The Mustang October 2017

Page 1


Volume 22 Issue 1


LET’S GET THIS STARTED A message from your editors.


DA has only been in session for a few weeks, yet this year has already witnessed the creation of new traditions and opportunities. The math and science building, in all its two-story glory, is already starting to fade into the other campus structures, and was even the site of the back to school dance in September - christening the courtyard with SDA’s most chaotic dance moves. Homecoming also got a bit of a makeover this year, with genderneutral ballots (“Homecoming ballot sees big change,” pg. 5 and “Royalty and revamped rules,” pg 7). Elsewhere in student life, it’s time to get informed about the new PSAT protocol (“PSAT moves to weekend,” pg. 5) and obsess over teacher babies (“Find the pair(ents),” pg. 16 and “What to expect when your

teacher’s expecting,” pg. 17). Additionally, expect truly extensive Halloween coverage in this issue, from a Scream Zone photo essay (“Unmasked,” pg. 13) to a festive game (“Monster MASH,” pg. 19) and more. But of course, seniors aren’t thinking much about any of that - we’ve got frighteningly personal essays and tragically short extra curricular lists to worry about. In other words, it’s college apps season. To prepare for this year’s graduating class, our closest Cal State (CSU San Marcos) is adding an engineering program and eliminating remedial classes (“Engineering new options” and “Changing courses,” pg. 4). Here on the newspaper staff, we welcomed a handful of new faces, as well as new editors for every section. Also, check the brand new design of the features section, starting on page 11. We’re also excited to incorporate more student drawings this year, with work from a variety of staff artists gracing pages throughout the paper. Though the school year looks long from here, we at the Mustang are confident it will fly by - one issue at a time. -Olivia Olander, Editor in Chief

INDEX ROLL CALL Editor-in-Chief Olivia Olander News Editor Simmone Stearn Opinion Editor Mallika Seshadri Features Editors Taylor Gates Nohemia Rosales See a backstage look at the Scream Zone on page 13...

Arts Editor Taylor Rudman Humor Editor Nadia Ballard Sports Editor / Business Mgr Yari Sequeria Online Editor Sophie Hughes Assistant Online Editor Sylvia Young Photo Editor Patrick Hall

... and match these babies with their teacher parents on page 16!

Staff Artist Emma Toscani Staff Writers Tom Amoroso Drew Atkins Alyssa Fisher Ashlyn Haines Jack Hauser Ava Jakubowski Amelia Kaiser Sarah LaVake Julia Lucero Lena Mau Hunter McGahan Taina Millsap Sienna Riley Kamryn Romley Jenna Weinhofer Advisor Tim Roberts




Cover Artist

Backpage Photographer

Junior Dana Journey preserves her memory through art like this month’s cover, Journey said. “You know, you can kind of feel art when you look at it. So when I put my memories in art, I can understand them better,” Journey said. She got her creative start from her grandmother, who works at an art college. “She always used to show me her drawings, so I got really influenced by that,” Journey said. She plans to pursue art as a career because she wants to love her future job.

Junior Amber Tse took this month’s backpage photo as part of an assignment. “We were doing macro, and it was fall and it was just pretty. There’s really not much to take photos of besides flowers in macro,” Tse said. “My parents used to take a lot of photos when I was younger, so I started using a camera and it was so fun,” Tse said regarding her start in the hobby. “I took [a photo class at SDA] and really liked it, so I took another year. Now I’m super into photography.”

The Mustang is the student newspaper of San Dieguito Academy. Advertisements do not necessarily reflect the opinion of the newspaper. The Mustang is an open forum which welcomes letters. Letters can be submitted to room 44, emailed to or mailed to the address below.

San Dieguito Academy Room 44 800 Santa Fe Drive Encinitas, CA 92024

OCT 2017

NEWS Building offically opened Students and faculty attended the ribbon cutting of the math and science building. By Taina Millsap.


TEACHER GEORGE STIMSON photographed the ribbon-cutting. Photo by Patrick Hall.

DA officially welcomed the new science and math building through a ribbon cutting ceremony in front of the new facility Sept. 29. Principal Adam Camacho gave a speech concerning the importance of the new facility: “SDA is a school were educational experience is motivated and measure by our authentic culture, our talented teachers and staff, and of course our amazing students and their successes. The core of our success will come from our districts laser focus on continually learning and executing what is best for kids. The new SDA math and sci-

ence building is a perfect example of that,” he said. In the past, math and science classrooms were scattered around the campus. “Now I feel like we have an amazing opportunity because were all together,” said math teacher Gail Lee. “It’s great for the kids to be able to come to one place to get help from a math or science teacher.” Senior Angelique Velasco said, “The new building and how it offers all this new technology and space... makes [the construction] all worth it.” Full story at

DACA’s impact at SDA and beyond

The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals order used to protect hundreds of thousands of undocumented individuals. Now that it is set to be repealed, advocates and friends of those affected are wondering what happens next. By Olivia Olander.


ome 790,000 young people may soon face deportation and other obstacles due to President Donald Trump’s move to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. This includes SDA students, according to AVID and college applications teacher Ruth Magnuson and others close with the community. DACA was created by former President Barack Obama to give undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. as children the chance to get a work permit or study in America. Now, it may be repealed within five months. Although Magnuson said only “a handful” of students on campus are actually on the DACA program, “there’s a lot of people with mixedstatus families, so it’s been challenging… It’s a scary time.” “It’s pretty upsetting how they canceled DACA, because this makes it harder for undocumented students to get an education and be here somewhat legally,” said an SDA junior male who has friends and family currently signed on to the program. “Not having it will impede their studies.” What is DACA? DACA is an often-used acronym for the 2012 executive order that allows undocumented immigrants who entered the U.S. as children to get work permits and driver's licenses, as well as temporarily protect them from deportation. It does not provide permanent citizenship, but was intended to “lift the shadow of deportation from these young people,” Obama said at the time. “[Seniors on DACA] are still eligible for in-state tuition for public [colleges],” Magnuson said, refer-


ring to the California Dream Act, which grants this privilege. “They still have the ability to get some grants through Cal Grant. However, most of the students are low-income, first-generation students who need to supplement their college tuition with work. Without the work permit that DACA provides, they might not be able to do it.” DACA was also seen as a temporary version of the DREAM Act, legislation that would grant permanent residency to undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children and is separate from both DACA and the California Dream Act. The DREAM Act has been introduced in the Senate in several different variations since it was created in 2001, but has never been passed. Who’s protected? Young undocumented immigrants, often referred to as “Dreamers,” were eligible for DACA if they were brought to the U.S. before age 16 and met certain other requirements, like not having a criminal conviction record. More than a million individuals were eligible for these benefits, according to a 2014 Pew study, and over 78 percent of those people applied. DACA stopped accepting new applications earlier this month, but is accepting application renewals until Oct. 5 from people whose current status expires before March 5, according to the U.S Citizenship and Immigration Services website. Trump and DACA Estimates for public support of DACA range wildly — from 45 to 78 percent, according to Politifact — and Trump himself has claimed support to be as high as 92 percent. However, the Trump administration

announced steps to phase out DACA Sept. 5. The news came via Jeff Sessions, Trump’s attorney general and an opponent of legislation to protect undocumented immigrants. Sessions announced a six-month window for Congress to revise or replace the act. Whether Dreamers will actually be deported after that point is unclear. Trump said former DACA recipients will not be “enforcement priorities,” and the Department of Homeland Security said it has “no plans” to use the information collected through DACA applications as a way to find and deport people, The Washington Post reported. Trump previously stated that he wants a solution for Dreamers that will make them “happy and proud,” and even seemed to tweet his support for protecting them on Sept. 14. “Not everyone is born under the same circumstances… DACA gives the opportunity for people who were born in bad circumstances to recover from them and follow a path that they wouldn’t have otherwise if they had stayed in Mexico or another country,” said the junior boy. “It gives them an opportunity for a better life, and it’s wrong to repeal it.” However, by rescinding the executive order, Trump reiterated his “America first” call to action, and his desire for stricter immigration laws. Sessions also voiced support for enforcement of immigration laws. “Enforcing the law saves lives, protects communities and taxpayers and prevents human suffering,” Sessions said. Not everyone agrees with this assessment in regards to immigration. “I have a lot of family and a lot of cousins that are undocumented, but they feel this threat that they can’t be

here, and they have no privilege,” a junior SDA girl said. “We should all be equal. We all want an education, so I feel like we all should have that opportunity. For [Trump] to take that away is not right.” Has SDA responded? Some districts, such as the San Diego Unified School District, have issued statements committing to protect their undocumented students after this announcement. The San Dieguito Unified High School District did not release a similar letter in response to this particular incident, but did pass a school board resolution back in March that reaffirmed non-discrimination policies in the district and focused on undocumented students who fear immigration enforcement. It also included support for some other minority groups, such as the LGBTQ community. “We can do more as a district to support our undocumented families or mixed-status families,” Magnuson said. “A letter would be really nice, like the one they sent last year. I think another one needs to be sent to let families know that this is a safe place and we will support them in whatever way we can.” She added that many teachers at SDA are individually supportive of these students. What happens now? According to the Trump administration, Congress now has until March to either come up with a new version of DACA or let it expire. CNN reported that if DACA ends completely, those who were formerly protected would then be up for deportation like any other undocumented immigrant. Some members of Congress are once again pushing for the passage of the DREAM Act, even if it means accepting tighter

border security measures. Other options involve keeping aspects of DACA with or without a path to citizenship. On Sept. 14, just days after initially threatening to repeal DACA, Trump met with Democratic leaders to negotiate a potential new immigration policy. After the meeting, Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said they made a deal with Trump protecting Dreamers as part of a larger agreement that included enhanced border security, but this has not been confirmed by Trump. Rep. Darrell Issa (R), the local delegate to the House of Representatives, is against DACA. “It is inherently un-American to create a new group of second-class citizens that are allowed to stay indefinitely but given an indefinite unknown status,” he has written in the San Diego Union Tribune. Shortly after the Trump administration announced their decision to end DACA, Issa released a statement criticizing Obama for creating the program and saying he is eager to modify it. Magnuson said she has seen support for DACA students come in from throughout the state, with some organizations even donating money to pay the fees associated with reapplying to the program. “We have, but it doesn’t take away from the fear that these families feel every day,” she said. She recommended that concerned students reach out for help, because some organizations “do this all day long and can point them in the right direction.” Additional reporting by Ava Jakubowski.


