Batavia High School’s student newspaper
The week of March 14, 2016
Team Bulldog: Breaking social barriers Student ambassadors partnering with VTP program to form ‘lifelong friendships’ By McKenna Renier Staff Reporter
Have you ever noticed that the type of clubs around the school are very exclusive? Not exclusive to general education students, but exclusive to students with special needs. Be honest: rarely do you even see students with special needs besides in the morning when they hand out passes. They are tucked away in a back hallway and given little opportunity to socialize normally with students their age. One club aims to change that. Team Bulldog is a club where all students are welcome. The focus is inclusion of all students at Batavia High School. Team Bulldog was created by a handful of students and
teachers in hopes to offer socialization opportunities between students with disabilities and their non-disabled peers. Team Bulldog is different from any other club in the school. “It’s the only club at Batavia that includes everyone despite their ability,” said Julianne Robinson, a student that helped establish the club. “It’s just a group of teenagers coming together to have fun and improve social skills that some students lack.” The club is attempting to reach out to gen-ed students in order to educate them on people with disabilities. Club members say that they just want the VTP students to be treated as they are, like normal teenagers who like to talk about relationships, sports,
Bulldog Hour opinion, page 2 Off-campus lunch, page 3 Movie reviews, page 4-5 Chromebook website filter, page 8 Late start, page 9 Conover injury, page 10 Baseball, softball previews, page 11 Frazier profile, page 12
and hobbies. “My favorite part about Team Bulldog is hanging out with all of the kids,” said Jake Spencer, a student who participates in the VTP program. This club is a way for students like Jake to meet new people he typically wouldn’t meet. “Students who are part of Team Bulldog will benefit by developing lifelong friendships,” said Teresa Owen, the classroom teacher of the VTP program at Batavia High School and Team Bulldog Sponsor. For a journal article in Research and Practice for Persons with Severe Disabilities, Charles A. Peck interviewed students across the country and concluded that their benefits from inclusion
clubs like Team Bulldog include: “Improvements in self-concept, growth in social cognition, increased tolerance of other people, reduced fear of human differences, development of personal principles, and interpersonal acceptance and friendship.” At a typical Team Bulldog meeting students just do normal teenage things like attend sporting events, have movie nights, and “other fun things
you would do with your friends,” Robinson said. The club has tye-dyed shirts, gone to a basketball game, played bingo, and are planning to have events like a senior picnic and a baking day. “The best part of Team Bulldog is seeing students at different school events that they normally would not attend,” Owen said. This club allows opportunities for students with disabilities to go to
sporting events and activities knowing they will have people with them feeling included and a part of something. “It’s a beautiful thing what we’re doing by breaking so many barriers and stereotypes,” said Jessica Miller, a president of the club. “We are showing that just because someone has a disability doesn’t make them any less human than other people.”
Turf field installation approved Construction will cost an estimated $1.1 million, will be split with booster club By Ashley Cichon Staff Reporter
On May 15, construction on a synthetic turf field will begin at BHS to improve playing and practicing usage, save money and reduce injury, according to school administration. Since the addition of the BFAC and fieldhouse, the conditions of the deteriorating fields were visibly noticeable, according to football coach Dennis Piron. The add-on caused the high school to lose four substantial fields, leaving little space for sports teams, marching band, and physical education classes. Many games and practices were canceled because of circumstances due to weather, such as flooding. Teams also had to practice off-site, costing roughly
$7,000 for busing and rental fees. In addition to these inconveniences, the rough terrain made injury a likely possibility. “Having the turf means we will save money by not having to pay transportation, as well as reducing injuries because it’s a true surface,” said David Andrews, the athletic director at Batavia High School. “Also, a sense of pride because the students don’t like to feel like the poor neighbor. We deserve this like every other high school does.” Although there are a lot of reasons why the high school should get the turf field, there has been a great deal of controversy in regards to where the money is coming from. The estimated $1.1 million con-
struction cost is being split between the booster club and the district. The school board approved of the booster club donating $500,000 over a five-year span while the district will pay for the rest from funds that are accounted for. “I would like to thank our booster club for the extremely generous donations,” said Dennis Piron, a teacher and 26-year football coach at BHS. “It will benefit our current students and students decades to come.” Overlooking the money aspect, concerns about crumb rubber have also been an issue. There is speculation that crumb rubber (which is what makes up the infill for synthetic turf fields) can cause lymphoma, a type of cancer. Although this is not scientifically
proven, Batavia is taking every precaution to ensure that no students come into contact with the crumb rubber by using Coolplay. Coolplay is a top layer over-crumb rubber that not only prevents exposure to crumb rubber, but is also a good shock absorber and a cool surface. According to the BHS faculty and staff, there are many opportunities available to students. The school board predicts that with the coming-soon addition of an artificial turf field, the possibilities are endless. “This benefits all students, not just athletes. And it will even benefit our entire community because they will have access to it during the summer,” Andrews said. “The usage is endless for our community.”
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Point/Counterpoint: “What should be done with Bulldog Hour?”
