irkwoo K d Kirkwood High School 801 W. Essex
February 17, 2010 Issue 7 Vol. 92
Credit Requirements pg.5
Serving Kirkwood High School since 1918
-SPEED READMarch 1, The KHS Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) will approach the school board and petition, again, to have “sexual orientation” admitted into the district’s non-discrimination clause. The GSA compiled a school-wide petition of over 800 student and faculty signatures in favor of the addition. The meeting begins at 7 p.m. in the KSD offices at North Kirkwood Middle School. GSA members, students, teachers and community members will be speaking. “It’s a community-wide event,” Matt Dumke, senior and GSA president, said. “We want as many supporters as possible.”
Three fights raise questions among students
42% of KHS students surveyed (93/221) believe Kirkwood has a fighting problem.
See DISCRIMINATION - pg.4
week there were two in-school fights and one out-of-school. Officer Chad Walton, resource
“There was some bad blood between [the students in the fights] and there was something that had been boiling up for a while,” Cathy McGrath, assistant principal, said. “There had been atAmber Taylor managing editor tempts to resolve Ryan Schuessler their fight, mediaeditor-in-chief tion between them, but that apparently didn’t matter, and they decided to go ahead and resolve it in this manner, which is just sad.” Kirsten Dickherber, junior, was near the first fight when it broke out. “I was walking and saw people standing and didn’t know what was going on,” Dickherber said. “Girls were punching each other and people were screaming.” According to McGrath, over the past few years there has been an increase in fights among girls, and a decrease in those among boys. “I’m not sure why we have more girls fighting than boys,” McGrath said. “But a lot of the high schools I’ve talked to, not just Kirkwood High
He was robbed, beaten and tied to a fence post in the outskirts of Laramie, WY. It was after midnight, and the nighttime fall air chilled him to the bone, piercing his bruised and bleeding body. He was left alone to die – at the age of 21 – simply because he was gay. Sean McWay design editor This victim, Matthew Shepard, a University of Wyoming student, became a poster-child for violence against homosexuals. The murder brought national attention to the issue of hate crimes. Matthew’s parents, Judy and Dennis, created the Matthew Shepard Foundation to “replace hate with understanding, compassion, and acceptance.” All this happened Oct. 1998. Meanwhile, over in South Bend, IN, at the University of Notre Dame, a scary message was found in the school’s student newspaper, The Observer. A cartoon published in the newspaper went like this: One character opens up the conversa-
tion, asking, “What’s the easiest way to turn a fruit into a vegetable?” The other character responds with a simple “no idea.” The punch line reads: “A baseball bat.” “Fruit” is a derogatory term for a homosexual; a “vegetable” refers to someone who is perpetually in a coma; a “baseball bat,” in this instance, acts as a tool for violent and hateful action against other human beings. This cartoon didn’t appear two generations ago, in a time where mindsets were a bit different. This was published Jan. 13, 2010. The backlash against this cartoon was quick and ranged from students on campus to national gay-rights organizations. Everyone asked the same question. How on earth could a college newspaper publish such an openly hateful message?
made a dramatic entrance at KHS. In the first
up of “anywhere from 9 to 12 girls.”
GSA approaches school board with petition
fter a fairly peaceful first semester, February
officer, said the fights were collectively made
At KHS, we have an opportunity to make our school this safe haven.
School but others as well, have had the same thing.” Dickherber has noticed the same thing, saying she has never seen a fight among KHS boys. McGrath also emphasized her belief that KHS does not have a problem with fights. “I don’t think there are a lot of fights at Kirkwood. I think certain months, certain times, fights tend to boil up more so than other times. This time of the year seems to be a time of the year when we are all heightened to it or are tired of being inside and cooped up, so people’s anger starts to rise, and then fights tend to emerge,” McGrath said. “So right now, in the midst of it, people tend to think, ‘Oh my there’s been all these fights’ when in actuality, for the year, there haven’t been that many fights.” Dickherber again agrees. She struggled to think of the last fight she saw, or even heard about. See FIGHTS - pg.3
Michael Burch art editor
“Wussy Sport” See MOCK TRIAL - pg.11
Districts Preview See DISTRICTS - pg.15
“For anyone to call Mock Trial a ‘wussy sport,’ clearly shows that they do not know anything about it.” -Zach Brand, junior
All games will be held at St. Louis University High School. The first game will start at 5 p.m., Feb. 22.
February 17, 2010
The Kirkwood Call
Second semester advice for juniors and seniors Mackenzie Becker news editor
1. University of Missouri-Columbia 2. University of Missouri-Kansas City 3. Loyola University-Chicago 4. Indiana University-Bloomington 5. University of Central Missouri 6. Missouri State University 7. Michigan State University 8. Westminster College 9. Hendrix College 10. Beloit College
Tips for Second Semester High School Seniors: 1. Make sure you get your financial aid information to colleges as soon as possible. Most schools operate on a first come, first serve basis, so the sooner you turn in forms like the FAFSA and the CSS Profile the better off you are.
Colleges With No Application Close Date:
2. If you have not already applied to college, do so immediately. There are still schools accepting applications, but deadlines are fast approaching. For students still looking, there are options out there.
Tips for Second Semester High School Juniors: 1. Start researching colleges if you have not already. Now is the time to start flipping through guide books, requesting information and visiting campuses. 2. Keep your grades up. Junior year grades are the last chance to really shine before mailing your transcript to a college. 3. Make sure you are signing up for a challenging senior year.
Although it may seem great to have double late arrival, IP, a cadet and triple early dismissal, colleges really want to see that you keep yourself going and take a balanced schedule. 4. Start or keep preparing for the SAT, the ACT or SAT Subject Tests. Don’t wait until December of your senior year to start thinking about standardized testing.
Upcoming Dates to Mark on Your Calendar:
Feb. 16- Princeton Review ACT Prep Class and Bright Flight Course Begin at KHS Feb. 21- St. Louis University Free FAFSA Workshop Feb. 27- Webster University ACT Workshop March 13- SAT Examination April 5 or 6- ZAPS ACT Course at KHS April 10- ACT Examination May 1- SAT and SAT Subject Test Examinations May 3- AP Examinations begin
3. Even after you apply, it is okay to let a school know that you went to state for swimming, or you received a I Rating at Solo and Small Ensemble Contest. This will help show the college that you are still very interested in attending.
For more information about standardized testing, college or scholarships, stop by the Guidance Activity Center or see your college counselor Emily Berty (A-L) or Abby Peterson (M-Z).
4. If you have not received your decision letter, try to be patient. April will come eventually.
Students work toward top Scouting rank Eagle Scouts is an honor only 2 to 4 percent of Boy Scouts earn. Their ranks include Neil Armstrong, Steven Spielberg, and now, Alex Balbes. Bess Wilhelms Bryan Burke is also making the final efnews writer fort to become a Eagle Scout. “You have to enlist the help of adults and other people, who aren’t necessarily scouts and direct them,” James Solomon, assistant scoutmaster, said. Balbes, sophomore, became an Eagle Scout Jan. 14, 2009, but he started the project for the award in 2008. Burke, senior, is soon going to the final board review for his Eagle Scout award. “A lot of kids reaching a certain age have trouble organizing something as a whole,” Solomon said. “You have to design the project as a whole.” Balbes made a series of videos on house rabbit care. The videos he made for his project made are now being used to educate new members of the House Rabbit Society. Burke made three benches for a local church in downtown Kirkwood. “You have to insert time and effort into getting the rank,” Solomon said. “Two to three years, usually longer.” Balbes had to take more of a leadership role and al-
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low the boys who helped him do most of the work for the project. “The most rewarding part of being an Eagle Scout is being able to help other scouts become Eagle Scouts,” Balbes said. The leadership they gain is one of the more rewarding parts of getting the award to many of the boys who have received it, Solomon said. “I feel like getting an Eagle Scout will help me get the skills I need to get jobs and other benefits,” Burke said. Though the rewards of the Eagle Scout award are large, students must have an inspiration according to Solomon. One of Balbes’ main inspirations was his brother. “[My older brother] got his Eagle Scout, and watching him get it made me want to,” Balbes said. Like Balbes, Burke was also inspired and pushed by a family member. “My mom’s the main inspiration,” Burke said. “She’s the reason I kept going.” Parents are a big part of the Eagle Scout process, according to Solomon. “The parent’s role is to encourage them when appropriate,” Solomon said. “They need to understand the
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goals and what the program is trying to achieve.” Though he has reached the top scouting rank, Balbes is planning on continuing in Boy Scouts because it is one of his main extracurricular activities. Burke is also planning on continuing with a greater emphasis on leadership in his troop. “This year is going to be really exciting. It’s the 100 year [anniversary] of scouting, and there will be a scout quest in Forest Park, which happens every 10 years,” Balbes said. The 100-year anniversary will also include a week long camp out, called the Camporee, which will include shooting, swimming, two Olympic sized pools, an Indian village and other activities. “[Because of Boy Scouts] I made friends around the nation that I wouldn’t have Alex Balbes, sophomore, poses met normally,” Balbes said. in his Boy Scout uniform.
