring a foreign language before. Ultimately, he enjoyed takes years, and it’s nice to see the range of offered activities. how you measure outside of the “There are a couple activiclassroom.” ties that happen during the day,” Leading up to German Biernbaum said. “There’s a Day, students brushed up their section where you can recite a grammar and vocabulary skills. poem in German for an audience, Many were eager to compete. w

“German Day is the culmination of a lot of work, especially for students who recite poetry from memory,” Lund said. “[My favorite part about German Day is] sharing with my students different ways of seeing the world. Learning a new language opens windows in your mind.” Sophomore Patrick Kovalak chose to do the scavenger hunt this year. Kovalak, who attended German Day last year, went again because he believed it would help him continue his linguistic and academic growth. Research by the Eton Institute has proven that learning another language increases brain power, strengthens memory and improves reading skills. “[I was] pretty excited [before German Day], and it was a lot of fun to come back this year,” Kovalak said. “I like the competition that takes place, [and I think] it will help me in learning new things throughout life.” h

5 panorama Seniors take on the annual Night of Percussion


Seniors conclude their high school musical career on a high note bradford SIWAK


news writer

sophia LI

news editor

enior percussion students bid farewell to percussion director Michael Faris and the percussion program at the 26th annual Night of Percussion. The April 12 performance consisted of 17 pieces as well as student-led presentations in the PAC. Unlike other school musical performances, the event only features percussion instruments. Such instruments, like drums and xylophones, are defined as those that create sound when hit or otherwise scraped. “Whether you like music or not, percussion is really enjoyable to listen to,” senior Jacob Cytron said. “It’s not everyday you hear an ensemble made up of entirely percussion. It’s something unique.” Because Night of Percussion is the last major performance by the seniors, it serves as a

final farewell. The put on the best seniors celebrate their show possible,” high school musical Shuchart said. experience with a fun “The recording mixture of songs. process was kind “We take it very seof strenuous, riously because, when but it’s super the time comes, we cool having a all want to be at our real professional best,” freshman Alecrecording.” zander Hines said. After the vid“[Music] influences eo, the seniors my life a lot because dedicated time to I’ve always done talk about what music, but coming to DRUM ROLL w During their final performance, upperaspects of music classmen percussionists show off their musical skills in front of do percussion really they considered percussion director Michael Faris. (Photo by Bradford Siwak) [makes me want] to to be important pursue music as a career.” fun making great music together. to them. They each delivered a During the time spent together From start to finish, it’s electric.” speech to the audience. practicing music in high school, “Percussion is more than just One of the highlights of the the seniors grew closer. The a class; it’s a culture and a pasnight was the seniors’ video. students inevitably learned more time,” Cytron said. “The lessons, Senior Ethan Shuchart played about each other while learning rehearsals, solo competitions, the title characer in a parody of various songs and skills. auditions, recording sessions and “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.” The “When they see us in band, seniors put as much time into the performances [all took up] a lot they think we just play band video as they did practicing their of my time, but if I could do it all instruments, but it’s more than over again, I definitely would.” musical numbers. that,” Hines said. “We actually After their speeches, the “We stayed after school and build a bond together [and] have seniors gave gifts to Faris. The used Seminars to make sure we

gifts consisted of a microphone that plugs into a cell phone, red ribbon for the soon-to-be-opened school music wing and ceremonial cutting scissors meant to go with the ribbon. After Faris had listened to his senior students’ speeches, he decided to change the sentimental mood. He took the opportunity to jokingly tease the seniors. “I didn’t realize throughout all these years you were able to verbally communicate to this extent,” Faris said. Regardless of whether or not they continue in percussion past high school, the seniors have acquired critical life skills. For example, playing an instrument improves memory. “We all realize how valuable this program was to us [in] becoming the young adults we are,” Shuchart said. “I will always remember the importance of this class and the lessons we all learned in the tiny closet in the back of the band room.” h

What in the world? Looking at big news BIRMINGHAM, ENGLANDA picture of citizen Saffiyah Khan smiling while facing a leader of right-wing group English Defence League went viral April 8.

LADUE, MISSOURIAndy Bresler, Carolyn Jaeger and Kisha Lee won the three Ladue Board of Education seats April 4.

MAHYORO, UGANDAOutbreaks of elephantiasis, a disease which causes debilitating swelling in the limbs, were reported April 10. The cases were caused by volcanic soil containing harmful minerals.

MINGORA, PAKISTANWomen’s education activist Malala Yousafzai became the youngest U.N. Messenger of Peace April 10.

CARACAS, VENEZUELAThousands gathered in the streets, demanding the firing of the seven Supreme Court justices after the government attempted to give legislative power solely to the courts April 8. audrey wang and simon nguyenw ARTISTS

panorama 6 FEATURES Springing into plans for spring vacation How teachers and students pick a travel destination for the school malavika KUMARAN


features writer

hat better way to learn more about the world than to travel? AP World History teacher Eric Hahn has planned and organized trips over spring break to allow students the opportunity to experience different cultures. Students traveled to Japan this past spring break. “Spring break trips have occurred for three years now,” Hahn said. “The first year we went to India, the second year we went to Rio [de Janeiro] in Brazil and the third year we went to Japan.” Planning the trips is a long process. Hahn begins organizing them in the fall when school starts. Though Hahn organizes the trip, students ultimately decide the destination. “I try to come up with three places that I think students might want to go to,” Hahn said. “I try to choose places that are not popular family destinations, but would be a little bit more unique. After I choose three places, students sort of vote on where they want to go. For example, this year the choices were South Africa, Cuba and Japan. Japan