Backround: Three semesters ago, Bulldog Hour was introduced after a group of teachers though it would be a good idea to have designated time for students to receive extra help from teachers. This was intended to be a useful time for students, but teachers and administration began looking at ways to fix problems that arose, including large amounts of unused time by students. At the beginning of this semester, the school announced that Bulldog Hour would be shortened to 40 minutes and moved to a different part of the school day to alleviate teacher concerns. The cafeteria was also off limits since Bulldog Hour was now not during lunchtime. At the time of the change, roughly 500-600 of the 2,000 students enrolled at BHS were checking in with a teacher according to weekly data collected through ScanQR codes. Even though there were changes made, the administration still sees value in giving students time during the week to seek out extra help. But the question remains whether the changes should have even been changed. “I think we should keep Bulldog Hour because it has the potential to help kids that need extra help without taking time after school,” Shields said. “It’s really good for AP kids to review and get caught up. It’s an easy way for students to make up tests.” - Staff reporters Colin Cadle and Emily Risner
Students are in need of a longer, not shorter, Bulldog Hour
Go back to the way it was: Don’t fix what was never broken
By Alyssa Dian
By Sammy Pinner
If you are a student, teacher, or administrator at Batavia High School, you might have heard about the new time change for Bulldog Hour. The teachers and administrators have recently been discussing this topic and are attempting to make a compromise. Bulldog hour will take place after block two and will act as a “study hall”. Although, instead the usual full hour, the administrators have shortened this time to 40 minutes. Along with that, students will have a five-minute passing period after block two and after the 40 minutes are up. Then A, B, and C lunch will remain the same, only with different times. Unfortunately, as much as the faculty may want to shorten or drop Bulldog Hour completely, the students beg to differ. Before the teachers and administrators make a final decision, they should take the students’ opinions into consideration. My middle ground would be to slightly shorten the length of Bulldog Hour but include this “hour” twice a week. Many of the students attending BHS use Bulldog Hour to their advantage. It would be a
mistake to cut or shorten this time out of the students’ week, especially since it has been a tradition for the past year and a half. “I like it a lot,” said freshman Lillian BatyBarr. “It gives kids a chance to relax the night before and not have to stress about getting homework done because you have an hour the next day to get it done. It lets you get extra sleep at night. Along with late start in the morning.” The administrators at BHS have severely jumped to the conclusion that the majority of the students at this high school are failing to use their time wisely, but according to Baty-Barr, the administrators are incorrect. Unfortunately, only 30 percent of the students at this high school check in during Bulldog Hour using the QR code. The other 70 percent of students that don’t check in, is what worries the administrators. Many students have trouble remembering to sign in and some of the evidence can be inaccurate. Also, a few QR scanners are faulty and do not let students sign in. On the other hand, no matter the problematic issues that are sometimes caused because of this “hour”, it is a very beneficial resource at BHS. “It’s great because it gives kids something to
look forward to; to get help with their classes and relax for awhile,” said sophomore Sam Branson. Again, this student voiced his opinion very similarly to Baty-Barr. Both students managed to explain how they use their time during Bulldog Hour and how this time affects their education. Agreeing with the two, another option that would be beneficial to us would be to have a use of this time more than once a week. A reasonable request would be two times a week. This would give us a great amount of time to be able to finish homework and visit certain teachers which could help relieve the stress levels of most teens. Although, each student who replied to the survey given stated Bulldog Hour should follow the same pattern as last semester and the year before, it does not mean that there should not be some sort of change. “It splits up the day and it gave me a chance to do homework or go to a teacher for help,” said senior Megan Mcgee. This simply shows how helpful this time is for some students like the ones mentioned above. It is a blessing for us students to be able to have a time like this and most of us find it very useful.
between the day.” The administrators have jumped to the conclusion that since some students take this time to relax, they are actually taking this time to fool around and hang out with friends. Students also take this time to do homework and/or study for their next classes and tests. “I like it a lot,” Baty-Barr said. “It gives kids a chance to relax the night before and not have to stress about getting homework done because you have an hour the next day to get it done. It lets you get extra sleep at night. Along with late start in the morning.” Bulldog Hour is a whole hour to be able to finish your homework so you don’t have to stress to get it all done the night before. “It’s a tradition kids here are used to,” said
junior Jennifer Sykstus. “It would be a shame if they changed it. A lot of students would be bummed.” Almost all the students at Batavia High School would be upset and bummed if Bulldog Hour would be taken away or changed. Bulldog Hour is something all students here at Batavia look forward to and love. It brings so many benefits for all the students whether it’s getting help in the class or on an assignment, to relax and let your brain rest for a little while, or if it’s to study for class or an upcoming test, and so many more. A full hour gives us students enough time to eat lunch, go to teachers for help, and finish any assignments. A shortened Bulldog Hour does not give students enough time to finish all these tasks.
Since second semester has started, the school administrators have made a decision to try to change Bulldog Hour. They would like to change Bulldog Hour because they believe that the students have been taking advantage of this time by fooling around and using the time to only hang out with friends. The administrators think that the students aren’t choosing to use this time wisely, because they seem to be sitting around and only hanging out with friends as if it were a social hour, but that is inaccurate. A majority of the students here at Batavia use this time to go to their teachers for help in the class they aren’t quite understanding or to seek extra clarification on an assignment . Other students also love to take this time to relax and have time between classes to take a break. “(I liked Bulldog Hour) because it worked out well,” said freshman Lily BatyProud to educate Batavia students to Barr. “It was meet the challenges of tomorrow a good break
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OPINION: Off-campus lunch should be optional for licensed students By Sierra Hobson Staff Reporter
High school is a place where teens have the chance to learn responsibility, expand their education, and above all, grow both academically and personally. High school is also where most students begin driving. Driving is one of the biggest steps a person can take in life because it opens up a whole new horizon of opportunities including finding a job or starting a new hobby. Despite this new window of opportunity being a little dangerous and scary, it is a necessity to most. One way to build upon the responsibility of being a young driver is to offer off-campus lunch at high schools like Batavia. This would give students the practice they need, and the freedom they desire. Batavia has over a thousand students, most of whom are licensed and parking either in the the school’s lot, or a nearby facility. When asked about off-campus lunch, senior Alyssa Klemm and sophomore Elisa Reamer weighed in on the pros and cons.
Both students agreed that off campus lunch would be a positive step in Batavia’s future. Not only would it provide students with a wider variety of food, students would be happier in general due to the alleviation of stress that a break from school could provide. However, reasons against off campus lunch are just as relevant. When students are off school grounds there is a higher risk for injury such as a car accident, and unfortunately, an easier route for students to consume alcohol. However, The Rider Online brings up the point that, “The district sets a double standard by allowing students to drive to and from school but not allowing them to drive to lunch.” The article continues on by mentioning that not only is driving a student’s responsibility, not the schools, but, a debatable safety hazard. The likelihood of a car accident occurring on the way to lunch is just as likely on the way to and from school. For administration, rules and regulations seem to be the top priority. However, from
a student’s perspective, the benefits of this type of program are what is most important, not a list of precautions that may or may not be needed. Klemm, a two-sport athlete and active club member knows a lot about responsibility. In her opinion, off-campus lunch could be achieved if handled in the safest, and most effective way. Klemm suggests that only licensed drivers whose cars are parked on school grounds should participate making the number of participants somewhat consistent. “Sometimes you feel a little trapped at school so off-campus lunch would provide a break from the stresses of tests, homework, and pressures of college
preparation,” Klemm said. “You would be able to recuperate and get your choice of food before returning for the second half of the school day.” Like most schools, Batavia has a long list of programs that work, and some that faculty and administration have concerns about. Off-campus lunch is an opportunity with both positive and negative consequences, all depending on the integrity and responsibility of the students it’s intended for. Whether or not off-campus lunch is ever set forth in Batavia, or any high school in the area, most can agree that in a perfect world, getting some fresh air and enjoying a meal outside of the cafeteria would be pretty incredible.
Plainfield Central at Girls’ Soccer (6:30 pm) Boys’ Lacrosse at Brother Rice (6:30 pm)
Thurs., March 17
Boys’ Lacrosse at Homewood-Flossmore (5 pm)
Fri., March 18
Sat., March 26
Glenbard West at Baseball (10 am) Softball at Glenbard West (10 am) Girls’ Soccer at Lake Park Invite (3 pm)
Mon., March 28-Fri., April 1 Spring break - No school!