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Going from the A-B-C’s to 1-2-3’s Scott Warren sits after school doing what many teachers do: grading his sixth grade social studies Emily Goyda students’ work. But innews writer stead of marking papers Mike Murphy news writer with A’s, B’s or C’s, Warren instead marks a 1, 2, 3 or 4. This rubric grading system, implemented at both North and Nipher middle schools during the 2007-2008 school year, is a source of confusion to some students and parents. In it, a 4 is considered exceeding expectations, a 3 meet(187 out of 201) ing expectations, a 2 approaching expectations and a 1 below expectations. The lowest grade a student can earn using the rubric system order to receive an A for the marking period is a 3.4, Deborah Holmes, assistant superintendent, said. “Students are graded based on a standard that they have to meet in order to get a 3,” Michelle Condon, Nipher principal, said. “All of the other things that could go into that grade are taken out in order to judge how well students meet that standard.” Condon said the standard for a class is created based on the expectations of standardized tests, like the M.A.P. test. She also said aspects not looked at in a grade include timeliness, a point of concern for some teachers like Warren, who do not see the motivation for students to do work on time if this is the case. Condon provides assurances, though. “I don’t think kids really take advantage of the fact that they don’t have points off for [late assignments],”
Condon said. “I feel like our teachers quite fair if you’re learning something have explained well enough that if you and you don’t get it the first time. It’s a do the homework, you will do well on chance to practice.” the assessment.” Kalfus said she tweaked the scale to An assessment, Condon said, is the fit her own needs, but overall it works test that judges how well a student very well in a language environment. meets the standard, implemented at the She gives formative tests that are not end of each unit. Teachers of the same weighted in the grade book and does grade and subject from both middle not weight homework, either. Accordschools get together to determine what ing to her, the tests that count are sumshould comprise the assessment. Talk mative evaluations that occur after a of standardization student has a good idea what is comworries some stu- ing. Holmes agreed with Kalfus that of KHS students dents and parents the system works better in a class like surveyed prefer a when it comes to foreign language, communication arts traditional A, B, classroom individ- or math than in classes like science or C grading system uality, but Holmes social studies. to the rubric scale. said the system is “With those subjects, there is a such based on a standard of knowledge, not a breadth of knowledge than can be covhow it is gained. ered. It’s hard to pick and choose,” Hol“Part of what’s so good is that we’re mes said. “With things like literacy, it’s measuring what students know and easier to know where exactly a student are able to do,” Holmes said. “There’s a should be. Right now, it seems like the ‘what’ and that’s what standard must be math teachers have it down to the most reached, but there’s now ‘how.’ Teachers precise system.” have free reign as long as their students Some of Baldwin’s concerns lie in the are learning what they fact that failing a need to learn.” class like science [The rubric] was harder to Teachers seem to have is much more difbe at the extremes— to get mixed feelings about the ficult with this sys100 percent or an F. -Tucker Overmann rubric system. tem, but getting an freshman “I feel it makes some A is more difficult types of assignments as well, a plight easier for students,” Ruth Baldwin, students who have dealt with the system eighth grade science teacher, said. have encountered. “But I also feel that it makes the kids “I didn’t like [the rubric system],” less responsible.” Tucker Overmann, freshman, said. There are a number of teachers at the “It was harder to be at the end of the high school, like Anna Kalfus, French grading extremes—to get 100 percent teacher, who have started using the sys- or an F.” tem to grade their students as well. Baldwin cites facts that uphold Over“It helps give feedback to me as well mann’s opinion. She said at a recent as the students,” Kalfus said. “It’s not meeting of eighth grade science teachers, out of over 400 students, there was only one student failing the class. “It’s the kids on the lower end that will have the biggest shock once they get to the high school,” Baldwin said. “The kids that make A’s will continue.” The class of 2014, which starts high school next year, will be the first class to have used the newer grading system throughout all three years of middle school, a fact that sparks questions of acclimation in some. According to Holmes, the system has been in development at Kirkwood for 12 years. Condon feels students will have no problems transitioning to the traditional grading system used at KHS. Andrew Bennett, freshman, said he Jayvn Solomon art editor
Cont. FIGHTS from cover
Mike Wade, assistant principal, agrees with McGrath and believes there is not a fighting problem at the high school. “The reason fighting seems like such a big deal is because there aren’t really fights here; you can count, probably on one hand and definitely no more than two, how many fights there are a year,” Wade said. “So when there is a fight, everything just explodes, and everyone makes a huge deal about it. When in reality, there aren’t really fights at the high school and that’s what makes Kirkwood so great.” Like McGrath and Wade, David Holley, principal, agrees and thinks Kirkwood is, for the most part, fight-free. “There has been less fighting this year opposed to other years since I’ve been here. As far as it goes, historically, we don’t have many fights at this school and we’ve had hardly any this year,” Holley said. “Our students are one of the reasons why I don’t think we have fights; when these things are brewing up beforehand, kids are there to intervene. But theses girls were so upset, it took three adults to split them up.” McGrath was one of the first adults on the scene of the fight. “What I saw when I responded was that Mr. Gunn
February 17, 2010
Kirkwood School District’s rubric grading system at a glance: The rubric system is based on measuring students’ mastery of content areas. The rubric numbers students receive are used to calculate an overall quarter letter grade. They translate as follows below:
The student is not only meeting but surpassing expectations.
The student is meeting the defined expectations.
The student is approaching expectations but lacks security with concepts.
The student struggles to meet defined standards.
F= below a 1.0
The student demonstrates little measurable competence. Information courtesy of the Kirkwood School District web site.
felt he was adequately prepared for high school despite the change in grading systems. But like others, he disagrees the system should be implemented at the high school. Holmes said there is no current plan to make the rubric system mandatory at the high school, but it will continue to be used at the elementary schools, as it has for a number of years, and at the middle schools. “This is something that’s been written about a lot and that schools are moving toward,” Holmes said. “I’ve had other districts looking at our web site and taking aspects of our system that will work best for them. Right now, we’re in a really good place.” According to Holmes, surveys show that parents and students are happy with the rubric system, but parents, in particular, still have a few questions. “Our biggest problem is helping everybody understand this system,” Condon said. “The most important thing is to communicate to parents and students what it’s really all about and to help them understand the benefits.”
had grabbed one of the girls and was trying to get her a school has the right to suspend a student for up to under control. And several students were trying to 10 days. Once the school recommends longer than a get the other girl under control,” McGrath said. “Mrs. 10-day suspension, there is a hearing in the central Miller went to her while Mr. Gunn and I struggled office with the assistant superintendent, the parents, with the one girl to get her under control. We then the students and the grade level principal. At the tried to separate them so that they wouldn’t cross hearing, the students involved will present their case, paths again.” the school will present their case and the assistant The severity of the fight superintendent makes a was what drew the a large ruling on what the conThe reason fighting is such a big deal amount of attention from sequence will be. students to the fight, accordThe administration is because there aren’t really fights ing to Holley. The majority of has been vigilant about here; you can count, probably on one fights at KHS do not require trying to prevent physhand and definitely no more than police involvement, he said. ical conf licts among two, how many fights there are a year. “A fight is a fight. I’ve the student population been here a long time and before they happen. - Mike Wade there haven’t been that many “We’ve been a lot assistant principal fights,” Holley said. “But this more visible to prevent fight wasn’t like other fights; fights from occurring, these girls took it to an extreme and got arrested.” and we’ve been talking to kids a lot,” McGrath said. “If According to Walton, all of the students involved we’re aware of a situation, as we always have, we pull have seen punishment. them in and talk about it, call parents and try to work “All the girls have been suspended,” Walton said. it out.” “There are school consequences as well as legal conWalton also emphasized the administration’s zerosequences. Some are awaiting court dates, others be- tolerance stance on fights. cause of their age are awaiting juvenile courts.” “If you continue that behavior, there are conseDistrict policy, which follows state laws, states that quences,” Walton said.
February 17, 2010
Darn it, just use protection
I know that it’s rude to stare, but I just can’t help it. My eyes refuse to move from the, now, “outty” belly button that forms a bump beneath her striped pink shirt. As she smiles, showing our friends pictures from the latest ultrasound, I can’t help but to think that last summer I was Aubrey Beltran opinions writer envying her flat stomach and pierced “inny” at the pool. Today my mind won’t escape the comparison between that formerly flat tummy and the yellow smileyfaced beach ball we used to toss around. Although I wish it were true, she isn’t just cramming our old, over-sized beach toy under her shirt as a joke. She’s eight and a half months pregnant. I really struggled beginning this article, but I felt I had to write it. I couldn’t decide whether to tell the stories of the two 17-yearold boys I know who have children. I couldn’t bring myself to talk about the other 19-year-old girl with a child due before spring break even lets out. I didn’t even know how to begin with the 18-year-old I met a week ago whose new baby boy hasn’t even reached three weeks of age. Five technical teens, living far beyond their years. Unnecessarily. This isn’t only happening in my circle of friends, half of them were no more than short introductions. On a survey given out by The Kirkwood Call 157 out of 171 (92%) students said they know someone who had a child before their 20th birthday. Only 14 said they didn’t. We’re not uneducated about safe sex. KHS health class, parents, teachers, even peers provide advice, daily, giving teens the tools we need to succeed at staying teens. The only trouble with having all the tools is only whether or not we choose to use them. When asked what might be the reasons for why he and his now ex-girlfriend were expecting if protection was involved, the solemn reply blatantly told of the scary trends running rampant among teens. “With anyone I ever slept [with] I only used a condom about 12 percent of the time. They all said they were on birth control so I wasn’t worried,” a senior explained, “but most of the time it was a hookup, just one time [after a] party or something.” We need to get smarter about how we manage our bodies. Luck is not a contraceptive. Unprotected sex resulted in Missouri being
25th in the nation for the most pregnancies among girls aged 15-19 and nationwide there were 71.5 pregnancies for every 1,000 women. Both these studies came from the Guttmacher Institute, a non-profit organization that focuses on educating women about their reproductive health. Whenever my mom sees stories about reports like these on teenage pregnancy she always shakes her head and mumbles, “There’s no reason to get pregnant if you don’t want to, not in this day and age.” She makes herself sound so old but, nevertheless, what she says is right. Especially since Missouri is lucky enough to have Title X clinics. This important piece of legislation provides minors confidential access to birth control, wellness exams and even emergency contraceptives (if the patient is 17 or older) through designated clinics like Planned Parenthood. Minors don’t even have to go through the difficult process of discussing options with their parents to receive these amazing health benefits. If the teen chooses to go to a non-Title X clinic confidentiality is not guaranteed, and parent signatures will be required. But, for many suburban teenagers, these clinics go largely unused due to lack of effort, not funds. The Pill costs only $15-50 a month depending on the brand. Acknowledging your budget makes it completely up to you. Only abstinence can be 100 percent effective in preventing pregnancy, but by using birth control and condoms it increases your Michael Burch art editor chances. Almost all clinics provide free of sliding-fee scale services to teens in order to make it easier to pay with cash. And safety is not only a girl’s responsibility either. STD/STI checks are necessary and recommended for everyone. Teen years are our time to enjoy being young, not being a parent. Not to say that my friends’ children are not wanted, they are. But, I really feel that both the lives of the kids and their parents might have been better, or different, with a little more time to grow. About everything else in our lives we seem to be smart: handling school, work, pressures of applying to colleges, so this should be added to that list. It’s hard enough to see my friends enduring relationships with immature significant others, let alone literally immature human beings. We are lucky enough to have guilt- and embarrassment-free prevention. Now we simply need to use it.