Engineering new options


A new program at CSU San Marcos may be an advantage for SDA students interested in pursuing a degree and career in engineering. By Nadia Ballard.


al State San Marcos is attempting to introduce more students to the engineering field of study. The Department of Education awarded CSUSM a Hispanic-Serving Institution STEM grant to develop programs in software engineering and electrical engineering. “The fact that Cal State San Marcos is now introducing the program is fantastic for [schools] in their service areas, which we are one of; and because we were outside the service area of San Diego State it’s been harder for our students to get accepted,” Counselor Vicky DeJesus said. “CSUSM is slowly but surely growing and now that they are offering an engineering program; it’s an advantage for our students.” “We are fortunate to also have the support of local companies

to provide additional and critical financial support,” said Professor Ricardo Fierro, associate dean of the College of Science and Mathematics at CSUSM. The award was allocated to close the achievement gap for Hispanic and other underserved students. According to Fierro, the opportunities that this new program provides for students in the region are exciting because many universities, such as UCLA and Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, have more applicants to their engineering programs than they can accept. CSUSM is entering its 26th year and the establishment of this engineering program is evidence of the university expanding to accommodate and offer more to students. DeJesus said that Cal State San Marcos as a university has

CAL STATE SAN MARCOS CAMPUS. Photo courtesy of Edmond Zaide. started off small and will eventually aggrandize with programs such as these, which will likely become more selective and competitive over time. The program will offer software and electrical engineering majors, the latter emphasizing both theory and practice. The degree prepares students for careers in app development, systems analysis, and software engineering, as well as for entrance into graduate and professional schools. Electrical engineering will deal with the application and study of electricity, electronics, and electromagnetism. The major’s career opportunities

include electrical design, simulation, electrical systems, schematic diagrams, circuit design, system engineering, computer aided drafting, programmable logic controller programming, and more. According to Fierro, “both degrees require strong science and mathematics skills, but are also rewarding in terms of finding engineering solutions to global, economic, industrial, environmental, and manufacturing problems.” CSUM expects the number of students studying software and electrical engineering to grow each year as there is a high demand for

CSUs: Changing courses

these degrees in the region and at other universities. “It’s good for schools to be embracing full-on engineering programs, especially because in recent years engineering has become a much more prevalent area of study where the future is going to be, in terms of jobs and that kind of thing,” said senior Wayde Gilliam, co-engineering president of SDA Robotics team Paradox 2102. The program is starting out small with limited funding and limited space. However, the program is already accepting applications for its first graduating class.

CSU is eliminating remedial classes to save students money and help them graduate on time. By Mallika Seshadri.


rumor gained momentum among Cal State San Marcos faculty members last August, said math professor Bosko Celic. Days later, it proved to be true: the CSU system announced the elimination of remedial courses— which do not count toward a student’s degree—beginning with this year’s high school class of 2018. The decision was made to help double the CSU system’s graduation rate by 2025, so 40 percent of students will be able to obtain a bachelor’s degree in four years, the Chancellor of the CSU system, Timothy White, said in a press release. Proponents feel this will help students evade a larger college debt because they will not have to pay extra fees for remedial classes, which cause many students frustration, resulting in some dropping out. The change elicited many questions among concerned high school teachers and university faculty members, especially about how the system will catch up their 40 percent of students who aren’t considered college-ready. Though the CSU system has yet to provide a specific solution, they


promised students will obtain the necessary math and English skills to proceed with their degree after going through some form of remediation, according to SDA counselor Carolyn Lee.“They don’t have all the answers yet. They’re saying that more information is going to come out January,” she said. The Process The CSU system also decided to drop placement exams, including the ELM (entry level mathematics) test and EPT (English placement test). Instead, the system looks to make placement decisions based on “mixed measures,” including test scores, rigor of high school curriculum and transcripts, said Lee. “Pulling from multiple measures gives students more than one opportunity to demonstrate their mastery of a concept, whereas a single sitting test, where we all know students can have a bad test day... The really good piece is that the overall record a student has put forth and their history of succeeding is going to count for more,” Lee said. Celic, who teaches remedial math classes, said that despite being skeptical about some aspects of the change, many students will thrive

after the elimination of remedial classes, including those who he feels were wrongfully placed in remedial courses by soon to be scrapped placement tests. He added that these students would now be able to immediately work toward a degree. “It might be beneficial for the students who are already understand the basic mathematical principles... because [students] jumping over the remedial classes… [Can] start right on the money,” he said. Benefits and Drawbacks SDA English, college applications, and AVID teacher Ruth Magnuson said she was initially concerned that the elimination of remedial classes could cause students entering the CSU system to not be college ready. But, after attending a Cal State Conference, where she was reassured that all students would enter their major with a strong foundation in English and math, she began to embrace the change. “They’re still going to get the skills that they need both in math and in English and writing. But, now they [will] be working toward something instead of just getting stuck in this pit of remediation,” she said.

Celic said while he is generally a proponent of the change, it could be detrimental for some students if the CSU system does not come up with an effective alternative. “Some kids that I’ve been teaching for the past year...didn’t know how to add fractions, and some kids didn’t know how to subtract two negative numbers. And…, when [students are struggling with these concepts], you cannot push that person into pre calc right away… the kid would be so discouraged,” he said. “First, you learn how to crawl and then how to walk, and then you are able to run.” Celic said many of his students have voiced appreciation for what they learned in remedial classes like his. They “found [remedial classes] very beneficial for them because they felt much more confident [in their ability]; their self-esteem level increased,” he said. His primary concern is for those who are pursuing fields like physics and engineering, which require a strong foundation in math and an understanding of calculus. Implications for SDA With 62 percent of SDA graduates attending a four year university, including 17 percent entering the

CSU system, Lee said, “We’ve done a really good job of making sure students are getting through that a-g material [high school requirements for the CSU and UC systems that require students to complete number of classes in each academic subject], but not just getting through [the matieral], but really being successful and understanding it.” Magnuson said she sees “really strong readers and writers and motivated students” in her classes, making her confident that SDA graduates are well prepared to handle college level work, especially because of “the amount of AP classes we have,” and high success rates on standardized exams, including CAASPP tests, which revealed 88 percent of SDA students are proficient in math, and 80 percent are proficient in English. Though SDA students prove to be academically successful, Lee stressed the importance of taking senior year classes seriously and striving to really understand the material. “Make sure you are putting yourself in a good position, [so] when you do get placed into those college level classes, that you actually feel confident,” she said.

OCT 2017


Homecoming ballot sees big change ASB’s new ballots include gender-neutral blank spaces instead of the traditional “king” and “queen” options. By Olivia Olander.


COMMMUNITY MEMBERS APPLAUD a speaker at the City Council subcommittee meeting, Sept. 28. Photo by Taylor Rudman

Marijuana farms nearby? Some community members believe farming marijuana will enrich Encinitas’ history of cultivation. By Simmone Stearn.


pproximately 100 people attended the Encinitas City Council meeting last month to debate and discuss the permission of marijuana cultivation and retail distribution in Encinitas. The Encinitas City council subcommittee, formed by Encinitas Deputy Mayor Tony Kranz and City Council member Joe Mosca, led the meeting. Kranz stated at the commencement of the subcommittee meeting that he supports Marijuana cultivation in Encinitas and wants to preserve Encinitas’s agricultural heritage. However, he is against its retail distribution. Mosca expressed neutrality as toward the situation, but is, as well, against retail distribution. Many of Encinitas residents who

support marijuana cultivation say that it will continue the agricultural heritage of Encinitas and support its farmers. “Encinitas used to be called the flower capital of the world. I’d like to think we still are,” said Bob Etcher, a third generation farmer who owns a farm in Encinitas. Etcher stated that growing marijuana will allow for his business to continue, one which employs around 100 people. However, it was called into question whether or not the benefits of the cannabis industry outweigh the disadvantages. Since marijuana produces strong odors, technologies must be implemented in cultivation facilities to prevent it from affecting the surrounding environment and the implementation of these technolo-

gies alone can account to thousands of dollars said Meg Sanders, who has been a CEO of a cannabis company in Colorado for eight years. Encinitas Union School District board member Leslie Schneider and San Dieguito Union High School District board member Maureen Muir presented for those against marijuana in the debate. Schneider said marijuana cultivation will be enriching a few at the expense of others. In addition, she claimed that a surplus of marijuana can already be found, so its cultivation may not be that financially beneficial with tax revenues, and that it does not have a place in Encinitas. “Pot is not our community character,” Schneider said. “Marijuana does not fit in.”

omecoming court is going gender-neutral for the first time in SDA history. When students received ballots in homeroom last month, they were asked to nominate three students from their grade as “royalty,” rather than just king and queen. ASB secretary Summer Horton, a senior in charge of the ballot, said there were disputes last year that prompted the change. “In past years, we’ve just had two or three spots to pick a homecoming king or homecoming queen… Some people thought we should make it more gender-neutral, so this year we decided to do that and we just picked the top people from each grade,” she said. Chloe Williams, an SDA graduate from the class of 2017, was one of the students who pushed for the change last year. “I [fought] through

the Forum and ASB to erase any gendered terms because there are many students at SDA who felt alienated by the binary categories,” Williams said. “If someone was the kindest person at the school, what did it matter whether they were a girl, boy or anything else?” “Seeing men and women differently isn’t productive, and those attitudes start in high school and earlier,” she continued. Horton said those nominated will be able to choose their own title, “whether they just want it to be ‘royalty’ or king or queen or whatever they want. [ASB is] working on making everything as gender-neutral as possible and we want everyone to be happy.” Nominees have been notified of their status, and will be officially announced at the homecoming assembly Oct. 20.

PSAT moves to weekend

The PSAT/NMSQT test will no longer be a free schoolday activity, but will be offered on a Saturday morning. By Simmone Stearn.


DA, in previous years, offered the PSAT/NMSQT test through school; every student had an equal opportunity to participate. However, the new 2017-2018 school year has a new set of changes. “This year it’s being offered on a saturday,” said SDA’s Principal Adam Camacho. “Both SDA and Torrey Pines will be offering it on the weekend.” Now, this year, students must pay a fee of $28 to take the test which will take place on Saturday, Oct. 14.

SDA Assistant Principal Robert Caughey said, “This year, they [the district] were going to make us select funds for the exams. In the past it was a donation and any test that we administered that students didn’t pay, the site was going to have to cover the difference in funding. There was going to be a potential loss in revenue here at school that the site simply doesn’t have to ability to pay for."

Training California to know the signs

A new youth suicide prevention law is now in effect in all public California high schools, aiming to protect at-risk teens and educate teachers, parents, and students. By Taina Millsap.


ith increasing suicide rates all across the country, a new state law is now implementing changes in high schools. Schools will be taking new measures to promote communication between communities, assistance for suicidal students through the training of teachers, and educating students and parents on how to recognize signs and how to get help. The main goal of the law is to inform students, teachers, and school employees what to do when they see signs of a suicidal individual, and how to identify those signs.


The SDA staff were trained during summer and soon all students and parents will start to get information about suicide prevention.The biggest change so far was the training of all teachers and staff during the summer before the 2017-2018 school year. SDA staff are working on changes and activities that will hopefully help struggling kids. Counselor Anne Nebolon said, “I know what we need to do as a school district and we’re doing it” she said “The main message going out is answering the question of ‘What do I do if I know someone that is suffering?’ You have to go to

a trusted adult, that includes all staff in school. ‘It can’t be kept a secret. Come to us and we’ll help, no one will get in trouble, they will get help.” SDA wants to show students that the less they keep their feelings secret, the more people will get help and the less students will be in danger of losing their lives, said Nebolon. In past years, suicide rates have increased, prompting the creation of this law and the realization that high school students, the age group most affected by it, require available

professionals to help with the information necessary. Changes are slowly progressing as all public schools in California are in the process of training teachers and counselors. Most of the training for the staff is about identifying warning signs, risk factors and what to do next. Teachers will have a general idea of how to identify these problems and how to report them to a trusted professional who will then take more detailed observation. These policies will also specifically focus on the at-risk youth groups

with mental illness or substance abuse disorders, as well as LGBTQ+ youth. Activities and training for students will be seen later this year at SDA, as the staff team in charge of those activities has not yet planned anything. However, they assure students and their parents that modifications will soon be in place. There will also be a district webpage on the district website with everything the school will be doing with kids and staff, along with information for parents of at-risk teens.