Mon., March 28
Upstate Eight Conference Boys’ Track Meet at BHS (4:30 pm)
Benet Academy at Baseball (10 am)
Sat., March 19
Tues., March 29
Upstate Eight Conference Girls’ Track Meet at BHS (4:30) Wheaton Warrenville at Girls’ Soccer (12 pm)
Thurs., March 24
Track and Field at Batavia Invite (4 pm) Minooka at Baseball (4:30 pm) East Aurora at Girls’ Soccer (6:30 pm)
Student Editor Sierra Hobson
Kate Buchas Ashley Cichon Ryann Deutsch Alyssa Dian Hailey Gillian Anthony Glisson Adrian Guzman Hannah Katz Wyatt Kmoch Erika Knutson Rachel Morano Selena Nava Chloe Patterson Samantha Pinner Tarah Redmond McKenna Renier Emily Risner Carly Simonian Zaira Solis Marissa Spears Zoe Stone
Tues., March 15
Girls’ Soccer at Lake Park Invite (4:30 pm) Willowbrook at Baseball (10 am)
Thurs., March 31
Softball at Plainfield North (4:30 pm) Girls’ Soccer at Lake Park Invite (3 pm)
Troy Murray Journalism I/II is a class and club designed to give students with varying backgrounds an opportunity to write, edit, and design a school newspaper. A new staff takes responsibility of the paper each semester. The opinions expressed within are solely that of the student staff of The Spectator, not of the school administration, school staff, or club sponsor.
If you are interested in learning the basics of journalistic writing and publishing content online or in the print edition of the school newspaper, consider enrolling in Journalism I.
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‘Deadpool’ deserves two crisp ‘Fifth Wave’ a disaster high fives for being marvelous dystopian the topic and causing the By Emily Risner By Erika Knutson Staff Reporter
In this day and age mostly everyone is desensitized to violence and profanity. If you aren’t, Deadpool may not be the movie for you due to graphic images, fight scenes, and copious amounts of curse words. Crude and sexual humor is a profounding theme throughout the movie with a few cringe-worthy jokes. Overall Deadpool is highly recommended to those who are able to handle that and are old enough to see it, since it is rated R. The main character, Wade Wilson, who later becomes Deadpool remains a sarcastic wise guy throughout the movie, which is a breath of fresh air considering most other superheroes aren’t. The director, Tim Miller, is famous for creating the opening sequences for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and Thor: The Dark World. Miller made his directing debut with Deadpool, which was simply incomparable to any movie like it. Miller kept the humor throughout the movie because it’s a defining characteristic of Deadpool, but the way he included the humor was unmatched to any action-romantic-adventure-sci-fi-comedy. “Deadpool: [in the middle of a fistfight] Have you seen this man? [hold up a crude crayon drawing of Francis]” Deadpool starts off with a single fight scene with flashbacks to get the backstory of how the “hero” came to be. The backstory is a love story between Wade Wilson and Vanessa Carlysle who met in a bar and connected by seeing who was worse off in life. They fell in love and got engaged, soon to discover that Wade, Deadpool, had cancer that would kill him. Vanessa eagerly urged many different clinics to heal him so they could stay together but Wade wasn’t having any of it because he didn’t want her to see him die. Luckily, a shady man
came and offered him a solution. It was a non-government funded operation to give people superpowers. Francis cured Wade of cancer by injecting him with a serum, which was activated by significant amounts of adrenaline. Wade then goes through torture 24/7, which is successful but leaves him with a hideous disposition. Since Francis dislikes Wade so much, he continues to torture him. Francis believes he kills Wade but his power was a superhuman healing factor. Wade returns for Vanessa, but because he’s not good-looking he cannot bring himself to
talk to her. He then creates a plan to get Francis to fix him. Creating a suit of red,Wade then calls himself Deadpool. After becoming Deadpool, he spends a year planning his revenge, which leads back to the first fight scene which brings the background flashback portion of the movie to a close. The fight scene has unsuccessful results. This causes the X-Men to come recruit him, again, to put his superhuman skills to the use of good rather than revenge. Francis discovers that Wade is still alive, is furious, and wants him dead. Now if you’ve seen any
superhero movie ever you know the bad guy, Francis, goes after the one thing the good guy loves, Vanessa. Francis takes Vanessa, causing Wade to save her by using help from the X-Men by saying he’d consider being one of them. Does Deadpool become pretty again? Does the not-so-cookie-cutter-superhero get the girl? Does Deadpool become an X-Man? You’ll have to go watch this amazingly hilarious movie to find out, if you’re old enough to get in.
The movie The Fifth Wave rolls on shore in last place among the recent teen dramas, such as The Hunger Games, The Maze Runner, and Divergent. This film, directed by J Blakeson, had a very interesting concept. However, the movie was executed poorly. The movie starts out with an odd spoiler where Cassie Sullivan (Chloë Moretz) walks into an abandoned convenience store and shoots a guy who she thought was an alien, but was actually a normal citizen. This troubling scene was never revisited or explained. Cassie and her family were living a normal day when suddenly they saw an abnormal object in the sky. The first “wave” completed by aliens known as the others, was an electronic shut off. Nothing with motors or batteries or anything that required plumbing was working. Blakeson showed barely a day on this wave, completely skipping over
movie to start out boring. Then, it was on to the next wave. The second wave was a tsunami that cleared out everything and everyone near water. This, again, was shown over a very short period of time, leaving the viewers with questions as to what happened after the tsunami. The third wave was a disease that came from birds killing off many people. After this, Cassie and her family went to a refugee camp where she was separated from her younger brother and parents. As Cassie was wandering, she met the mysterious Evan (Alex Roe), starting to develop a weak love triangle because of her high school crush, Ben Parish (Nick Robinson). Cassie learns a terrifying secret about Evan and runs away. She finally makes it to the military, and she finds out her brother is there. At the point where the movie is starting to get interesting, suddenly, it ends.
See FIFTH page 5
5 ‘Room’ one of the year’s best films By Sierra Hobson Staff Reporter
Room, starring Oscar winning actress Brie Larson as Joy or “Ma” and Jacob Tremblay as Jack, was an eye-opening and touching revelation. Scene by scene, this film had thrill and anticipation, leaving viewers both in tears, and at the edge of their seats. In just an 11-by-11 foot room, Tremblay transformed every perspective imaginable. Director Lenny Abrahamson’s heart-felt adaptation of Emma Donoghue’s novel will keep audience members thinking long after they leave the theater. Room follows Joy and Jack, tucked away in the captivity of a small, compact shed known only to Jack, who has never left this confined space, as “room.” Joy was kidnapped seven years ago and has been in room ever since. But to Jack, whom Joy gives birth to while in captivity, the room is
all he’s ever known. In reality, five-year-old Jack has yet to catch a glimpse of the outside world and its entirety. This film shines a light on both the relationship of mother and son, and the heartbreak of such an emotional and psychological journey. Joy has protected Jack for so long, but the way to truly save him is to free him from the room. Will they ever make it past the four walls? Breakout star and Critic’s Choice winner Jacob Tremblay, at just nine years old, captured the innocence and complexity of his character, Jack, brilliantly. I give Room five out of five stars for its compassionate and insightful adaptation of an unforgettable story. Tremblay and Larson’s relationship was a joy to watch as they showed movie viewers that through thick and thin, love will always persevere.