just kind of overwhelmingly was sure there is nothing that could went as a chaperone. For this the most popular destination.” happen, and they even look at the trip we had three chaperones, but To ensure a more organized neighborhoods. Students are also there were some other adults that travel experience, Hahn sets up given these bands that they wear went along too. The tour comthe spring break trips with a tour around their wrists that have a pany usually allows [us] to have company. A lot of work goes into number they can call if they ever a certain amount of chaperones. deciding which tour company get into any trouble. Luckily They judge that by the size of will be the most suitable option. nothing bad has ever happened.” the group [and] the age of the “Usually we have to use a Along with these safety pregroup.” tour company because setting cautions, several adults accompaStudents have a considerable a trip like that up takes a lot ny the students on the trip. Aside amount of freedom and ample of planning,” Hahn said. opportunity to explore “There are many competing nearby areas throughout tour companies, so I’ll call the trip. Senior Jacob around and ask companies Cytron was one of the stufor best prices. I’m also dents who traveled on the mostly concerned about Japan trip this past spring. safety and organization of “During the day, we had the group. Whoever sounds organized tours,” Cytron like they’re going to offer said. “Once the tour was the most or the best, that’s over and we got back to who we go with.” our hotels, we could exSafety is always considplore. We would also get to ered first before anything walk around at the places JOURNEYS IN JAPAN w During their we went to. In Tokyo, we else is planned. The exten- Japan spring break trip, Ladue students visited sive process to ensure the the Tōdai-ji temple in Nara. “It was really amaz- went to the Harajuku shopstudents’ safety above all ping district, which was ing that there was another place out there beelse begins months before sides just here,” senior Jacob Cytron said. (Photo many streets full of shops, the actual trip. and we got to walk around by Aaron Greenberg) “Before [tour compathere.” nies] allow students to stay at a from the official chaperones, a Throughout the Japan trip, the particular hotel, there is somefew parents tag along as well. students stayed in three different body who goes to that hotel “Once it’s determined where cities: Kyoto, Hakone and Tokyo. months in advance and actually we go and there are enough For Cytron, the experience was looks at the room, the security students to sign up, other faculty one like no other. of the rooms and even escape can be asked to chaperone,” “This was my first time really routes,” Hahn said. “They go up Hahn said. “This year, [Rachel] out of the country,” Cytron said. and down the hallways to make Garavaglia, the math teacher, “I’ve been to Canada and Ja-

Summer student checklist: For incoming sophomores:

maica, but this was the first time really overseas.” Other students who went on the Japan trip also felt that the vacation was a unique experience. Junior Kate Prablek said that because she went, she was able to learn about Japanese history and culture. “I think Japan is a really cool place to go,” Prablek said. “It’s a beautiful [series of islands]. Many of the places we went to were very historical. We got to learn about people’s religion and what people do in their daily lives.” The Japan trip, which was funded entirely by the people who went, is the third of many spring break trips to come. Although Hahn isn’t sure about the next destination yet, the experience is sure to be just as valuable to students. “I truly enjoy traveling with students because I think it’s so great when students become a little bit more global, see the world in a different way and are exposed to an international experience,” Hahn said. “To travel with students and hear the comments and see people listening to different music, trying different foods and going to different places, that’s for me what’s the best part of the trip.” h

A go-to survival guide for the new school year

For incoming juniors:

For incoming seniors:

Start to ask about leadership positions for next year. Proactiveness is important.

Start to study for the ACT or SAT. When the school year starts, it will be harder to find time.

Create a Common Application account so that you can start your college application.

If you are taking an AP class, look up the objectives for the class on the College Board website.

Try to find a volunteer position or job that pertains more to your career interests.

Make sure that you have taken the tests that the colleges in which you’re interested require.

Volunteer or find a job that you can continue throughout the school year.

Estimate financial aid needs and begin to compile a list of colleges in which you’re interested.

Look for potential college scholarship opportunities on websites like

Try to find older peers who took classes similar to those you’re taking next year. They can help to support you and to give advice.

Sign up for your first ACT or SAT. Since you will have many other chances of improving your score, try not to stress out.

Have fun! Spend time in the sun, hang out with friends and enjoy your last summer before college preparations begin.

Traveling teenagers:





parris KING-LEVINE features writer

s the school year draws to a close, many seniors are making their final decisions about what they will do after they graduate. Some students will attend Ivy League universities like Harvard University or Cornell University, while others will stay put in Missouri to attend Saint Louis University or University of Missouri– Columbia. However, seniors Jared Israel and Nicole Thompson aren’t staying anywhere near St. Louis– they’re going to school in Europe. Israel and Thompson have their sights set on University of St Andrews, a university located in Scotland founded in 1413. Known for its academic excellence, over 45 percent of students come from outside of the U.K., according to the school’s website. Both Israel and Thompson are thrilled to join that group. “I was drawn to the idea of studying in a whole new place, being immersed in a new culture and being able to spend time in such a beautiful country,” Israel said. Before learning about St Andrews, the two did look into other schools that were in the U.S. After much consideration, a school that was out of the country seemed like the perfect fit for both of them. “I’ve always wanted to live in Europe. I applied to a college [in London] and got in, but St Andrews was the better fit,” Thompson said. Israel plans to study English literature there, and Thompson is interested in studying psychology. She was also intrigued by St Andrews’ sports programs. “The college is exceptional academically, and they have one of the best women’s water polo teams in Europe coached by the British Youth National Team head coach,” Thompson said. To add to this idyllic situation, both Israel and Thompson’s parents have been very supportive of their choices. In fact, Nicole’s mother, Glenda Thompson, doesn’t believe there are any disadvantages about Thompson moving to Scotland. “We don’t have any concerns at all. We moved to the [U.S.] from Australia and have visited many countries, including living for three months in Thailand, so Nicole is already well-travelled and has experienced different cultures. She already loves Europe, so it should be an easy transition for her,” Glenda Thompson said. “Now

that she has made the decision to study abroad, we are really excited for her and very proud.” Glenda Thompson believes that going to St Andrews will give Nicole the opportunity to meet people from all over the world. Additionally, she thinks that because of the extensive history of the university, it is an honor for Thompson to attend the worldclass school. “She will be traveling a lot for water polo,” Glenda Thompson said. “The team has training in Hungary and Africa, and games are played all over the U.K., so she will get to see and experience a lot of new places.” While Israel and Thompson are preparing to attend college, Austin Bliss, a 2016 Ladue graduate, is nearing the end of his first year at The Chinese University of Hong Kong. He is planning on majoring in Contemporary China Studies there. Like Israel and Thompson, Bliss also considered St Andrews, but he ultimately decided on his current university. “I want to pursue a career involving China after I graduate, so my intention is to use university to prepare myself for that. I had decided I wanted China to be the main focus of my future before I finished high school,” Bliss explained. In any foreign country, the culture is different from the society Americans know, whether it be the language, food or education. Even though Hong Kong is far away, Bliss specifies that there are always more similarities than differences between cultures. “Some cultural differences are really positive. For example, I really appreciate how alcohol is not an integral

double takes: junior Katie Bohnert

actress Anna Kendrick

Students establish their post-high school homes outside of the US

sophomore Brandon Yan

HOME SWEET HOME w (Above left) While

most high school students visit colleges and universities close to home, senior Nicole Thompson traveled all of the way to Scotland. In regards to living abroad, “There aren’t any drawbacks in my mind,” Thompson said. (Photo courtesy of Nicole Thompson)


right) Senior Jared Israel stands in St Andrews while visiting the school. “I picked a school in Europe because I wanted to try something new,” Israel said.

