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Prom and classrooms

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Artist of the month

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Panther Press

The voice of Montezuma-Cortez High School

206 W. Seventh Street, Cortez, CO 81321

After-prom is a hit Talia Whyte, Sports Reporter

Photo credit, Talia Whyte

April 2014

Volume 14: Issue 6

Choir reaches best note

M-CHS host CHSAA Large Group Festival and battle for top rating Judy Ha, Guest Reporter

Down the 600 hallway of M-CHS lies the isolated music wing. For the last twenty-one years, MontezumaCortez High School has hosted the Southwestern CHSAA Festival in both the instrumental and choral divisions. This year, the event was held on April 14, 2014. Instrumental and choir groups came from all over Southwest Colorado including Cortez, Durango, Bayfield, Ignacio, Pagosa Springs, and Farmington.

The festival was a perfect learning opportunity for local, young, and inspiring musicians. The music fused harmoniously and each school’s numerous hours of practice was evident in their performances. Each ensemble performed prepared pieces before a panel of three judges who scored from 1(superior) to 5 (unprepared) based on tone quality, notes accuracy, blend, tempo, dynamics, etc. The music Continued on page 4

Dr. Wayman is “play” gambling with students Marlana Lopez, Aaron Lewis, Isaac Padilla, and Ahanabah Finley.

On April 12th, the Grand March, 2014 prom, and the first schoolsponsored after-prom party took M-CHS by storm. Grand March began at 8pm in the auditorium and featured M-CHS seniors and juniors. Dave Robinson, M-CHS’s assistant principal introduced the couples (or singles) to the audience. For the students in their finest attire, it was a night to remember. Some

couples sauntered into the spotlight and smiled demurely while others attempted more creative entrances. Seniors, Mikey Mills and Tara Abrams were selected by their peers as the M-CHS 2014 Prom King and Queen. The festivities resumed at the Elks Lodge where the dance took place. The juniors and seniors danced the night away under the lights of Continued on page 9

Photo credit, Levi Downing


02

Panther Press

Sports News

April 2014

Watch out for the Gurney

Talia Whyte, Staff Reporter

Ryan Gurney is an M-CHS sophomore. He plays for the MCHS Panthers Varsity Football team as the safety on defense and a reciever on offense. In his free time he hangs out with his

friends and family, and continues to practice football. He’ll start to work out when football starts up again next fall. His favorite food to eat is pizza. According to Gurney he faces challenges since he is only a sophomore. “I’m not as big as some guys,” said Gurney. Ryan Gurney was one of the six Panther players (Randy Haley, Jonathan Walck, David Skaggs, Austin Bayles, and Victor Perez) who were selected for the West Slope League All Conference Team.

Spring break? Hardly. Talia Whyte & Tyler Dykes, Staff Reporters Spring break is supposed to be the end of the 4th inning Cortez was nothing but relaxing and enjoying down just by one run 6-7. Cortez the sun, but for Cortez Baseball could not hold on, scoring no runs boys spring break had a totally dif- the rest of the game: Fruita won ferent meaning. The Friday before 10-6. With their pride at an all-time break, the Varsity baseball team low, Cortez baseball returned home traveled to Montrose where they for a week of practice to prepare suffered a loss of 10-0. With their for the upcoming games against heads hanging low, they were look- Central and Grand Junction High. ing for redemption the next day The week of practice seemed to do when they traveled to Fruita. Cor- little good though. Once again, the tez kept it a close ball game and at team fought hard and kept it a close

ball game until after the 4th inning against Central, but was once again conquered 14-3. After the horrific loss, Cortez had to face Grand Junction High the next day. With fire in their bellies, Cortez Panthers Varsity Baseball fought hard and didn’t let up. Grand Junction High School didn’t even score until the 4th inning, but despite their pressure on the opponent, Cortez didn’t come out with a win.