The Kirkwood Call Cont. DISCRIMINATION from cover
It seems ironic these hateful actions are occurring in our schools, the very place where youth should be taught to both think and act progressively. Our nation’s educational facilities should be places where positive values of acceptance and tolerance are taught. And, at the absolute very least, our schools should be a safe haven for all students. At KHS, we have an opportunity to make our school this safe haven. In a movement started by the Gay-Straight Alliance and supported by the Young Democrats and The Call, students and staff members are showing their support for adding “sexual orientation” to the KSD nondiscriminatory policy. The policy excludes sexual orientation from the list of protected groups, currently including sex, race, religion, age, national origin, handicap and disability. Over 800 students and staff members signed this petition to legally protect homosexual students and staff members against discrimination in our schools. Since Matthew Shepard’s murder, over 10 years ago, there have been over 12,000 hate crimes related to sexual orientation, according to the FBI. Yet, in all of those cases there lies hope in an ever-growing level of awareness. In October 2009, President Obama signed a bill that has come to be known the Matthew Shepard Act. Obama stood beside Judy and Dennis ShepaOver 800 students and rd as he spoke staff members signed this movingly and oppetition to legally protect timistically about homosexual students and the bill he had just staff members against dissigned into law to crimination in our schools. expand protection against hate crime. “We must stand against crimes that are not only meant to break bones but to break spirits; [crimes] that not only inflict harm but instill fear,” Obama said. “No one in America should, ever, be afraid to walk down the street holding the hand of the person they love. No one in America should be forced to look over their shoulder because of who they are.” Judy Shepard has been speaking around the country since her son’s death, giving special attention to colleges and universities. She, too, sees great promise in the attitudes of gay students across the nation. “I started speaking at colleges and would see young people afterwards. Their eyes were so filled with fear and trepidation for their future,” Shepard told Ellen Degeneres on her talk show. “Now, when I meet these kids, they seem empowered. They know what they are being denied, and they know how to get it.” At the KSD school board meeting March 1, the nondiscriminatory policy is up for discussion. Students and teachers are scheduled to speak in support of the policy change. Ryan Schuessler and I will present the petitions that over 800 of you signed. What I ask is that you show your support for this cause: Come to the school board meeting March 1 (7 p.m. at North Kirkwood Middle School.) Make your voice heard. Read the In-Depth on pages eight and nine of this issue to hear about the unbelievable difficulties met by homosexual high school students. We are the empowered kids Judy Shepard talks so optimistically about. We can make the move toward acceptance. We can honor Matthew Shepard’s memory and fight against the bigotry and hatred seen recently at the University of Notre Dame. We can make our community and our world a better place for everyone – starting with our very own high school.
-LETTER TO THE EDITORDear Editor of The Kirkwood Call, My name is Sloane Simmons and I am a freshman. On Wednesday in homeroom I was watching KHTV news and they announced that there was a new edition of The Call out. I was very excited to hear this news because I personally love The Call. This newspaper is very controversial and most of the time I agree with what is put out there. However, I completely disagreed with the article “Lose the leggings... or else.” As I first glanced down to the bottom right of the article, I noticed a picture that looked oddly similar to me and what I look like every day. Skeptical, I began reading the page. The first thing that rang a bell in my head is when they used, “heaping, colossal bun,” since I’ve been known to plop my hair, exactly how they said, right dead center on top
of my head. Me and my sister, Sidney Simmons, both have a tendency to have that look at least once a week. Throughout the article, it began more obvious that this was either based or inspired by me. I was not offended at first because I thought to myself, “Hey, maybe I’m just self conscious.” It was soon reassured by the many texts I received throughout the day and after school saying, “Have you seen your picture in the paper..?” After each text I received or each comment that was made, I began to get almost angry. I tried convincing myself that it was just an article in a newspaper that high school kids wrote. The truth is, I don’t care what other people say, but that stuff actually in a way kind of hurts. Ok, so maybe it wasn’t based off me. It’s still offensive to the girl that gave you the inspiration to write that article.
Since you have the right to voice your opinion, I have that same right. Many of the girls will agree with me when I say, LEGGINGS ARE CONSIDERED PANTS. They cover every single important part of your body that is school required. Yes, they are slim and fitting to your body, but that does NOT make them unqualified to be pants. You cannot judge clothing on the tightness of it, and if the person can “pull off the look” or not. We wear leggings for pure comfort, plain and simple. Uggs are the best. Again, for comfort. When else would you wear them, summer? Just because it is not cold inside doesn’t mean it is not outside. We wear them for warmth when we walk outside. Do you expect us to take our shoes off when we come inside the schools building? Regardless, we wear these things for the simple concept of being relaxed.
No matter how much makeup some girls may put on, we would still like to be comfortable. Have you even taken into thought that maybe girls wear a lot of make up to be comfortable with how they look? If not, and if you’re the girl with perfect skin and looks half alive without eye makeup, then go right ahead and make fun of girls who wear makeup to school. The point that should be made here is that girls, deep down, have those days when they don’t care about what they look like. So thank god we have leggings, our baggy sweatshirts, Uggs, and my “mulan” bun to save us from those days when we are only worried about comfort. Sincerely, Sloane Simmons freshman
The Kirkwood Call
February 17, 2010
Why are credit requirements so inflexible? In 2005, the Missouri State Board of Education increased minimum graduation requirements to 24 credits for the graduating class of 2010, the first major change to high school graduation requirements in the state since 1984. Unfortunately, many students who take challenging, time-consuming classes often have to drop one or more of them in order to fulfill requirements like health, gym and personal finance. These restrictions punish kids with a busy schedule and force them to drop important classes. Often for these high-achieving students, summer school also is not an option, as many attend extracurricular programs. In this world of highachieving high schoolers, the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) needs to make requirements more flexible and realistic.
o say that Maddie Moll plays the bass is to say that Michael Jordan plays basketball. First picking up the instrument in the fourth grade Kirkwood instrumental music program, Moll, sophomore, now plays bass in the KHS symphonic orchestra, which will travel to New York City to play with two other groups at Carnegie Hall in March at the prestigious 2010 Instrumental Music Festival. She’s played in the St. Louis Youth Symphony Orchestra since the seventh grade, and she made the Missouri All-State Orchestra as a freshman (an incredibly rare achievement) and has played in it for the past two years. Last year, she received Current DESE requireHonor I Supements punish any student rior Ratings at the who wants to pursue AP MSHSAA District and honors classes and Solo/Ensemble extracurricular activities. Music Festival and an Honor I Superior and an Honor II Excellent at the state level. The bass isn’t her only love, however. Moll also has spent her sophomore year working as a photographer on the Pioneer yearbook, a nationally-recognized publication. The 2009 edition of the yearbook earned the highest honor rating from the Missouri Interscholastic Press Association and a Gold Medal from the Columbia Scholastic Press Association’s annual scholastic yearbook critique. Although both programs are incredibly demanding, Moll has managed to successfully balance and exceed at both. The Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE), however, has crashed the party.
[ ] GOOD INTENTIONS
Beginning with the class of 2010, all high schoolers in the state of Missouri must graduate with a total of 24 mandatory classes, including one full credit of gym, a half credit of health and a half credit of personal finance. The personal finance, health and gym quandary is no stranger to many students. In order
to ensure all students can graduate, KHS offers summer courses in those three classes. Counselors also provide information on taking health and personal finance online through the University of Missouri High School program. Since both the yearbook and orchestra are year-long classes and Moll will be attending a music program in Oklahoma next summer (which prevents her from taking summer classes), she is forced to drop the yearbook next year. Her demanding regular classes prevent her from taking the classes online, so she’ll take a gym class and a health class during the school year. Moll’s story is not an uncommon one. In the past year, The Kirkwood Call lost two excellent staffers, Emilee Graham, junior and features staffer, and Mike Killeen, senior and art editor, because the two had to fit in mandatory credits like health, personal finance and gym. The orchestra and band lose top upperclassmen to the credit requirement dilemma every year. The current DESE requirements punish the student who wants to pursue AP and honors classes and intensive extracurricular activities. All this conflict raises the question: Why is the DESE so inflexible about these credit requirements?
THE GYM DILEMMA
According to the DESE, “Missouri high school graduates must earn at least one unit that provides students with knowledge and skills necessary for developing and maintaining a lifestyle that fosters physical fitness, participation in recreational activities and general concern for personal well-being.” However, the department states, “Courses devoted to conditioning for interscholastic sports or practicing for interscholastic sports may not be counted toward meeting the minimum requirement.” Why in the world don’t varsity sports count as gym credits? Athletes participating in varsity sports learn more about “maintaining a lifestyle that fosters physical fitness...and general concern for personal well-being” than those in a gym class. Between practices and games, varsity athletes spend just as much time on their health if not more than students in a gym class. If the DESE were to count varsity sports as a gym credit, students could open their schedules to a vast amount of other classes.
Maddie Moll, sophomore and Pioneer photographer.
The Kirkwood Call 2009-2010 Staff
Carly Wooldridge photographer
Last year talk emerged of a Kirkwood “zero-hour” gym class. Students who took the class would meet two days a week for “early mornings” (like many AP science courses). Although a number of students expressed interest, the administration decided not to go through with it. The zero-hour would provide students like Moll an opportunity to fit in more classes that they can’t take during the day.
Carly Wooldridge photographer
Maddie Moll, sophomore, practices bass before orchestra class. She is involved in both the KHS symphonic orchestra and in the Pioneer yearbook as a photographer (below left), but she has to drop yearbook next year in order to fit in mandatory credits like gym, health and personal finance.
According to the DESE handbook published when the new credit requirements were first announced, if a student demonstrates that he or she understands the course material, the district may grant credit through “an alternative method.” In 2005, DESE said, “State education officials intend to continue exploring the feasibility of course-specific competency tests that could be used by high schools as a basis for awarding academic credit. Such exams could be developed by the state, by local school districts, or by a consortium of high schools.” This idea sounds promising and could be the key to addressing the problem, but we haven’t heard anything about it since 2005. The Kirkwood School District could work Athletes participating with this concept in varsity sports learn to provide stumore about maintaining dents like Moll a physically fit lifestyle with another opthan those in a gym class. portunity to earn credit, particularly the health and personal finance credits. DESE deserves a hearty thanks for paying attention to busy students, but why has no one acted on this idea? Maddie Moll is only one example of the multi-talented, super-involved KHS students. Students in today’s high school world are far too busy and involved for these inflexible credit requirements.
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Peter Krusing...........................Editors-in-Chief Ryan Schuessler Amber Taylor..........................Managing Editor Sean McWay...............................Design Editor Devan Coggan.........................Opinions Editor Kevin Bedford..........................Opinions Writer Aubrey Beltran Maddy Ford Johnny Frohlichstein Lauren Hummel...............Entertainment Editor Maggie Hallam.........................In-Depth Editor
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Carly Wooldridge Abby MacDonald.....................Business Editor Jordan Berger....................Asst. Business Editor Corinne Cox.............................Business Staffer Grace Eschenroeder Jon Priestley Mitch Eden...........................................Adviser
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February 17, 2010
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-I CAN MAKE YOUR BEDFORD-
Partying gone way too wild The sun peeks through the blinds as your eyes open to your friend’s foot in your ear. And when your will power is finally up to the task of getting you off the couch and step out onto Kevin Bedford the floor that’s litopinions writer tered with hung over bodies, your headache pounds more and more. In the haze of your confusion you arrive in the kitchen where the table and counter is furnished with empty Bud Light cans, giant half-drained bottles of Popov Vodka and the chunky leftovers of Jell-o shots not to mention the girl that everyone was taking them off of; she’s located in the sink. And there you are standing there with the faint smell of vomit on your breath and a burn mark on your shirt from smoking. You begin texting your friend who made it home with one question, “What happened last night?” Stop me if any of this sounds familiar. I’m not judging anyone; I just want the explanation. I know plenty of people who drink or smoke, and they are athletes, Student Council members, honor roll students, TryPod representatives and everyone in between. I doubt any of them can
convince me that what goes on any given weekend is necessary to enjoy yourself. Or maybe I’m over-analyzing this; maybe smoking or underage drinking constitutes a good weekend. And adding a Facebook album of that night you don’t remember that features you with your eyes half closed and beer in hand for all the universities on your list to see is a smarter idea than I thought. After all two students interviewed in The Call’s issue five in-depth on teen drinking said, “What we really care about is having a good time with our friends, regardless of our level of sobriety.” Drinking is not Facebook. Yet, it’s as big of a part of the social atmosphere. Of 331 seniors surveyed only 18 percent hadn’t tried alcohol at least once. And along with that 72 percent of those who took part in drinking received their alcohol from someone older. Now those are role models. Things are starting to look up for our generation. It’s actually simple: why do something that impairs your judgment to the point where you make decisions that aren’t as fun finding out about, as they were the night they happened? Because the thing is not everything works out like The
Hangover. I doubt you’ll be able to get a hold of Mike Tyson’s tiger without losing a limb or make it to your wedding on time before dying of heat exhaustion on a roof. And not every weekend is going to work out as well as the last one. Numerous KHS students just this year have faced various DUI charges and even life-threatening situations in which they could’ve potentially contributed to the nine teenagers that die each day from alcohol-related causes, according to the Center of Alcohol Marketing and Youth. The thing is being in total control of your bodily functions throughout the night isn’t as bad as it sounds. Losing brain cells isn’t something you have to do every weekend. Besides, getting Jell-o shot remains out of your belly button is a hassle. At least that’s what the girl in the sink said.
