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Rolla, Mo. Current position: Principal-Rolla High School (2008-present) Notable professional experience: High school assistant principal, Pattonville School District (July 2003-June 2008); Mathematics teacher, Pattonville School District (August 1999-June 2003)

St. Charles, Mo. Current position: PrincipalHazelwood West High School (2008-present) Notable professional experience: Associate high school principal, Hazelwood West High School (2004-2008); Middle school assistant principal, Hazelwood East Middle School (19992004)

*H[OSLLU4J.YH[O Ballwin, Mo. Current position: Assistant principalKirkwood High School (2008-present) Notable professional experience: Assistant high school principal, Pattonville High School (1997-2008); Assistant principal, Parkway North High School (1995-1997); Mathematics teacher, Warrensburg Middle School (1989-1994)

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Glen Carbon, Ill. Current position: Assistant principal-McCluer North High School (2006-present) Notable professional experience: Educational consultant, Kaplan K-12 Learning Service (2006); Program Supervisor-Leadership Pact and Community Outreach Programs-Pathways in Education (2003-2006)

8LITVMRGMTEPWIEVGLFIKMRW By Jacob Sharp

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our candidates were interviewed on Tuesday, Feb. 15, for the head principal position of Pattonville High School after Sara Keene announced her resignation in January. Nathan Hoven, Joseph Dobrinic, Cathy McGrath and Gary Spiller presented to panels of department leaders, staff and parents, students and administrators, and were given a tour of the building on Tuesday evening. “We had over 50 candidates apply for this position and that was narrowed down to 10 that we

interviewed,� Barry Nelson told the group of about 35 staff and parents gathered in Room B104 evaluating each interview. “Ultimately there are four candidates here today that we feel would make the best principal at Pattonville High School.� Nathan Hoven, a former Pattonville assistant principal, addressed those in attendance and said, “I think my experience has improved over the past three years and has put me in a position to offer a lot back to Pattonville and to give back to a school district that gave me so much to begin with.�

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n recent months, snow and ice has battered the Pattonville School District area. This inclement weather has already affected Pattonville’s schedule with the usage of multiple snow days. “In recent memory, we’ve never had more than four snow days,� Pattonville School District Superintendent Mike Fulton said. As of Feb. 15, the district has called off for inclement weather seven times. However, the district has just six snow days built into the yearly schedule. Because of this, students, faculty and staff members are now required to attend school on April 22 The district must make up excess snow days because the state mandates that students attend school at least 174 days of the year and the district itself requires students to at-

tend at least 177 days. With approximately 40 more days left of winter, the threat of bad weather still looms on the horizon. “We are only half-way through winter. It’s reasonable to anticipate that we’ll get more snow,� Kent Ehrhardt, KMOV weather forecaster and Pattonville alum, said. Ehrhardt works closely with school districts around the area during the snow season. “We try to stay days ahead of [the inclement weather]. We kind of anticipate it and put staffing in place so that we have a team, not just one person,� Ehrhardt said. Ehrhardt also commented that he will often book a hotel near the broadcasting center to insure that he will make it to work on time during inclement weather. At Pattonville, Fulton makes the call as to whether or not the district will have a snow day. However, he works closely with associates both in

See SNOW, page 3

Joseph Dobrinic graduated from Pattonville in 1988 and attended Bridgeway Elementary and Pattonville Heights Middle School. “My family is involved in the community and there is a certain high level of pride that transfers from the community to the school and that’s something that I want to be a part of.� Cathy McGrath was also a former assistant principal at Pattonville and was in that position for 11 years. “When I heard there was an opening at Pattonville, I wasn’t even looking to leave [Kirkwood] but I was extremely excited about the challenge

Pattonville Briefs Compiled by Jessica Brunts Nate Bassman, 11, was selected for the Opera Theatre of St. Louis’ Young Artist in Training program. Bassman will get the opportunity to work with professionals who will help him develop his talent. He will also be eligible for scholarships through the program.

Lora Hakanson, 12, and Megan Jones, 12, were both awarded the Presidential Scholarship to Missouri State University. They were two of only 30 Presidential Scholarship recipients.

Erica Ream, 12, and Khalil Griffin, 12, have been named National Merit Finalists.

of coming back and making Pattonville better and more successful.� Gary Spiller, the only candidate without prior experience at Pattonville said, “This is a place that I can provide expertise to make Pattonville a top school in North County and to further the mission of the school district ‘That All Will Learn.’� If everything goes as planned, a recommendation will go to the school board as early as March 1 and an announcement would be made on March 2 as to who is the new principal at the high school. However, the four hopefuls presented at the

Pattonville’s two robotics teams competed in the Cape Girardeau Regional Robotics Tournament and earned spots in the state championship competition. The competition will take place on Feb. 26 at Missouri University of Science and Technology.

Pattonville students competed in the 2011 Special Olympics Bowling Tournament Feb. 10. Nancy Villinger, 12, and Carli White, 10, won bronze medals. Nick Burse, 12, and Hosea Kent, 11, won silver medals. Donna Buus, 11, Chris Concialdi, 11, Justin Emch, 11, Jacob Lewis, 9, and Nick Mellring, 12, won gold medals.

The Varsity Drill Team placed 6th at the National Dance Team Competition Feb. 5-6 in Orlando, Fla.

interviews may not even be selected. “The next principal could be any of the four candidates here tonight or it could be none of them,� Nelson said. “It all depends on the feedback and data that we collect from your evaluations.� Nelson has said that Pattonville School District has what is considered the most rigorous hiring process in St. Louis county. “We want to make sure that we choose the right person for the job.�Y

Principal search coverage continued on Page 2

Brad Ridings, 12, and Matt Hahn, 12, both signed athletic scholarships with Mineral Area College for baseball. Brock Montgomery, 12, signed an athletic scholarship with Lindenwood University for football. Joshua Gross, 12, signed an athletic scholarship with St. Louis Community College for soccer.