VIEWS w (Left) Known for having the largest public

golf course complex in Europe, St Andrews offers panoramic scenes. “I found out about the school sophomore year, and I wanted to go immediately,” Israel said. (Photos courtesy of Jared Israel)

part of university life as in the U.S. or Europe. There is a huge food culture here that doesn’t really exist in the same way in America. What you eat is almost as important as who you eat with,” Bliss said. Despite the unique life experiences one may have while studying abroad, there are some downfalls. Homesickness, cost or cultural differences may deter students from studying abroad. “The school bureaucracy can be especially frustrating. But it wouldn’t be fun if there weren’t any challenges. For everything bad about my experience here, there are a dozen good things to make up for it,” Bliss said. For Israel, Thompson and Bliss, studying abroad fulfills their academic needs and assists them on their path for future aspirations. They believe it is a great way to experience the world while simultaneously granting them a valuable education. “I think benefits will be found in the lessons I will learn by being the outsider in a new place and the relationships I will form there,” Israel said. h

We scoured the halls in search of Ladue’s best look-alikes... here’s what we found.

Buzzfeed star Steven Lim

senior Karina Probstein

actress Brie Larson

(Student photos by Lily Hauptman. Celebrity photos courtesy of,,



Breaking the silence on gun violence Ladue Gun Violence Prevention Club founded in order to raise awareness about gun safety

home,” he said. “Gun safety at home is people should be trained, and people very important, and I teach a lot about should know the law because once they katie BRY that because there are statistics and find out that the law says they can carry in-depth editor examples of children that do find a gun and conceal a weapon without a permit, iven the recent events that have and instinctively pull the trigger, so gun they may not really know when they can plagued both the nation and our owners should be responsible.” and can’t use that firearm.” local community, gun violence Ramirez works for the Ladue Police Ramirez explained that people can get has proven to be a prevalent issue that Department, but he also owns his own into legal trouble when they do not have needs to be addressed. business as a firearms instructor for the a proper understanding of when it is leJunior Malone Hanis started a club state of Missouri. He trains people in fire- gally acceptable to fire their weapon. He dedicated to raising awareness for gun arms operations and teaches concealed added that a person could go to prison or violence prevention. The club began this carry weapons licensing and registration. be civilly sued if he accidentally injured school year and has held a few meetings. “I think that anyone who carries a someone because he did not know the They have been increasing membership gun should have training,” Ramirez laws for gun usage. for the future, according said. “That “So, if you are just exercising your to Hanis. comes with right to carry and conceal, that is great; This club is important because it In their most rethe education but you better know the laws that go with cent meeting, the club and training it,” Ramirez said. “It is a huge responsiis a specific current events issue planned an upcoming behind owning bility to own a gun, and if you are going and raising awareness is the first Ladue Gun Violence a gun.” to take on that responsibility, you should step to making a difference. It’s Awareness Day, in which Junior Antake on everything that comes with. I students are encouraged a productive way for students to drew Lucier think that people should be responsible, channel their opinions as well. to wear orange to inreceived his whether that is with your safety at home junior Sasha Marx first gun in crease awareness for gun or out in the world.” violence. Hanis believes sixth grade Lucier appreciates the right that he has that Ladue Gun Violence Prevention when his uncle gave him one for huntin America to bear arms because he and Club is needed at Ladue because of the ing. Before he began hunting, he took a his friends and family like to recreationimpact gun violence has on teenagers. training class. ally shoot. They like to hunt as well as “Right now there is a lot of gun vio“We took a hunting class as training skeet shoot. lence going on, including many shootbefore I got my gun,” Lucier said. “They “It is important for Americans to have ings,” Hanis said. “Violence does not taught us never to point your gun at the right to bear arms for protection and only come from shootings, but also suisomebody and to always treat a gun like because hunting is fun,” Lucier said. “It cides, especially teens who have access it is loaded.” also regulates the animals’ population to guns. So, [gun violence] is a really big Police officers are required to go because they can get overpopulated, and issue that affects many teenagers, and as through police academy training in order hunting is good for that.” high schoolers, we can make a difference to qualify to Ladue Gun by advocating for safe storage of guns, join the force, Prevention Club It is a huge responsibility to own a gun, which can save lives.” according is a nonpartisan and if you are going to take on that reMissouri does not currently have to Ramirez. club, meaning sponsibility, you should take on everything that students of any laws that penalize individuals for Ladue police negligently storing or leaving a firearm in must qualify that comes with. I think that people should all political para location where a child is likely to gain five times a be responsible, whether that is with your ties are welcome access to it, according to The Law Center year in order to join. Although safety at home or out in the world. to Prevent Gun Violence. Additionally, to stay on the members generLadue police officer Rick Ramirez child access prevention and safe storage police force. ally lean toward laws do not exist at the federal level. “We have the Democratic “Almost every other country that has a continuing education throughout our Party, Hanis stressed that any political the right to bear arms has laws for how whole career when different laws come party is welcome in the club. you have to store your guns and laws for out, and firearms is one of the subjects “We accept all opinions and discuss having a training class before owning a we learn,” Ramirez said. all viewpoints,” Hanis said. “We discuss gun,” Hanis said. “Having laws like safe Ramirez added that Missouri has an what common sense gun laws are and if storage, being trained before [owning open carry law, which means that anyone they are good or bad or how it affects difa gun] or more thorough background can carry a firearm. This year, effective ferent people or what people think about checks are common sense laws that will Jan. 1, Missouri joined 10 other states their Second Amendment rights.” not infringe on Americans’ rights.” that have laws that allow people to carry Junior and member of Ladue Gun Safe storage of guns at home is imconcealed guns even if they haven’t gone Violence Prevention Club Sasha Marx perative to protect the lives of children, through the training required for permits, also appreciates the outlet for students to according to Ladue police officer Rick according to the National Rifle Associashare their opinions. Ramirez. Gun owners often do not lock tion, which supported the legislation. “This club is important because it is a up their firearms correctly, which could “Statistically, crime does not go up specific current events issue and raising lead to children or teenagers getting with it; it usually drops in the states that awareness is the first step to making a ahold of them. have such freedoms as carry and conceal difference,” Marx said. “It’s a productive “People should be held accountwithout permits,” Ramirez said. “Now way for students to channel their opinable and should have their guns safe at on the other side of that coin, I think that ions as well.”h


in the sch

Wear Orange A for Ladue Gun V Awareness D


LEADING THE CAUSE w (Above) Junior

Malone Hanis leads the discussion about planning Ladue’s Gun Violence Awareness Day, which will take place April 28.