-POINT OF VIEW-
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Sam Edwards photographer National signing day was Feb. 3, and joining the nations greats are six KHS seniors including Jordan Frick (above). Frick plans to attend Purdue University on a soccer scholarship. Signing alongside her were Brain Rosser, Ahmad Hicks, Mycole Pruitt, Alvin Stewart and David Thomas.
7 pinion O S Does American Idol deserve so much popularity? February 17, 2010
The Kirkwood Call
Simon Fuller revolutionized reality TV in 2001 with the creation of American Idol. This show, created to discover America’s next singing sensation, gave the American public control over who continued on from week to week. American Idol has maintained immense popularity, but some question its validity. As the show continues strong through season nine, two Call staffers debate whether the show is worthy of the enormous popularity that it has garnered over its first nine years.
Yes: Idol is number one for a reason
No: America is being held captive
American Idol is, to put it lightly, a gift from God. The show is incredible, and to be perfectly honest, it’s what gets me through the second semester of the school year. Yes, I’m one of those people who live for Tuesday and Wednesday nights and huddles around the television as Ryan Seacrest finds more and more dramatic ways to say, “THIS, (extraordinarily long pause), is Maddy Ford American Idol.” And I am in no way ashamed of this. opinions writer However, many people aren’t as enthusiastic about this television phenomenon as I am. Contestants on the show may draw in millions of viewers, but they also get a lot of heat, and not just from Simon Cowell. Idol contestants typically get reputations, at least in the music world, as having little to no talent and taking the easy way out. Are you kidding me? It takes a remarkable amount of talent just to make it on the show in the first place. Hundreds of thousands of people audition for this show, and according to USAtoday.com, an average of 12,000 individuals come out to each audition city. Idol hits seven cities per season, and we’re into season nine of the show. Take that information and combine it with the average amount of Idol hopefuls, and you get a lot of disappointed Americans. But for those who do manage to win the judges and America over, they have the world in the palm of their hand. Idol has churned out incredibly successful artists such as David Cook, Chris Daughtry, Jennifer Hudson, Carrie Underwood, Kelly Clarkson, Jordin Sparks and Clay Aiken to name a few. These past contestants have platinum albums (Cook, Daughtry, Clarkson, Aiken, Underwood), Grammys (Clarkson and Underwood), even Oscars (Hudson) to call their own, all of which wouldn’t have happened without the help of the show. Yet above all, Idol is simply an opportunity. It provides one of the music industries biggest stages as far as exposure and talent is concerned. How can you possibly hate on a show that just provides a chance for undiscovered talent to emerge on the music scene? It may seem like I’m biased, since I’m a disgustingly huge fan of the show, but rest assured, the numbers don’t lie. According to USAtoday.com, from January until late May, American Idol is the most watched television show in the country, drawing in an average of 31.2 million viewers per show. In all honesty, American Idol is nothing short of brilliant. It provides entertainment for all, whether you prefer watching inspiring auditions such as “I Am Your Brother” from season seven or the most recent “Pants on the Ground” from season nine or follow the show until the finale. It continually showcases talented artists for the music industry and viewers to critique and watch, but above all, it always keeps us interested. For me, it produces potential future husbands to consider (David Cook).
The finale of American Idol garnered more votes than the most recent presidential election. Bloody awful. Granted, nine years ago in its first season (when it actually crowned the best singer in America, not the ninth), American Idol was a great show. The auditions were bloody hilarious, and KelJohnny Frohlichstein ly Clarkson did a fantastic job to claim the title of opinions writer America’s best singer. However, since season one, the show has lost its luster. It is beyond repetitive; every year is alike. We laugh for the first few weeks at the people who sing dreadfully, and then we try to keep up every week as most of the singers are whittled away until there are two left. Then, the two remaining have a monumental showdown, culminating in Ryan Seacrest performing the most prodigious action of the entire season. He opens the envelope with as much hesitance as possible, waits for a few minutes (or sunlit days) and finally announces the winner. This formula would be bloody magnificent, except for the fact that this is the ninth time we will experience the cycle. The only difference is new voices, and even those get bloody repetitive after too long. After the original auditions, American Idol becomes even more bloody abhorrent. Ever notice how many people who make it to Hollywood are thin and at least somewhat attractive? There are few that are not, and even the ones who succeed (remember Ruben?) rarely end up doing so in their career beyond American Idol. The vast majority of the singers who go far into the show have average or great singing voices and a physique that is not bloody disenchanting. The show is not a measure of singing ability. However, the aspect of American Idol that most makes me want punt an adorable, newborn kitten the most is the “memorable moments.” The girl who burst into tears during one of Sanjaya’s performances was bloody fraudulent, and when Paula Abdul was on the show, her occasional rampages on Simon were bloody ludicrous. Also, Simon’s outbursts on the eccentric people who try out are bloody agonizing to watch. He shreds their performances and lifelong ambitions apart, and we guffaw and harass them. How can such a lackluster show take over society? In 2006, the finale between Taylor Hicks and Katharine McPhee received more bloody votes than any previous presidential election with 63 million. The finale has had the highest viewership of its time slot since 2005. The man who sang “Pants on the Ground” (which, I must admit, was bloody hilarious, even if it was clearly a plant) is already a sensation; there are t-shirts, Facebook groups and witty, Photoshopped pictures. American Idol effectively captivates a nation every January more than anything else. I hear more about it than I do the bloody State of the Union. But the main problem of American Idol? Simon Cowell says ‘bloody’ too much.
“ ” “ ”“ ” “ “ “ Jayvn Solomon art editor
VERB AT I M the many voices of Kirkwood
the humorous, the witty and the just plain bizarre
for even more verbatim, visit thekirkwoodcall.com to submit something you’ve overheard, email firstname.lastname@example.org or talk to anyone on The Call staff.
It needs to sound ghost-like. Right now it just sounds like a guy with a sheet over his head. Patrick Jackson, orchestra teacher
trying to convey what kind of sound an orchestra piece should have.
Don’t worry. I have an extra pair of pants. Sue Ellen Minich, Spanish teacher
announcing her preparations for the possibility of her water breaking in class
I do love me some Mexican Oreos. Andy Robbins, junior
relating a Spanish fiesta to America’s favorite cookie.
Do you want eyebrows on that?
Kirsten Dickherber, junior
trying to extend a game of hangman.
Class, I just wanted to tell you that there is going to be more nudity today. As always. Gina Muller, Spanish teacher
warning her class of impending exposure in a Spanish soap opera.
Defenestration is the only effective form of punishment.
Sean McCarthy, English teacher
exploring possible methods of discipline. Defenestration is the act of throwing one out of a window.
February 17, 2010
The Kirkwood Call
From the eyes of Tom Gaither-Gan
-b y Amb er Ta ylor
Andy Gaglio screamed back. He had only been 16 for one month and had just gotten into a fight with his parents. They screamed at him for missing his curfew, again, and his emotions began to boil over. Everything he kept bottled inside was about to explode into four words that would silence their fight and end up bringing them closer. So Andy screamed back. “You try being gay.” Andy, senior, came out just after New Year’s as a sophomore in 2007 when he could no longer hide who he was. “At first, I did my best to stay closeted. I dated girls and kept part of myself hidden. But I wasn’t really a happy guy because I wasn’t being who I was. You can’t fake who you are for a long amount of time,” Andy said. “But for me, coming out wasn’t too bad. I’m not like the stereotype, and I didn’t come out to assimilate to something other than I was—I came out to be who I was.” Andy decided to confide in one of his friends first before fully coming out. “The fear of coming out always freaked me out. It wasn’t that I ever wanted to come out, but I couldn’t stay closeted anymore. I physically couldn’t take it; my body hurt, my head hurt and it was itching to get out. It was out of fear that I stayed closeted and out of frustration that I came out,” Andy said. “I started by coming out to my friends because, if they don’t accept you, friends are easier to let go of than family.” But the friend Andy came out to, Margaux Meyer, senior, was accepting and encouraging; Margaux helped Andy embrace who he was and gave him the confidence and support that led Andy to tell his other friends. But despite Margaux’s support, Andy was still fearful of coming out to his family and was unsure of how they would react. “After I screamed it at them, everything stopped dead. And then after a while they were like, ‘You’re gay?’ and I said, ‘Yeah,’ and then they asked why I hadn’t told them sooner,” Andy said. “I thought that, with my dad being Catholic, he wouldn’t accept me, but he completely understood. And my mom, well she’s my mom. She is
the most giving and most loving person, and she loves me no matter what.” Andy’s mom, Robyn, stopped the fight and pulled him in for a hug when he came out. “What he did is not easy, but he didn’t want to live a lie,” Robyn said. “It is a process from a gay person to realize he is gay; it doesn’t just happen. For Andy to come out in high school and to go through that process—I just have so much respect for him doing that, because not everyone is accepting and understanding; he’s realized that.” Andy said, despite other’s opinions, he came out so he could be true to himself. “I never wanted to be the stereotype—there is nothing wrong with it, but it’s not who I am,” Andy said. “You can’t help who you are, and you should never be someone you aren’t because it’s definitely not worth it.” Though Andy has received unconditional support from his family and friends about being true to himself, he is still frustrated by people who are less understanding and accepting. “What people tend not to understand is that relationships are the same in both the [gay and straight] worlds. You find out through experience; people lie, people cheat, people love and they fall in love; [relationships in the gay world are] not different, but completely the same,” Andy explained. “You learn with time, and I am still learning.” Andy also believes people are born either gay or straight and that sexual orientation cannot be changed. “When people say [being gay] is a choice, I want to say, ‘How dumb are you?’ but that would be giving them attention they don’t need. If they say it’s a choice, it is their opinion but, frankly, it’s not a choice. It’s just not,” Andy said. “You choose to come out; you don’t choose to be who you are. I didn’t choose to have brown hair. I didn’t choose to have green eyes. I didn’t choose to be gay and I can’t choose to be straight. I’m sorry that [some people] don’t understand what life is and what the purpose of it is; but it is to be happy. And I’m happy being who I am.” Andy has embraced who he is and offers advice for others struggling to be true to themselves. “There is no point in being anyone but who you are. Faking it? Not worth it. Trying to impress people? Not worth it. Hiding who you are to spare others? Definitely not worth it,” Andy said. “Just be who you are and be happy.”