News

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By Jessica Brunts

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fter Principal Sara Keene announced she would be resigning from her position at the end of the year and moving to Texas, the search for a new principal began. Pattonville has an elaborate hiring system that allows the district to choose the candidate that is the best fit for the Pattonville community. The hiring process at Pattonville is designed to involve teachers, students, parents and community members as well as the school board. The process of finding the right person for the job involves many steps. The first step in the search is advertising the position. According to Barry Nelson, assistant superintendent for human resources, Pattonville advertised online using the Missouri Regional Educational Application Program (MOREAP). This is an online application program throughout the state of Missouri for educational positions. Applications were due by Jan. 27. As of Jan. 26, over 40 candidates had submitted applications. Applicants were required to have secondary administration experience at the middle school or high school level, a letter of interest, three letters of recommendation, a resume, all college transcripts and completion of a performance event. A performance event is like an essay. The prompt given to the applicants was â&#x20AC;&#x153;Discuss a time you  %DUU\1HOVRQ$VVLVWDQW6XSHULQWHQGHQWIRU+XPDQ5HVRXUFHV played a key role implementing a DGGUHVVHVWKHSDQHORIVWDIIDQGSDUHQWVGXULQJWKHLQWHUYLHZV significant change that impacted student achievement. Discuss how ZLWKSULQFLSDOFDQGLGDWHVRQ)HE3KRWRE\-DFRE6KDUS you determined why the change interview with parents and teachers. to have a candidate recommendation was necessary, the key action steps Interview team members, as well as to the BOE by March 1. If everything taken, communication strategies, observers, fill out feedback forms went as planned, the new principal how you addressed challenges associwhich are then sent to Superintenwould be named on March 2. ated with the change, etc.â&#x20AC;? dent Mike Fulton. The building level â&#x20AC;&#x153;The way weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve structured the After the applications were subinterviews were originally set for Feb. process, weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re able to get different mitted, they were reviewed. After 10, but they were moved back to Feb. perspectives on who will be the best reviewing the applications, a small 15 because of the snow days. candidate,â&#x20AC;? Nelson said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s very imnumber of candidates are sent on to â&#x20AC;&#x153;We take the most qualified canportant and itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s the way weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve always the building level interviews. The didates to Pattonville for feedback,â&#x20AC;? done it at Pattonville.â&#x20AC;? candidates are sent to be interviewed Nelson said. He says that there is no Keene believes that the Pattonville by interview teams made up of set number of candidates that are hiring process is â&#x20AC;&#x153;extremely effective parents, teachers, students, admintaken to the building level interviews. and intense.â&#x20AC;? She went through the istrators and department leaders. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It depends on the pool of candiprocess only three years ago and she Letters are sent out to teachers, dates.â&#x20AC;? felt that other schools did not have select students and involved parents Isaac Caverly, 10, has been a nearly as in-depth interviews. asking if they want to be a member member of the Pattonville interview â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a great process. Anyone that of the interview team. However, team in previous years and plans to is not interested in the position eianyone that wants to be a part of the do it again this year. He believes that ther wonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t give it the time and energy interview process can be. If a person is not selected for the interview team, being a part of the interview team is a or will be weeded out. Youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re going to great way to be involved with school. they can observe the interviews and get the best candidate out of it.â&#x20AC;? He said that involving students in the still give feedback on the candidates, She believes that the process is interview process is a great way to according to Nelson. very in-depth. The superintendent see how the candidates interact with At the building level interviews, visits the building where the candistudents. candidates typically face several date currently works, and the board After the building level interviews, interview teams. The order is not even met her family on the day of Fulton reviews all of the feedback set in stone but it could fall in a approval. on the candidates. He then makes a pattern such as interview with the â&#x20AC;&#x153;This process is not leaving any recommendation to the Board of Edu- stone unturned,â&#x20AC;? she said. Y department leaders, interview with students and administrators and then cation (BOE). The BOE is in charge of all hiring. At press time, the goal was

1HZFODVVDGGHGWR3DWWRQYLOOHFXUULFXOXP $PHULFDQ(WKQLF6WXGLHVWREHRIIHUHGQH[W\HDU By Andrew Tyahla

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ext year, students at Pattonville will be able to take a new social studies class. American Ethnic Studies will be a new class offered starting in the 2011-2012 school year, and will be taught by Ms. Vialettice Cobb. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We will be looking at their experiences and cover the issues that face them in depth,â&#x20AC;? Cobb said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Among the groups covered will be the Native Americans, African Americans, Spanish Americans, Asian Americans, Spanish Americans, and even American Jews.â&#x20AC;?

This semester-long class will be about the various ethnic groups that live in our country and their history, beliefs, and values. Also included in the curriculum is how and why the various groups came to the United States in the first place. Some of them came to make a profit, others came to escape persecution, and others came by force. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We will also focus on the Holocaust during the Jewish American unit,â&#x20AC;? Cobb said. So far, the actual lesson plans are still to be determined. However, it

will include discussions, guest speakers, lectures, and films. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Of course, we will also have a textbook,â&#x20AC;? Cobb said. It is a class for those who are curious about people of other ethnic groups and wish to learn more about them. It will also require an open mind to deal with views that students may not agree with. Â&#x2122;



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Pattonville is an award-winning district serving students preschool through 12th grade in northwest St. Louis County. The district has one high school, two middle schools, a PreK-8 school of choice, six elementary schools, and an early childhood education program. Pattonville is one of only 24 school districts out of nearly 450 K-12 districts in the state to earn Missouriâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Distinction in Performance Awardâ&#x20AC;? every year it has been given. Pattonville is the most diverse school district in Missouri to achieve this honor for the 10 consecutive years it has been bestowed. Pattonvilleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s schools have also earned places on Missouriâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Top 10 lists of highest performing schools in the state. The annual report card by the St. Louis Black Leadership Roundtable consistently places Pattonville in the Top 5 in the St. Louis area for African American achievement.

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Pattonville High School is an exemplary school serving a diverse student population of more than 1,750 students. The schoolâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s foremost priority is student achievement. This mission is directly supported by a wide array of extracurricular activities (the arts, music, debate, robotics, sports, etc.) that support student achievement and involvement. ACT scores are consistently above state and national averages, and scores on state high school end-of-course exams place Pattonville among the top 10 in St. Louis County. The school was named a National School of Service Learning and was recognized as a national School of Character by the Character Education Partnership and by â&#x20AC;&#x153;Business Weekâ&#x20AC;? magazine. Pattonville High School is a modern facility that is scheduled to receive an additional $20 million in facility upgrades over the next few years.

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Interested candidates should complete the administrative application and apply at MOREAP (to be considered a completed MOREAP application include: a letter of interest, resume, 3 letters of recommendation, and transcripts). You must also complete the performance event located on page two of this posting.

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Discuss a time you played a key role implementing a significant change that impacted student achievement. Discuss how you determined why the change was necessary, the key action steps taken, communication strategies, how you addressed challenges associated with the change, etc.

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tudents will notice an absence in the 2010-2011 school year as Special Olympics, an annual tradition for Pattonville, will not be hosted. Another staple of the school year missing is a Winter Dance, which Student Council usually manages. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The dance was more of an administrative decision, while Special Olympics has to do with [Pete Barrett] leaving STUCO and [Jessica Muckerman-Presson] taking charge,â&#x20AC;? Heather Sprengel, STUCO president, said. Along with the change in command of STUCO, the manager of Special Olympics also changed, complicating things further. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m disappointed, yeah,â&#x20AC;? Madison Emerick, 12, said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It got the students and the school together. And I know some [National Honor Society] kids depended on Special Olympics too. It was good community service, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s sad to see it go.â&#x20AC;? STUCO still plans to support Special Olympics however, through donations and participation in the Polar Plunge, an event hosted by STUCO. In regard to the absent Winter Dance, STUCO is in the planning

stages for a new event called â&#x20AC;&#x153;Flick on the Field,â&#x20AC;? a sort of drive-in experience at the high school. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re trying to start some new traditions here at Pattonville,â&#x20AC;? Sprengel said. Flick on the Field would probably involve a family-friendly movie such as â&#x20AC;&#x153;Toy Story 3â&#x20AC;? or another animated film. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We want people to be able to bring their family and maybe younger siblings,â&#x20AC;? Emerick said. Apart from the setbacks this year, STUCO is still pressing on and enjoying success with the Pirate Crew, a student section at sporting events that brings school spirit to the game. On April 26, STUCO is inviting guest speaker John Oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Leary, a survivor of a fire and an inspirational speaker, to present to the high school. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We kind of see it as STUCOâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s gift to the student body,â&#x20AC;? Sprengel said. Oâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;Leary was burned on 100 percent of his body when he was 9 years old, and was given less than a 1 percent chance to live. After enduring years of surgery and intense therapy, he has gone on to lead a successful life and encourage others to rise above challenges. Y