OCT 2017


Royalty and revamped rules The Mustang’s take on gender neutral homcoming ballots, a new suicide prevention law and support of students impacted by current events associated with DACA.


hese editorials represent the collective voice of The Mustang staff members in reference to current events discussed in news stories found in this issue.

Homecoming Ballots

Though crowning a homecoming queen and king are part of a quintessential high school experience, The Mustang staff feels the decision to change the ballots is the right one, especially because of SDA’s inclusive and accepting nature. Our school prides itself on enabling every individual to define theirselves, and we think it is especially important that we set a precedent for what is right and alter this tradition, which wrongly assumes everyone is cisgender. Though a small step in supporting the transgender and non binary students at the school, we believe it is an important one.

Suicide Prevention Law

Suicide has been an issue commonly shoved under the rug and is

seen as taboo to talk about. The Mustang staff feels it is time mental health and suicide are discussed. We are thankful the new Youth Suicide Protection Law will shed light on this issue; the fact that it’s being discussed shows people care. The Mustang believes education is key, and we think more should be done at our school, especially since SDA is our home away from home; knowing a teacher is there for support could mean the world to someone, especially if they struggle confronting their parents to tell them about their exacerbating mental health and ask for help. While educating teachers, parents and students is a step in the right direction, we can always be more proactive. For example, an education-centric community day should be introduced, and students should be engaged in the planning process.


Those supported by DACA grew up in the United States just like us.

They lead similar lives, they attend the same schools, and they aspire to the same things. The Mustang believes these students — most of whom did not choose to come to the United States — need to be met with steadfast support. Other school districts in San Diego, including the San Diego Unified School District, have promised these students school will be a safe zone, and SDUHSD should do the same. We should also create visuals that can be hung up in classrooms that serve as an ongoing reminder of our support of these students. We have a moral obligation to empower them. DACA, and immigration in general, are hot topics. Many who agree with President Donald Trump’s stance and actions believe crime rates could be lessened if more individuals are deported. However, there is no evidence to prove immigrants are responsible for heightened crime rates. Instead of falsely assuming they are criminals, let’s treat them as people.

It’s not just a bill

A LOT HAS changed since SDA’s 1997 homecoming royalty were crowned. Photo courtesy of SDA Yearbook.

A newly proposed bill to extend Medicare to all should be supported.


alking to the elevators on the third floor corridor of Rady’s Children’s Hospital, I held back tears seeing a little kid — no more than four feet tall — being wheeled from an operating room into the intensive care unit, hooked up to numerous tubes and asleep to sounds of beeping monitors. I quickly realized that despite


If you see someone trip over something or even nothing, it’s probably me. Mallika Seshadri

enduring serious health issues, that kid was lucky to receive the amazing treatment at Rady’s. But, not knowing his background, I also wondered what kinds of decisions his parents had to confront. What if they had to sacrifice putting food on the table to keep their child alive? Were they able to make critical payments while


bills escalated? Having a loved one in the hospital is painful and panic-inducing enough, and families shouldn’t have to make the impossible decision over losing everything or losing their child. It’s that simple. Regardless of political identity, we can agree on a human level (Sen. John McCain included) that access to good medical care is essential.

Currently, 28.2 million Americans live without healthcare, according to the Center for Disease Control and

Prevention. This group of uninsured individuals, which is greater than Australia’s population, could now have the right to health care since the last Republican effort to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act was squandered. Now, health care could be even more accessible under Bernie Sanders’ rencently proposed a bill to extend medicare to all citizens. The proposed legislation would be phased in over time, starting by giving individuals older than 55 and those younger than 18 access to health care. If passed, the vast majority of high school students, and the child on the gurney at Rady’s Children’s Hospital, would have access to medicare and its new benefits like mental health services— something students, among others, could benefit from since “1 in 5 [teens and young adults] live with a mental health condition,” according to the National Alliance on Mental

Illness (NAMI). While the benefits of universal health care are undeniable and 60 percent of those polled by the Pew Research Center in June said the “federal government is responsible for ensuring health care coverage for all Americans,” many find it hard to support such an endeavor when they their taxes could be raised. But, the United States already spends more money (coming from taxes) than any other major nation on health care, and millions are still suffering from inadequate coverage due to its for-profit nature. It’s time that tax money collected for health care is allocated toward doing what it’s supposed to do: improve and save lives. This bill was proposed in the middle of Sept., and anyone who has seen the Schoolhouse Rock video knows a bill goes through a pretty long, tedious journey to become a law. Exercise your rights. Get in touch with Rep. Darrell Issa and voice your opinion (good luck). And, please spread the word. Support should be given to this bill as it would save the lives of the poor little bill on capitol hill and millions of Americans. Art by Drew Atkins.



Two sides of every story B Students should think twice before speaking openly and aggressively about their political views. eing an underclassman in believed the things they felt so a class full of juniors and strongly about.Plot twist! I don’t. seniors is scary enough as They were very wrong. it is. What about, during The verbal abuse directed not only an election year, having completely toward Trump, but at Republicans opposite political views? as a whole, was horrifying. The fact That’s what I had to deal with that some outspoken people can last year. I’m Republican, born and shamelessly attack a group of people raised. My parents are both pretty so profusely - honestly, it scares me. understanding when it comes to And they call us Nazis? other people’s opinions, but do not Just a heads up: that’s my family try to convert my mom or try to you’re talking about. That’s me, change her my parents, even views. She my little brother will tear you you’re attacking. Whatever floats apart with Maybe not directly, your boat... crazy strong but sometimes the arguments indirect approach Sophie Hughes and evidence that burns us a little to back them more. up. Do we I had to proofread, support contribute to, and every publish stories that proposition openly questioned or action that President Donald our sanity, and hashed on and on Trump suggests? No, not in the about how we were such terrible slightest. But do we think he was the people, a danger to society even. much better candidate than former And every time I skimmed over a Secretary of State Hillary Clinton? sentence calling Trump a moron, or Most definitely. Nothing can change describing Republicans as ignorant, it that. was kind of a little flick in the back of There are a few things I definitely the head. Not a full slap in the face, regret about sophomore year. I but just an incessant reminder that I should have taken AP World and was not the same as them, and as it ran harder during track season, seemed, not quite as “good” as them. and above all, I should not have So, moral of the story? Be aware. stood by silently as an entire class Be open-minded. Be accepting. threw insults at not only Trump, Isn’t that what SDA is known for? but my political beliefs. I suppose Think about who you are talking they assumed I felt like them, and to. Are you absolutely positive that

IN OPPOSITION OF seemingly-popular belief. President Donald Trump is working efficiently to better America and its economy. Graphic by Brian Magnuson. they have the same views as you? Could you potentially insult them by stereotyping a group of people and criticizing them? Have some decency and try to understand how they

might be feeling. People may say we are “monsters” or “idiotic buffoons” but in reality, we’re not, and we still have feelings. Every time I get worked up

about any political disagreements, a friend of mine always reminds me that “everyone is entitled to their opinion.” Just try to respect our opinion, too.

Making America great again Despite what others choose to believe, President Trump is fulfilling his pre-election promises.


ost of the mainstream media opposes President Donald Trump, siding against him and rarely providing concrete evidence as to why. People with Democratic viewpoints, from students to adults, accuse Trump and Republicans of being ignorant. But, in reality Democrats are the ones who are uneducated because they refuse to see the ways Trump has benefited this country in less than a year. So, let’s drop all the fake news and start talking facts. According to CNBC, under Trump, the United States stock market added over two trillion dollars to the American economy in the past eight months. Because of the large amount of growth in the stock market, most American’s 401ks


(employee tax deferred retirement January, the economy added 863,000 plans invested in the market) have jobs, including 821,000 in the private grown substantially. Nobody hates sector.” making money, whether you are Looking at numbers from both the left, right, Bureau of Labor black, white... Statistics and or however you ADP Research Some people drink identify, there Institute (a coffee...I prefer is no argument privately funded liberal tears. to combat these organization), the facts. Press Secretary’s Alyssa Fisher In addition to statement is increasing stock confirmed. In market growth fact, job creation more than to date is close to the previous or exceeding 1.5 administration did in two terms, million according to both sources. Trump has been spurring job Each month of 2017 has so far creation across the country for adults surpassed the job numbers for the and teens. same month in 2016, showing that In June, the White House Office of Trump cares about giving American the Press Secretary stated that “since jobs to American citizens, who

contribute to this country. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, teen employment was up by 1.6 percent over last year’s peak. Along with the higher teen employment rate, the teen unemployment rate “was 1.9 percentage points lower than last July. This represents the lowest summer youth unemployment rate since July 2000.” The majority of America’s youth are employed in leisure and hospitality industries, like food services. More people spending money on such services enables lasting job creation for teens across the country. Increased job creation in this sector shows the economic health of the nation. Since Trump came into office, his

strong business acumen has relayed over to his role as the president and has aided him in furthering the US economy as a whole. As a former businessman, he understands the hardships that business owners face and therefore can confidently lead American industry to become the superpower it once was. Lastly, there is no denying that Trump is extremely intelligent and well off. He obviously didn’t need the presidential salary. So, why did he do it? The answer is simple: he ran and won because he wants to help this country and its people thrive to their full potential and then some. And he is already set off on the right path. All you have to do is look at the facts.

OCT 2017


Small liberties are a big deal Why it’s important to recognize small steps in promoting gender equality.


t was announced last month that in world politics? Saudi Arabia, the only country We often don’t realize the privito prohibit women from driving, leges we have in this country until we would lift their ban in June of 2018. look at how women are treated in the By removing this longstanding rest of the world. Women in Saudi policy, the country has made a big Arabia are still held under strict pastep in eliminating the severe represtriarchal values, such as the “guardsion of its women. ianship” laws that allow men to have The change in legislation is inpower of their female relatives. tended to repair The fact the country’s remains that reputation given there is still a I can fit my hand their strict gender lot of work to inside of a Pringle segregation. The be done before can. country also gender equality hopes that this is attained in our Sienna Riley will give them a world. Though great economic this is a major boost since this step, it should not will allow more remain the only women access to Saudi Arabia’s step. workforce. It is our job, as a considerably So why should this matter to privileged western society, to broadus in the United States, and more en our scopes and educate ourselves specifically at SDA? Well really, the about inequalities to truly make a question is, why wouldn’t it matter? difference. With seemingly small This decision was “a step in the right privileges being given to oppressed direction” as stated by the US State women worldwide, we as a human Department in response to the derace get one step closer to worldwide cree. However, what does this mean equality. The smallest steps can for our generation moving forward sometimes make the biggest change.

Photo illustration by Emma Toscani

Bathrooms are wack

The bathrooms are beginning to resemble my life: a mess that no one should have to deal with. Especially our janitors.