-b y M aggie Hallam
Ali Kluck, sophomore, began seeing signs of liking girls in sixth grade when she met one of her sister’s friends. Something about this friend made her stand out from the rest; she was different, but in a good way. Shortly thereafter, Ali looked at a guy and it hit her: she realized she was not attracted to him at all. She then started dating a girl December 2008 and decided to come out later that month. After telling her family and friends she was a homosexual, she received mixed emotions, but most were happy for her.
Adlai E. Stevenson once said, “My definition of a free socie For Tom Gaither-Ganim, educational support counselor, come out during high school. According to Gaither-Ganim, coming out involves persona feelings of fear and reluctance as well as a sense of relief at st “At this age, so many things are open, and there are so ma After coming out, students may face harassment. Howeve are accepting. He has heard mostly of isolated instances of t rather a societal issue. Gaither-Ganim also supports the GSA and believes the clu “The GSA says a lot about out school, our leadership, our society where we respect each other despite our differences.” Although homosexuals suffer from inequalities in society themselves in a high school setting. “I really respect people that have to go against the grain in Gaither-Ganim said.
“My mom didn’t believe me at first,” Ali said. “She thought it was just a phase. But for the most part everyone was okay with it.” Only recently did Ali’s mom fully believe her, and until then, the two didn’t talk much for a year. “One night I said, ‘Mom, I like girls. It’s not just a phase, and it’s not changing,’” Ali said. Since then, their relationship is better, and Ali feels she is now free to be herself without worrying about her mom not accepting who she is. Ali is proud of who she is and believes people should just love each other and be happy, whether it is with a member of the same sex or not. “If someone doesn’t like me because I’m gay, that’s their fault,” Ali said. “I’m me, and I’m not going to change who I am for somebody else.”
The Kirkwood Call
nim, educational support counselor
ety is a society where it is safe to be unpopular.” , this quote sums up the experience for some students who
al introspection and reflection; it isn’t easy and includes mixed tudents can be themselves. any question marks,” Gaither-Ganim said. er, Gaither-Ganim believes, for the most part, people at KHS taunting and believes it is not a rampant problem at KHS but
ub is an asset to the school. r community,” Gaither-Ganim said. “I hope we could live in a
y, Gaither-Ganim admires those who have the strength to be order to honor what they know and recognize in themselves,”
-b y M aggie H allam and Amb er Ta ylor
February 17, 2010
-b y M aggie H allam
Lauren Borelli, junior, told her mom and friends she was a lesbian freshman year. Once her mom found out, it was easier to talk about afterward. However, Lauren thought her mom would be more supportive than she turned out to be. “My mom wasn’t against it, but she wasn’t sure about it,” Lauren said. “My dad lives in Texas, so we don’t really talk about it. But I don’t think we would talk about it if given the chance.” Although Lauren found it difficult to tell her mom, it was easier to tell her friends, and they supported her right away. The first person she told was her friend and fellow junior, TJ McCoy. “Friendship is more than your sexuality,” Lauren said. Lauren thinks people at KHS, in general, are pretty accepting of gays. She believes Kirkwood is more supportive than many other schools. As for the United States, Lauren thinks people are a lot stricter than they should be. “There will always be people who disagree with you,” Lauren said. “Unfortunately, I think it will be more difficult for straight people to accept [homosexuality].” Lauren believes everybody should be treated equally when it comes to marriage and other basic rights, regardless of sexual orientation. “I don’t see why gays should have any less of a privilege,” Lauren said.
-b y M aggie H allam
Drew Starr, junior, admitted to being homosexual the summer after eighth grade when he had a crush on a guy. Nervous, he sat down and told his mom, much to her surprise. His dad found it hard to believe as well. “My mom loves gays; she has so many friends who are gay,” Drew said. “I think it was harder for her to come to terms with believing that I was actually gay.” Despite her surprise, Drew’s mom supported him right away, as did his friends. “I’ve been best friends with Sam McReynolds (junior) since third grade, and he was so supportive,” Drew said. “I supported him completely when he came out, and he supported me when I came out.” Although coming out was difficult, Drew did not see it as a big deal. According to him, nothing really changed. Drew believes the students and staff of KHS are supportive of gays overall, and he has not been judged because of his sexual orientation. “There was one incident where somebody called me a ‘fag,’ but it wasn’t that big of a deal, and I totally felt like everyone supported me,” Drew said. Although most students support homosexuals, Drew believes the United States is behind on accepting gays and passing gay rights. “Portugal passed gay marriage as a country,” Drew said. “Gay marriage isn’t of huge importance to me. But things like hospital privileges so you can see your partner [like family] when he gets into a car accident or something like that and is hurt, that’s important to me.” For any students who are scared to tell their friends and family they are homosexual, Drew offers a bit of advice. “If your parents haven’t expressed hate against gays, then go for it, take the plunge,” Drew said. “It’s nice to be comfortable with yourself.”
ming ut in high scho ol
photos b y Tom Eb eling and Ly dia Mitchener
10 FeatureS Mystery religion raises questions on practices
The Kirkwood Call
February 17, 2010
Tom Cruise has praised it, South Park has parodied it Founded in 1954, the Church of Scientology has been and recently the self-proclaimed “world’s fastest growing rumored to reserve many of its important knowledge religion” was explored by some KHS students. The Church of regarding the religion for members willing to put in years Scientology has appeared in magazines, bestof time into the church. With celebrities such as Cruise Joe Weber selling books and commercials. Though its and John Travolta as spokesmen for Scientology, the truth features writer name is becoming more and more well known, behind the religion’s practices is often shielded by an Scientology has brought even more feelings of confusion and array of multimedia coverage. wonder to outside observers. With its closest church location Senior Mary Clifford has not been to the church but being only a 15-minute drive to The Loop in University City, feels that its beliefs are all “a little ridiculous.” She has read three members of The Call decided to make the trip and try to one of Hubbard’s books titled Dianetics, which explains a find out all they could about the church. therapy used by scientologists to help relieve pain caused When entering through the large double doors of the by psychosomatic illness. Church of Scientology’s St. Louis location, two spiraling “In the book he sounds like a science fiction writer, and staircases with a receptionist’s desk underneath greeted that he has a very creative imagination,” Clifford said. us. After filling out a small informational form, we were Though still skeptical about the practices of Scientology, introduced to Mindy, a public relations secretary at the visiting the church helped Meyer understand some of the church. Wearing a blue collared dress shirt and a big smile, positive things that can come out of its practice. she led us upstairs into a large “It gives a person hardwood floor room. Tables someone to talk to filled with books written by without feeling like the famous science fiction they are a burden,” writer and founder of the Meyer said. church, L. Ron Hubbard, During The Call’s surrounded the room along time at the church, with a statue of the man all of our questions himself. In the middle of were willingly given an the room five rows of fold answer. At times we let up chairs faced a television out giggles at the acting playing informational videos on their promotional about Scientology. videos. It was hard not Margaux Meyer, senior, to feel self-conscious recently took a trip to the when we were told to church during an open house close our eyes, imagine and had a similar experience. a picture of a cat and “After we watched the point to where we saw video for about half an hour, it. But we also got a we took a 200-question survey much better look into with questions like, ‘What what it means to live as is your favorite ice cream a Scientologist. flavor,’” Meyer said. According to Mindy, Meyer and her friends spent our guide, Scientology four hours that day talking to is more about the Sam Edwards photographer Scientology members and personal philosophy reading information about it is about Church of Scientology, located in University City, is open to visitors who want than the church after noticing an to learn more about Scientology. Sunday services begin at 10:30 a.m. Lectures worshiping any deity on Dianetics and Scientology technology are also available. advertisement for an open or savior. After leaving, house of the church. however, many things “After we finished the still seemed unclear as surveys, a man took me into the corner of the room away from to how the church really functions every day. my friends and said ‘I’m going to tell you about yourself,’” “At first, I felt complete skepticism about Scientology, Meyer said. “They told me I was depressed and needed a and now I can understand how it could help someone,” sense of direction. That’s not like me at all.” Meyer said. “But I still think it is crazy.”
She blinded me with... Scientology Though its official numbers are controversial, The Church of Scientology has claimed anywhere from 8-10 million members worldwide. Where other census groups have predicted numbers as low as 500,000.
L. Ron Hubbard’s first book on Scientology, Dianetics, sold over 150,000 copies its first year, becoming a nationwide best-seller.
Becoming increasingly popular among celebrities, current members of the church include Tom Cruise, John Travolta, Katie Holmes, Beck, and Kirstie Alley.
Before writing his book Dianetics, Hubbard wrote over 135 science fiction and action novels.
For more scientology information, visit www.scientology.org
KYS holds blood drive working to save others’ lives Entering the gym, it is not usually someone’s goal to see hundreds of students bleeding, but this day was different. The annual KYS blood drive was held Jan. 29 in the Denver Miller Gymnasium, and Annie Travis with the help of Mississippi Valley Refeatures writer gional Blood Center, this was exactly the sight they had hoped would be a reality. “The blood drive is a tradition that I took on when
I became the sponsor for KYS,” Bob Becker, science teacher, said. “We used to donate through the Red Cross, but recently we have been in contact with Mississippi Valley and we received better feedback from the students who gave blood.” High expectations for KHS had KYS members working to advertise the blood drive by hanging posters around school and encouraging students to sign up to give blood during their IP, study block and homeroom. “Our goal for this blood drive was 100 pints of blood, or 100 students, but we try to beat that every year,” Becker said. “We ended up with 111 pints. It is our obligation to bring in as many people as we can, and it is Mississippi Valley’s obligation to bring in as many beds as it takes to satisfy that goal.” Laura Berner, junior, who donated blood for the first time, had premonitions that were much worse than reality. She said the initial waiting was scarier than the actual act of donating. “I was extremely nervous. I wasn’t even sure I was going to go through with it.” Berner said. “My heart rate was up, so they couldn’t take my blood pressure, making the screening process take a while. After that I gained some nerve. The needle went in, and I couldn’t even feel it.” Another first-time donor, Caitlin Cowan, junior, said it was extremely Natalie Webb artist helpful to have a student to talk to in or-
der to keep her mind off of the blood and help her feel more comfortable. “After giving blood, I helped out with the drive along with the other KYS students,” Cowan said. “It was a lot of fun to talk to people while they were giving blood to help them feel less nervous, especially because I had already given that day.” Tony Fonseca, junior and KYS president, said accidents and disease in the world today are so frequent that doctors and patients cannot run the risk of not having the right kind of blood for someone who is in need of it. “It is important for high schoolers to give blood because a large part of the population cannot anymore on account of old age,” Fonseca said. “We need to step up and do what we can while we are still able to do it.” Becker said the blood drive was an overall success because KHS exceeded our goal and had students helping out nurses and running errands for the drive. Volunteers were crucial when it came to the operation of the system. “Mississippi Valley commends me on the students of KHS for being helpful and courteous,” Becker said. “Kudos to the club and the school for making this season’s blood drive an extreme success.” Blood was not the only thing donated by students and faculty that day. P.E. classes had to plan activities that did not center around using the gym. “We really appreciate the P.E. department of the high school for their generosity in sharing the gym and moving classes to other locations for the day,” Becker said. “There is no way we could have been nearly as efficient or have gotten to as many students without their help.”