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he Free Application for Federal Student Aid is a Web site that educates students and families on the process of obtaining financial aid for college. This Web site is better known as FAFSA. According to www.pin.ed.gov, it â&#x20AC;&#x153;processes millions of student financial aid applications each year.â&#x20AC;? It also â&#x20AC;&#x153;disburses billions of dollars in aid funds to students through the school, enforces financial aid rules and regulations, serves millions of student loan accounts and securing repayment from borrowers who have defaulted on their loans; and also has

an operation information technology system and tool that manage billions in student aid dollars.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;Basically every person in America who needs financial help for college needs to fill the FAFSA form out every year in January and then the government has a formula to see if the people actually need financial help,â&#x20AC;? Julie Kampschroeder, college counselor, said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;There is a grant called the Pell Grant. The Pell Grant is the free federal money.â&#x20AC;? There is also Missouri state grant money and campus grants. All of

tells a student how much the family is expected to come up with in cash to attend that college.â&#x20AC;? The services on this Web site are free, but the student needs to make sure that they go to the proper Web site. The official government Web site address is www.pin.ed.gov. Kampschroeder recommends to never search FAFSA using Google or another search engine. The results will send the student to a Web site where they will have to pay for financial aid. Kampschroeder also encourages

students not to wait too long to go online to FAFSA. â&#x20AC;&#x153;If students wait too long, then the state funds would be gone.â&#x20AC;? There are four financial aid meetings every year at Pattonville. Meetings are held in October, November, January and April. Kampschroeder encourages students and parents to attend and said they must pay attention. â&#x20AC;&#x153;If students donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t come or pay attention, come senior year they will be far behind and lost.â&#x20AC;? Y

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driving around and if heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not doing whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s the temperature,â&#x20AC;? Gerke said. In the severe cold, the transportathat, heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll go to bed early so that he In addition to the administration department wants to make sure can get up in the morning to drive,â&#x20AC;? tive action, the district also has the that the bus heaters can turn on. Melissa Fulton, 12, Mike Fultonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s grounds crew salt the school area the â&#x20AC;&#x153;We want to make sure the [parkdaughter, said. night before to help make the caming] lots are clear and make sure the Often, the superintendent will puses themselves less hazardous. buses are warmed up and ready to go,â&#x20AC;? be out on the roads by 4:30 a.m. to â&#x20AC;&#x153;There is a concern that kids could Gerke said. insure that they are safe for travel. slip. The school could perhaps be liMike Fulton claims that he makes However, Gerke tests the roads as early as 2 or 3 a.m. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I go out and drive early in the day. Then I contact the superintendent around 4 a.m.,â&#x20AC;? Gerke said. The amount of snowfall so far this year has been particularly heavy. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve had a pretty snowy winter so far. Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve had enough to average for the entire season and we still have some ways to go,â&#x20AC;? Ehrhardt said. However, snow is  $VWXGHQWWUHNVWKURXJKNQHHGHHSVQRZLQWKHSDUNLQJORWLQ-DQXDU\ not the only factor that the administra- 3KRWRE\-HUHPLDK:LOOLDPV tion looks for when canceling school. able,â&#x20AC;? Ehrhardt said. safety his first priority when he is â&#x20AC;&#x153;Ice is most dangerous, then comes In addition, the schoolâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s buses deciding whether or not to cancel freezing rain, then sleet and snow. must be taken care of in the event of school. It depends on how much snow and extreme weather. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Is it safe enough to pick up all the

kids and can students drive safely to school? That really weighs heavily on my decision,â&#x20AC;? Mike Fulton said. Mike Fulton must evaluate this throughout the entire district and even in other areas as well. Because of this, some areas can be entirely safe to drive on, while others are simply too hazardous. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The municipalities do a really good job of clearing roads, but if you live in county areas, they have a lot of areas to plow, so it takes them a little longer,â&#x20AC;? Fulton said. This fact weighs heavily on his decision as he wants to insure that the morning commute is safe for all students attending the school. In addition, whether or not volunteer transfer students or Special School District students can get to school impacts whether or not the district has a snow day. â&#x20AC;&#x153;[The Volunteer Transfer Progam] is part of the conference call and we are listening if they can get the kids from their homes in the city out to the county. Also, the Special School District program canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t always get the kids to school,â&#x20AC;? Mike Fulton said. However, safety is not the districtâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s only concern when canceling school. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It also has a huge budget impact because [the districts] lose money when they lose a day of school,â&#x20AC;? Ehrhardt said. Â&#x2122;

&RQWLQXHGIURPSDJH and out of the school district in order to make his final decision. One of Fulton â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s most influential advisers is Steve Gerke, Pattonvilleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s director of transportation. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We want to make sure students can be safe and we can pick people up in a timely manner,â&#x20AC;? Gerke said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;So the superintendent and I will talk and he will make the ultimate decision as to whether or not we will have school.â&#x20AC;? Together, Fulton and Gerke evaluate the inclement weather â&#x20AC;&#x153;the night before and that morning. And while I am talking to the superintendents from other districts, [Gerke] is talking to the other transportation directors. So, we are getting a good feel for the transportation around the county,â&#x20AC;? Fulton said. Fulton communicates to area superintendents through a conference call either the night before the potential snow day or the morning of. In addition to this, Fulton and Gerke often drive the districtâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s roads either the night before or the morning of the storm. â&#x20AC;&#x153;That night, heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll usually be out

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these grants are determined by the results the student gets by filling out the FAFSA form and sending it to their respective colleges. Kampschroeder encourages every student and parent to visit the FAFSA Web site and to study the information it makes available. Kampshroeder said this Web site will help a student with all of their financial needs for college. â&#x20AC;&#x153;By April, financial aid packages are sent to the students by e-mail and then the student can make a financial decision,â&#x20AC;? Kampschroeder said. She added, â&#x20AC;&#x153;The FAFSA Web site