Panther Press

News

M o r e c h a n g e s i n s t o r e f o r M C H S Adoption of an Asset Based Thinking Model

03

Tyler Dykes, Staff Reporter TCAP has come and gone along with spring break. It was just another round of testing for most M-CHS underclassmen except for the hints of change floating around the hallways. M-CHS students and staff heard that TCAP scores would be taken more seriously in the future. It was rumored that scores would begin to appear on students’ transcripts along with their ACT scores. In addition, all grade levels would have to take TCAP instead of just the underclassmen (9th and 10th grade). However these hints of change proved to be a hoax; despite the false rumors, changes are afoot at M-CHS. Changes were bound to come at some point in time. The biggest change students will face is the replacement of TCAP with CMAS (Colorado Measure of Academic Success). CMAS would have science and social studies which was not common to see on any other test. CMAS will be taken on the computer much like MAPS testing. CMAS will only come if the RE-1 school district doesn’t get out of the red and into the black. “We are right below the cut line at 48 points and to get bumped up we just need 50 points but it’s harder than it sounds to get just 2 points,” said RE-1 Superintendent, Alex Carter.

The second big change students may be foregoing next year is new guidelines for leaving campus for lunch. In order to leave campus for lunch, students must meet four out of five requirements. Student’s grades must be passing in all classes. They may not have any referrals or more than five absences. Students must also be involved in a club, activity or sport. The final requirement is improvement/gains on TCAP scores. In order to make one of these requirement easier for students to meet, the administration hopes to present students with more options; “We also plan on having more clubs during lunch” said Dr. Wayman, M-CHS’s principal. Believe it or not, there is a schedule change coming for next year. The proposed schedule will be Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday are six periods, one hour each with no Career Pathways, and an hour lunch. Wednesday will be a shortened day similar to this year; all six periods are shortened with a 30 minute Career Pathways class. As for the community, a proposed mill levy may be coming. Look for this on the next election ballot. Re-1 Superintendent, Alex Carter, is preparing to

ask the voters to support yet another tax increase. This will go directly to teacher pay increase across the district. “I thinks it’s a great idea to support teachers anyway we can, so I would go for raising their salaries. Teachers are underappreciated and deserve to be paid more”, said Adrea Tripp, M-CHS senior. Carter has convinced the board that adopting an “Asset Based Model of Thinking will help all of us focus on what is working, on the many opportunities we have for imporvement, and on building upon our strengths through positive efforts.” The Re-1 board believes that “the greatest resource of this community are the children.” To no end, M-CHS students, staff and administrators will handle the Alex Carter addressed the M-CHS staff on April 14 changes in 2014-15 with when he explained carefully an “Asset Based Thinking Model” for Montezuma-Cortez School District RE-1. vivacious spirit.

Rigorous courses culminate Levi Downing, Staff Reporter

Advanced Placement classes have been in Colorado schools since 1973. They are commonly referred to as the “intelligent” student’s class. Students can sign up for an AP class after they take an honors class, or with instructor approval. Students who pass the AP test with a 3 or higher receive college credit if the college/university accepts it. AP classes include Biology,

Art, English IV, Calculus, and U.S. History. The final test for an AP class costs 89 dollars. With additional class purchases, the prices decline: 87 the second time, 84 the third time and 82 every time after that. Some AP students like the fact that it’s graded on a five point scale. According to Tara Abrams, M-CHS senior, AP students that she knows “study for about two

hours a night.” According to Angela Gabardi, English IV AP teacher, AP classes give students a pure learning experience because all of the students “want to be there.” All AP tests occur at 7:40 AM, except Studio Arts that happens at 9:00 AM. The testing begins with Environmental Sciences on May 5th, and concludes with US History on the 14th.


04 Panther Press A 2014

News

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Concert

photo credit, Levi Downing

Continued from page 1 groups were also judged in sight reading. Each band had six minutes to skim over a piece of music and play before a judge. Under the direction of Rodney Ritthaler, The M-CHS Symphonic Winds scored an overall 2 (excellent) and 1 (su-

“The band will get better and better.” Patrick McDonald, Senior perior) in sight- reading. “We have improved a lot from the beginning of concert season. I was personally satisfied and proud in seeing such a young band kick butt. The band will get better and better,” said Drum Major, Patrick McDonald an M-

The band puts in many hours of practice in order to achieve the best sound possible.

CHS senior. Cortez Middle School also sent their choir and band group, CMS’s Combined Choir received a (1) in final ratings, a (2) in excellent sight reading and (3) good in overall ratings. The M-CHS Chamber Choir scored first in both catego-

Emergency scenerio in panther territory On Friday, April 11, the Southwest Memorial Hospital, Cortez Police Department, Cortez Fire Department, Air Care & Careflight Helicopter Agency, and the Montezuma-Cortez Sheriff’s Department partnered with the EMT classes at M-CHS to create a mock disaster scene. As part of safe teen driving

ries and M-CHS Concert Choir received a final rating of 3. In regards to the performances, complimentary judge, Bill Willkerson said that “[they had] great energy [and] very good technique in every section.” Ritthaler was “happy to see so

many high school and middle school groups participate in the CHSAA Large Group Festival.” M-CHS looks forward to hosting the Southwest CHSAA Festival in many more years to come and challenge young musicians.