Oscar-winning actress Brie Larson plays Ma in Room, one of the year’s best according to staff writer Sierra Hobson.
cont. from page 4 The movie dragged until the last 20 minutes when it rushed to a conclusion, leaving the viewers confused and unsatisfied. The plot jumped around and left details unanswered. One example of a huge hole in the story is the fact that after the blackout there were army soldiers that were able to drive buses and trucks and use electricity when everyone else could not, and the charac-
ters were not even fazed by this. The plot itself makes little sense; there is an alien force invading the Earth by utilizing advanced intelligence and tactics, yet this same group chooses to rely on conventional weapons such as human-made guns and airplanes to try to end the human race. I give this film two out of five stars because the plot had an interesting concept, but it was confusing and underdeveloped.
‘The Big Short’ shines interest on a boring topic
Buttermilk a staple in the Geneva breakfast scene
By Ryann Deutsch
While it’s certainly not the big blockbuster of 2015, The Big Short is a movie you will not want to miss. The movie is based on the true story of four groups that predicted the market crash of 2007-2008 and bet against the banks, making themselves a fortune. Based on the nonfiction bestseller by Michael Lewis, The Big Short is written and directed by Adam McKay. It sounds crazy that the man behind Anchorman could tell this story right, but he does. McKay manages to successfully tell a serious story in a fun and comedic way. Through its writing, this movie informs the viewer of the twists and turns of the financial world and its lingo, all while remaining easy to understand and entertaining. The impact of the market crash is seen from another viewpoint and allows the viewer to understand the complicated world of Wall Street. Adam McKay does a good job of keeping this movie visually fresh and unusual. Throughout the film there a quick montages of the rush of Wall Street executives juxtaposed by the many Americans affected by the crash. Another unusual touch is the amount of celebrity cameos. When the Wall Street lingo gets too complicated, McKay brings in
a celebrity to dumb it down for us. Yet, this doesn’t feel random or out of place, it flows well with the rest of the movie. Along with Adam Mckay’s direction, the cast helps propel this movie to its success. Christian Bale plays Michael Burry, a genius money manager with limited social skills. Burry discovers that the whole American housing market is propped up on faulty housing loans which will collapse. So, Burry decides to take all of his clients’ money without permission and bet against the banks. All of the Wall Street Executives dismiss Burry as a crazy man except for Jared Vernett (Ryan Gosling), a Deutsche Bank dealmaker. Vernett loves Burry’s idea and decides to follow suit. Vernett intensifies the stakes and further entangles the many lives on Wall Street by partnering with Mark Baum (Steve Carell). Baum manages a hedge fund branching off of Morgan Stanley. Carell does an excellent job of showing the remorse and moral conflicts in making big money. His character adds a sense of reality by truly reflecting on what it will mean if they profit from betting against the banks, which will result in millions of Americans losing their homes, jobs, and life savings. Nominated for five Oscars, this movie is worth the watch.
By Hannah Katz The Saturday morning was cold and rainy, and the line was out the door. Walking up to the doors of Buttermilk in downtown Geneva, someone in my party rhetorically asked if it would even be worth it to wait in such a long line. We ultimately decided to crowd in the space with all the other hungry customers, and it was not a decision that any member of the dining party regretted. Buttermilk has all the menu items of a typical breakfast joint, but they have other items that go above and beyond expectations. The food is delicious, the portion size in comparison to the price is astonishing, and the ambiance of the cozy brunch spot altogether make Buttermilk a winner. The atmosphere of Buttermilk can best be described as modern rustic. With its exposed lightbulbs and white washed wood, walking into the restaurant, diners feel at home. After a 30-minute wait (which was a breeze compared to the 45 minutes we were told by the waitress) we were seated in a large booth by a window overlooking a side street, with the lovely view of the river in the distance. It was a small building and it was quite warm inside, but that only added to the homey, grandma’s house type atmosphere. The service was incredibly friendly and the waitress didn’t check up on us too much or too little. Thanks to my slight caffeine addiction, I ordered coffee as my drink of choice. To my surprise, they brought me my very own pot of coffee that they left on the table so that I could refill my own coffee cup as I needed, and the coffee wasn’t watery or bitter like I was expecting. Rather, it was
smooth and reminded me of something they would give you at a cafe in Paris. My party had trouble deciding what to get, thanks to the expansive menu as well as our indecisive nature. This didn’t bother the waitress however; she was patient with us, and explained any questions we had. We ended up ordering a stuffed breakfast biscuit, chocolate chip pancakes, an egg white omelette, and lemon blueberry pancakes. The food came out fast and was piping hot, and the portions were huge. No one in my party even finished half of their food. Everyone’s favorite part of the meal was the breakfast potatoes that came on the side with our food, which were fried and flavorful without being greasy. The pancakes were fluffy and the egg white omelette was cooked to perfection. The stuffed breakfast biscuits were overflowing with food and were just as tasty as they were unhealthy. The meal cashed in at just over $40 for four people, a steal for the quality of the food and the amount being carried out in styrofoam boxes, sure to be enjoyed later. Buttermilk is a great brunch spot for every occasion, from a casual breakfast with family, to a fun brunch with friends, and it is a place that is sure to make a splash in Geneva’s surprisingly large breakfast scene.
Ten months in Spain with Riley Davis
Junior experiences ‘easy-going,’ ‘kind-hearted’ culture, people on journey through Spain By Sierra Hobson Staff Reporter
As the sun rises above the rocky slopes of the Sierra de la Cabrera mountain range, just 40 miles outside of Madrid, Spain, its civilians wake to a beautiful, blue sky. This town is home to less than 3,000 people who spend their days walking in and out of town, talking, and hiking the indigenous land. In a town this size, everyone is like family, and during her junior year at Batavia High School, Riley Davis became their newest member. For 10 months, Davis was a foreign exchange student halfway across the world and away from everything she’s ever known. “I wanted to see different viewpoints of the world outside of Batavia,” Davis said of her initial desire to be an exchange student. “I also wanted to learn to live without the people, language, and surroundings I grew up with.” Davis has always had the drive to travel, but knew that a week vacation in a hotel wouldn’t be fulfilling enough. For her, being completely indulged in the culture of the land
and speaking the native language was the best way to truly experience everything. Her decision to go to Spain over other European countries was sparked by her prior knowledge and interest in the Spanish culture and language itself. Being a foreign exchange student, Davis explains, (through an organization called AFS, or American Field Organization) opened her eyes and mind to so much of the world around her. The entire process of getting ready to take off took about a year. After getting a visa and filling out application paperwork came the most important part – choosing a family for her to spend nearly a year of her life with. During orientation, Riley met with other foreign exchange students from all over the world. Not only was she able to form relationships with people from Spain, but students all across the globe such as Sweden, Norway, Japan, Switzerland, Turkey, Thailand, Finland, Italy, Poland, and Canada. After everything was filled out and stamped off, Davis took an eight-hour flight across the Atlantic Ocean and into a new life.