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he Pattonville High School theatre department and cast of â&#x20AC;&#x153;Bye Bye Birdieâ&#x20AC;? has been working diligently to finish preparing for the spring musical. The musicalâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s opening night is Feb. 17 and runs through Feb. 20. The musical starts at 7 p.m. on Feb. 17-19 and at 2 p.m. on Sunday. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Bye Bye Birdieâ&#x20AC;? is a comedy where a famous singer travels to Ohio to make a final performance before he is drafted into the war. This year, the musicalâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s cast has many first-time leads. One of those is junior David Robinson who plays Albert Peterson. â&#x20AC;&#x153;During rehearsals we try to get as much done as we can,â&#x20AC;? Robinson said. Freshman Anna Pirrie, is in a lead role this year playing Rosie Alvarez. She also had a role in the fall play, â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Diary of Anne Frank.â&#x20AC;? Pirrie said being a member of the theatre program has been a lot of fun. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I get the chance to meet so many new people. In the musical, there are a lot more people than there would be in a play.â&#x20AC;? Junior Sam Decker plays Conrad Birdie, the title character. Deckerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s character is a parody of Elvis Presley. â&#x20AC;&#x153;This musical is set in a different time [than last yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s show â&#x20AC;&#x153;Once Upon a Mattressâ&#x20AC;?]. This musical is more modern and can relate to more teenage situations,â&#x20AC;? Decker stated. In order to make up for lost time due to snow days, the cast, crew, and

pit have been having longer rehearsals. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We have all gotten more serious at rehearsals and make the most of rehearsal times,â&#x20AC;? Decker stated. Lara Covera, the director said, â&#x20AC;&#x153;The rehearsals are going fantastic so far but due to the snow days, the cast was set back four extra days of rehearsals.â&#x20AC;? By having so many people at a rehearsal, the stage can get crowded. There is an orchestra, costume crew and a stage crew. The pit orchestra plays a major role in this musical. The pit orchestra plays all the music that is performed. Melynda Lamb, vocal director, stated, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Rehearsals are going well so far. All of our lead roles have their lines memorized and our chorus is blending well with one another.â&#x20AC;? Junior Meagan Galluzzo is a part of the chorus for this musical. This is her first musical at Pattonville. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Learning and singing the songs are my favorite part of the musical.â&#x20AC;? Junior Carley McClain plays Kim MacAfee. This is her first lead role in high school after being casted in many other musicals. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I have more lines to memorize with this role and I have to actually act. I take on a new role and am somebody different.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;Bye Bye Birdieâ&#x20AC;? is known to be a fun, upbeat show and Robinson said, â&#x20AC;&#x153;The audience should expect surprises throughout the musical.â&#x20AC;? Y

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iremen who start fires. This may sound ironic and nothing more than farfetched science fiction right? On the contrary, this image of fiction is not too far from present day nonfiction. In Ray Bradburyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s novel, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Fahrenheit 451,â&#x20AC;? the message is just that. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We shouldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t start fires, but put them out.â&#x20AC;? And these fires are metaphorically a symbol of what the government can do to the gullible and simple-minded society in a futuristic time. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Fahrenheit 451â&#x20AC;? is a depressing and melancholy tale surrounding the main character Guy Montag. Montagâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s occupation is a future fireman, whose main goal is to destroy and erase the existence of all books and publications from society by way of torching them with fire. However, how does this tie in with our present day world of publications and books teenagers read in high school? A better question would be, what compels us to read a novel or a book? Books of all kind have a stronger effect on us than we may know. Even when people turn to the Internet for answers or information, this information comes from a book or reference somewhere. If books were censored or banned from school libraries what would the outcome be?

Decades of information would be lost and our now high-tech and fast paced society would be downgraded to a primitive and a comparable stone age. Nevertheless, this is happening in our world today. Many books are being censored and banned from schools worldwide. There is one outlining cause of the banning. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s because of content within some of these famous novels. Some of the censored and banned novels in the United States include, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Huckleberry Finn,â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings,â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;How To Kill A Mockingbird,â&#x20AC;? and â&#x20AC;&#x153;Fahrenheit 451.â&#x20AC;? All classic novels many schools have incorporated in their curriculum. The government has dobbed some of the books content as sketchy and inappropriate. In the case of â&#x20AC;&#x153;Huckleberry Finn,â&#x20AC;? itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s said that some of the phrases used are grammatically incorrect, and usage of the â&#x20AC;&#x153;N-wordâ&#x20AC;? was labeled profane and is being edited out of most school copies in English literature today. In fact, most of what we read in schools today is censored to fit our â&#x20AC;&#x153;high school appropriateâ&#x20AC;? eyes. Simply put, high schoolers would rather read publications that tell the truth and nothing less instead of being stripped of all the detail and information. Y

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oga is an ancient practice that predates even the written word. Yoga is practiced around the world, but in the United States it focuses mainly on breathing, poses and meditation. The earliest written accounts of yoga are credited to a scholar named Patanjali. He wrote about the eight limbs of yoga, also called â&#x20AC;&#x153;ashtanga yoga.â&#x20AC;? This is considered classical yoga, but most practicing yogis do not practice all eight steps as a part of their yoga practice. The third limb is what most people associate with yoga. Asanas, or body postures, are the poses practiced in a yoga class. The poses help a yogi

become more centered in their body and mind as well as relax and prepare for the next limbs. Pranayama, or breath control, is the fourth limb of yoga. Most yoga classes discuss breathing exercises and practice controlling the breath. It is a crucial part of yoga, as breath control helps a yogi complete the other steps. The fifth step is pratyahara, or control of the senses. In a traditional yoga class, this step is reached through meditation. Most yoga classes end in savasana, or corpse pose. To get into corpse pose, yogis lie on their backs and close their eyes. Savasana is a time for relaxation

and meditation. Some teachers may lead their students through a guided meditation. The benefits of yoga are endless. Yoga helps to strengthen the muscles and the mind. Practicing yoga poses can help an inflexible person become more flexible. It is a myth that only flexible people can practice yoga. Yoga teachers are prepared with modified versions of most poses. When doing poses, it is important to pace yourself. Yoga classes are encouraging environments with all levels of students. For teens, yoga can provide an outlet for stress and emotions. Attending a weekly yoga class can help tremen-

dously reduce stress in teenagers. In addition, yoga produces confidence. Perfecting a pose or allowing yourself to make mistakes can boost self-esteem and help in other areas of life. Yoga can be beneficial to athletic people as well. Yoga poses can help nurse an injury in the same way physical therapy can help injured athletes. Taking the time to stretch can also help prevent an injury. Some yoga poses, such as strength poses, are easy for athletes, while other poses, such as balancing poses, are more difficult for athletes. By practicing yoga, athletes can find themselves improving their game. Y

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is the best known yoga series. People who practice yoga all around the world learn sun salutations as a part of their practice. When trying sun salutations, remember that someone, somewhere in the world is also doing a sun salutation.





Start by standing up straight, with your feet about hip-width apart.