Junior Sasha Marx begins creating the poster on her computer to promote Ladue Gun Violence Awareness Day.

FASt fac

The relationship between suic

On average, 68% of suicides f 15-24 are committed with guns

48% of gun-owning household

dren do not regularly make sure are equipped with child safety lo trigger locks.

A gun in the home is 11 time to be used to attempt or commi to be used in self-defense.

More than half of all suicides in t committed with firearms. In 201 of all suicides in the U.S. were co with guns.




In the news


Recent gun violence in the US and locally

April 28 Violence Day

March 27 Sanford, Florida

A woman in central Florida and her boyfriend were arguing over property before he fatally shot her and also shot five others, including her two grade-school age sons. A GROUP EFFORT w

(Top) Ladue Gun Violence Prevention Club meets April 13 to discuss their plans. “It’s very empowering to work as a group and discuss changes we can make and ways to raise awareness about the issues we talk about,” junior Sasha Marx said.


(Bottom) Junior Mayaan Gazit writes the details on the board of the upcoming Ladue Gun Violence Awareness Day. “Ladue Gun violence Awareness Day is important because it reminds us that we have to work together in order to keep each other safe in our environment,” Gazit said.

March 28 Ladue, Missouri

Michael Hutson, 51, shot his estranged wife Kathleen Hutson, 50, outside of the Schnucks on Clayton and Lindbergh Road. Michael Hutson was later found dead in a van in Richmond Heights. Kathleen Hutson received surgery and emerged stable but in critical condition.

April 10 San Bernardino, California Two students were shot and injured in a murder-suicide, as a husband targeted his wife, who was a teacher at North Park Elementary School in San Bernardino. One of those children later died at a hospital.

April 12 University City, Missouri

Taylor Simpson, 17, was killed in a driveby shooting in University City. He was a student in the University City School District. Two other students retained minor injuries but were not in critical condition. (Sources:,,,


cide and guns

for youth ages s.

ds with chilthat guns ocks or other

es more likely

it suicide than

the U.S. are 13, 51% ommitted (Source

hMissouri legislature does not prohibit the open carrying of firearms, but it does prohibit exhibiting “any weapon readily capable of lethal use” in an angry or threatening manner in the presence of one or more persons.

Missouri Gun Laws and Policy

hThere are no state licensing requirements for the possession of a rifle, shotgun or handgun. hIt is a misdemeanor to possess an unloaded firearm when intoxicated; it is a felony to possess a loaded firearm while intoxicated. hNo state permit is required for the purchase of rifles, shotguns or handguns. hTo apply for a concealed carry permit, the applicant has to be: at least 19 years old, or at least 18 years old and a member of the United States Armed Forces or honorably discharged from the United States Armed Forces, a citizen or permanent resident of the United States, and either a resident in the state or a member of the Armed Forces stationed in Missouri.




Take a look back at this year’s Panorama issues on under the “More” tab!

Ladue Carnival

After Graduation Party May 21, 2017 10:30 PM - 1:30 AM Clayton Plaza Hotel 7750 Carondelet Avenue Clayton, MO Entertainment includes casino, raffle, D.J., photo booth, food, & more

Tickets will be sold for $40 Tickets will be sold to Ladue seniors only Purchase online at laduehighpa/after-grad-celebration, at Senior Awards Night on April 20th, during lunch period on May 3, 4, 5, 8, and 9, or at graduation rehearsal on May 17. Artwork by: Jamie Tao

“I regret not joining Panorama.”

-senior Panth Shah

It’s too late for Panth, but not for you! Contact Ms. Semmel in Room 216 for more info.


Freedom, fun and ope FALAKO



Previews of the newest, films: highly-anticipated movies

a&e writer

‘Captain Underpants’

G (Photo courtesy of

eorge and Harold are making trouble again, but this time it’s on the big screen. The children’s comic book series “Captain Underpants” is coming to theaters June 2. Kevin Hart and Thomas Middleditch play George Beard and Harold Hutchins, two fourth graders. The duo accidently turn their principal into a superhero named Captain Underpants. Now it’s up to the boys to keep Captain Underpants out of trouble. h

(Photo courtesy of

‘Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales’

C (Photo courtesy of

aptain Jack Sparrow sails into theaters May 26 with Johnny Depp returning to play Sparrow. The fifth movie in this fantasy franchise features a new set of pirates fighting against an old foe, Captain Salazar, played by Javier Bardem. The pirates will need to acquire the mysterious Trident of Poseidon in order to defeat Salazar and his ghostly crew. h

(Photo courtesy of


‘My Cousin Rachel’


‘Wonder Woman’

his romantic drama, which debuts July 14, details the relationship between two cousins, Phillip, played by Sam Claflin, and Rachel Ashley, played by Rachel Weisz. Phillip suspects Rachel of murdering his godfather, but things quickly become complicated as Phillip begins to fall for Rachel. This adaptation includes actor Iain Glen from “Game of Thrones” and a cover of Chris Isaak’s “Wicked Game.” h

n addition to the DC Universe, “Wonder Woman” premieres in theaters June 2. The story follows Diana, princess of the Amazon tribe of female warriors. She leaves her home to stop the carnage of World War I. Gal Gadot stars at as the iconic superhero. She first appeared in “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice.” With actors like Chris Pine and Robin Wright also starring, the movie is sure to break the box office. h

A review of the best sushi spots in the Lou A rating of three popular Japanese restaurants around St. Louis anya TULLMAN a&e writer