The Kirkwood Call
February 17, 2010
Taking charge of the courtroom a trial at a time “Mock Trial combines two it less intimidating.” things I love: law and workThis popular club is encouraged for anyone with a ing with kids. As an educator, I good work ethic, and is willing to put some long hours love to see such dedicated kids,” in the practices, Frick, said. Stragand said. “This is a great “I would recommend anyone to go for it. Speakout-of-school experience.” ing in front of others is a good skill to have especially In a windowless room, cell when dealing with unexpected variables during the phones are off, time keep- cross examination,” Dayan said. “You never know ers are in place and everyone what to expect.” begins to take his or her seat. Finally after the trial is over, both teams’ fate lies Silence fills the room as the in the hands of the judges. After deliberating, the words “All rise” are heard and judges praise the students for giving appropriate eye the judge enters. She looks the contact, or they correct the students when they read crowd over, making the wit- strictly off note cards. With constructive criticism nesses swear to tell the truth, taken, the students can only wait and practice until the whole truth and nothing their next trial. but the truth. Then she listens “The best part of Mock Trial is getting to know how to the opening statements. much time and effort it takes to become a lawyer,” Jay As intensity fills the air, Frick, junior and first-year member, said. “The hardest the examination begins. part is the memorization of my parts and as well as just Carly Wooldridge photographer Jay Frick, junior, and Peter Stragand, history teacher, review strategies prior to the hearing. Every word is analyzed, faknowing what to say to the opposing counsel.” Stragand, a former lawyer, helps his students improve their confidence. Members put full effort to cial expressions are second Not only does the club impact a student’s life, but impress the judges and boost their scores. guessed and it also gets them thinking about their future. “Wussy sport. Wussy sport. Wussy sport.” Each questions are asked again in hopes “I want to be a lawyer when member of Mock Trial chanted these words, before of only catching the witness off Mock Trial combines two I grow up,” Zach Brand, junior, every court case. The tradition started when the for- guard. With a stutter in his voice things I love: law and worksaid. “The best part of Mock Trial mer mock trial coach and at the time, head football and sweat trickling down his foreing with kids. As an educais when I outsmart my opponent coach called Mock Trial a “wussy head, the witness tries to speak, but tor, I love to see such dediMary Kate Vatterott fear strikes his face. Pleasantly surwith objections. It makes all of my sport,” clearly not understanding features writer cated kids. preparation and hard work go to the passion and determination of prised, the cross examiner sits back - Peter Stragand down at the counsel table, letting good use.” the club members. Mock Trial coach These well-prepared students, Mock Trial is a competitive, extra curricular activ- the rest of the hearing continue. With high school football teams having practiced around three ity in which approximately 75 Missouri schools participate. Students prepare to take different roles as going to state and the swim team reaching sectionals, hours after school and three to four hours on the weekattorneys or witnesses, learning proper techniques of the same excitement occurs for Mock Trial. The trial ends, officially take charge in the courtroom, impressing the judges proving that this is no “wussy sport.” examination and legal objection. After long practices begins. This is their playoff game. “The atmosphere, for me, is relaxed because it’s “For anyone to call Mock Trial a ‘wussy sport’, clearly students perform in a real court rooms, such as ones in Clayton, and perform in front of professional lawyers self-directed,” Josh Dayan, senior, said. “I began as a shows that they do not know anything about it,” Brand and judges. Peter Stragand, former lawyer and current freshman, and it was fun from the start because the said. “They don’t understand the hard work we put beupperclassmen who were on Mock Trial helped make hind it to make a good outcome.” social studies teacher, is the Mock Trial coach.
Welcome to the Nerf gun show It all started with boredom and a 3-ounce tube of black model paint. It was this boredom that inspired a new kind of art painting Lauren Schneider Nerf guns. features writer “I like taking something generic and making it unique,” Jack Richardson, senior, said about painting Nerf guns as his new hobby. Richardson had always enjoyed the music side of art. It was not until his girlfriend, Angie Johnson, senior, bought him a Nerf gun that he realized his artistic potential. “Jack’s been really excited [about the guns]. I knew he was interested when I saw him standing in his garage in the 5 degree weather painting Nerf guns,” Johnson said. After receiving the gun from Johnson, Richardson started a collection of guns. One day when Richardson was bored he started disassembling a gun. When it was laid out in front of him Richardson came up with the idea of using model paint to spruce up the gun. “At first I used black paint, but it was boring so I went to buy more,” Richardson said. “After I finished painting it, I thought it was the coolest thing ever.” The first gun he painted ended up being his favorite, but because he found enjoyment in painting guns, Richardson decided to paint most of the guns in his collection. “I was excited and proud [of my guns], so I posted pictures of them on Facebook,” Richardson said. Soon people started commenting on the pictures and asked Richardson if he would paint their guns, too. Matt Desloge, senior, was the first person to have his gun painted.
“I always thought the colors were bland, and when I was on Facebook I saw Jack’s guns. I thought they were unique. He used interesting colors. You could tell he enjoyed it,” Desloge said. “All I did was give him money for paint. He did a great job.” Currently Richardson has painted 10 guns (each a different model) and now has a whole box of different colored 3-ounce tubes of model paint and no boredom.
courtesy of Jack Richardson To get a Nerf gun painted you can join Richardson’s Facebook group “Nerf Gun customizing by Jack Richardson.” The price for Richardson to paint a Nerf gun is around $10 and students can go to his Facebook group for more information.
Band travels to Tan-Tar-A
Nerves were running wild as about 70 band students stood in the Katie Thorpe Essex features writer p a r king lot after school Jan. 28, awaiting their turn to enter the bus and pick a seat. They were headed to Osage Beach to perform for a group of musical instrucLydia Mitchener photo editor tors. Excited chatter The band practices in class prior to its trip to Tan-Tar-A. Jason Rekittke, was heard from every band instructor, leads the class and helps the students prepare for their upgroup that surround- coming performance. ed the bus. After all, they had been waiting for this trip for for and definitely the most musically educated,” Julian Loida, junior, said. the past five years. But when the Kirkwood band entered “It is a big deal because bands are selected through an audition,” Jason the stage, they were prepared. Only one Rekittke, band instructor, said. “You of three high schools invited, the band send in a recording of the band as an ap- started holding Sunday rehearsals, and plication, and a National Board of Music they had daily practices in class. All the rehearsals led up to that Educators review the recordings, and moment. The band played “Valdres,” they pick the best.” The band left for Tan-Tar-A resort in “Masque,” “Symphony Number One,” Osage Beach to perform for a group of about the bombing of Dresden, and musical instructors the next day. They “They’re Off.” “The high we felt while we played— were invited by the Missouri Music Educators Association (MMEA) and have the excitement. We played the best we been sending in tapes for the past five ever played,” Molly Meyer, senior and clarinet player, said. years. This year they were chosen. Rekittke compared the experience “This is the golden performance,” Jacob Bubb, senior and band president, at Tan-Tar-A to being in a state chamsaid after returning from the trip. “It pionship game, but unfortunately they cannot attend the MMEA conference does not get much better than this.” The band was supposed to perform to perform for another four years. That at 9:30 a.m., but the performance was doesn’t mean band will not have any delayed 15 minutes. Nerves built up more trips, though. “[The band’s] next goal is to get acduring the waiting period because the audience was full of professional music cepted to play for the Midwest clinic in Chicago, which is the national level,” instructors and teachers. “It’s the biggest crowd I ever played Rekittke said.
February 17, 2010
Todd Sarvies, vocals, guitar, piano
Taylor Smith, drummer
Mike Dyer, bassist
Tom Ebeling photographer
The Kirkwood Call
Local band rocks The Pageant John Boy’s Courage took the stage as the crowd cheered and whistled at the band. Taylor Smith, drummer, counted off the first song, Cassie Kibens “Flatline”, and the night had begun. features writer John Boy’s Courage (JBC) played Feb. 5 at The Pageant, and for Mike Dyer, bassist, and Smith, that night was a first. “I always wanted to play The Pageant,” Dyer, senior, said. “Taylor and I always said we wanted to play there before we got out of high school.” The band, JBC, has been around since 2006, except with different members for the first two years. Todd Sarvies, 27 (vocals, guitar and piano), contacted Smith two years ago to ask him to play in JBC. Smith agreed and along with Sarvies played at places like Blueberry Hill. “I’ve known [Sarvies] forever, through church or family friends,” Smith, senior, said. “We had like a little White Stripes thing going on.” Three months later Smith called Dyer about joining the band due to some differences with the previous bassist Smith and Sarvies had. “Playing with [Sarvies] is completely different [than playing in a high school band],” Dyer said, “[JBC] has a different style of music and a different situation, it has a different feel, feels more like we are doing a job.” The name John Boy’s Courage comes from the type of music Sarvies writes. “I write songs about my hang-ups with the struggles we face in everyday life and the courage that it takes to over come those obstacles,” Sarvies said. “The ‘John Boy’ is just a name.” To get ready for The Pageant show, the band practiced 3-4 times per week at Sarvies’ house and practiced more on their own as well.
“We have a pretty rigorous practice schedule,” Dyer said. “[Practicing] is a mixture of individual and practicing together.” Even though Sarvies started the band and writes most of the songs, Smith and Dyer write their own parts for the songs and contribute their input when working on the songs. “Taylor and I fine tune [the songs], and [Sarvies] gives us as much input as we want,” Dyer said. “If we don’t like a part, we can work it out. [JBC] is definitely an open band.” Dyer and Smith had never played The Pageant until Feb. 5 but overall the audience liked the acoustic rock performance given by JBC. “Mike put some pretty good riffs in there,” said Greg Weis, senior, “They’re pretty unique.” After JBC’s set the other bands performing that night congratulated Dyer, Smith and Sarvies or a good show. “We have a respect for what we do,” said Dyer. Even though the snow storm kept some of the fans from coming, many KHS students came out to support their fellow students. “They sound so professional,” Lucy Randall, senior, said. “They didn’t sound like a high school band.” Dyer and Smith plan on playing with John Boy’s Courage until they go to college in the fall, each wanting to study music performance, unless something major happens, then college might be on the backburner. Sarvies, however, was signed with Johnny Wright, a music manager from Wright entertainment, and for now is staying with Dyer and Smith. “So far the plan is [Sarvies] is going to remain with [Dyer and Smith], but I don’t trust anyone in the music business as far as I can throw them,” Smith said.