Bikram Yoga: Bikram Yoga was developed by Bikram Choudhury and became popular in the 1970s. In order to be called a â&#x20AC;&#x153;Bikramâ&#x20AC;? class, teachers must be specially certified. In a Bikram class, the rooms are heated to 100 degrees Fahrenheit and each class is exactly the same, with a series of 26 poses repeated twice. Ashtanga Yoga: Also known as power yoga, ashtanga yoga is a more advanced style of yoga. Students move quickly from pose to pose and much emphasis is placed on the breath. Ashtanga yoga requires strength and flexibility, so it is usually practiced by more experienced yogis. Iyengar Yoga: B.K.S. Iyengar developed a style of yoga focused on the detail and alignment of poses. He also includes the use of props such as blocks and belts. In order to qualify as a teacher of his style, teachers must complete a two to five year training program.



Exhale as you bring your hands apart and bend over in a swan dive.

Inhale as you raise your hands over your head.

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Lift your back up a little so that it is parallel to the floor on an inhale. Exhale and bend all the way down again.

Kripalu Yoga: This style of yoga allows the students to work at their own pace, using modified poses and props according to studentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; flexibility and strength. There are three stages in Kripalu yoga, and students move from stage to stage as they improve in their practice.

<RJD%RRNV The Yoga Deck by Olivia H Miller

Resting your palms on the floor, kick the right leg behind you.



Repeat with the left so that you are in a pushup position. Inhale here, engaging your core to keep your back flat.



Pick up your right leg on an inhale and swing it forward right between your hands. Repeat with the left foot.

Exhale as you slowly lower yourself toward the ground. Just before reaching the ground, inhale and push your torso up, but leave your hips and legs hovering over the ground. This pose is called upward facing dog.



Now, lift your hips into the air and turn your body into a triangle. This pose is called downward facing dog. Try to make your spine as straight as you can, all the way through your neck. Ideally, your legs would also be straight, but most people have a little bend at the knee.

This is a series of cards with one pose on each. You can choose one at a time or choose a sequence of poses. The Athleteâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Guide to Yoga by Sage Rountree This book explains how yoga can be used to the benefit of athletes. It includes comprehensive descriptions of each pose and routines that target problem areas. Bikramâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Beginning Yoga Class by Bikram Choudhury

Inhale as you reverse the swan dive.

Then finish by exhaling while you bring your hands down with palms pressed together. Repeat the entire routine leading with the left instead of the right.

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<RJD&ODVVHV Interested in taking a yoga class? Many affordable classes are offered locally. The Bridgeton Community Center offers yoga classes for ages 16+. The next session begins on March 23. Classes are offered on Mondays, Wednesdays, or Thursdays from 7-8:15 p.m. You can sign up for more than one night per week. The Maryland Heights Community Center offers teen yoga classes on Tuesday nights from 6:30-7:30 p.m. The next session begins in March. YMCA members can take advantage of free yoga on Wednesdays from 5-6:15 p.m., and on Saturdays from 8-9:15 a.m. Also free yoga basics is offered on Mondays from 6:30-7:45 p.m. and Yoga I and II are offered on Thursdays from 7-8:15 p.m. Janeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s House of Well-Being in St. Charles offers yoga classes at almost any time of any day. You can sign up for a certain number of classes and redeem them at your leisure. Free yoga is offered on Sunday from 9-10:30 a.m.

There are pictures of the ideal version of each pose contrasted with reality. This book serves as an introduction to this unique style of yoga. Light on Yoga by B.K.S. Iyengar This classic yoga reference is anything but light. It highlights complex and advanced poses as well as yoga philosophy.

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he girls’ swimming and diving team won the Suburban North Conference title for the third consecutive year on Thursday, Feb. 10. The team was led by Elise Amo, 10, who finished first in both of her individual events, the 200-yard freestyle and the 500-yard freestyle. Amo, who was also a member of the winning 200-free and 400-free relay teams, was named swimmer of the meet. Pattonville divers also did well placing first, fourth and fifth overall. The dive team was lead by freshman Laura Fulton, who placed first out of

all competing divers. Sarah Langston, 11, placed fourth, and Ashley Stough, 9, placed fifth. Fulton was not the only freshman to help the team to victory. Jennifer Baker, 9, placed second in the 50-yard freestyle race and second in the 100yard backstroke. Rachel Murphy, 9, also had a good outing finishing third in the 500-freestyle and placing fifth in the 200-individual medley. Veterans Melissa Fulton and Gina Prosperi both scored points for the team in their individual events. Prosperi placed first in the 100-yard breaststroke and Melissa placed sec-

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aron Rodgers completed his transition into Green Bay quarterback legacy, leaving Packers fans asking the question, “Who is Brett Favre?” Rodgers was the star of last Sunday’s contest against the Pittsburgh Steelers, passing for 304 yards and three touchdowns in his MVP performance. Rodgers and his Packers definitely played a great football game, but the performances of the people surrounding the Super Bowl lacked the “super” quality that is expected. The National Anthem is usually not a huge part of sporting events. The only people that really pay attention to our nation’s song are at the event. In fact, most of the time it isn’t even aired. So when the National Anthem is televised, it is a big deal. One would think the person responsible for singing it would make sure it is flawless. Christina Aguilera obviously did not agree with that common thought. In the middle of the song, Aguilera left out an entire line. When she was supposed to sing, “O’er the ramparts we watched were so gallantly streaming,” she belted, “What so proudly we watched at the twilight’s last gleaming.” That was a line she previously recited in the song, minus the word “watch.” To give Aguilera some credit, she kept singing. She didn’t just abruptly stop and ask for a re-do. That doesn’t excuse the fact she screwed up, but at least this blunder wasn’t a complete disaster. Fans were left hoping for a flawless

Super Bowl Halftime Show, but again were let down. The Black Eyed Peas are a very distinguished group of artists. They have had much success in their long singing careers. They have released many hit songs. But one thing that is sort of weird about The Black Eyed Peas is that they don’t perform live too often. America found out why during the Super Bowl Halftime Show. The show part was amazing. All of the different stage pieces and changing colors really brought some pizzazz into the performance that really hasn’t been seen before in a halftime show. Even though all of that was great, The Black Eyed Peas were terrible. They butchered almost all of their songs. The electronical enhancement used in the recording studio wasn’t there to help them. Will.i.am’s autotuned microphone might have actually made him sound worse instead of what was the intended purpose. On top of all of that, Usher came onto stage and didn’t even sing. He danced a little, struck a pose, and then disappeared under the stage. He might have said “Oh my gosh” a couple times, but more was expected from such a legendary performer. Then there is Slash. A little ray of hope appeared once he popped up on stage. But as soon as Fergie seductively approached him, America’s hopes were crushed. She started singing a Guns N’ Roses classic, “Sweet Child O’ Mine.” Her long and over-exaggerated “mine” at the end of all of the verses that

ond in the 100-yard freestyle race. The team placed first in the 200yard freestyle relay and in the 400yard relay as well. Fulton, Jennifer Baker, 9, Amo, and Ellaina Adams, 10, were the participants in the 200-yard relay. Fulton, Amo, and Adams were also in the 400-yard relay with the addition of Kacie Hulse, 11. The Pirates’ 200-medley relay finished in 3rd place at the championship meet. The Pattonville swimming and diving team ended the season with a record of 11-2. Y