Wasabi Sushi Bar


he first stop on my sushi adventure was Wasabi Sushi Bar located on Manchester Road. As I walked into the restaurant, I was impressed by the charming ambience; I immediately noticed the wooden floors and darkly painted walls with matching chairs. As I opened the extensive menu, I decided to order the caterpillar roll filled with unagi, shrimp, cucumber and avocado for $11. I also tried the Clayton roll and an avocado roll. The service was fast, and the waiters were nice. When the food arrived, I was excited to dig into my first roll. Wasabi’s caterpillar roll did not let me down. The perfect combination of eel and shrimp was balanced out by the cucumber and avocado, and I immediately scarfed down all eight pieces. The eel and shrimp were cooked to perfection, which is a difficult task to achieve. Not only was the roll delicious to eat, but it was also plated with expertise. Thin slices of avocado were placed on top of the rice to add a unique texture to the roll. I give Wasabi Sushi Bar five stars. h

I Love Mr. Sushi


fter going to Wasabi, I went to I Love Mr. Sushi on Olive Boulevard. Upon entering, I was definitely less impressed than I was when I walked into Wasabi. From a visual aspect, the restaurant is much less appealing, and it seemed as though it had not been updated in decades. However, the menu is much bigger and has a wide variety of options; there is something for every type of sushi fanatic. Feeling bolder than I had the night before, I decided on a pizza roll. The pizza roll includes crab meat, cream cheese, cucumber and avocado, and it is topped with salmon, spicy mayonnaise and eel sauce. The whole roll is baked on tin foil and can be ordered for $12.95. As I ate the pizza roll, I was overwhelmed by the level of spiciness in the mayonnaise. It became difficult for me to finish the roll because of how spicy it was, so I ended up removing the salmon and mayo from the top. I was much more satisfied with the taste after doing this, and I enjoyed my last few pieces of sushi. I give I Love Mr. Sushi three stars. h

Drunken Fish


or the last stop on my sushi journey, I went downtown to Drunken Fish, located in Ballpark Village by Busch Stadium. Drunken Fish was definitely the biggest restaurant I went to, and the design was very welcoming and modern. On the menu, I noticed that there were many dishes aside from sushi, such as stir fries and steak dishes. I ordered a specialty starburst roll. The starburst roll contains crab, shrimp tempura, avocado, tamago, a type of Japanese omelette, and masago, or fish eggs. It was wrapped in pink soy paper and topped with honey-wasabi mayonnaise and sriracha sauce and could be ordered for $14.50. The starburst roll was the prettiest of the rolls that I tried, thanks to the pink soy paper. Although the presentation was admirable, the taste of the starburst roll was, in my opinion, not quite up to par. The soy paper was crumbly, and the wasabi mayo was a bit too spicy. However, the crab, shrimp tempura and avocado blended together perfectly and were quite satisfying. Overall, I give Drunken Fish four stars. h


Senior Sit Down Each month, Panorama sits down with a senior athlete. This month’s featured player is lacrosse player Olivia Jones.


From fields to pitches across the pond Senior Arthur Gibert will travel to the UK to continue soccer career

In early 2017, Gibert confirmed his decision to play soccer for Bradford City, a team in League One, the third tier of professional English soccer. At the same time, Gibert will be attending Richmond, the American International University in London. Richmond is home to its own soccer academy, which Gibert will forego to play professionally. The scouts at Bradford City seek talent from across the world and ended up scouting around the St. Louis area. “I was playing in a tournament during junior year, right around Christmas break, and one of their coaches came up to me and talked to me,” Gibert said. “I just started emailing him.” He and senior teammate Reese Minkler have played on the same club team, Sporting St.

Gibert said. “I’ve been there a few times in the past, and it’s awesome. There’s nothing that any of the other universities have that made me feel the need to go to a different college.” Gibert will be paid for each game he plays for Bradford City. He is currently on the development team but will likely attend every game. “He’ll get paid, so it’ll help with rooming, tuition and stuff like that,” Minkler said. “He loves soccer and England.” Life in Europe will CROSSING OVER w Looking at senior team- undoubtedly be more difmate Reese Minkler, senior Arthur Gibert makes a ficult than it pass in an Oct. 5, 2016 victory over Clayton. Gibert would have will play for Bradford City’s development team in been in the England. (Photo by Carolina Alisio) States. Gibthere in a couple tournaments ert’s parents, though, believe that that they had for the club to see their son made the right choice to all the players.” move to England. Ultimately, Gibert decided “My mom really supported that he wanted to play and study [my decision],” he said. “She in the U.K. His visit played a wants me to go to Europe, major role in his decision. partially because she wants to “I went there this summer, go. My dad, he’s kind of neutral and I really just loved England,” toward it.”


Rams Roundup

joel HSIEH


sports writer

s most high school seniors evaluate each university’s cost, size and available majors, senior Arthur Gibert can sit back and smile with relief. Gibert is in line for an extremely exclusive preprofessional program: playing soccer for a League One team in England.

Glen Morgenstern: What got you initially interested in lacrosse? Oliva Jones: I made my mom sign me up for lacrosse lessons in 8th grade, and I really enjoyed them. Also, all my friends were playing with me, so it was great. GM: What was your favorite Ladue lacrosse experience? OJ: We’ve won the Kirkwood Invitational Tournament two years in a row. It was really exciting both years. GM: What is your goal in your final high school lacrosse season? OJ: I would like to make it to state. We’re really good this year, and I feel like we have a really good chance to make it that far. GM: Who are your favorite musical artists? OJ: I like a mix of hip-hop, pop and alternative. I really like Chance the Rapper and a band called Flume. GM: Do you have a life motto? OJ: It might be kind of cheesy, but live life to the fullest every day. Make your life the happiest it could be.