Throughout a 10-month period, Davis lived with two different host families. She was able to learn a lot from each, however, formed a closer relationship with the second, whom she keeps in touch with today. “From the first night, we could see a special bond between her and her younger (host) brother,” said Darrell Davis, Riley’s dad. “She became very close to this family and we never had a concern sharing her with them.” Every day was a new adventure discovering the land and its eternity. Downtown Madrid was exciting, however, hiking the mountains of La Cabrera was Davis’ favorite part. Along with hiking, Davis loved the people in general. She says the people of Spain are some of the most genuine, easy-going and kind-hearted people she has ever met. The food was also a very special part of learning about the culture. Arrangements of jamon, or ham, tortillas, fish, and gazpacho filled the table as the clock struck 10 pm each night. 5,000 miles away, while her family was getting ready for bed, her host family was setting the
Riley Davis (right) and Riley’s mom (left) on the top of El Pico De La Miel looking over La Cabrera, Spain. Riley’s mom came to visit her host family in Spain one week before she had to return to the U.S.
table for dinner. In Spain, school is also run very differently than in the United States. For one thing, it is optional after the age of 16, and school starts around 8:30 am. Although Davis enjoyed the change in scenery and perspective of being in Spain, it was difficult to change her entire lifestyle. The biggest challenges she faced were missing friends and family, the language barrier, and overall a slight fear of leaving everything behind her. “Spain expanded my intellectual curiosity. In my future, I want a career that involves traveling where I am able to immerse myself into other cultures,” said
Davis. After returning, her family and close friends have all agreed she has really grown in the best and most beautiful ways. She laughs now because after being home for a while she says, “before I knew it, I was talking on the phone with my parents in the wrong language!” Her sister, Avery Davis, adds that Riley’s experience as a foreign exchange student has strengthened their relationship. After that kind of time apart, their time spent together is valued much greater. Even with prior education in the language, Davis struggled with communication for the first three or so
months. Stepping out the front door in the morning can be a marathon if you’re unable to hold a conversation. However, with handson practice daily, she was able to leave Spain as a fluent Spanish speaker. Davis was even able to teach the children from her town in Spain, English during her stay. By the time her trip was over, Davis had a second family and the experience of a lifetime. When one of her friends, Hannah Slater, mentioned how she had missed junior prom and other important events of the school year when she returned, Davis’ response was simple: “I didn’t miss anything.”
The perfect vacation: Hilton Head Island By Ryann Deutsch Staff Reporter
When looking for the perfect vacation spot what do people usually consider? Miles of pure white sand and the warm embrace of the sun? A place to unwind with loved ones? Or maybe a place to explore and go on adventures? Chances are vacationers will find all of these things and more on Hilton Head Island. Hilton Head is an island home to many adventures. Located just off the coast of South Carolina, this popular vacation destination attracts 2.5 million families from all over the United States every year (hiltonheadchamber.org). Yet, Hilton Head manages to feel like a secret
getaway that isn’t plagued with tourists. The air is thick and the waves of the Atlantic Ocean can be heard as beachgoers lay with the sand between their toes while the sun beats down upon them. Hilton Head is home to over 12 miles of white, sandy beaches that are perfect for tanning, swimming or building sand castles. “My favorite thing about Hilton Head is being able to sit at the cabana in between the beach and the pool feeling the warm breeze and the salty air and the sound of children playing in the water,” said vacationer Laura Deutsch. “It felt like a complete vacation, relaxing, listening to the ocean waves with
no agenda other than to be with my family and relax.” It might sound crazy but, the beach isn’t for everyone. Don’t worry there is still plenty else to do on this gem of an island. It can be hard to feel the comfort of home when someone is on vacation. Imagine sitting outside, the floorboards of the deck creak beneath the servers feet as they bring buckets upon buckets of never-ending crab. The server sets it on the table and the steam rises into the afternoon sky as everyone digs in with delight. The customers mouths sink into the warm cheddar biscuits as they unknowingly smile with bliss. This is just a typical scene at any of the 250 restaurants that call Hilton
Head home. The southern, homestyle cooking bring visitors back to their mama’s kitchen as they laugh in each other’s company and enjoy the afternoon sun. One of these hot spots is the Salty Dog Cafe. This restaurant is one of the number one places on visitor’s lists whether it is for the view, special drinks or just to buy a sweatshirt. “The smoothies are amazing and the T-shirt shop was huge!” said customer Hogan Deutsch. For visitors who are looking for more of an adventure, Hilton Head has plenty of outdoor activities to satisfy their needs. The sounds of the sprinklers begin as the sun rises every morning, the bright green
grass almost looks like it’s fake and the carts whiz around carrying with them the sounds of laughter and memories. These are the typical sights and sounds found on any of the 30 championship golf courses located on Hilton Head. Golfers of all ages and skill levels are attracted to courses designed by some of the greats, like Jack Nicklaus and Pete Dye. Hilton Head is also a top destination for avid golf fans who would rather watch than play. Visitors come from all around to watch top PGA Tour events year round. For active visitors who don’t want to spend the whole day out on the course, Hilton Head has more than 300 tennis courts
available for use. “All of the tennis courts have amazing views and it’s always so fun and relaxing to play there every year!” said tennis player and frequent visitor Alana Miller. If tennis doesn’t sound appealing how about a shopping spree at any of the 200 local stores that carry unique merchandise or perhaps a round of mini golf? Hilton Head Island is home to many possible adventures for visitors who are active explorers, foodies and shopaholics. There is something for everyone to enjoy on Hilton Head Island. So be sure to consider it when it comes time to plan the next vacation.