Gods are the new wizards Not many people know about Percy Jackson & The Olympians, but in a time in which we have overdosed on Twilight and the Harry Potter film franchise is nearing its end (the last two installments will be released November 2010 and July 2011), maybe it’s time to get familiar with the gods and goddesses of this Greek Lauren Hummel mythology-inspired series. entertainment editor Rick Riordan’s series of five books has crafted a world in which the Greek gods are alive and well, and the fate of the mythological world lies in the hands of 12-year-old Percy Jackson, who just so happens to be part-god himself. In The Lightning Thief, the first book of the series, Percy’s story unfortunately begins with him getting kicked out of boarding school. Again. For reasons he does not understand, he has always been viewed as a different kind of kid. Doctors diagnosed him with ADHD and dyslexia, but no one can really figure out why Percy is the way he is. Not until one day during a class field trip does Percy realize something is not quite right with the world when his pre-algebra teacher transforms into a winged creature and tries to kill him. From there Percy is sent to Camp Half-Blood for sons and daughters of the gods, where he embarks on a journey of selfdiscovery that entails not only battling famous monsters but also reconnecting with the father he never knew, god of the sea, Poseidon. After beginning The Lightning Thief, I could not help but notice the similarities between Percy and a certain boy wizard. Percy’s two best friends
are Grover, a satyr, and Annabeth, a daughter of Greek goddess Athena. Themes of the series include loyalty and friendship, not to mention the fantasy story line and heaps of action to go with it. However, each series has its own voice, and I was not disappointed from what Jackson had to offer. Although Riordan’s novels are classified as children’s fiction or young adult, Percy Jackson & The Olympians provides enough entertainment to capture the attention of children and adults alike. And I won’t lie; the font is fairly large, making the books a very quick read. I found it refreshing to take a break from wizards and vampires and explore the world of Percy Jackson. As I read, I received somewhat of a lesson in Greek mythology as well. Riordan makes it easy to understand the legendary and sometimes complicated stories of the gods and factors each one of them into the story with ease. Once I began the series, I simply did not want to stop. Following the path of most young adult series these days, the film adaptation of Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief hit theaters Feb. 12, and while it is too early to say whether or not the film can gather enough followers (or cash) to spark a sequel, the cast alone is enough reason to see it. Starring Logan Lerman as the title character and Uma Thurman, Pierce Brosnan, Catherine Keener and Rosario Dawson as various gods and mortals, I know that for now I will be trading in wizards for gods. Vampires have sucked up enough of my time
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The Kirkwood Call
-IN BRIEFBasketball senior night The boys’ basketball team will have its senior night Feb. 19 against Oakville. The girls will have theirs Feb. 16 against Eureka.
Swimming qualifies three events for state The team qualified their 200 and 400 meter free-relay teams. Rachel Kokenyesi, freshman, qualified in the 100-meter butterfly and backstrokes, 200-meter individual medley events. Jordan Berger, senior, qualified in 100-meter freestyle.
Racquetball heading to nationals Thirteen boys and four girls will be traveling to Portland, OR for nationals beginning Feb. 24.
13 port S S Best and worst of Superbowl commercials February 17, 2010
All around: As always Anheuser-Busch comes up big with their commercials. With five minutes of commercials they were bound to have hits, from a group of guys talking about the party they were throwing using rapper T-Pain’s voice Robert Conroy to a human chain spanning the way of a collapsed bridge allowing a sports writer Budweiser truck to make its delivery in the town. Best: The Simpsons were featured in a Coca-Cola commercial; billionaire Mr. Burns loses all his money which makes him very depressed until a generous Apu offers him a Coke, ending his worries. Controversial: Before it even aired, a commercial featuring Tim Tebow and his mother sparked much controversy. The two were there to speak against abortion, but many complained to CBS saying the Superbowl was not an appropriate place to speak on this topic. Creative: A man takes a trip to France, falls in love, becomes entangled in a long distance relationship and travels back to France to live with his girlfriend, ending with the birth of a baby. All of this is learned through the man’s Google searches in Google’s only commercial. Funniest: Chip company Doritos held an internet-run contest to find the commercials that would be representing its brand during the Superbowl. This contest was successful in producing quality ads, the best featuring a young boy telling his mom’s date to “keep [his] hands off [his] momma and off [his] Doritos.” Getting old: Racy commercials seem to be Go-Daddy.com’s name-of-the-game when it comes to advertisement. Their ads feature girls beginning to take their clothes off followed a few seconds later by a message stating: “It’s too hot for T.V,” crushing the hopes of many young boys.
Michael Burch art editor
-FROM THE SEAT OF PETE-
Wrestling state tournament soon to start The state tournament begins Feb. 18. Wrestlers will hope to follow in the footsteps of last year state champion, Stephen Doty.
Winter Olympics The Olympics began Feb. 12 and will be going on for the following two weeks. The U.S. will be hoping to better their 25 medals from four years ago in Torino.
For more sports stories and event updates visit us at:
It’s time for another Olympic miracle
Referenced by many as the greatest sports moment ever, the USA’s win over the Soviets in the 1980 Olympics hockey semifinals didn’t even win a medal. Peter Krusing The game, however, symeditor-in-chief bolized the take down of a giant. The team gave hope and inspiration to the USA, which was looking for a rallying cry during the bleak Cold War. As the 30th anniversary of this memorable game approaches, our country faces similar tensions. We are struggling through a depression, a war and a health care mess, but—like 1980—we have a rallying cry. When USA hockey general manager Bryan Burke named the 2010 team to compete in Vancouver, he decided to kick the trend of using experienced NHL pros to fill the team. Instead, he filled the team with young, talented players including 21-year-old St. Louis Blues’ defenseman Erik Johnson. This year’s team only has three players with Olympic experience as Jamie Langenbrunner, 34, as-
sumes the role of captain. The average age of the team is 26.5 years, making it the youngest team since the NHL started allowing players to play. It seems like Burke is trying to imitate the 1980 roster, which was full of amateur and no-name players with an average age of 22. USA hockey will look to Ron Wilson, Toronto Maple Leaf’s head coach to lead the young team. Wilson led the USA to its first gold medal in the 1996 World Cup of Hockey and is the second-winningest coach in the NHL. As the teams begin skating in Vancouver, the heavy favorites will be the Canadians and Russians. The Canadians are led by superstar Sidney Crosby and will have the home-ice advantage. However, the Russians, which will rally behind Alex Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin, look to build off their last two world championships and skate home with the gold. The USA again is the underdog in Vancouver. The last medal USA won since its gold in 1980 after the victory over Finland was silver in 2002, but lost in the bronze medal game against Sweden 4-2 at the last year’s world
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championships. According to the International Ice Hockey Federation, the USA is ranked fifth behind Russia, Canada, Sweden and Finland. However, the USA has hope in these Olympics. The Vancouver Games will be the fourth time NHL players will be allowed to play in the Games while the rest of NHL takes a two-week break, and three different countries have won under this rule. USA could make it four different countries by winning. They will also benefit on playing on a NHL regulation rink instead of the one that is typically larger for Olympic venues. In order for the underdog USA team to have a shot at gold, it will need its young players to play to their potential. Hopefully, the young players will rally around Wilson as the 1980 team did with Coach Herb Brooks when he said, “This is our time. Now go out there and take it.” Who knows, maybe we will have another miracle that unites our country. We sure need one to fix an unemployment rate of 9.7 percent, a national debt of $8 trillion debt and a 13.2 percent poverty rate. This team has the make up of the last miracle. We must believe in miracles.
February 17, 2010
The Kirkwood Call
Students at the Denver Miller Gym fill the stands in white clothes. Joey Greenstein, senior, is the third person from the right of the front row cheering for Kirkwood’s boys’ varsity basketball team to pull off a win against Fox Jan. 4. “In my opinion, when fans think of Kirkwood basketball, they think white-out,” Greenstein said. photo courtesy of Randy Kriewall
It was as if a blizzard had invaded a field covered with autumn-orange leaves. Except it was not outside, it was in the Denver Miller gym Feb. 25 last year. Another game between two of the greatest rivals in the state emerged. Only it was more imporDrew Morris tant this time because they had arrived sports writer to play each other in districts. Countless fans from both sides cheered at the game, and the only thing one person could hear was the sound of the crowd. A screaming student section filled with whitecovered fans was there encouraging Kirkwood to pull off another win in districts. The Kirkwood boys’ varsity basketball team defeated Webster Groves, 71-63. Joey Greenstein, senior, considered Kirkwood the “underdogs” going into the game. He believes the fans had an impact in the outcome of the game. “Of course the team won because they were good and played well,” Greenstein said. “But I think [the fans] helped them out by giving them a lot of support.” The support was more than signs that said “Go Wood!” or fans dressed in the traditional red shirt that represents Kirkwood’s colors. Greenstein came out with the idea to improve the student section’s spirit by getting a good number of students to dress or body paint themselves in completely white. “I asked Dr. Holley if I can go on the announcements and introduce my plan,” Greenstein said. “He said yes,
and that’s when the white-out started.” The white-out became the new trademark for Kirkwood’s basketball fan base. Right after the announcement about the white-out, it was immediately used in the next boys’ varsity game against SLUH. Hunter Ward, senior and varsity guard, was very appreciative of the fans’ support, especially Greenstein’s. “He has always cheered us on,” Ward said. “He really does bring most of the student body. He cares a lot about our program.” Ward also believes the white-out is a confidence builder for the team. “[The white-out] really pumps me up,” Ward said. “Not only me, but the rest of my teammates. It really boosts us for our game when everyone’s there supporting us.” Greenstein, a former basketball player during his freshman and sophomore years, developed a strong love for Kirkwood basketball. However, he found himself better off in the crowd supporting the team rather than playing. “Needless to say, it’s a lot more fun being supportive and bringing people together,” Greenstein said. Plus, Greenstein believed Kirkwood didn’t have a consistent student section in the past, which led him to get motivated to invent the white-out. “The white-out was a great idea Joey came up with,”
Brian Rosser, senior and fan, said. “He really wanted more people to come together and watch the games, which helps the team do well.” “The white-out really did help, I admit,” Greenstein said. “It’s a great feeling knowing you brought new fans into the games who never came to games.” It became so popular that Vianney came out with the “black-out,” but more as a competition, according to Greenstein. “It was intense when [Vianney] came up with something,” Greenstein said. “But that’s what made it fun. It is nice to know they were inspired to come up against us with a new idea.” After attending many boys’ varsity games displaying the white-out, Greenstein began to wonder about the girls’ varsity basketball games. He decided he did not want them to feel left out. So, he wanted to use another idea for the student section called the “red-out,” similar to the white-out except the student section was filled with red-covered fans. “I thought it would be nice to try something different,” Greenstein said. “The red-out was pretty successful and it drew more fans to the games.” Due to the idea of white-out, Greenstein is defined by many as a true fan, by players along with fans. “Joey is the ultimate, super fan for Kirkwood basketball,” Hunter Ward said.