By Gabby Pirrie

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required the word pushed the performance over the edge. With two super blunders already under Super Bowl XLV’s belt, a third was not far off in the realm of possibilities. It may have taken some people until the end of the game to realize it, but one thing was missing from the water cooler conversations the next day. That void was due to the commercial that would go down in Super Bowl history. It just wasn’t there. Sure, there were a couple of commercials that were a little memorable, but none really stuck in anybody’s mind. Doritos and Bud Light probably had the best commercials, but overall, a lot of people had their expectations cut short. Those of us that watch for the game weren’t too disappointed but for a lot of people who go to Super Bowl parties just to socialize and watch the musical performances and commercials were left upset. For those of you that were not too happy with the music and commercials, just be thankful you only had to see Justin Bieber once. Y

attonville’s wrestling team was hit hard with multiple complications this season, but they still maintained an outstanding record of 7-2. Jesse Farmer, 12, Wes Raiche, 10, and Matt Murphy, 11, also qualified for the State championship meet this year. Many of the top varsity wrestlers such as Raiche, Dylan Hogan, 11, and Eric Thomas, 10, were out for much of the season due to injuries and other factors. Bryan Lopez said, “This gave the chance for many of the freshmen to step up.” Robert Zimmerman, who often filled in on varsity as a freshman, said the team has leaders in Nick Fiquette, 12, and Farmer who have really encouraged him throughout the season. “Nick helps me a lot with moves and Jesse gives me a lot of encouragement,” Zimmerman said. Full of advice, Fiquette and Farmer have proven to be great leaders on the team this year. Both being State tournament returnees, they aimed all season to qualify for it again, bringing many new improvements with them. “I have more endurance and am in better shape than I was last year,” Fiquette said. During the offseason, wrestlers, like Fiquette, do a lot less running but focus more on lifting and wrestling while participating on Team Missouri Select-Club which helps him during the regular season. Also focusing a little less on the running, Farmer conditions during the offseason as well.

“I’ve improved most on my basic wrestling techniques such as take downs and speed,” he said. They have both had a great season full of lasting memories. “My favorite part is the competition against the other wrestlers this year,” Farmer said. The St. Louis area has many wrestling teams that excel. “The McCluer match was my favorite because we still did really well without four of our starting wrestlers,” Fiquette said. But in order to achieve such a great season, these wrestlers have had to endure many hardships, one being their practices. Starting with the fatigue technique of heavy lifting, they then do basic drills of one-on-one wrestling, and following this they do timed laps, or sprints, for the last 20 minutes of practice. “I don’t like the extra running we have to do for getting pinned,” Farmer said. Coach Mike Moeller said, “The kids are a lot more dedicated and hard working this year than they were in the past.” He believes that even against their main competitor, McCluer North, they were still fundamentally better wrestlers. “It might be a little more challenging in Districts this year because more St. Charles county schools are being added and they are known to be great wrestlers,” Moeller said. He has high hopes for some individuals on the team this year and believes they have a good chance at going to State again.Y


Opinion

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uring the 2008 Presidential Election, Barack Obama defeated John McCain to bring the White House under Democratic control. After this victory, the votersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; expectations were running high for the new president to restore the nation to prosperity. However, some of these expectations seem to have been too high, for many expected Obama to reduce the national deficit, pull U.S. troops out of the Middle East, and eliminate unemployment; all in the span of two years. At the same time, Republicans branded his actions socialist, and accused him of being a Muslim (he is actually a Protestant Christian). At the same time, nothing is getting done in Washington with neither side being able to compromise. All of these tensions have come to a head with the recent tragedy in Tucson, Ariz., and still politicians argue whether it was sparked by the patrician antagonism or if the man responsible was mentally unstable. In any case, our elected officials must compromise if Obama is to be able to fulfill his campaign promises. This country was founded on compromises; without which, the Constitution would never have stuck, and the U.S. would have failed.

If George Washington or any of the framers were to come forward in time to the present, I think they would be horrified as to how Congress has devolved. Instead of a coherent governing body capable of debating bills to something all sides can stomach, they would find a bunch of whiny babies in fancy suits. Strictly speaking, students like us make compromises every day, while a lot of politicians adopt an â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s my way or the highwayâ&#x20AC;? attitude similar to small children. As a result, there is a massive political gridlock while our economy continues to plummet and the death toll in the Middle East rises. Meanwhile, the Health Care Reform Bill is the top issue in Congress. The Republicans and the Tea Partiers considerer it to be the bane of capitalism and have openly declared a universal effort to repeal it. Considering the fact that they control the House of Representatives, the repeal will probably pass there as well as the Senate. However, Obama has the power of a veto and will likely use it. As a result, the bill will be tossed around Washington while the unemployment, deficit, and Middle East issues will continue to fester. If things donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t change, this grid-

lock will spill over to other bills and actions. In fact, our nation is facing the ceiling on its national debt. At this point, we will either have to raise the ceiling, or dramatically cut spending. Chances are that the Republicans will go with one side and the Democrats will push for the other. While Congress debates this issue, our businesses will grind to a halt from a lack of funds. But this time, there will be no government bailouts as there will be no money to pull from. Unless compromises are made, the U.S. will go into an accelerated decline while politicians argue. Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve seen it in other countries like Iran and Haiti, where even presidential elections are contested months after they have concluded. In the mean time, all other aspects of their citizensâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; lives slide into anarchy, leaving them open to fascist dictators to command them. In short, the government needs to learn how to compromise all over again, before it lets America hit rock bottom on their watch. Y

Having a principal that is concerned with all studentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; activities makes Keene unique. She has a genuine interest in students outside of the classroom as well as within it. Her invested interest in the student body creates a critical rapport between students and staff. This rapport has opened up the lines of communication between Keene and the students, allowing for student input on issues affecting the school. Keene has done an excellent job of listening to what the students think and giving them feedback on their ideas. At the Board Student Administration Action Committee meetings, she is attentive to studentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; concerns about the school, ranging from the use of contact time to better hallway behavior. When BSAAC members suggested the implementation of clocks in the

hallways, Keene responded to the studentsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; proposals by making the suggestion a reality.