Photo illustration by Emma Toscani


e back. Round two. Let’s show (literally), that apparently go. we do. Even with the instructions, In writing our piece sometimes people forget to flush. last year about the bathrooms, we And that’s a beautiful sight. By thought, “Hm, maybe people will beautiful, we mean literally the read this. Hm, maybe people will opposite. not be super freaking disgusting and This is a great example of the keep leaving tampons on the floor. domino effect, folks. A few people Hm, maybe the janitors will get a ruin the bathroom experience for raise.” the entire female population of the Obviously, we were wrong. school. We walked into the girl’s bathroom Some other issues include how in the dark scary the doors don’t hallway on the lock, the sinks are Buy one, get one free (while first week of always broken, and supplies last). school and saw we’re perpetually Lena Mau, Kamryn Romley a horror scene out of soap and including three towels (not about tampons on the to warm my hands floor, writing on on that weak hand the tampon boxes ‘dryer’ just before already, some I wipe them on black, goopy, my jeans). Not to hairy thing on mention, people the floor next to the toilet, and keep writing on the mirrors but the instructions on how to flush the dang messages get 50 percent erased, and toilet. I’m 100 percent confused. Fully. This You would think that someone is why we can’t have nice things wouldn’t need instructions on how Now don’t get it twisted. We to flush a toilet, but it is such a shit appreciate the janitors who work

tirelessly day in and day out to make our campus a thousand times prettier and cleaner. We just don’t appreciate all of the disrespectful messes that are made in the bathrooms every day by disrespectful students. The janitors shouldn’t be treated this way, they deserve better. Seriously. That’s another human being having to clean up your stuff every day and you’re abusing their job and frankly, them as a person. It’s inhumane. At this point we’re even wondering if kids from other schools are coming into our bathrooms and making them a mess as some kind of sick prank. Sometimes that feels like the only plausible explanation as to why the bathrooms would be so disgusting. Moreover, don’t be a LCC wanna be. Respect our campus, and all of the bathrooms inside of it. For some of us, it’s our last year at SDA and we’d love for it to be a clean, blood and poop on the ground/walls, free year. Please, try to be sanitary and decent. A little effort goes a long way folks.



Capeless heroes There are people we remember and grateful for in our lives, and some may be the people who teach us everyday. By Jenna Weinhofer and Hunter McGahan


eing a teacher is more than showing students how to distribute. Teachers inspire students to find the career that fits them and make learning enjoyable. For myself and other students, reaching out to our teachers gave us experiences we are more than thankful for. When I, Jenna, first stepped into my kindergarten class, I was excited. I was not the kid clinging to their parents and begging them to stay, I was—and still am—a nerd; I crave knowledge. But, I would not have felt this way if my teachers did not go above and beyond to make every day the best. I expected the joy of learning to disappear once I entered high school;


the expectations were higher and the workload was greater. I thought teachers would not care as much. I was definitely wrong. Teachers are willing to put their students before themselves. We’re only here for the free printer paper.

Jenna Weinhofer, Hunter McGahan

A teacher welcomed me into his classroom every morning. We talked about everything whether it be silly or serious, and during that time, he

would put his work aside to listen. he cares about all his students,” He was there for me whenever I Flager said. “He wants them to needed him and brought out the best improve if they [are willing to] put in in me. I am forever grateful for that. the work.” Others have also been profoundly Junior Jana Roper had a teacher influenced by their teachers. who gave her the opportunity to Senior Kira dissect a parrot Flager shared a fish outside of “I think he did this freshman year class since she experience where loved marine for me because he a teacher gifted biology. Roper, her their favorite with the help of cares about all his brush pen. After her teacher, got students.” that, the teacher an internship pulled her aside through - Flager in her cartooning the Birch class and gave her Aquarium so one-on-one lessons. It helped her she could continue experimenting. learn new art techniques. “There is not really a word to “I think he did this for me because describe how much [this] meant...By

doing this [my teacher] sparked even more curiosity into me about the marine world,” Roper said. SDA teachers have made a lasting impression. We are able to learn more about what make us happy because our teachers are psychics; they see the potential in us we do not see in ourselves, and they challenge us to go above and beyond all expectations. Above all, teachers are heroes (and I know they have capes). Teachers showed Flager how to tackle a new art technique, they showed Roper how to pursue her passion outside of school, and they showed me how I want to become a teacher. I want to empower and support the next generation like they have for us.

OCT 2017



Stories have served an important purpose for humans throughout history. They help us understand our past and its connection to our own lives and futures. When we share them, they bring us together. Reporting by Yarisette Sequeira and Sylvia Young. Illustrations by Emma Toscani.

During the summer of freshman year, Ayse Coban’s vacation to Malysia took a terrifying twist and left her with a new fear.


ver the summer I went to Redang Island in Malaysia and basically I was in the hotel room alone when my parents and little sisters went on a walk at the beach. They left all of the balcony doors and stuff unlocked and I had no idea how to lock them because there was this complicated locking mechanism so that monkeys wouldn’t get in. They had like monkey warnings, but I thought yo it's got the like the chain on it so I should be fine. “So I was just watching TV when I hear this pounding on the glass. I turned around and there was a monkey half into the room unlocking the chain and I completely freaked out. I just started throwing stuff at the monkey until the monkey ran away. “Then I heard the knocking of

some glasses and stuff in the next room because my room and my parents room were connected. I opened the divider to find around 20 monkeys in my parents’ room going through the stuff, eating our pastries, and just completely making a mess. “I lost it. I closed up the divider, I was panicking, I tried locking the doors, I couldn’t figure it out, and then the monkeys tried coming in again from my balcony door and it was just horrible.I didn't have my phone on me at the time so when my parents came back they just found me in complete shock. But luckily some of the hotel management was able to go and get the monkeys completely out of the room. But it was completely terrifying and I don't like monkeys now.”

It was a normal afternoon during her sophomore year until something went wrong. Junior Lucy Ryall tells the tale of her near-death experience.


was driving home from school and I had a really old car. It was a Volvo 240 and I started kind of smelling something, and it smelled like something was burning, but I always just kind of thought, ‘Oh must be someone smoking in the car next to me.’ “And so I got all the way home and when I got out of the car I noticed that the trunk was smoking and so I popped it open and all these flames started coming out and it was on fire, so I ran inside. I didn’t grab my backpack out of the car ’cause I was scared it was gonna blow up. “So I ran inside and I got my mom and she came outside and put out the


fire with the hose, but after that my parents decided to buy a new car because the fire was right next to the gas tank, so basically I almost died. And I don’t know why no one else driving on the road like honked at me to tell me that my car was on fire, ’cause you could definitely see it. But, I’m lucky to be alive.”




OCT 2017


UN MASK ED At the Scream Zone, most visitors only see the masked performers and go running. Many hear their screams, but few hear their stories. Story by Taylor Rudman Photos by Jaden Hauptman

A FELLOW WICKED nun helping Alicia Carrol, a ghoul in need, with her costume. Although the performers love the scares, many consider the relationships they form there as far more valuable.



ven creatures, lurking in the shadows, have to clock-in to the nightmare. The maskless monsters, conventionally dressed, form a line to start their evening. A raven haired girl gives the guy in front of her a sharp shove. He turns around, startled, but is quick to playfully embrace her with one arm. Once scanned in, they make their way along a dusty path, twisting by a ratty green fence to get backstage. The Carpenters’ soft folksy song, “Top of the World” begins to play through a tinny speaker near the box office. A slight grin inching on his face, resident Scream Zone actor Mike Andersen makes an offhanded comment on how “oldies music” can be so creepy in the right setting. Of all the things to be afraid of. Before the real screams begin, shrieks of laughter can be heard from behind the fences and trailers, the performers’ makeshift home. Inside, an evil clown does his best nasally impression: “Bueller? Bueller?” while a girl with the anticross on her forehead sips a Red Bull. “Lady Loops” shows off her hula-hooping skills for her coworkers, and some other performers discuss going to The 17th Door Haunted House together the following night. A colorfully dressed clown screams to her friend inside the trailer, “You honestly don’t know who Little Bo Peep is? Like, Toy Story! He doesn’t know Little Bo Peep!” Turns out, haunting hour and social hour are one in the same. The Del Mar Fairground transforms into the Scream Zone every October, and many performers transform along with it. Some have worked there for over ten years, some are fresh meat. They all have one thing in common: a passion for fright. Before the curtains are drawn, the actors discussed getting ready for the show, their relationships with other cast members, and their favorite scares. Why They Do It “It just feels so good. It’s like an indescribable feeling,” Andersen said. “If you are having a bad day, or something happened and you have to get it out, it’s like a therapy session with yourself.” For him, scaring someone provides a rush of adrenaline like nothing else. “It’s like my cup of coffee when I scare someone,” Ricardo Aguilera said. Melissa Smith has worked at Scream Zone for six years and plays “Lady Loops.” She said, “You can thrive on that energy. The loud scream, the chainsaw noise, it all just drives you. You just get so pumped up. It’s like a runner’s high.” Inessa Padloff, has come back to work as an actor there for the last ten years, since she was 18. She said, “We’re tired, and we come from work, a lot of us, and we are beaten up and broken, but the second you get a group that’s scared it just bumps you right back up to where you want to be.” It doesn’t feel like a job for many of the actors. “I do it because I just have a passion for it,” Andersen said. “It is just a bonus that I get paid for it.” Granted, Scream Zone is seasonal. So when they leave the fairgrounds, they face something even scarier than the haunts they perform- their real jobs. The makeup comes off, and a new kind of uniform goes on. Day Jobs Andersen starts his shift at Costco at 5 a.m. Padloff works as a logistics coordinator for a chemical company. Smith is a loan underwriter, and with an eye roll, she said, “It’s very boring and adult, but I get health insurance and stuff like that, which is something

that I need.” Ary Hernandez, who works in insurance by day and as “The Doll Maker” by night, sees working at the Scream Zone as the more entertaining of his two professions. “You get to have fun and do things you don’t get to do at an insurance company, like running around with a chainsaw,” Hernandez said. “That’d probably get you fired.” Building Relationships The readily available chainsaws are not the only upside to working at the Scream Zone. Strong relationships are quickly formed during their month or so together. At a towering 6’6”, Skylar Wang typically plays the “Krooked Man.” “I love it here,” he said. “It’s like a family. We are together for almost 30 days straight so you start to develop a bond.” After working at Scream Zone for eight years, Aguilera doesn’t just return for the scares. “It’s kind of like when you go back to school, you aren’t really going for the school sometimes, you are going to see your friends, and it is the same thing here,” Aguilera said. “I get to see my friends, and I get to work with them.” “It’s just a wonderful job and I love it and the community is wonderful, I’ve never had a more open and welcoming group of friends,” Smith said. “We are all kind of the weird kids.” Best Reactions All of the actors have a relatively easy time bonding, no ice breakers needed. Their common love for haunts makes for an easy conversation starter. Over the years, they have seen so many different reactions that many of the performers have favorites. “We all hang out at Denny’s afterwards, most of us, if we don’t have other things to do early in the morning. Definitely bragging rights at Denny’s,” Andersen said, as he himself had hit the trifecta of scare reactions: on separate occasions he has made patrons urinate, soil themselves, and vomit. Naturally, that would be something to boast about. Although excretion of bodily fluids is certainly impressive, the most favored reactions often to involve falling to the ground in fear. “I had a girl who fell on the floor, and she was crying. She was holding her necklace that was a cross. She was crying on the floor,” Padloff said. “That was my favorite, it was just too funny.” Smith’s patrons have actually proved a liability, as one of them broke a hole in the wall with his elbow after falling backwards in fear. “I think that’s my proudest moment. I scared somebody so bad that they damaged the wall.” Emasculating moments also tend to win a lot of points. Aguilera, a frightening clown in the CarnEvil maze, could hardly contain himself when reflecting back on his favorite scare, staring into the distance with his stark white contact lenses: “There was a couple, a guy and a girl, and the guy came in all hard like, ‘I’m not gonna get scared.’ I jump out and he pushes her in front of me. She falls down to the ground and he books it to the nearest exit. I don’t like saying this, but I broke character and I laughed. I laughed so hard.” Breaking character is fairly rare at the Scream Zone, but happens occasionally. If it isn’t because they are busted up with laughter, it is for a small child that needs them. They aren’t monsters at heart. Padloff, who plays “Karnage,” a “demented clown” in the front, said, “Last night, these little girls lost their parents and they grabbed my arms and I led them out,” she said. “Usually I’ll go all after kids, but I have a soft spot too.”