Farrell learns independence on her own Junior stayed in Batavia area to attend BHS after parents moved to Connecticut By Hannah Katz Staff Reporter
Unlike most 17 year olds, junior Maddie Farrell can’t wait to go home and see her family. The average high school junior, however, see their families every day. Farrell, on the other hand, lives 900 miles away from her parents and her brothers. Most teenagers would eagerly jump on the opportunity to live away from their parents, with their only discipline being little restraint from their grandparents. Maddie Farrell, however, knows that living virtually alone is not all it’s cracked up to be. The freedom is an upside, but there are many negative aspects including frequent travelling, having to mature incredibly fast, and having to gain a sense of self sustenance that most people don’t possess until much later in life, according to Farrell. When Farrell’s parents told her they were moving to Connecticut after her sophomore year because of a new job opportunity, she couldn’t believe the news
and was left wide-eyed. She had friends in Batavia. She had a boyfriend. She had a life. “I cried. I was so sad and so mad,” said Farrell. “I got really angry at my parents and I immediately thought ‘No, I’m not moving.’” After a long discussion with the entire family, it was decided that Maddie would stay with her grandparents in Illinois to finish out her two years of high school. Farrell was left in disbelief, she didn’t think that she would be living apart from her parents from August through May until she graduated. The decision was made quickly, and Farrell knew what would happen if she stayed with her grandparents, but she also understood her feelings towards the Connecticut school she would have been attending. “I thought about it and I was like ‘I would have a really hard time fitting in at this small school I would have to go to,’ it only has 300 kids who all know each other already and I would have been the new girl,” Farrell said. “But
now I’m really regretting my decision.” Farrell’s grandparents allow her lots of freedom, but sometimes this independence isn’t all it has cracked up to be. Maddie explains that she has to do almost everything for herself, she doesn’t have anyone to tell her to do her homework, or to go to bed at a reasonable hour. She often has to be self sufficient, and do everything for herself. She doesn’t have her parents watching her every move, but Farrell knows how to handle this responsibility. “She handles her independance very well,” said Joe Posledni, Farrell’s boyfriend. “She does everything she needs to and functions perfectly.” Although Farrell may not live with her parents, she constantly talks to them. Whenever her phone lights up from receiving a message, Farrell’s face lights up as well, and she promptly unlocks her phone to respond to her mom’s text, snapchat, or phone call. Farrell also discusses how her relationship with her parents has
been strengthened by the distance between them. “It made me really good friends with my parents actually,” Farrell said. “It’s kind of weird, but I tell my parents everything now and I skype them every day. I actually talk to them more now than I did when I actually lived with them. It kind of makes me regret doing that.” Throughout the day, Farrell texts her parents and communicates with them through snapchat, and other forms of quick contact. When she is at her grandparent’s house however, the methods of communications are different. A tough aspect of the distance from Farrell and her family is the travel between them. However, Farrell isn’t a nervous flyer anymore. On her frequent flights to and from Connecticut, Farrell has seen it all, from planes nearly tipping on their sides during a storm, to several of the passengers in the plane experiencing airsickness, Farrell has the flight experience, and the lack of nerves, of a flight
attendant. “They either come to visit me or I go to them once a month-ish but sometimes it’s either a month and a half or two months,” Farrell said. “During cross country season I can’t go and visit them so they have to come visit me.” The distance has been hard on Farrell. Her friends and those close to her have noticed that she is a lot lonelier than she was before the move, and she does experience bouts of sadness. However, Farrell
has a large support network and many friends who care about her. Farrell loves nature and hiking, and the geography of Connecticut is perfect for her adventurous personality. She even plans to graduate high school early and to hike the Appalachian Trail alone from Maine to Georgia, and eventually go to college closer to her parents. “Value your parents,” said Farrell. “They’re actually pretty great once you get to know them.”
Changing student perspectives Blue Lake International Program adds to participants’ experience, worldviews By Zoe Stone Staff Reporter
The plane shudders as it makes its way down the runway, touching down halfway around the world from everything the young passengers have ever known. They exchange glances, expressions ranging from excited to nervous. Matching blue backpacks are swung onto matching blue shoulders as the music students make their way out of the plane and set foot in this new place. The Blue Lake International Program allowed musical teens (both singers and instrument players) to perform in European countries (such as Germany and France), which, in the opinions of the students, made
them all better musicians, better people, and allowed them to come home with a whole new outlook on the world. For one, Blue Lake offers technique classes, with both one-on-one and group teaching. This is extremely helpful according to the students. Additionally, being surrounded by music enthusiasts aids them in becoming better musicians. “Just being around people who are 100 percent serious about music and just being in that atmosphere changes you as a musician and makes you so much better,” said freshman singer Emily Tratar. Freshman trumpet player Jeffrey Trux knows the benefits of a similarly fun and easygoing environment created by his peers at the
camp. “I enjoyed Blue Lake primarily for the social aspect,” said Trux. “Our band had 60 people in it, and by the end of the experience, I had some sort of story and/ or connection with every one of them.” He recalls how all the band members would bond while playing games such as capture the flag, and roasting marshmallows together at night. Trux and Tratar both both met many people throughout their travels, including fellow American musicians, European musicians, and regular European families who hosted the travelers in their houses for the duration of their stay. Tratar said that her host family had a positive impact on her. She de-
scribed how one of her host spent overseas and working incredibly important in my opinion. I think that it is an dads pushed her to try new hard with respectable individuals and role models opportunity that few people things, citing a time when can enjoy, and that the few the family went to the gro- made me a better person in every way,” Trux said. people who have enjoyed cery store together to run “The way I see the world it will always remember it, some errands and he urged has changed, and the reand will always cherish the her to pick something new spect I have for other peochange they experience for out to try. ple and other cultures are the better as a result.” The experience also showed her how close she could get to people in a short amount of time. She still keeps in touch with her foreign friends, and thus has a constant reminder of her amazing time. Trux also said the experience changed him. Janelle Woods (front left), Emma Tiongson (front middle), and Emily Tratar “The time I (far right) with their German host family at a castle in Germany.
Point/Counterpoint: “Should the strict ban of websites on Chromebooks continue? Ever since Batavia High School students received Chromebooks from the school for the 2014-2015 school year and beyond, there has been a debate about what websites should and should not be blocked. Some students argue that sites should not be blocked because it disrupts their studying and limits them from having all possible online resources. Others, however, think that blocking certain websites from Chromebooks keeps students safe and protects them while simultaneously keeping them on task. Here, two writers for The Spectator will provide their opposing insight on the issue.