By Courtney McNeese

A

new semester has started and â&#x20AC;&#x153;Walk and Talkâ&#x20AC;? and â&#x20AC;&#x153;Stay to the Rightâ&#x20AC;? are still being hammered into the inhabitants of Pattonville High School, and most students get it now. So why are the administrators still pushing these â&#x20AC;&#x153;codesâ&#x20AC;? when there is a bigger, more distracting problem? Everywhere you look in the halls, barelycovered behinds stare back. While the Behavior Guide says nothing about walking and talking and staying on the right, it does state on page 13 that students could be sent home for wearing â&#x20AC;&#x153;pants which are sagging worn below the waist level.â&#x20AC;? Why arenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t administrators dealing with these distractions? It is actually against school rules to have sagging pants, yet school officials hardly do anything to enforce this code. I donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t know about the rest of the school, but I would much rather get some exercise doing the human obstacle course through the hallway than have the guy in front of me show all of SpongeBob SquarePantsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; face on his underwear. Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s really nothing attractive about a high school student looking like he still wears dia-

pers. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m sorry, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not. And males arenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t the only ones having pants problems. Leggings are not pants. Not to be misunderstood, Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m not against leggings. I like leggings. But only under a skirt, long shirt or sweater dress. However, when said leggings are worn with short shirts, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s distracting. I have heard the guyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s perspective on it and itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s definitely distracting to them. To be fair to the male population, there are other reasons leggings can be distracting. For me, and probably a lot of other girls, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s gross when youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re walking up the stairs only to look up and see the outline of a girlâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s underwear. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not sexy. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s trashy. Maybe adding â&#x20AC;&#x153;wearing leggings as pantsâ&#x20AC;? to the handbook as a dress code violation would make the halls a bit classier. This is obviously distracting, so instead of enforcing â&#x20AC;&#x153;walk and talk,â&#x20AC;? maybe administrators should focus on more pressing hallway etiquettes. Y

3,5$7( $IRQGIDUHZHOOWR'U6DUD.HHQH 35(66 Staff Editorial

It is the opinion of the Pirate Press staff that Dr. Sara Keene has made a very positive impact on Pattonville High School in her three years as principal. For three years, Sara Keene has been principal of Pattonville High School. She has announced her resignation at the end of this school year and the school district has already begun to search for a new principal. But as Pattonville High School looks toward hiring a replacement, it is important to consider the impact Keene has made in just three years. Keene supports all students in their endeavors, both extracurricular and academic. She has made it a point to attend events for every sport and activity. She can been seen on a Friday night cheering at a football game and then supporting the cross country team at a meet the next morning.

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In fact, Keene, a big advocate for Positive Behavioral Interventions and Support (PBIS), has worked hard to improve traffic flow for students during passing time. Through positive incentives, she has worked to create a school environment where school policies are followed not

because of the threat of punishment, but of the possibility of a reward. Keene is also a big proponent of health, and when students came to her wanting healthier food in the cafeteria, she listened. Hummus wraps and smoothies were added to the menu this year, starting a trend toward a healthy cafeteria that would be great to continue after Keene leaves. Keene came to the high school with fresh ideas and a positive attitude and her new policies often deviated from the norm. However Keene will be leaving behind a better Pattonville High School, one that offers a positive learning environment for students. As a new principal comes to Pattonville High School, he or she will have some big shoes to fill. Â&#x2122;

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The Pirate Press is the open forum newspaper of the Pattonville High School. The opinions published are of the publication and are open to criticism. As the members of the 2010-2011 staff, we dedicate ourselves to the accurate and objective dissemination of information to all readers. We will protect and exercise our First Amendment rights. The viewpoints of all staff members are to be regarded as being seperate from those of our administration, faculty, peers and adviser.


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By Armand Hayes

T

he radio has been around in Missouri since 1893 and has been growing and expanding ever since. Radio allows the general public to enjoy different types of music, listen to political arguments, find out what is new with their sports team and find out what is new from their favorite artist on a daily basis. When it comes to popular radio stations, St. Louis has many choices ranging from Z107.7â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s pop songs to 93.7 The Bullâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s country music. Radio allows the general public to enjoy different types of music and find out what is new from their favorite artist on a never-ending media feed. â&#x20AC;&#x153;To me, Z107.7, is a great radio station, but they play the same thing over and over again, especially when itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a new pop song or something like that,â&#x20AC;? Aaron Landgraf, 10, said. That does not mean that it is not still one of the best radio stations in our city. The station is fast-paced, appeals to a younger audience, plays up-to-date music, and has a variety of fun radio personalities. The MJ Morning Show is syndicated to St. Louis from its studio in Tampa Bay, Fla. Besides its constant updates on musicians and news, MJ also has interviews with celebrities and talks about politicial issues when it is necessary. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I listen to MJ in the Morning almost everyday just to get an update on what is going on,â&#x20AC;? Thomas Graven, 12, said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Plus the guy is hilarious. Him and Froggy and everyone else are just a great match when theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re all together and it makes for a great show.â&#x20AC;? Listeners of Z107.7 can also finetune their visual senses and watch full music videos from several different artists and view celebrity pictures on its Web site.

100.3 The Sound is considered the Gen-X radio station for its variety of new music that is not exactly alternative but more categorized as the new sounds of music. The radio station plays recorded concerts and has conversations with some new artists but 100.3 The Sound is more real and stays on topic. The Web site of the station, which modernizes traditional radio, is full of updates about classic rock stars and the new artists. Also, the site has the recent playlist of songs from the radio and it also has the faces and names of all the radio DJs throughout the day. Also, the songs played on the radio are available to be downloaded on iTunes. But, if rock does not suit you, and you want a taste of rap music to listen to, then Hot 104.1 is for you. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m all about rap and they always play different things that I either havenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t heard or enjoy hearing,â&#x20AC;? Brian Gibson, 12, said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Besides that, the side conversations and talks they have can be hilarious.â&#x20AC;? Hot 104.1 to some, can be considered a replacement for 100.3 The Beat, the old hip hop and R&B station. It has several comedians who have been on television like Ricky Smiley, Steve Harvey, and Wendy Williams. Between Ricky Smiley and Steve Harvey, the mornings are always enjoyable, and easy to listen to. So if the iPod is dying and you feel lost, always know that the radio usually will have something worth listening to. In addition to the radio stations listed, there are several other great stations to listen to and if you have XM Radio, then the choices are spread out even further. The radio has been with us for a very long time and will continue to improve and stay with us for even longer. Â&#x2122;

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By Chris Babb

B

y the grace of Odinâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s beard, we comic book fans have found strength in numbers with 2011â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Ultimate Allianceâ&#x20AC;? of super hero proportions. With so many comic book movie adaptation releases, one might be asking themselves which are worth experiencing in theatres, and which are barely worth the drive to Blockbuster. Donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t fear, 2011â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s top four comic movies are here accompanied by its trusty sidekick of a comic buffâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s predictions. In brightest dayâ&#x20AC;Ś In blackest nightâ&#x20AC;Ś No movie shall escape my sight. Especially when it comes to DCâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Green Lantern. Now, some may find themselves doubting the performance of Hal Jordan as portrayed by Ryan Reynolds. Reynolds may be one of the biggest hunks in Hollywood, but I find myself skeptical of the â&#x20AC;&#x153;Lanternâ&#x20AC;? role. The trailer doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t give Reynolds the justice deserved though. The comic arc that the movie is birthed from, Green Lantern: Rebirth, depicts Jordan as a duplicate of Reynolds that eventually becomes a noble man. With stunning CG and a cast composed of class A thespians, I say that this movie is definitely worth the June 17 theatre release experience and possibly worth a few re-watches. I often find myself wondering what happens when you give Michael Bay $200 million, lots of explosives, more CG than ever required for any movie, and a beloved childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s toy to loosely base a movie off of. Well, my question was answered with the upcoming release of Transformers: Dark of the Moon. Try not to get it mixed up with the greatness of Pink Floydâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s album, but more with the excitement of watching paint dry. The July 1 release date