Teen maze 2014: Your Brain on Adolescence Thursday, April 17

week, the students, staff, administration, and community members witnessed a Friday, April 18 dramatization of a crash and rescue. “You don’t want to go out with your friends and say ‘oh it won’t happen to me. Yes it will. You are not invincible. You have to take action towards your safety and to others’ safety,” said M-CHS senior Jaci Jordan.

Positi

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Celebrating diversity/ Anti-bullying!

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Got police?

Doesn’t it get annoying when you see a police officer on almost every block in Cortez? I think that the city should cut the number of police officer in this town. Having so many police officers can make drivers more nervous and paranoid about what they do on the road, thus causing even more distraction for new drivers. One student stated that “some police in this town are more about the power than doing their job.” It seems that the power of the badge can really change some policemen’s

Zach Smith, Staff Reporter egos. Some laws even contradict each other. It is against the law to drive home from the bar drunk, yet when you walk home one can be charged with public intoxication. I suggest that the city of Cortez transfer some policemen. That way, the number of cops can be equal in places such as Dolores, Mancos, and Durango etc.

Play the right game

Adrian Opsahl, Staff Reporter

There are many students who are addicted to gaming. They game in class, they game during lunch, they game between classes, and they even game on the bus. Parents and teachers may find this to be a problem since the students are distracting themselves, but I believe that this doesn’t apply to some games. Students often choose to play the wrong games during classes. Certain games like Flappy Bird and Angry Birds can be a big distraction. Some students will argue otherwise, but almost all games that are played in real time, like these, require a large amount of concentration and attention. Sometimes a student might place too much attention on a game they were playing during lunch or break, and not

notice the bell ring. The stories of some games are just so good that students might forget to pay attention to anything else. In some parts of the school, and with some games, this might not be a problem, but that doesn’t mean that this can’t happen. I know that most games can be a distraction in school, but not all games. Some games, like Bloons Tower Defense, can be harmless when played in school, while some games can be nothing but a problem. My solution is for the students to save certain games for play at home, and use games that don’t need full attention in school.

Panther Press 2013-2014 Staff Editor-In-Chief Abby Lock

Student/teacher relationships vary. Students have issues with the policy of following the dress code as it is. As a student myself, I have found that students who don’t follow the rules are getting away with dressing provocatively- especially those with good grades. There should be a reason as to why these certain students aren’t getting the necessary discipline that others are getting for revealing skin. If I, for instance, were to go to school wearing ripped jeans from my quadriceps down to my feet, I wouldn’t be looked at a second time. I’d be sent straight to the principal’s office. If it was any other gal that was dressed inappropriately it wouldn’t bother the staff and administration. This is mostly because the students who don’t follow the codes are the ones getting away with it. If we are forced to follow the rules, then so should everyone else. This brings me to my next position: grades. Girls who dress with their toots showing and their cleavage out, who have good grades seem to go unnoticed for breaking the dress code. Knowing this now I would’ve wore the same outfits as them just to see how the school staff and administrators act toward me. Then again I don’t believe that it’s the female teachers that are in the wrong when it comes to the high school girls dressing like they do. I feel that male staff and administrators treat female

Business Manager

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Victoria Harrington

Call Abby Lock

Staff Reporters Adrian Opsahl Levi Downing Tyler Dykes Elizabeth Shuster (guest)

Dress your grades

Zach Smith Mark Wall Talia Whyte Judy Ha (guest)

at

(970) 565 - 3722 Ext. 2240 12:40 and 1:35 p.m. Monday Through Friday Contact us at: Montezuma-Cortez High School Attn: Panther Press (Deb McVicker) 206 W. 7th St., Cortez, CO 81321 preferably between

Panther Press Opinion

Vicci Harrington, Staff Reporter students completely differently than if we were male. Putting this out on the table, I don’t believe that we should have male teachers. Don’t get me wrong, my favorite teacher is male. I’m not saying all male teachers are picking out specific students choosing not to discipline them for dress code violations, but when they don’t, the staff should be held accountable. For a resolution, I propose that we eliminate the male teachers and have a school for females that aren’t afraid to enforce the code of conduct or the dress code. But I know that’s not likely to happen. I believe what our high school needs are more teachers who aren’t afraid to tell students when it’s time to put some clothes on.