Doty lifts Pioneers to another level Every high school athlete is a student athlete, but few are home schooled. At KHS, there is only one such athlete: Liana Doty, sophomore, and the starting point guard on the girls’ Nikko Gianino sports writer varsity basketball team. Tim Tebow, quarterback of the two-time national champion Florida University Gators, is an example of a home-schooled athlete. Doty, whose brother Stephen (also home schooled) graduated last year after winning a state championship in wrestling and now attends Virginia University, was home schooled through middle school and now takes six classes a day at KHS. She is home schooled in American History and Algebra II. Doty says her early education gave her a good outlook on life. “[Being home schooled] taught me the value of self-discipline,” Doty said. “Just because I was being taught by my parents all the time doesn’t mean I wasn’t working hard.” This philosophy has transferred smoothly to Doty’s basketball career. She has played her whole life for various select teams before she enrolled at Kirkwood. Last year, as one of the many freshmen on varsity girls’ basketball team, she earned all-conference honors as a point guard. This year, she was
named captain of the team along with Jordan Frick, senior. Although she appears mild-mannered off the court, according to her teammates, Doty undergoes a transformation once she laces up her sneakers. “You don’t expect her to play like she does,” Dajae Williams, sophomore, teammate said. “It surprises you when she takes it to the rack. But Doty’s style of play is much more than simply driving the lane. Her head coach, Ron Sanford, named her captain because of her basketball I.Q. Sanford said Doty knows the game very well for someone so young. “She has a tremendous knowledge of all aspects of the game, offense and defense,” Sanford said. “She displays great awareness and poise on the court.” Another reason Doty was named captain is because of her commitment and the extra time she put’s in. Three days out of the week, Doty will show up to school around 6:30 a.m. and shoot hoops until 7:15 a.m. If she misses a couple layups in a game, she will do layups the whole time. If her three-point shots do not fall, she will shoot three’s for 45 minutes. Whenever the team has an offday, Doty can be found on a court, honing her basketball skills. Sanford said all
this extra work is completely her idea. “She has a bigger commitment than anyone to basketball. It gains her a lot of respect with the team,” Sanford said. Doty and the team have gained a lot more than respect this season. Last year’s varsity squad had a host of freshmen along with Doty who have matured and learned how to compete at a varsity level this season. “I am really proud of the way the girls have developed and improved since last season, especially with their defense,” Doty said. The team’s record stands at 14-7, and it is tied for first in conference play with Parkway South. Doty’s eyes light up when she describes her team’s success. “A big part of our success this year has been because of our chemistry,” Doty said. “We’ve learned how to gel with each other and play as a team.” Sanford said the team has worked hard all season, rebounding after big losses and learning from their mistakes. And much of this can be attributed to their captain. Doty’s work ethic shows through no matter what she does. “She commits herself to anything in life, whether it’s basketball, schoolwork, youth group, anything,” Sanford said. “Her mentality is that if you’re going to
Lydia Mitchener photo editor Liana Doty, sophomore, dribbles toward the hoop for a layup against Pattonville Jan. 6. Kirkwood won 43-29. “I am really proud of the way the girls have developed and improved since last season,” Doty said. The girls’ record is 14-7.
15 February 17, 2010
Record: 10-10 District Seed: No. 4 seed
Record: 12-9 District Seed: No. 2 seed
The Pioneers will play No. 5 Gateway Tech. Key Players: Hunter Ward (Sr.), Kyle Rice (Jr.), Myles Artis (So.).
Vianney plays No. 3 SLUH opening round in districts. Key Players: Joe James (Sr.), Jack Voelker (Sr.), Tony Cochran (So.).
The Pioneers went 3-0 in district play last tear. The hosts beat SLUH 62-52 in the first round, Webster Groves 71-63 and Vianney 62-51 in the district championship game. However, the Pioneers eight-game winning streak was broken when Chaminade Red Devils beat them 79-66. Key Wins: Maplewood and Lee’s Summit North Key Losses: Webster Groves and Rock Bridge
The Vianney Golden Griffins entered the district playoffs a No. 2 and won their first round contest against the Gateway Tech Jaguars 49-48. Vianney lost in the championship game against the Pioneers, ending their season. Key Wins: St. Charles West and DeSmet Key Losses: Chaminade, Borgia and McCluer
-UrsulineRecord: 13-7 District Seed: No. 4 seed
-KirkwoodRecord: 14-7 District Seed: No. 2 seed The Pioneers will play No. 3 Webster Groves. Key Players: Lianna Doty (So.), Natalie Fryrear (So.), Dajae Williams (So.).
The Kirkwood Call
- District Previews -
The Lady Pioneers were put out early in the district playoffs by Webster Groves, 53-49. Key Win: Parkway South Key Losses: Webster Groves and St. Joseph’s Academy
The Bears will play No. 5 Gateway Tech. Key Players: Bridget Brotherton (Sr.), Michelle Burton (Sr.), Hannah Weisbrod (Jr.). The Ursuline Bears rolled past Gateway Tech. However, in the second round of district play, the Bears beat by Nerinx Hall 54-28. Key Win: Lindbergh Key Losses: Kirkwood, Cor Jesu and Incarnate Word
- Gateway Tech Record: 12-8 District Seed: No. 5 seed The Jaguars will play No. 4 Kirkwood Key Players: Patric Bowen (Sr.), Henry Williams (Jr.), Jordan Herron (So.). The Jaguars lost in the first round 4948 against Vianney Golden Griffins. Key Win: Denver East Key Losses: East St. Louis and Miller Career Academy.
All district games will be played at St. Louis University High School starting Monday, Feb. 22. The first game will tip-off at 5 p.m.
Girls’ -Gateway TechRecord: 5-7 District Seed: No. 5 seed The Lady Jaguars will play No. 4 Ursuline Bears. Key Players: Tina Taylor (Jr.), Joi Towsend (So.), Enjoli Williams (So.). The Lady Jaguars were put out of a chance of a district championship by the Ursuline Bears. Key Win: Soldan Key Loss: Cahokia
Record: 14-9 District Seed: No. 3 seed The Jr. Bills will play No. 2 ranked Vianney. Key Players: Tim Cooney (Sr.), Michael Mayberger (Sr.), Mike Butler (Sr.). The Jr. Bills lost in the opening round against Kirkwood in last year’s districts 62-52. Key Wins: Kirkwood and Whitfield Key Losses: Chaminade and Vianney
-Nerinx HallRecord: 13-8 District Seed: No. 1 seed The Markers will play the winner of Urusline and Gateway Key Players: Mary Beth Mathias (Sr.), Kirsti Yess (Sr.). The Nerinx Hall Markers entered the 2009 district playoff games at No. 1. In the opening round, the Markers rolled over the Ursuline Bears 54-28. Then in the championship game, the Markers squeezed past the Webster Groves Stateswomen 62-61. After winning the regional championship game, they went down to Mizzou Arena and lost to both Nixa High School and Hazelwood Central High School to come away with a fourth-place state finish. Key Wins: Lafayette, Francis Howell Key Losses: St Joseph’s Academy, Rock Bridge and Incarnate Word
-Webster GrovesRecord: 21-1 District Seed: No. 1 seed Webster will play the winner of Kirkwood and Gateway Tech. Key Players: Cortez Conners (Sr.), Derrick Dilworth (Sr.), Jason Meehan (Jr.), Rayshawn Simmons (So.). Last year at Kirkwood High School, host of the 2008-2009 district playoff games, the Webster Groves Statesmen entered the playoff ranked No. 1. In the second round of district play, the Statesmen came up short as the Kirkwood Pioneers beat them 71-63. Key Wins: Parkway West, Hazelwood Central and Kirkwood Key Loss: Oakville
-Webster GrovesRecord: 14-7 District Seed: No. 3 seed Webster Groves will play Kirkwood in the opening round. Key Players: Jordan Thompson (So.), Mackenzie Smith (Sr.), Annie Paloucek (Jr.). The Webster Groves Stateswomen beat rival Kirkwood 53-49 in the opening round of district play. They lost to Nerinx Hall in the district championship game 62-61. Key Wins: Kirkwood and Parkway South Key Losses: Incarnate Word and Ft. Zumwalt West
Myles Artis sports writer
Katie Just sports editor
Michael Burch art editor
February 17, 2010
The Kirkwood Call
Clubs carry students past field and court
Students get involved in the wide variety of clubs offered at KHS. Whether they are perfecting their arguing skills in the court room or dumpster-diving for the good of the planet, these students give their time to extra-curricular activities.
Carly Wooldridge photographer
Lydia Mitchener photo editor
Cans in hand, Anna Brodersen, freshman, helps with preparation for Student Council Orange Crush distribution on Feb. 10. “I wanted to get involved in Student Council because I wanted to help out with activities like Hatchet Hop and Orange Crush,” Brodersen said.
Playing Uno, Patrick Day, junior, spends his after school time in Peer Helpers Jan. 27. Members of Peer Helpers travel to Nipher Middle School every Wednesday where they help kids with homework or play games. “I like peer helpers because it really gives me the chance to be there for a kid who is not necessarily at the best time in his life,” Day said.
Sam Edwards photographer Blake Voller, freshman, jams out in the commons after school Jan. 27. “It’s really fun, there is really nothing to it, and you just bring your guitar stuff, set up and just play. It is a great chance to meet people that you can connect with,” Voller said.
Tom Ebeling photographer Shaking the hand of Kathy Harris, KSD school board member, Alvin Stewart, senior, crosses the stage at the BACC award ceremony Feb. 3 in the Keating Theater.
Carly Wooldridge photographer Examining their notes for the last time, Annie Manwarring, Zach Brand and Jay Frick, juniors, prepare for their mock trial at the Clayton Court House Jan. 6. “I think it’s great that we have a club like Mock Trial at Kirkwood because it gives a realistic experience of being in a courtroom during a trial,” Manwarring said.
Sam Edwards photographer Dan Fenton and Andrew Byrd, juniors, enjoy a game of improv freeze tag Jan. 27. “I like freeze tag because it makes you think and makes you react quickly to how the situation was set up before and then create your own story,” Fenton said.
Searching through the dumpster Feb. 3, members of the L.E.A.F. Club Elliot Hill, junior, Michael Kierstead, junior, and Jack Waldemer, senior, look for recyclable goods that were carelessly thrown away. Tom Ebeling photographer