(Photos courtesy of Olivia Jones)


sports editor

Louis, for their entire high school careers. Gibert used the club’s connections to get on the radar of more teams by attending their training sessions. “He got the Player of the Camp award while he was [at the session], and he’s been looking at the program for a while,” Minkler said. “He played over

In 2016, Gibert led the team in points scored, was second in assists and came in third in terms of goals, getting around 30 hours of playing time as a center midfielder for the Rams. In leading Ladue to a 29-2 record, Gibert earned All-Metro status. As for offseason practices, Gibert only missed one– for a soccer tournament in England. “Any time we have a player going to play in college or professionally, it’s really cool to say ‘Wow, I coached this kid,’” Ladue soccer coach Dave Aronberg said. “He definitely put his time in to get here. [Gibert] worked for it and it paid off.” In addition to the support given by the recruiters and coaches, on the high school field Gibert’s teammates are quick to praise him and his positive influence on the team. “He’s got great technical abilities; his foot skills and his knowledge of the game are really solid,” junior teammate Elliot Lorenz said. “He knows when to pass, when to shoot, how to make plays and how to set up his teammates.” Gibert’s future will be different than most. Nevertheless, he thinks he can make it big. “I’ve played [soccer] pretty much my whole life,” Gibert said. “And yeah, I love it.” •

Ladue’s spring athletic teams have made some big moves Water Polo

Ladue truly brings the stamina of marathons, the intensity of hockey and the strategy of chess to the pool. The Rams are 10-3 this year and 3-0 in conference play thus far. “We have a lot of players who are athletic and know what they’re doing in the water,” junior Dixon Bezzant said. “There was a group of six sophomores last year who are all on varsity this year. Two of them, Alex Benduski and Reid Rogers, have gotten really good.” The squad is atop their division. The Rams look to

Ultimate Frisbee

finish the regular season A new pastime has been strong and take a shot at revived after a long sleep the state trophy. at Ladue. Alumnus Ethan “Our Jablonow goal, as is re-initiated anyone’s, the Ladue is to win Ultimate the state Frisbee champiClub in 2014 after onship,” spendBezzant ing the said. “It’s previous going to summer be a difhoning his ficult goal MARCO! w Searching for teamdisc skills. to achieve, mates, junior Alex Benduski helps but we Ladue defeat Pattonville 20-8 March 13. His creation took do have (Photo by Madi Ward) off like a a good rocket and is still improving. chance this year.”

The team finished fifth at state last year and is off to a 4-2 start this year. A wave of capable athletes helped them take those first steps toward the championship. “It began pretty small,” senior Joel Rosen said. “We had maybe 20 people at first, but the football team helped recruit athletes to play frisbee.” The team now boasts 39 total team members, who are split between varsity and JV teams. They hope to improve on last year’s finish at the Missouri state championship May 5-7. “I was really surprised at how much enthusiasm everyone had,” Rosen said. “After the first game, that enthusiasm had only grown.”




Looking up to the track stars

Noteworthy Number

You can’t catch these Ladue track and field athletes


jackson BRY sports writer

anik JAIN

sports writer

Junior Olivia Shroder Events: Discus, shot put, javelin Best Event: Even in each event Notable Finishes: 1st in shot put at Ft. Zumwalt meet, 1st in javelin at Wentzville meet “Track has made me grow up and be appreciative of the the sport.”

Senior Zach Bush Events: 200m, 4x200m, 4x400m Best Event: 200m Notable Finishes: 1st in 200m, 4th in 4x200m at Webster Groves meet, 5th in 200m at Wentzville meet “Track gave me a mindset of finishing. You can’t run a race halfway.”

Sophomore Dale Chesson Events: 200m, 4x200m, 4x400m Best Event: 4x400m Notable Finishes: 2nd in 4x400m, 3rd in 4x200 at Wentzville meet, 3rd in 4x400m at Timberland meet

“Since my teammates and I are all close, I can have fun in practice.”

Sophomore Lila Bensky Events: 800m, 1600m, 3200m Best Event: 1600m Notable Finishes: 3rd in 1600m, at Webster Groves meet, 2nd in 1600m at Timberland meet “I love that I get to compare my performances from week to week.”

Junior Alex Cobin Events: 400m, 800m, 1600m, 3200m Best Event: 800m Notable Finishes: 1st in 1600m, 1st in 4x800m at Wentzville meet, 1st in 3200m at Webster Groves meet

“It’s one of few sports where what you put in is really what you get out.”

Junior Kelechi Achilefu Events: 110m hurdles, 300m hurdles Best Event: 110m hurdles Notable Finishes: 4th in 300m hurdles, 9th in 110m hurdles at Timberland meet “In track you can really see the improvement in yourself.”

(Photos by Madi Ward and Rhiannon Rhoads and courtesy of Lila Bensky)


The odds, as of April 12, that the St. Louis Blues will win the 2017 Stanley Cup– the lowest of any team in the playoffs. Despite earning more points than five playoff teams, a Blues’ playoff run would most likely feature the Chicago Blackhawks in the second round. At 4:1 odds, the Blackhawks have the best odds to win the Cup. Blues coach Mike Yeo’s former team, the Minnesota Wild, plays the Blues in the first round and has the fourth-best chance to take home the trophy. Last year, the Note was defeated in the Western Conference Finals by the San Jose Sharks in six games.

Mark Your Calendar Time





3:30 p.m.

Varsity Boys’ Golf

University City High School

Ruth Park Golf Course


4:00 p.m.

Varsity Boys’ Tennis

Kirkwood High School

Ladue West Campus


4:15 p.m.

Varsity Girls’ Lacrosse

Webster Groves High School

Ladue Middle School


9:00 a.m.

Varsity Girls’ Track

Invitational Tournament

Parkway Central


9:00 a.m.

Varsity Boys’ Track

Invitational Tournament

Parkway Central


5:30 p.m.

Varsity Boys’ Water Polo

Parkway Central High School

Ladue High School


7:30 p.m.

Varsity Girls’ Soccer

Rockwood Summit High School

Rockwood Summit


4:30 p.m.

Varsity Boys’ Baseball

Affton High School

Ladue West Campus


1:00 p.m.