UN MASK ED A night backstage at Scream Zone does not reveal much about the masks or the scares, but more about the people behind them. Story by Taylor Rudman Photos by Jaden Hauptman

TOP, THE PERFORMERS gather together minutes before Scream Zone opens and their night begins. Before dispersing, the performers exchange smiles and put their hands in to proudly scream their cheer: “Scream Zone on three, Scream Zone on three, one, two, three, Scream Zone!” BOTTOM, AS THE night progressed, the costumes on the rack began to dwindle. Many of the costumes look as if they were purchased at the local Halloween store, but that doesn’t matter in the end. Skylar Wang said, “Most people can snap themselves out of it at any point, but they get lost in the environment and everything, because they want to be scared.”

SKYLAR WANG, IN full makeup and costume for his character “the Krooked Man,” explains what it is like to work at the Scream Zone. Note the Red Bull in his right hand- some of the actors work past 2 a.m. on the weekends. LEFT, KENNY SHELTON making sure even his teeth are appropriately terrifying. Even though they may only be glimpsed for a frightened moment, the performers still make sure to care for the details. MIDDLE, RICARDO AGUILERA applies his clown makeup and cracks a smile as he recounts his favorite memories from working at the Scream Zone. For him, scaring someone is like watching a Youtube prank video in person. “I see someone get scared out of their mind, and I can’t get enough,” he said. RIGHT, MARCUS BAUTIXIA the final touches on Michael Whitaker’s makeup.




FEATURES Find The Pair(ents)


Write a letter in the corresponding box to match these teachers’ babies to their parents. The answers are placed upside-down on the bottom of the page. By Nohemia Rosales




Leona Mullen

Jaime Duck

Oly Norris


Kerry Koda

Stephanie Sears

Answers left to right: A is Oly Norris’s children Emilio and Lucia, B is Stephanie Sears’s daughter Scarlett, C is Keryy Koda’s daughter, Mari King, D is Leona Mullen’s Daughter, Winter, and E is Jamie Duck’s son, Logan James.


OCT 2017


WHAT TO EXPECT WHEN YOUR TEACHER’S EXPECTING Excited, exhausted, and nervous. These are just a few of the emotions that teachers Kerri Leonard and Kelly Hawkins felt as they left for maternity leave and prepared for motherhood. Both teachers delivered baby boys last week. Before they left, Leonard and Hawkins talked about getting ready for the babies and turning their classrooms over to a long term substitute. By Yarisette Sequeira and Sylvia Young.





am so excited, its baby number one, I don't know what it erri Leonard was set to begin her maternity leave on Oct. is, and I am just so curious about what’s growing inside 6, but went into labor and had to start her leave early. On my body,” said Hawkins who left for maternity leave on Oct. 3, her son was born. September 21st to give birth to her very first baby. After Leonard begins her maternity leave, she will be temOn Oct. 1, Hawkins became the mother a baby boy, a surporarily replaced by long term substitute teacher Jared Nicol. prise to both her and her husband who left the baby’s gender She describes Nicol as “excited, very energetic...organized, and unknown leading up to the due date. thoughtful.” To help with the transition between teachers, Nicol “I have a few nieces and a nephew,” said Hawkins. “I was will sub for three days of class before Leonard leaves so students in the waiting room when they were born and it was so excitcan get familiar with him and his style before he starts working ing for me waiting to find out if it was a boy or a girl that I was full time. Nicol also came to back to school night, so parents like gosh, it’s got to be even more exciting in the delivery room. could meet and talk to both him and Leonard. Leonard explains That's why I decided not to know.” Nicol will be“working with my outlines and a lot of the things As a mother, Hawkins exthat I do, but he’ll get to put pects that the new lifestyle and the Mr. Nicol twist on them.” perspectives she experiences Leonard is sure that hav“I’m tired, I’m trying to lesson plan, will translate greatly into her ing a baby will influence her teaching career and relationteaching, but she’s not yet I’m trying to get ready for my long ship with her students. sure exactly how. “Just like “I feel like I will be a lot I’m sure being a teacher will term sub, I’ve got other obligations more invested and connected inform how I parent, I’m sure with you guys,” Hawkins said. that being a parent will probI’ve got to do...and then on top of “Whenever other teachers that ably inform like the way I that, baby’s trying to have dance are parents talk to be about think about things,” she said. how to handle the classroom Students and staff were parties all night long.” and deal with students, they enthusiastic when they found always mention that when out about Leonard’s pregyou have kids you’ll totally do nancy last spring. Since the things differently.” beginning of the school year, -Kerri Leonard Hawkins will be back to she’s also gotten support from work full time starting second teachers she didn’t often see. semester, with long term sub “I came back...and a lot of Brian Thomas teaching her class in the meantime. The semespeople went ‘Oh! Didn’t know you were pregnant!’” ter will be continued by Thomas with the same materials and Leonard is looking forward to having a boy, but was surformat used by Hawkins, however he will bring his own unique prised because “I have so many girls in my family I didn’t expect teaching style to the classroom. a boy.” She has a few top name choices, but hasn’t yet settled on a Hawkins feels that a long term sub will offer a unique exfinal decision. However, “the hardest part” of thinking of names perience for her students. However, she is a little nervous about was being reminded of past students. “Someone throws out a the change it causes partway through the semester. name and I think ‘Nope!’” Leonard said. “I definitely think it will be a cool opportunity for students Although most of Leonard’s pregnancy was during sumto get history from two different teachers...I am just a little conmer vacation, she is still busy trying to manage teaching and cerned about the consistency of how I started things off versus pregnancy simultaneously. More than anything, she’s overhow he is going to end them,” Hawkins said. “But I have comwhelmed and tired by juggling her many responsibilities. “I’m plete confidence in him that he’ll be great.” tired, I’m trying to lesson plan, I’m trying to get ready for my Since the news of her pregnancy came out, Hawkins was long term sub, I’ve got other obligations I’ve got to do...and then touched to see all the support she was given by both her stuon top of that, baby’s trying to have dance parties all night long,” dents and co-workers as she prepared for this exciting new says Leonard. chapter in her life. As her due date approaches, Leonard shares that “on one “I was really surprised when I told my students last spring hand it feels really exciting that it’s so soon and on the other that they were as excited as they were,” said Hawkins. “I have hand it feels terrifying that it’s so soon...I’m worried. I just want felt so supported and loved and it's just been so nice to feel that to make sure I do it right, but I know that doing it right is everyway during this important part of my life....I guess it feels good body’s own thing”. But, she jokes, “I’ve watched both my sisters to feel like I’m going to be missed.” do it so I figure if they can do it, I can do it, right?” When asked about her expectations of motherhood, Leonard said, “I imagine probably overwhelming emotion and happiness...followed with sleepless nights and vomit and dirty TOP: TEACHER KELLY Hawkins and her husdiapers, but being okay with that.” band are now parents of a baby boy. Photo

courtesy of Kelly Hawkins BOTTOM: TEACHER KERRI Leonard also welcomes a baby boy to her family. Photo courtesy of Kerri Leonard




Sometimes the easy way out leads you to failure. In Hack or Wack, we fail for you by testing out different hacks. Is it Hack? Or is it Wack? Find out in this special fall edition!` By Amelia Kaiser and illustrations by Drew Atkins Glowing Eyes The Hack: use an empty toilet paper/ paper towel roll with a glowstick inside and hide it in a bush for a creepy pair of glowing eyes. Result: Hack! It has to be pretty dark to not see the cardboard roll, but it’s definitely a good idea and looks really good if you add some tape on the open ends so light doesn’t escape through the sides. Rating: 10/10 Cookie Cutter Carving The Hack: First, carve your pumpkin out entirely and cut off the top. Then use a cookie cutter and hammer it into into the side of your pumpkin for easy carving. Result: Hack (mostly)! The problem I ran into while doing this hack was the rind of the pumpkin was pretty thicc which caused the cookie cutter to just kind of sit in the rind. But if you just kind of hammer the center, it falls into the pumpkin. Rating: 8/10

Glue Spider Webs The Hack: Lay out some waxed paper and use a hot glue gun to make a design in a spider web shape. If you’re extra you can even glue in a little plastic spider. Result: More wack than hack. It looks kind of jank. The glue has kind of an ugly murky tint and you have to be creative with the way you hang it, but it works. Not as well as window gel clings, however. Rating: 6/10 Lazy Pumpkin Decorating The Hack: Stick Mr. (and Mrs.) Potato Head features into a pumpkin. Result: Hack! I used to do this when I was little, but now I’m pretty sure they make special kits for pumpkins. I think if you used a metal skewer or something to puncture the pumpkin before sticking in the features, it would be really easy to do. Rating: 10/10

Some fun DIYs to try: Crawling Spiders: Buy some spider rings from the Dollar Tree or 99 Cent Store (or anywhere you can find them) and cut off the ring part so you are left with little spiders. Glue small magnets to the back and attach it to a magnetic surface of your choice! Glitter-dipped pumpkins: Collect materials: ModPogde, bowl of glitter, sponge brush, and newspaper (not this one, though, this is some good stuff). Brush ModPodge onto the bottom of your pumpkin and dip it in the glitter, and place the final product on the newspaper to dry. Halloween candy bracelets: Gather elastic thread, a needle with a large eye, and candy corn. Thread the needle with the elastic and string it through the candy into a chain. When the elastic is almost the size of the circumference of your wrist, tie it off!



OCT 2017


CONCEPT ART BY Senior Ness Machin for an upcoming mural by the lunch storm drain.



ll of SDA’s drains lead directly into the San Elijo Lagoon without any filter. Everyone directly affects local wildlife by letting trash run down the drains and pollute the environment. Also, dirt particles get carried to the water through runoff, which increases the turbidity, or murkiness of the water. The problem could be prevented by creating filters to catch the trash and dirt before it goes running off to the lagoon. Students have taken action to confront this issue by participating in the Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plan (SWPPP) internship. The internship gives students the materials and education to mitigate pollution. They meet during hour lunches and late starts. Many interns discovered the program because SWPPP representative, Patti Diaz, came into a few science classes to give a presentation on the program and how to get involved. However, many students joined the internship for an array of different reasons.