Remove the ban: students need access Keep the ban: they are meant to to websites for academic reasons protect students, help them focus By Hannah Katz Staff Reporter
I don’t think the administration should keep such strict bans on student’s Chromebooks. In the long run, it does more harm than help. If students aren’t using their time effectively and are getting off task on these unblocked websites, that is their prerogative. I know for me, there have been times where I have been doing assignments and there was a website that looked like it had beneficial information, or a Youtube video that would clarify my understanding, and it was blocked by school administration. If students don’t have access to all sources of information, even those the school deems “useless,” or “distracting,” how are we expected to succeed in our studies? For a majority of students, these Chromebooks are not only their school computer, but a device to use at home, as well. Since activities and games or other social media is blocked, not just on the school wifi,
but on the system of the Chromebook, student enjoyment is limited outside of school. For a few students even, their Chromebook is their only chance to connect to the internet – they may not be able or allowed to use the internet at their homes. This means that their time at school, at lunch, or after their classwork is done is their only chance to have an online presence and we should not take that away. I’m not arguing to lift the ban completely. The school should keep bans on some inappropriate sites- those that have inappropriate images or that could prove dangerous to students, but students would use this lifting of strict guidelines to their advantage. If students abuse the privileges during class, then it will reflect on them as a student and they should receive the rightful consequences. But certain students taking advantages of these privileges should not take those opportunities of internet freedom from other students. The school should also use these unrestricted
chromebooks to teach students about having a positive social media presence and about digital footprints, they should not just take the chance for these things away altogether. The Child Internet Protection Act, the laws enacted that all schools are required to follow, includes rules about “The safety and security of minors when using electronic mail, chat rooms and other forms of direct electronic communications, unauthorized access, including so-called ‘hacking,’ and other unlawful activities by minors online, Unauthorized disclosure, use, and dissemination of personal information regarding minors, and Measures restricting minors’ access to materials harmful to them” (https://www.fcc.gov/ consumers/guides/childrens-internet-protection-act). Nowhere in these laws does it say that it is required to block educational game sites, informative videos, or sources that may help student succeed in their studies or just to relax in their free time.
By Carly Simonian Staff Reporter
Between all the high school drama, the school work, and everything else in between, there has recently been buzz about one specific topic: Why would the school ban us from using Youtube, Netflix, Facebook, and other social media websites during school hours? Why is that fair when we may need to use them for “school purposes”? Being a student at Batavia High School myself, I can understand how all of these students feel, and why they are upset. “When I’m sitting in class bored out of mind, and all of my favorite websites are blocked, what am I supposed to do?” said Elena Simonian, freshman at Batavia. As much as I understand this, school is not the place to be watching our favorite TV series or surfing the internet. When we have free
time in class after we are done with our work, we should be continuing to do other homework, or collaborating with classmates, rather than having our eyes glued to a screen. If the school left these sites unblocked during school hours, they never know what kids could be looking at online. According to guardchild.com, 70 percent of children 7 to 18 years old have accidentally encountered online pornography, or other inappropriate material through a web search while doing homework. Kids could also be using these sites to bully other students, possibly getting parents and staff involved. If we
need to search a video or topic that is blocked for school purposes, we could always use a smartphone or home computer to do so. The school can’t afford to just sit and wait for something bad to happen over the internet before they block these sites. It is a shame that certain student’s abused our freedom of the internet when we had it, making us all suffer, but because of these reasons, teenagers can’t be trusted with open internet access during school hours. There are many more negatives than positives when it comes to these websites, which is why they should stay blocked on our school computers.
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Have a story idea that you would like to see covered by The Spectator? Is there a school issue that you feel passionately about and want to write a letter to the editor addressing that issue? Submit all ideas and letters to: Batavia students have been seeing more and more of this screen lately as the district continues to block web content.
Late start important to students Extra hour allows for more sleep, greater student achievement By Ashley Cichon
Every Thursday morning, students enjoy the delayed class time that gives them an hour long opportunity for more sleep. This is a period that many students, if not all, take advantage of in many different ways. Kids at Batavia High School look forward to Thursdays because an extra hour before school allows plenty of time that is beneficial to the students. Late start, which is when classes start at 8:25 instead of 7:35, allows students to get the needed amount of sleep for teenagers. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, teenagers need eight to nine hours of sleep, while most teenagers only get
seven hours. Starting school almost an hour later helps students obtain those extra hours of sleep they need to be successful in school. A study by the CDC, (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), found that high schools that started as late as 8:30 have 66 percent of students sleeping eight or more hours. It is important to start at 8:25 because kids are able to sleep extra hours which is greatly needed for teenagers to manage stress and eat healthy. “I think it would be nice to start school an hour later because not only do studies show that teenagers learn better in the afternoon, but they would also get the recommended amount of sleep”, says Joseph Franz, a teacher at BHS and a father of a senior
in high school. Most teachers argue that it takes away from class time, but when there is no bulldog hour, late start reduces class time by only 15 minutes, which is a small price to pay for the well-being of students. If teachers feel that those 15 minutes are detrimental to a student’s learning, a possible solution of starting and ending school later should be considered. “Rather than losing class time for late start, I’d rather change everyday to 8:35-3:30,” Franz said. Getting extra sleep not only helps teenagers stay healthy, but also helps their lives at school. High schools that start late on a daily basis or have regular late start days see improvements in school attendance, standardized test
scores, and academic performance. Students are more successful in these areas because with the proper amount of sleep, they are able to wake up fully energized and alert. Memory spans are longer lasting, as well. In addition to gaining the preferred amount of sleep, extra help in the morning is a huge factor
in helping the students succeed. “It allows more sleep and more time for extra help,” said Miles Corrigan, a sophomore at BHS. “I get better grades when I come in for help.” During the hour long period before school, teachers who are not in meetings are able to help kids with homework or
understand lessons. This contributes to the success of testing and academics. Going to school early on late start days also helps testing performance because students are able to make up tests they did poorly on to improve their grades. Many students agree that having the option to go to school early for extra help is a privilege many would not give up.
Purpose of late start detentions lost on students 30 minutes of punishment excessive for unintentional tardies By Tarah Redmond
Students at Batavia High School who are late to school by even a mere five minutes on Thursdays receive a late start detention to be served the following Thursday. This rule angers many students, who feel they don’t deserve to serve a detention for barely being late. “The late start detention rule shows that we value every second we have with you here,” said Tara Jerbi, dean of Batavia High School. “However, I do see how it bothers kids to spend an extra 30 minutes here on a day when they get to sleep in for only being a few minutes late. ” The dean of students also says that she receives many complaints about this rule from
students, but still, even two years later, nothing has been done to change the rule. “Sometimes people are just running late. You never know why, and it was probably unintentional. Especially if it was only by a couple minutes!” said Katherine Osborne, a student who has never received a late start detention, but still is greatly opposed to the rule. Anyone with common sense can see how this doesn’t add up: 30 minutes of your time wasted because you accidently ran late. On average, there are about 15-20 students sitting in the gym on Thursday mornings. These are the students who are being punished for tardiness on the previous Thursday. The dean sees this as a positive thing, “because
7:35 is the normal time to be at school, and not asking for much of your free time. Students who do sports are also getting a break from having one after school instead,” Jerbi said. Being a student who has received many late start detentions, I think this rule is very unfair. I am never intentionally late to school on Thursdays, and when I am it’s not necessarily my fault. I don’t drive myself to school, and just like many other students at Batavia, I depend on another student to give me rides to school. I don’t see why I should be pun-
ished for someone else’s mistake, or something completely out of my hands like car troubles or weather. “If you’re only late by a few minutes, you obviously intended to be there on time,” said
Nena Kramer, a student who has received late start detentions on many occasions. “It’s not fair to take away our late starts, because students benefit from late start in many ways. It gives us a chance to catch up
on sleep, do homework, and worry about ourselves for once during the school week. School compromises basically all of our time, and there isn’t a student here at Batavia who isn’t constantly tired.”