Varsity Ultimate Frisbee

Kirkwood High School

Ladue West Campus


An attitude of gratitude a


w ey dr







sasha RICE copy editor

t’s been one whole year since my grandmother passed away. In October of 2015, she was still young– a mere 80 years old. I had a lifetime left to live with her. I never imagined that in a span of six months, my vibrant second mother would physically deteriorate to such a point that she’d no longer have the strength to live. But alas, that is life. Lately, I’ve been thinking about my grandmother almost constantly. To me, this one-year anniversary is a constant reminder of all the firsts my grandmother has and will continue to miss. For instance, I will never be able to show her my new dog. I will never be able to see the look of pride on her face when I tell her what colleges I’ve gotten into. And above all, my grandmother will never see me in my cap and gown as I receive my diploma. This occasion is perhaps the most painful missed moment, as it was always my dream that she be with me when I start this new chapter in my life. For a long time, I’ve been bogged down with feelings of loss. I realize these sentiments will never fully go away, and that’s okay. But, throughout this past year, I’ve also managed to gain some perspective. Rather than despairing over experiences I no longer get to share with my grandmother, I’ve started to truly cherish all of the memories she gave me and lessons she taught me. I used to hate things that would remind me of her; parks, birthday cake and gas station restrooms would bring on another round of tears. But while these remnants of my life with her are still painful to experience, I am grateful to have them; they ensure that I will never forget her. Even though missing someone is painful, I feel lucky to have had someone in my life who is worth missing. My broadened perspective has affected other aspects of my life. I am able to better see the positive side of a situation that would normally seem distressing. I’ve learned to appreciate the more mundane moments, such as casual conversations or fun times with friends, as I know that I will treasure these seemingly simple experiences one day. Most importantly, I’ve learned to no longer take the people or experiences in my life for granted. Of course, I’m guilty of the occasional “my life sucks” spiel when I procrastinate until the last minute to finish my homework or do poorly on a test. Complaining is a normal part of student life– after all, we are teenagers. However, we should also remember how fortunate we are to go to a great school with fantastic teachers and friends. We should take time to thank our families for loving us unconditionally. And we should never forget the support we have from others as we navigate our way through life. These lessons have changed my outlook for the future, and I know that I am a better person for it. Though the past year has been hard, I can now say with the utmost confidence that I am happy despite the sadness. I can only hope that wherever my grandmother is right now, she feels the same. h

(This column represents the opinion of the writer)



Staff Editorial Teachers across the nation deserve higher pay

Ask a Ladue teacher about his salary, and he’s likely to do one of two things. He will either look at you funny and change the subject or he will explain Ladue’s system of compensation. Ladue staff salaries are determined by three major factors: department, college degrees and years of experience. Teachers can also receive merit bonuses based on administrator evaluations, which are given to them in the form of a one-time lump sum that are not added to their salary for the next year. With a median educator salary of $66,099, the Ladue School District pays the fourth-highest median salary among Missouri schools, behind Kirkwood, Clayton and Webster Groves. Ladue calibrates its system of salaries and benefits against those of our neighboring districts, so pay between nearby districts are similar. That seems reasonable, but there’s still a problem: we’re not our neighbors. Alhtough Ladue pays about $7,000 less per teacher, it maintains almost even academic pace with Clayton, with higher average composite ACT scores in two of the last five years. Ladue’s average score in 2016 was 25.7– above the national average of 21 and the Missouri average of 20. Ladue also scores significantly higher on the ACT than the better-paying Kirkwood and Webster Groves districts. To be fair, the school administration is indeed making plans to raise teacher salaries for the 2017-2018 year. But the problem is larger than just our school district, for the fact remains that teachers nationwide are systematically undervalued and underpaid. Median teacher pay in Missouri is around $47,000, which is about $10,000 less than the national average of $57,200. And while teacher pay and student performance

have a strong direct correlation, real teacher salaries have actually decreased since 1996. But that’s not all: according to the Brookings Institute, a renowned research group, secondary teachers make only 71 percent of the salary of their similarly-educated peers nationwide. Although it’s difficult to compare academic nine-month salaries and benefits to 12-month employment in the private sector, there is little doubt that most teachers could find better rewards for their skills in other professions– at least better monetary rewards. This fact is worrisome when considering that potential teachers– whom we need to help continue societal progress– may be dissuaded from pursuing this career in lieu of a more lucrative option. Certainly the joy of teaching students is worth accepting a slightly lower salary and even bringing treats on Pi Day, but we can do better and we can do it now. In the 2014-15 school year, Ladue finished with a $3.6 million surplus– in 2015-16, an additional $3.1 million was left untouched. Surely, some of that can go to into the hands of hardworking teachers who continue to help build Ladue’s reputation as a successful school. But the district cannot count on a surplus every year. The simple, if unpopular, answer is slightly higher taxes. Ladue voters have been generous in funding renovations at most of the schools. They will see the value in keeping up with, or preferably being academically ahead of, other districts. Teachers cannot effectively demand raises, however, because it is illegal for teachers to go on strike in Missouri. Therefore, we must use our combined voice as a community to support them. After all, aren’t our teachers worth fighting for? h

(Unsigned editorials reflect the majority opinion of the Editorial Board.) aleesha shi w ARTIST

Should fine arts programs be cut first?


Schools should cut budgets for fine arts first alex FU


opinions writer

omplementing the four core subjects, schools offer a variety of electives that provide students with avenues for self-expression. But in the wake of budget cuts that have become commonplace, school boards may need to condense or eliminate programs to conserve money. Schools should consider fine arts as the first programs in which to decrease funding. Though fine arts allow many students to enjoy exercising their freedom of choice and unique expression, these programs impact the school and student body the least. If schools face a budget cut and decide to keep the arts, the superintendent may suggest eliminating or cutting down on sports programs, such as football or basketball. The community will likely cause more of an uproar toward cutting sports rather than cutting fine arts programs. Sports represent the face of the school and its students, whereas the absence of a painting class may be mentioned in passing only between students. The overly-inclusive curricula of fine arts classes stand as another reason why they should be cut. Though expectations of personal skill become higher as students transition from elementary school all the way to college, fine arts programs in schools act as an opportunity for any student to participate. Because this results in students of varying skill being attracted to the same class, an openended, basic curriculum is required to tailor to the whole crowd. Students of higher skill may find the class boring or uninspiring, and with fewer students overall enjoying


fine arts, this department should be modified first during a financial conflict. Fine arts programs are also often irrelevant to the Common Core standard required by the state. The Common Core initiative focuses on English literature, science, social studies and math, and few fine arts classes can round off these core subjects. Because the arts aren’t directly correlated to state requirements, save for high school credits, they are more easily dropped without schools suffering substantial losses. Even if the school combines or eliminates art classes, many of the arts exist in the form of public and privatelymanaged programs outside of school hours. In fact, these programs, having been created solely to focus on one subject, prove to be more comprehensive and thorough than school programs. Students can achieve more if they take time outside of school to act in a public venue or paint with a reputable artist as a tutor. Also, core classes could integrate eliminated fine arts as projects in the main curricula. This would allow students to be exposed to art even if the school itself doesn’t offer a separate class for that art. Painting could be integrated into an English class through visual representations of literary themes; photography could be used in geology where one needs to observe rocks and minerals. All the courses schools offer are important. Each choice students make when deciding next year’s schedule creates different learning experiences and paves different paths for personal expression, whether in a core subject, practical art or fine art. However, with the curriculum changing and funds decreasing in many schools, sacrifices have to be made with the students’ benefit in mind. h