For example, senior Taylor Lessley said, “People don’t realize that all our trash is going directly into the ocean. Animals eat the trash and it’s not okay. Like little sea turtles eat bags and choke on them. So, I do it for the animals.” “I really like how it gives you the opportunity to change something at this school, rather than just exist here for four years,” junior Taylor Cannon said. “I definitely feel like I am making a positive difference in my community and it is honestly such a good feeling to have. SWPPP really gives me a sense that I am a part of something much bigger than myself. Through my involvement I am educating others on the impacts of our actions, and I am doing handson work to mitigate pollution issues not only on campus, but in our local wildlife,” said senior Ness Machin. Interns first learn about environmental science topics that correlate with water issues. They work on monitoring the campus’s drains by identifying pollutants, and at the end

they present their research to the San Dieguito Union High School District School Board. They also conduct rain event storm water testing. Interns are notified to leave their classrooms during a rain event for sampling, and are trained to collect stormwater. Afterwards, they compare the results to the EPA benchmark for each pollutant. Most of the work goes into BMPs (Best Management Practices). Interns are assigned different drains and come up with the best strategies to prevent pollutants from entering the drains. The most common occurrences are total suspended solids (TSS) a fancier term for dirt particles. Last Years BMPs The softball field drain group found it was the most polluted drain on campus. “There was a huge excess of [dirt particles]… This is bad because this sediment inhibits light from reaching the lower levels of the lagoon’s ecosystem which in turn stifles life which requires this light to live. … My team built a temporary

Students prevent water pollution on campus. By Taylor Gates small scale bioswale out of nearby rocks. A bioswale is a landscape element designed to root down soil in order to prevent erosion and naturally remove erosion from runoff,” Machin said. Independently she made a plan for a larger bioswale using plants and soils to purify the water. The lunch drain group made a non-structural BMP since it fit best for that particular area.“We proposed a screen to catch excess dirt particles and food trash… it would be like a window screen, but it would be just below the grate to catch large particles. We also suggested lids for the trash cans, so trash won’t blow into the drains,” Lessley said. Cannon, as business supervisor, keeps everyone’s job in check to make sure they compose their research into an organized document, and put together the presentation. Cannon said, last year they made an “108 page-document detailing what the problems were, and how we could solve them. We took this to the staff at SDA and did a 30-minute presentation.”

This year Cannon wants to put this research to use. “I hope we can take it further this year by getting approval for our bigger ideas now that this internship has established itself on campus,” Cannon said. Upcoming Mural This year the internship is doing a mural on the ground by the lunch drain to raise awareness. The project will be started near the end of October. Machin wanted to portray the San Elijo Lagoon as an animal from the ecosystem. Out of her drafts the interns voted on the egret to best represent the Lagoon. “They almost have a kind of regality to them the way they move and the sleekness of their form and the majesty of their wingspan… I am also excited to welcome a new batch of interns and watch the mural design I created come to fruition. I am very excited to use my artistic abilities to draw attention to a real issue. Quite honestly it feels good to do good. I am very lucky to have the opportunities that have come my way,” Machin said.



“WHEN I FIRST met the older lady I was staying with, Eladia, she invited me to come to her house so I could kill a chicken and cook with her,” said senior Natalie Paxton. Photo courtesy of Natalie Paxton


SÉ UN AMIGO Last summer, some got jobs or went to the beach. Others traveled to a foreign country to make a difference and improve their Spanish. By Taylor Rudman


ere one day, gone the next. SDA students freshly released for summer break pack their bags. They travel to an unknown country and live with people they’ve never met before, staying for four, six, seven, or eight weeks. Junior Julian Isacescu-Bernard will fly for six hours but will land worlds away. He will live in an impoverished Costa Rican village. He will only speak Spanish. Over a span of six weeks, he will complete renovations for his host family’s community church. Hesitantly boarding his plane, he thinks to himself, “What am I getting into?” He does not regret his trip for a moment. Last summer, over a dozen SDA students joined with the Amigos de las Américas program and traveled to Paraguay, Nicaragua, the Dominican Republic, or Costa Rica for one to two months to improve their Spanish language skills and complete community service. Some of the projects included community refurbishment, youth involvement, and civic participation. Although improvement in Spanish was the main goal for many, they

came back from the experience with new bonds and an altered world view. Expectations Prior to leaving for Nicaragua for six weeks, junior Julia Herold was told what to expect and how to assimilate comfortably, but did not fully understand until she spent time in the foreign county. “I feel like as much as they prepared us for it in training I didn’t have any idea what I would be doing,” Herold said. Most Amigos concluded that it is best to go in without any expectations, as it is rather unlikely that they’ll be accurate (good or bad). Senior Trent Moothart, who spent eight weeks in the Dominican Republic, said, “I was expecting to be more of an outsider, more of a tourist kind of gringo. But it was cool; once you get there people accept you and take you in.” Senior Natalie Paxton, on the other hand was left disappointed. “My high expectations were kind of the death of me,” Paxton said. “I had a much harder time than I thought I would.” Culture Shock Once they arrived in the foreign countries, a bit of culture shock was

inevitable. Isacescu-Bernard said, “I wanted to experience what it would be like to live outside of the San Diego bubble and live in a community that’s less fortunate than mine.” Paxton had the biggest shock of all, as the country she visited for Spanish immersion primarily did not speak Spanish. Instead, they typically spoke their indigenous language, Guaraní. “I feel like I just didn’t get the Amigos experience and I want to go somewhere where there isn’t Guaraní.” Some of the surprises were more pleasant. “No one is afraid of anything. Everyone just goes for it,” Moothart said. “Nobody is shy or afraid of going up and saying, ‘What are you doing here?’ Or dancing with you, it is just so cool.” Relationships The social change of pace allowed for some serious connections to form. “The amount of relationships I’ve forged through this experience is insane even to think about now. Just the six weeks I feel like I have a whole new set of friends and family,” Herold said. “The people there were pretty great and everyone got close with all

OCT 2017


ALTHOUGH AMIGOS PARTICIPANTS were intent to complete their projects, they still had time to play with the community members. Photo courtesy of Julia Herold the other Amigos kids in Paraguay,” Paxton said. “We all bonded and it was so sad to leave them.” The Projects Not only did they become close with their community members, but were able to complete projects that positively impacted them. Herold provided resources to a youth led traditional dance group as part of her project, and Paxton built a small community center on the side of a soccer field. Isacescu-Bernard repainted the community church and built two walkways. “We made it look really nice and people were able to walk on rainy days where they can’t walk on the grass,” he said. “It’s just nice to help out.” As one of his projects, Moothart helped get kids more active. He said, “We got some of the local youth, some of the kids, to come hang out at the school and play basketball and volleyball, which is a pretty big deal because the kids there didn’t really have much to do during summer.” Moothart also refurbished a playground. Change of View After living in a foreign country, students saw the world a little bit dif-


ferently. “I feel like sometimes people take things for granted. And we shouldn’t – we should be really grateful for what we have,” Isacescu-Bernard said. “That’s what I’ve noticed doing Amigos.” Moothart observed the way that social relations can be stunted with Americans’ fast-paced lifestyles. He said, “In the US nobody is hanging out in the street just to hang out. They are going somewhere. They are walking somewhere because they need to get somewhere. [In the Dominican Republic] they are just cruising the neighborhood, because hey, why not?” Going Back Home Returning home, things just did not quite feel the same. “It was actually harder coming home than it was leaving, in terms of culture shock and differences,” Herold said. Isacescu-Bernard said, “Everything was so simple in Costa Rica, where I was; it was a very secluded community, the jungle basically. Away from the city. When I got back to the airport, everything was really overwhelming. There were so many cars.” Herold recalled her mom want-

ing to cook her a meal and apologizing for “bare cupboards.” Herold said, “I got home and I kind of forgotten that we have so much food all the time and it was just kind of, I didn’t understand. I just imagined literal bare cupboards.” After spending so much time away from friends and family, the social repercussions were not quite as grand as many expected. “You’d think you’d miss a lot, but you really don’t. I got back, and I was like, ‘Hey, friends, what did I miss?’ And they were just like, ‘One new song came out. You missed this meme,’” Moothart said. “In the grand scale of things, I literally missed nothing.” “I had FOMO, like I had fear of missing out,” said Isacescu-Bernard. “The things my friends were doing, but I wasn’t going to not go to Amigos just because I was going to miss a hang out or something.” “It’s not a super easy way to spend your summer; you could just be laying at the beach or at home, but it is way more rewarding,” Moothart said. “I don’t regret it at all, so go for it.”

TOP, SOME OF the local children drawing together in a playroom. “There isn’t much technology, so you kind of build a strong relationship in quicker time over there than you do here, because everyone is focused on their phones here,” Isacescu-Bernard said. Photo courtesy of Julian Isacescu-Bernard.

MIDDLE, AN AMIGOS volunteer is having a laugh while playing a new game with some of the kids in his community. Photo courtesy of Julian Isacescu-Bernard. BOTTOM, NATALIE PAXTON takes a walk with her host mom. Photo courtesy of Natalie Paxton



Logan said, “I originally thought jean on jean was weird, but then I started doing it.”

“The bottom half of my outfit is kinda ‘70s,” Dervetski said. “My shirt is more of a ‘90s cut.”

Cook said in regards to the styles coming back, “I love it. I love all of it.”


The top fashion statements from the past are coming back in full force. Story and photos by Ava Jakubowski


any pieces from the past are coming back into style. Students trying to express their individuality are reviving a mutlitude of fashion statements from decades ago. Owner of Encinitas resale store Thrifty Threads, said, “I have never seen quite so many decades as of 2017.” Thrifty Threads has been up since 1978 and has seen many articles of clothing come and go throughout the store ranging from many decades. The year of 2017 has been one of revival and the converging of many decades’ best pieces. Thrift shops aren’t the only place to get vintage clothes, as many find that their older family’s closets are just as adequate. Holly Cook, junior, said, “I have a lot of stuff from my mom when she was growing up.” Cook likes to wear bright colors and funky outfits that reflect the disco times, which she can find lots of right in her own home. “My mom has a couple of older pieces that she gave me, and I go to


thrift shops,” Taya Dervetski, junior, said in regards to where she gets her vintage pieces. Taya likes the colors of the different era clothes and the fact that when she mashes everything together into an outfit, it looks good. “I don’t try to follow what other people are wearing,” said junior Madi Logan. “If I like it, I’m going to wear it.” Logan’s favorite place to get her spunky clothes is in her grandma’s and aunt’s closets. Although many of the pieces are from older family members, Dervetski derives inspiration for her outfits from ‘90s girl bands, especially TLC. “I love a mixture of the ‘70s and ‘90s because of how colorful and fun everything was,” Dervetski said. “Everything was a little different and there was diversity in what people wore.” Cook draws her inspiration from the ‘90s show Friends and ‘60s model Twiggy. “The style suits my personality,” Cook said. “it makes me feel individual to myself.” Some of

her favorite pieces include neckties, overalls and creepers which were initially popular in the ‘80s and ‘90s. Dervetski said, “I try to go more individual and pick out things that catch my eye rather than trying to pick out things that go with what everyone is wearing. I try to make my own little path.” One of Taya’s favorite “eye catchers” are the decorative jackets that she keeps in high stock. Thrifty Threads owner said, “There has been a large interest in the ‘90s lately, and it crosses all ages, but I have noticed that it’s mostly millennials.” The people that come in have asked for all sorts of things varying amongst all the eras of fashion. If you are looking to try out some new vintage looks, high school is the right place to be. Logan wasn’t at first sure of what her thoughts were on the old styles coming back. “It’s put together but at the same time, I wouldn’t think of putting those things together,” she said, “and it actually works.”