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S t a f f

E d i t o r

The M-CHS Panther Press is an open forum which operates under RE-1 district policy. The RE-1 school district, board,

i

and staff are not responsible for the information and opinions expressed in the

Panther Press.

The Panther Press invites pantherpress@cortez.k12.co.us your letters, comments, and questions. Letters dmcvicker@cortez.k12.co.us will be edited on the basis of content and 970-565-3722x2241 conciseness.

a l


Press 06 Panther A 2014 pril

Pr o m 2 0 1 4 : A n i g h t i n N e w Yo r k C i t y

Isaac Padilla (left) recieves a prize at the after-prom party.

From left to right: Isaac Padilla, Mikkel Waltman, Aaron Lewis, and Brandi Avon make their entrance at Grand March.

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Tara Abrams (left) and Mikey Mills (right) pose for a picture after being crowned royalty.

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Chandler Dee (left) and Selena LaPaz (right) make their prom debuts as juniors.

Students having fun at the dance.

A slow dance--keeping it PG.

Above: Shaunnell Butler (left)and Josh Horneff (right) in their matching attire.

Not everybody needs to be a couple!


Panther Press

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What’s going on in the classroom?

feature

Orion Rainer (furthest) and Kalin Whiteskunk work as parteners in Computer Applications.

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Teacher-student communication is key.


Press 08 Panther A 2014

Lifestyles

pril

Staff Spotlight Vicci Harrington, Staff Reporter

Casey Coulter is a physical educational teacher at M-CHS. Coulter earned a bachelor’s degree from Mesa State College, a Master’s degree from Adams State College, and has completed his master’s certificate through California Southern University. Coulter was recently wed to M-CHS culinary arts teacher, Diana Wojciechowski (now Coulter). Next to spending time with his wife, Casey Coulter also enjoys golfing, hiking, fishing, or anything that involves activity. Coulter is considered a wellknown teacher for his work with students in weight training. He hasn’t considered doing another teaching job only because his true calling is teaching and coaching high school level students. “I enjoy my weights

classes because I get to work with the athletes and help improve their strength and speed. I have not taught anything else besides P.E and weight training except for Health Classes,” Coulter said. Not only is Coulter a familiar teacher for students, he is also a wellknown coach to M-CHS football athletes.

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What doesn’t kill you is going to die.

Open mouth, insert foot, hop out of office.

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Panther Press Entertainment

More spring

Abby Lock, Editor-in-Chief

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standardized testing leprachaun Lent Secret Garden spring

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Women's History Month Mardi Gras time change rainbow

the drama department co-hosted the New York style decorations. The DJ after-prom party at the Cortez Recrekept it lively and played a variety of ation Center. Beginning at midnight, music; from fast and slow dances to in- the Hawaiian/Las Vegas themed party structive dances. Once the dance was offered food, a casino room, a pool well underway, Abrams and Mills led a table, door prizes, karaoke, and a fun dance to “My Heart Will Go On”—the house in the gym. Intended to keep students out of hazardous situations after theme song from Titanic. The M-CHS student government and prom, the party encouraged the attend-

Medieval clash of castles

09

Castle construction takes over the classroom Elizabeth Schuster, Guest Reporter “We are building new castles, drawing, and decorating. I enjoyed it.” Faith Krebs, Freshman

“Yes, absolutely, I would do this project again. It was challenging, but really fun.”

Angel Veach, Ahnna Higgins, Paula Leon, Kayla Hageman, and Faith Krebs proudly display their castle in Mr. Harriman’s first period class.