Fine arts are integral to student development





ryan MILLER opinions writer

n contemporary America, schools have a systematic tendency to undervalue fine arts classes. When budget cuts need to be made, art classes are often the first to lose their financial support, and many teachers and students assert that fine arts are less important than other core subjects, like science or mathematics. Although society needs scientists and mathematicians, we seem to have forgotten that we also need painters, poets and musicians. Human civilization is not entirely the product of scientific discovery; it is also the product of the arts. Therefore, the continuance and maintenance of fine arts programs in education are integral to our human identities. While scientists and engineers drive technological advancement to benefit the human race, artists preserve our humanity. The responsibility of the scientist is to understand nature, but the responsibility of the artist is equally important: he is responsible for understanding mankind. Scientific advancement without a deep understanding of the human soul is like a runaway train with no passengers– it loses its purpose. If a student wants to become a well-rounded graduate and benefit from his education as much as possible, then fine arts classes are essential. Education isn’t simply measurements, calculations and facts; it is also developing a connection with the world and its peoples. Understanding and appreciating art is sometimes the only way to truly know people and society. The fine arts teach students how to express themselves creatively, serve as a conduit for

self-fulfillment and– most importantly– provide the basis for social cohesion. National Endowment for the Arts chairman Dana Gioia emphasized the importance of art in his 2007 commencement address at Stanford University. “Art is an irreplaceable way of understanding and expressing the world,” Gioia said. “There are some truths about life that can be expressed only as stories, or songs or images. Art delights, instructs, consoles. It educates our emotions.” In addition to the central role that fine arts play in developing and uniting society, there are also tangible benefits to individuals studying them. According to a study conducted by the National Education Association, at-risk youth or students of low socioeconomic status experience the greatest benefit from the fine arts programs. Their interest in school greatly increased, and they were less likely to drop out. The study also found that 74 percent of disadvantaged students with in-depth arts involvement were planning to earn a bachelor’s degree, as opposed to 43 percent of such students with low arts involvement. Additionally, according to, a website that campaigns to improve society, countries that have the highest math and science scores, like Japan and Hungary, also have mandatory music programs. Art is indisputably the most effective tool for communicating abstract ideas and perspectives, and it produces substantial benefits in terms of scholastic success. Faced with a tidal wave of overwhelming technological progress, the fine arts are what anchor us to our human nature. If we cut funding for these classes, we deprive students of powerful forms of expression that are necessary to preserve and sustain our civilization.h

Polls of the People In the event of a budget crisis, should fine arts classes be the first cut? Read more about budget cuts on this page.

No 29%

71% Yes

Which of the following summer movies are you looking forward to most? 50 Read more about summer movies on pg. 11.









Pirates of Wonder the Caribbean Woman


Captain My Cousin Underpants Rachel

What is your favorite part of prom? Read more about prom on pg. 16.

42% of students said ‘post-prom’ 19% of students said ‘dancing’ 18% of students said ‘pictures’ 15% of students said ‘other’ 6%

of students said ‘dinner’

(First survey based on 268 students sampled. Second survey based on 144 students sampled. Third survey based on 268 students sampled.)



A window into Ladue prom

Ladue students dance the night away at Windows on Washington


PHOTO michael BURKE photo editor

Check out for more stories online.


very year on one magical April evening, juniors and seniors replace their Lululemon leggings for long, luxurious dresses and trade their graphic tees and khakis for suave tuxedos and bow ties for prom. Students ate and danced on two floors of Windows on Washington, their beautiful outfits drenched in the spirit of the dance floor and their hearts overflowing with teenage bliss by the end.h

(Below) Senior Stephanie Zhong celebrates as she grabs a piece of cake for dessert after dinner.


Kyler Schulz, Egret Jin and Michelle Liu do the dance seemingly every dance requires: the classic 2007 hip-hop line dance song "Cupid Shuffle."

SLOWIN' IT DOWN w (Middle) Sophomore Bella Saxton and junior Kelechi Achilefu slow dance at prom. "Since we met playing Uno in study hall, I wrote 'I wanted 2 give you a wild night 2 remember, so prom?' I used the number two card for '2' and a wild card for 'wild.' Finally, I wrote out prom in Uno cards," Achilefu said. "I was kind of surprised. It was funny because I knew it was going to happen, but I thought it was really adorable because it's like an inside joke, so it was nice," Saxton said. Achilefu's favorite part of prom was seeing Saxton in her dress for the first time.

(Photo by Abby Yearout)

(Photo by Jordan Ganzer)

TURN IT UP w (Photo by Abby Yearout)

(Photo by Abby Yearout)

(Left) Junior Dee Nichols dances at prom. “It was fun to let loose and turn up in an environment full of positive people," Nichols said.


(Photo by Jordan Ganzer)

(Photo by Davina Lettau)



Seniors Chino Davis and Mary Hooper were crowned prom king and queen at the end of the dance. Four senior girls and boys are nominated by other seniors to be on court, and seniors and juniors vote for the nominees to become king and queen. Hooper was thrilled to receive her crown. "It was super exciting to be recognized by my classmates. It's a memory I'll never forget," Hooper said. Davis also expressed appreciation for being crowned. "It felt great. I was honored," Davis said.


Juniors Grace and Lily Crockett dance their hearts out at their first prom.

Seniors Nisha Naseer and Cindy Geng shout song lyrics. "My favorite song was 'Rolex,'" Naseer said. "The songs were a lot better this year," Geng said. Post-prom was held at St. Louis' Incredible Pizza Company. "I liked how we had access to all of the rides and games," Naseer said.

(Photo by Davina Lettau)

(Photo by Davina Lettau)

(Left) Seniors Norman Boyce and Bibi Schindler walk onstage together at the end of prom. They were one of the four prom court couples nominated this year. "I was super amused about being nominated, but then I found out that my friends had campaigned to get me on court. It was fun," Schindler said.

Panorama April 2017  
Panorama April 2017