OCT 2017


old music for the soul

This is a column for “lost” songs and bands that have been forgotten by the youth of today. Each song is from my personal record collection, mostly random finds in 99 cent bins. Story and Illustrations by Emma Toscani


ld music is something that many only listen to in passing. Not everyone can be a music buff with a shelf of records stretching a thousand miles long. It is easy to listen to whatever is on the radio, which is for the most part mass produced pop songs by the next hot girl that’ll quickly be replaced next month. But some genuinely good music from before 1995 that is not traditionally played in mainstream settings is available online (obviously), though you might need to go past the Top 40 songs, and there is something to be said for jamming out to a tune that your parents danced to

when they were in high school. Listening to music from an older time is something that can be a great discussion piece or a way to find out what you truly like in music, due to the wide range of music from before the last two decades. There was a lot more variety in music from jazzy tunes to fast paced punk to a different recording sound altogether. Below, SDA students with different tastes in music share their thoughts on randomly selected records.

Annika Maxwell Freshman Usual Music Style: “[I listen to] like indie/folk music, like Fleet Foxes, The Head and The Heart.” Maxwell is also familiar with older music like Donovan and similar artists from that time.

Keely Fuller Senior Usual Music Style: “Pop/rock-type music? Emo crap… [Bands] like Panic! At the Disco, All Time Low and those guys and that genre.”

Jimmy Adame Junior Usual Music Style: “[I usually listen to] Hip hop… R&B… I especially like when artists sample like jazz.”

Eduardo Hernandez Senior Usual Music Style: “Probably pop… I like Fleetwood Mac, but that’s probably the oldest… And like ‘90s music, but not that old.”

Lauren McCormick Junior Usual Music Style: “[My music style] is kinda eclectic. I generally listen to alternative music, but I like old music too, so it’s kinda confusing.”

Donovan: The folk artist--and OG single-name singer--from the 196070s who sang the hit “Mellow Yellow,” a foot-tapping acoustic rock song from 1967. Annika Maxwell, freshman, said that although she didn’t really like this song, she does like Donovan. In fact, she was the only interviewee that knew Donovan. She did cite other songs like “Lover o Lover” and “The Actor” as more “her style” and called them “very relaxing.” Most of his songs work perfectly as background music for getting ready on a day like Saturday or a late start – not a normal school day – when a student could be rocking out to Donovan at home instead of going to class.

The Kinks: “Oh I love it, I love it,” said senior Keely Fuller after listening to the song “Permanent Waves.” The Kinks are a ‘70s-era rock band with some well-known songs, but their older, lesser known albums like “Misfits” are still worth a listen. Fuller continues on to say that the Kinks are “cool” and that she especially enjoyed the guitar component. This particular song has a rich beat made from an electric guitar, a synthesizer, and a snare drum/high hat duo. This combination creates a great vibe for driving down the 101 on a sunny day.

The English Beat: A funky ska band from the 1980s, their song “Mirror in the Bathroom” features a fast-stepped, jazz-style beat. As junior Jimmy Adame said, “[the bass guitar] was like quick, snappy, and the saxophone was like really crisp.” The voices are like instruments themselves, repeating the lyrics over and over. The genre of ska is described as being as mix of Caribbean mento and calypso with American jazz, rhythm, and blues. It would be awesome to listen to this in a setting like a dance party or a hangout with friends.

Phoebe Snow: Phoebe Snow is a bluesy artist from the late 1960s to 1980s, known for her large vocal range. “It Must Be Sunday” is a slow, hypnotic song from 1974 with a twanging guitar melody reminiscent of old love. “It’s interesting… I think it’s weird that there is like the acoustic and she incorporates the [saxophone],” said senior Eduardo Hernandez. The arrangement of a guitar playing quietly in the background with a dominant saxophone is uncommon in music today. Snow’s voice is rich and has a lounge quality to it, like something out of an old movie set in a small nightclub filled with smoke. Hernandez said that he did like this song on vinyl better. Snow’s voice mixes with the saxophone and the acoustic guitar, creating an atmosphere perfect for reading a book or relaxing after a long school day.

Oingo Boingo: This band is a nontraditional New Wave band from the 1980s. The song “Controller” from the album “Only A Lad” is very funky. With a laugh, junior Lauren McCormick said, “I actually really like it. It reminds me of some South African music that I‘ve listened to.” The band is from Los Angeles but has an eclectic and vibrant style that is hard to find in most music. The song has loud electric guitar riffs mixed with a “bouncy voice,” as McCormick described it. The rhythm of the beats is good for walking around in downtown Encinitas.






ASK A SENIOR! Senior Emma Toscani imparts her wisdom How do you ask a girl to homecoming? You don’t. Asking a girl to homecoming is an antiquated practice harkening back to the middle ages, and something that should have stayed there. It is a celebrated practice at those basic high schools, but in the non-conforming environment of our beautiful San Dieguito Academy, it is a social don’t. Do not be the person that shows up at the club with a corsage and a tuxedo. It will promptly get torn from your person and set on fire. Where are the lockers? Where do you put your schoolwork?

Lockers are drug cubbyholes. They are also ugly as hell. I really don’t know where people put their schoolwork if they carry a tiny purse or a binder and nothing else. Magic? Mary Poppins’ bag? Who knows. Why is the bell schedule so weird? Because confusing bell schedules and weird room numbers are SDA’s middle name. Just go with it. How do you use the elevators? The elevators are portals to different dimensions and can only be accessed late at night. Use the specific pattern that is only given out by a senior on

the last day of school to utilize them. Where is the best water fountain? Technically “the best water fountain” is an oxymoron because all water fountains are bad, and SDA’s water fountains are hooked directly to the new building’s boys bathroom toilets so watch out. You may get poop in the face. Will I ever be happy? Happiness is a social construct. Deal with it.

HOROSCOPE Trust the stars to make decisions for you. By Nadia Ballard Aries One way to impress people is with a garden, but sadly you don’t have the time or patience to grow one. So instead buy vegetables at the store and hide them in the dirt like Easter eggs and say they grew there. Everyone in town will admire you. Taurus There is no such thing as fear, only your weak will to dance. Gemini The best medicine for a case of sadness is a strong dose of dissociation.Let your soul leave the astral plane and float away into the cosmos.

OCT 2017

Cancer Your future will go something like this: You are delicately sipping a hot beverage in a quaint, brightly lit cafe on the outskirts of a calm turquoise ocean. You’ve aced all your classes and the planet is safe. Leo Its 2038, the new iPhone has come out and among the revolutionary, state of the art features is the ability to stare into its new and quick processor dodecahedron shape and watch society collapse in real time.

Virgo Recently you’ve been struggling. Actually, you’ve always been struggling. Life for you is just one long constant struggle and not even the stars can help you with that. You’ll have to enlist the help of something better than a star. Maybe try finding the answers in yourself, because you’re the biggest star of them all. Libra You probably feel like the entire weight of the world and the crushing pressure of existence is weighing down. You don’t need a therapist though, instead invest in a mood ring and solve your problems that way.

Scorpio Start this school year off right by dropping out immediately. Doing so will build character and prepare you for the school of life. Sagittarius This month your horoscope is to be safe and kind. Capricorn It’s time to get ready for Halloween. If you wait too long to prepare for it, then when the skies turn orange and the pumpkin overlords come to reap the harvest you’ll be caught off guard. That’s a dangerous position you don’t want to be in.

Aquarius Your life is like one big boiled hot dog. Just one long stick of processed meat swimming in a boiling hot vat of its own juices. But worry not, because there is nothing wrong with that. Pisces You are ready to spread your wings and fly. You are a dazzling pearl and the world is your oyster,a living oyster that has slowly but surely coated you in layers upon layers of protective coating until you became a fully encased gleaming young adult ready to explore your fleshy oyster world. You’ve been prepared for this life, everything else is up to you.





SDA COTILLION SCAVENGER HUNT! Grand prize! By Kamryn Romley and Lena Mau


he annual SDA cotillion scavenger hunt is officially underway! Cotillion is coming up and tickets can be expensive if you fail to get them in a timely manner. Journalism is putting together a photo/video scavenger hunt for those of you interested in winning two free tickets. One for you and that superhot date that you’re gonna get. All you need to do is find and take picture/video evidence of you doing all – most or some - of these simple 10 activities around school:

1. Find Chaker’s bike! Take a picture! Don’t steal it! 2. Go to your least favorite teacher and, without warning, act out the movie “Finding Nemo” in silence, by yourself. All the parts. Must be a video. 3. Take the scary new elevator for a spin. 4. “...wear pink on Wednesday” and snap a quick pic! October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, so show your support! 5. Reenact some scenes from the movie “It” in the new swamp (the new vegetation in the middle of campus). Must provide video evidence. 6. Barrel roll down the aspalt

hill by the Mosaic. 7. Steal the Starbucks cup that you know someone in your first period has. Pics or it didn’t happen. 8. Do a kickflip in front of Leslie. Bonus points if you walk away with your board. 9. Stock the bathrooms full of cheap air fresheners, or buy the boys bathroom a mirror and stock the ladies room with tampons/ pads. 10. Bring baked goodies to Mr. Teisher, Mr. Brice, or Mr. Roberts. After you prove that you have done these activities, share the evidence with @SDAmustang on Instagram.

Drew Atkins rolling down the hill. What a man. Photo by Lena Mau. The tickets are first come first serve! Free tickets are only available while supplies last So

do as many of these activities as you can, as fast as you can. Good luck!

SPOOKFEST IN THE NEW BUILDING Suspicions about the new building rises. By Sienna Riley


ith a new school year come new changes to SDA’s campus, the most recent installment being the highly anticipated new building at the heart of the school. After a full year of construction, the new building is finally ready for public use. However, there have already been reports of suspicious activity at this location of campus. Ever since the disappearance of one freshman, strange, almost paranormal activity has continued to develop in this area of the school. The first of the rumors begin with a bike that resides underneath the staircase leading to the second floor of the building. The bike is supposedly a “phantom” bike, and will only appear in certain times of the day, but


those who see the bike assume it belongs to known-cycler Martin Chaker. Investigation has suggested that the bike follows the route of its previous owner, said to be a freshman that did not follow the no-bike rule on campus. The freshman was reportedly biking around the school too fast, lost control, and collided with a crane during construction. The bike was the only thing that remained of the unfortunate underclassman. Second on the list of suspicious activity is the secret passageway to hub of one of the biggest cult followings of today’s society. It has been speculated that SDA had not been paying their construction workers enough during the construction of the new building, so they sought The Freemasons to enlighten

themselves. In return, they built them a secret tunnelway located underneath the staircase to reach the Library of Freemasonry. It is said that if one is to locate the spot at 3:00AM, knock three times on the brick wall, and do a jig, the passage will open to worthy students seeking masonic enlightenment. There have even been sightings of mysterious figures roaming the halls of the building, according to another late-night excursion to the new building. The visit confirmed that if one was to scream at a certain decibel, they will summon the ghost of a teacher to scream back at them and give them a referral for trespassing. It is not advised to try this alone. The final, and perhaps the most chilling instance of all, added a new dimension entirely

The eerie new building. Photo credit Sienna Riley. to the paranormal of the building (literally). According to a group of seniors, who wish to remain anonymous, there has been a parallel universe discovered and accessed through the elevator. By punching in a specific pattern in the elevator buttons, the portal to the alternate universe will open. One senior described the universe as looking similar to SDA, but the students were like LCC kids.