Keelyn Chandler, Freshman

“I thought it was awesome. I really think they learned Jacob Lukas and Liz McDonald are partnered a lot about how up and excited about the castle they created many parts go into in Mr. Kelley’s period 1 class. a castle. It was fun Freshmen, sophomores, and juniors parto watch them being ticipated in a castle building competition engaged.” between Mr. Ray Harriman’s and Mr. Chris Mr. Chris Kelley, Social Studies Teacher

ees to stay until 4am by offering a variety of prizes. When the attendees left, the members of student government and drama proceeded to clean up the venue. A local Baptist church offered a free breakfast for after-prom attendees. One could say that M-CHS had a successful 2014 prom—one that marked the first after-prom party for the high

Kelley’s social studies classes. All of the castles are on display, and open to voting in the M-CHS library. The winning class gets free pizza.

school. “It was the best dance event I have been to. It was tons of fun, starting at Grand March all the way into after-prom, and the after-prom was way more exciting than I had expected it to be,” said Tara Abrams, M-CHS senior and prom queen.


Press 10 Panther A 2014

Entertainment

pril

Mac Miller: a lean, mean, rapping machine Zach Smith, Staff Reporter Mac Miller is a rapper who, in 2007, busted through to the rap scene. People know him from songs like “Donald Trump” “Knock Knock,” and “All Around the World”. Mac Miller, formally known as Malcolm James McCormick, was born on January 19, 1992 to parents, Karen Meyers and Mark McCormick in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. His father is Christian and his mother is Jewish, so Miller was raised Jewish. Miller had his Bar Mitzvah when he turned 13. He started rapping at the age of 14, and became a member of a rap group called The III Spoken. In 2010, Miller signed with Rostrum Records. Rostrum president, Benjy Grinberg met Miller while recording with Wiz Khalifa. A significant breakthrough came in late 2010 when Miller embarked on his first tour: the Incredibly Dope Tour, selling out every location. In 2010, he won two awards at the Pittsburgh hip-hop awards. Miller has said that he became addicted to combination of promethazine and codeine known as "purple drank" or "lean". Which he began taking to manage the stress he was enduring during his Macadelic Tour in 2012. In January 2013, Miller told Complex: “I love lean; it’s great. I was not happy and I was on lean very heavy. I was so f***ed up all the time it was bad. My friends couldn’t even look at me the same. I was lost.” He is also currently working on four separate projects, that he already has at least seven songs done on each. Miller told MTV that they include his next solo "Mac Miller album," and it had come together on accident. (wikipedia.com)

What the students say... What do you think of Mac Miller?

“I don’t care too much for his (Mac Miller’s) lyrics, but the music and beats he brings to the table are fresh and new! Everybody loves it, and he should keep it coming! ”

Briston Walker, 12th

“Yes because he has good music. The beat he has to every song is good.”

Raudy Castillo, 11th

“No I do not like him because Mack Miller is a bad influence.”

Juan Renteria, 10th

Artist of the month Mills mulls over surrealsim Zach Smith, Staff Reporter Mikey (Michael) Mills, an MCHS senior, is an artist with tremendous talent. Mills favors the surrealist style. Surrealism is form of art that emulates the subconscious and imagination instead of rational

“His art allows imagination to fuse with reality...” Sophomore, Judy Ha “just random and pointless drawings,” but according to some of thought. Mills prefers to use explo- his peers, “it’s (his art) imperfectly sive colors in his drawings rather perfect. His art allows imagination than black and white or basic color. to fuse with reality, making others Mills frequently draws in his free introspective,” said M-CHS sophotime outside of school with hopes more, Judy Ha. Mills will be conof continuing art in the future. Mills tinuing art through his senior year, mostly free-draws anything that and, according to Mills, he plans to comes to mind; he says that they’re make world peace in the future.


Panther Press

Tyler Dykes, Staff Reporter

Lifestyles

What do you think M-CHS can improve on?

11

Skye Cole, Sophomore

Briston Walker, Senior

Natasha Gordon, Junior

Echo LoBue, Freshman

Pick a schedule and stick with it! The schedule is the biggest deal right now. They are doing really well trying to improve the school. Yet they often ask us how they can improve the school but they never listen. I think our voice needs to be heard.

I feel like they’re doing a pretty good job…but they could probably be less strict on their attendance rules and what door we leave out of because that’s getting old real fast.

Lunch could be a lot better, the pass system is stupid, the lunch lines are always really clustered nobody can really get lunch on time, and school spirit in general is just crappy.

Lunch Time! Because I feel like that’s the only free time we get and the people that drive they have to rush and the teachers don’t get enough time as it is! It’s preposterous!

vistit our website at www.mchspanthernews.org

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April 2014 panther press