ensures your 4th of July weekend to be packed with explosions, fire, and more explosions. Although, I must admit it has great potential to be a pretty solid action movie. Dark of the Moonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s predecessor, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, is actually the worst reviewed movie of 2009, and the holder of the title â&#x20AC;&#x153;Worst Pictureâ&#x20AC;? from the 2009 Razzies alongside â&#x20AC;&#x153;Worst Directorâ&#x20AC;? and â&#x20AC;&#x153;Worst Screenplay.â&#x20AC;? Now with that being said, I can almost automatically assure I will never let my loved ones even think of seeing this movie for fear of the monster they will make of me afterward. Despite the seemingly entertaining Super Bowl ad, the loss of Megan Fox and the eternal hatred of the movie by the lead Shia LaBeouf stamps this movie as an utter failure from the get go. Autobots, roll out and never show your face in a theatre again. Whoever watches this movie, if thee be worthy shall witness the power of Thor. Now, from what Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve seen of the trailers, this movie has got more potential than you can shake a stick at with a May 6 release date. Insiders that have read the script say never before has there been a superhero movie so grandiose in scale. Some would argue, the script is sturdier than Mjolnir itself. Chris Hemsworth and Natalie Portman star in this high quality action hit. Clark Gregg also makes a reprise of his role from the Iron Man films. Now, what really makes this movie worth seeing to even the most out of touch movie goer is the continuity of the Marvel Universe. Thor is actually played out at the same time as Iron Man 2, which is revealed at the end of the movie when Agent Coulson reveals Mjolnir and Edward Nortonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Incredible Hulk.

In fact, all of this leads up to the eventual release of the Avengers (2012). With nothing but good, great, and epic coming from the first peeks of Thor, I say youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll be spending your entire paycheck to experience this IMAX 3-D adventure over and over and over again. Now, Thor may be a mighty Avenger, but what is any team without a leader? The July 22 release of Captain America: The First Avenger gives you a diverse look at the worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s first superhero. Think Saving Private Ryan meets Indiana Jones, but make sure to add in the spice of Chris Evans already seasoned superhero performance in Fantastic Four, and youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve got yourself another home-brewed success brought to you by the fantastic Marvel Studios. Captain America is set entirely in World War II, where Steve Rogers is juiced up by the Super Soldier Serum, which plays into the Marvel Universe through the creation of Abomination from the Incredible Hulk. Captain America will no doubt be the surprise hit to round off the summer, and truly an epic of our times. The million dollar question, though, is what direction will these movies unfold. Will they be literal translations that try to be the glory of the original comics, or will they be adaptations with small or large differences? Will these movies be praised for years and beyond, or will comic fans shed tears at the mutilation of childhood favorites? Until then, little Thorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s, captains, and lanterns will dance through my head as I use my trusty flashlight to break bed time and reread these great comics in anticipation of what will come.Y

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By Jacqueline Neil

E

very year music fans are eager to find out what is next in the music industry. Artists release singles and albums as they strive to the top of the empire and many faces of pop and hip-hop culture are returning to recording studios in 2011. Toronto-based rapper Drake is expected to release his sophomore album, Take Care, in April. He will be featured with his producer Noah â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;40â&#x20AC;&#x2122; Shebib and underground hip-hop producer 9th Wonder. This album is going to have a diverse range of featured artists including Florence Welch of Florence and the Machine, Justin Timberlake, The Neptunes, and many others. Returning to reality from behind bars, Lilâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Wayne will also be releasing an album in 2011. He has been keeping quiet about this project but recently he dropped his single â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;6 foot 7 footâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; which was the 10th most downloaded song on iTunes in its debut week. This album will be another installment of â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;The Carterâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; series. Music analysts are saying C4 will be the most anticipated hip-hop album of 2011, which includes hiphop royalties such as Kanye West and Jay-Z. On Jan. 5, Kanye West tweeted, â&#x20AC;&#x153;MY NEW ALBUM COMING THIS

SUMMER.â&#x20AC;? West released his maniacal album, â&#x20AC;&#x153;My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasyâ&#x20AC;? on Nov. 22, 2010, and is determined to take over hiphop. With lyrics in Monster like, â&#x20AC;&#x153;If you wanna make it No. 1, youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re No. 2 now.â&#x20AC;? This year he is teaming up with Jay-Z who has more No. 1 selling albums than any other artist in music excluding only the Beatles. Jay-Z and West are officially debuting their collaboration album â&#x20AC;&#x153;Watch the Throneâ&#x20AC;? in March. The two have recently released a single off of the 5-track album, H.A.M. The doomsday single is currently No. 91 on the Billboard Top 100 List. By the end of the year, West will possibly have the most musical output over any other artist over the span of 2 years. Material released from Young Money Entertainment artists Drake and Lilâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; Wayne, and Roc Nation artists Jay-Z and Kanye West, are some of the most anticipated albums of mainstream music this year. Other hip-hop artists to look out for are Lupe Fiasco, Dr. Dre, Rick Ross, and breakthrough artists Tinie Tempah, Jay Electronica, Diggy Simmons, and Wiz Khalifa. Fashionista Lady Gaga has announced her next project, Born This Way. Born This Way is to be released on May 23. Lady Gaga has been

nominated for over 200 awards and has won 92 times. She will begin her year with 3 Grammy awards. Lady Gaga has taken up the challenge of

Elton John. On Feb. 11, Lady Gaga released the single Born This Way. The song has a materialistic attitude insisting its listeners to get up and

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dance. In 2010, former Mouseketeer Britney Spears, finished recording her album, Femme Fatale. A single

from the album has been â&#x20AC;&#x153;Hold It Against Me.â&#x20AC;? The music video for the single was premiered on MTV at 8:56 p.m. right before the new episode of Jersey Shore on Feb. 17. Spearsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; last album, Blackout, is said to be one of the most influential pop albums of the past 5 years. Spears has recreated the sound of pop by evolving it into an electro-pop club sound. The aggressive sound of the beats and ongoing trance makes it easy to dance to. This five-album chart-topping artist will release her sixth album on March 26. Interscope Records has been discussing with Blink-182 a new album release set for either June or July. The band has not been in the studio since 2003 when they released their self-titled album. Band member Mark Hoppus recently blogged, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve been busy with new songs and ideas. Some tracks are nearly complete.â&#x20AC;? Critics suspect the album will be released this spring. The band spent 11 years making music. Due to arguments between the three band members, they split in 2006 and Hoppus and Blink-182 drummer, Travis Barker, formed a new band, Plus 44. Blink-182 has recently resolved their problems. Other artists set to release an album this year include Willow Smith, Lykke Li, Avril Lavigne, Paramore, and Pitbull. Y


February 2011 Issue