“It was horrific,” the senior said. “It was basically a nightmare. I don’t know how we got out of there, man, but I never want to go back. Please do not try the elevator game.” Though these events may be frightening and strange, these are merely rumors at the moment. We encourage all students to remain calm, as the administration is working to bring a team of paranormal experts to assess the situation.

OCT 2017


Meet the coaches

With fall sports coming into full swing, coaches talk about the training that leads to their teams success. By Sarah LaVake and Ashlyn Haines. Photos courtesy of the coaches.

Girls Tennis - Joe Tomasi How many years have you coached this sport for? This is my 21st year at SDA. Did you play any sports in high school or college? Played high school tennis. How do you train to prepare your team for a game? We talk about who we are playing and to play aggressively. What is your favorite part about coaching this sport/ what has been your proudest moment coaching? Watching the girls have success on and off the court. What training style was most effective in getting your team into CIF last year? I pick one or two things to work on. What will you keep doing and what will you change this coming year compared to past years? Not much change. Deb and I have been very consistent. Why did you start coaching? To try and make a difference. How do you think the program has changed since you started coaching? Seven league titles and one team championship, back to back singles champion. California coach of the year 2005 and 2017. Very successful six league titles the past eight years. What are you hoping to accomplish this year? Division 1 semifinals (team).


Girls Volleyball - David Savage How many years have you coached this sport for? I have coached volleyball for ten seasons. Did you play any sports in high school or college? I played high school and college basketball. How do you train to prepare your team for a game? I use a large whiteboard where I list the practice agenda, including the daily focus. We first do tutoring to focus on a specific skill, then a small group activity followed by a scrimmage type activity with lots of extra bonus ball reps and error correction. We normally end with serving and passing. What is your favorite part about coaching this sport/ what has been your proudest moment coaching? My favorite part is watching the girls interact in the court and off, seeing the connections that they have and how they enjoy each other’s company. The thing I am most proud of is that many of the my athletes keep playing after high school. Recreationally or in college it makes me very happy that they continue to play. What will you keep doing and what will you change this coming year compared to past years? One thing I want to keep the same this season is our unity among all levels of our program. The one thing I am working to change is posting daily on Instagram at sda_vb to highlight the athletes and program and to get more fan support at matches. Why did you start coaching? I started coaching because I love sports and wanted to positively affect athletes’ lives. How do you think the program has changed since you started coaching? I think the program has become more recognized as one of the top programs in the county. What are you hoping to accomplish this year? Make a good run at CIF and enjoying the journey. What team bonding do you do? Las Vegas Invitational Tournament.

JV Girls Tennis - Deb Abrahamson How many years have you coached this sport for? 20 years as SDA Girls JV tennis coach. Ten years as SDA Boys JV Tennis coach. Did you play any sports in high school or college? High school I played softball and swam on the girls swim team. In College at the University of Northern Colorado I was on the swim team freshman & sophomore year. How do you train to prepare your team for a game? We always do a dynamic warm up which includes cardio, tennis practice and finish with stretching. What is your favorite part about coaching this sport/ what has been your proudest moment coaching? The team aspect and creating a fun atmosphere where students get to experience being part of a team. Being a coach is a proud moment always. What will you keep doing and what will you change this coming year compared to past years? I really believe in only keeping committed students on the team. Student athletes that look forward to being with their teammates every day after school and representing their school through sports. Why did you start coaching? My love of the game and the students! How do you think the program has changed since you started coaching? Team is deep in tradition so I don’t feel it has changed. The uniforms have improved! What are you hoping to accomplish this year? A positive season with girls improving their game and friendships made. What team bonding do you do? We have a pool party and play our own version of “Davis Cup” tennis after school on a designated day. We also wear pink during the month of October and support the Susan B. Komen race in support of breast cancer and breast cancer awareness. And, we do a Halloween theme tennis tournament.

Field Hockey - Faith Dulany How many years have you coached this sport for? Since I was in high school - but at SDA, three years. Did you play any sports in high school or college? Yes, soccer/field hockey in high school, field hockey in college. How do you train to prepare your team for a game? We do drills dependent on what we need to work on as a team and what opponent we are up against. We focus on teamwork, set plays like corners and free hits, and of course do some running! What is your favorite part about coaching this sport/ what has been your proudest moment coaching? We’ve been in two back-to-back overtime games, winning both in a shootout. It’s been an exciting season. Favorite part of running a program is seeing athletes respond to coaching advice and as a result open their own eyes to their potential. What will you keep doing and what will you change this coming year compared to past years? We’re focusing on team bonding, having fun while working hard. Why did you start coaching? Love athletics I’ve been a part of teams since I was three and I can’t imagine life without sports. What are you hoping to accomplish this year? Compete in CIFs, beat league opponents, and have fun! What team bonding do you do? Everything! Beach days, team runs, fun drills, captains’ practices. We did a 9/11 commemoration practice this year, too. If the girls come up with ideas, we run with those and they do fun dinners as a team before games.

OCT 2017


Sports aren’t our forte A look into SDA’s recent atheltic struggles compared to our school district.

The last sports boy. Jack Hauser

E Boys water polo - Scott Kling How many years have you coached this sport for? I’ve coached for 12 years. Did you play any sports in high school or college? High school varsity water polo for three years and varsity swim team for four. How do you train to prepare your team for a game? We go over basic strategies, talk about targeting mismatches, and finding ways to emphasize our strengths. Usually we’ll make adjustments at halftime. If we’ve played a team before, we talk about things to watch for, players to be aware of, and set up specific matchups. What is your favorite part about coaching this sport/ what has been your proudest moment coaching? Watching players over a four year span, seeing who they are when they graduate, and being able to compare that to their first day as a freshman is really amazing. I also enjoy watching their skills grow year to year. What training style was most effective in getting into CIF last year? Strong fundamentals. Without them, you really have nothing to build a strong offense or defense on. Why did you start coaching? I love water polo and wanted to help it grow in San Diego. How do you think the program has changed since you started coaching? When I started five years ago we had 20 players and most played in the fall only. We didn’t have a consistent pool or a place to host home games. Today, we have over 40 players. We host multiple home games each year and fill the stands with family and fans. After our finals run last year we moved to Division II. What are you hoping to accomplish this year? Since we’ve moved up a division our goal is to make the playoffs and advance to semi-finals or better. In addition, we want to beat some league teams this year like LCC, Torrey Pines, and CCA. What team bonding do you do? Each summer we have a conditioning program for both new and experienced players. In July we sent 15 players to an open water tournament at Shaver Lake in Central California. Finally, the boys were able to participate in Navy Seal Training down in Coronado.


Girls Golf - Al Zamora How many years have you coached this sport for? I have been coaching the boys and girls varsity golf teams since fall 2011. How do you train to prepare your team for a game? Golf is such an individual game. As the coach, I prepare by reviewing our opponents record and player stats. Typically, a practice will consist of putting (team member must make 25 three foot putts, then practice lag putts) short game practice with working on the Wedges, and then Driving Range practice where each player will use most of their golf clubs. Additionally, the team will play team drill games on the practice green. What is your favorite part about coaching this sport/ what has been your proudest moment coaching? Meeting the new kids and watching them grow. There have been many proud moments, but it would [be] the moment when the light bulb of a team member turns on and they have grasped the concept to make them better. What will you keep doing and what will you change this coming year compared to past years? We will always be working on technique on the driving range, but I will be more focused on putting and the short game, because this is where strokes can be eliminated to lower scores and more wins. Additionally, I will want to [be] more aware of the mental aspect of golf… mental toughness and training to help the players stay in the moment and not think about what is going on outside of the shot they are about to hit. How do you think the program has changed since you started coaching? Throughout the years, the program has evolved from having more team leaders/captains involved by having them assist in running practices and responsible for team building and growth. What are you hoping to accomplish this year? We are hoping to finish in the top 25 possibly the top 20. Additionally, our goal is to shoot in the 230’s. What team bonding do you do? Team golf games, such as up and down, team dinner, and trips.

Cross Country - Gordy Haskett How many years have you coached this sport for? This is my sixteenth year coaching Cross Country. What is your favorite part about coaching this sport/what has been your proudest moment coaching? Favorite part - the kids on the team!/ Proudest Moment- at the end of a race when everyone has done the best they can do that day. What training style was most effective in getting your team into CIF last year? SDA is known for their hill training so I guess it was our hill training. What will you keep doing and what will you change this coming year compared to past years? Focus on more pack running and incorporate more speed training. Why did you start coaching? I was asked to :>)) I had coached adults for a few years and the opportunity to coach at my alma mater arose so I jumped at the chance. How do you think the program has changed since you started coaching? My first year there were twenty two runners on the team and I was the fourth coach for the seniors. We are a program of consistency and because of that this year we are a team of eighty runners. What are you hoping to accomplish this year? 4th is 1st for the Varsity boys ... there are four qualifying spots for the cross country state championships and if we get fourth that’s as good as a first... We go to State! Varsity Girls is to finish with their highest CIF finish in school history which will be fourth. For the rest of the team it’s to finish the season healthy and with a season of personal best times for each of the distances they run. What team bonding do you do? Camp Gordy, time trial/ BBQ, donut dash, game day, popsicles... etc Personally, I have no actual involvement in team bonding events such as Pasta Parties... everyone on the team gets too wiggy with me around and can’t seem to be themselves. I want the team to enjoy the party so it’s best if I stay home eating stale toast and watch reruns of “The Prince of Bell Air.”

very student that came to SDA had to choose our school over CCA, Torrey Pines, and LCC. This is an amazing contributor to our campus’s diversity, individuality, and culture that we have all come to know and love during our time here. However, it does not help our athletics. SDA has been regarded as the athletic embarrassment out of the high schools in our school district for the last few years. The reason for our recent athletic struggles lies in our league, which we share with Torrey Pines, La Costa Canyon, and Canyon Crest. Not only do athletes who pick SDA have to opt for the less traditional sports school, but they also have to play their friends and classmates that chose to go to the other schools. History shows that the outcome of these games is usually not good. In 2016 alone, the records of six of the biggest sports at SDA against those three schools were 2 wins, 30 losses, and one tie (with both wins coming from Girls Soccer). That brings SDA’s win percentage against our fellow local public schools to an astronomically low 6 percent. The social pressure of losing to friends creates a tough environment for a school that is trying to improve its athletics. It drains the pride and soul out of our Mustang sports when we have a record like that against the teams from around the communities closest to us. The familiarity of the opponent makes it even more humiliating to choose this school over the others if a prospective student wants to be taken seriously for athletics. If we were in a league that consisted of less local schools, say Mission Hills or Mt. Carmel, it would be easier for us to improve and grow as an adequate athletic school. Luckily for us, we will be switching league’s after this school year, but the damage of our “local” league will take a couple years to recover from. Our league next year is still up for debate among the schools, but it will not contain any of the other schools from our district, according to Athletic Director Scott Jordon. Hopefully this will help improve the reputation of SDA athletics and bring pride back to the Mustangs.



The Mustang

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