A gymnast’s worst nightmare
Long-time gymnast overcame serious spinal injury to become contributor on BHS team By Alyssa Dian Staff Reporter
As a child, being a part of a sports team can be very exciting. The heartbreaking feeling of missing a single practice is traumatizing for some. Imagine all of the time, effort, and determination that was put into that single sport, then finding out that it was the cause of a serious injury. Roughly three years ago, Rachel Conover was diagnosed with spondylolisthesis, a birth defect. Her spinal cord and nerves were being squeezed together by the broken vertebrae that she also had. This was called a spinal fusion. In her eighth-grade year of junior high school, surgery was scheduled to help relieve the excruciating back pain that shot up her spine, a pain she dealt with on a daily basis. About a year later, Conover began
to continue her gymnastics career and now is a varsity gymnast for Batavia High School. “I was surprised when I first found out about Rachel’s injury because she had been complaining about her back for some time before we decided to go see a doctor and figure out what the problem was,” said Tim Conover, Conover’s brother. “I had felt a sort of worry because of the seriousness of her condition and what could’ve happened if surgery had gone bad.” Conover began to notice she had back pain in seventh grade. She experienced pain at home, school, and especially at gymnastics. Her coach at the time, Katie Novorolsky, noticed the severity of her pain during practice, along with a small change in her work ethic. Conover began to dread
the thought of going to another 3 hour practice at the gym. There was more sitting throughout each practice than there was working, and after each skill, her hands became glued to her lower back as if she was afraid to move another muscle. Since gymnastics is such an impactful sport on the human body, a majority of the involved stress was drawn to her back and this was what caused her pain to flare up. After about six months, Conover and her parents decided to see an orthopedic doctor. After undergoing an X-ray, MRI, and CAT scan, Conover and her family received the results. She was diagnosed with spondylolisthesis and would need surgery. The thought of surgery frightened her and sweat chilled her palms. Spondylolisthesis is the condition in which one vertebral body has slipped forward over another. Although spondylolisthesis is a birth defect, it did not begin to affect Conover until she reached junior high. Conover’s surgery took place on Sept. 25, 2012, at the Children’s Hospital in Chicago. Two metal rods were put into her back in order to help relieve the agonizing pain caused by the condition, spondylolis-
thesis. “I never would have thought she would have to have surgery and be out of gymnastics for so long,” said Rylin Hoffner, teammate to Conover. “I thought she was just going to take time off for awhile and I was very surprised when I found out that she had to have metal rods put into her back. It was definitely a lot more serious than I expected!” After many long days, weeks, and months of recovery, Conover began to receive full function of her body again – for example, walking and traveling up and down stairs, on her own. Part of the recovery process was taking an extended period of time off
of most physical activity, including gymnastics. “I was sad that she wasn’t going to be able to do gymnastics with me anymore, at least for awhile,” said teammate and close friend, Amanda Dian. Although this recovery was hard, Conover managed to push through many obstacles that occurred during the overall process. Once Conover was cleared by her doctor to participate in the regular physical activities that took place in her life before surgery, she slowly began to do gymnastics again. “Not having her at practice was weird,” said Stephanie Hall, a student at ACC High School and Conover’s teammate at the
time. Since the recovery, Conover has continued to do gymnastics. She has been a part of the Batavia High School gymnastics team since the beginning of her freshman year of high school and will continue to do this sport through her senior year. Due to the re-occurring pain, Conover now focuses on one event in gymnastics, the bars. Even after the many years that have gone by, Conover still experiences back pain. “The two rods in my back stick out a little and if something hits that certain area, then it hurts,” said Conover. “For example, if I lay on my back.”
Rachel Conover competes on the uneven bars at Oswego. Conover recovered from a spinal injury to fill an important role on the BHS gymnastics team.
Test your knowledge with a Broadway musical quiz Staff Reporter
Fill in the blanks with the missing words from the song. Also try to name which musical the song is from and or the name of the song. 1. “Something has changed within me.
Something _______________. I’m through with playing by the rules of someone else’s game.” 2. “I am not throwing away my shot! I am not throwing away my shot! Hey yo, I’m just like my country I’m __________________ and I’m not throwing away my shot.” 3. “Hello! My name is _____________ and I would like to share with you the most amazing book.” 4. “It only takes a moment for _____________ and then. Your heart
knows in a moment. You will never be alone again..” 5. “I could be a poet and write a different story one that tells of _____________. And to the skies I’d throw it, the stars would to telling, the moon would help with spelling and night would dot the i’s.” 6. “Do you hear the people sing singing the song of angry men it is the music of the people who____________________.” 7. “Ain’t it a fine life carrying the banner through it all! A mighty fine life carrying the banner tough and tall, when that bell rings we goes where we wishes, ____________________, sure beats washin’ dishes what a fine life carrying the banner home free all.” 9. “A tale as old as time, _____________, barely even friends then somebody bends unexpectedly.”
ANSWERS: 1.is not the same - “Defying Gravity,” Wicked 2. young, scrappy and hungry - “My Shot,” Hamilton 3. Elder Price - “Hello,” The Book of Mormon 4. your eyes to meet - “It Only Takes a Moment,” Hello, Dolly! 5. glory and wipes away the lies - “Who I’d Be,” Shrek the Musical 6. will not be slaves again - “Do you Hear the People Sing,” Les Miserables 7. we’re as free as fishes - “Carrying the Banner,” Newsies 8. true as it can be - “Beauty and the Beast,” Beauty and the Beast
By Erika Knutson
Season preview: Baseball team plans to be ‘in the hunt’ for an UEC title
Team returns several starters including Niemiec, Albanese By Rachel Morano Staff Reporter
Head coach: Matt Holm Years coaching at BHS: 24 Last year’s record: 16-19 Top returnees: “Our team captains this year are Luke Beckmann (Sr.-1B/OF), Tyler Kledzik (Sr.-2B), Kyle Niemiec (Sr.-OF), and Glen Albanese (Jr.-P),” Holm said. “Beckmann, Kledzik, and Niemiec are all returning starters and offensive leaders for our team. Niemiec will make the transition from shortstop to outfield this season as sophomore Jared Martin steps in at shortstop. Look for Martin to be a solid addition to the Bulldog infield. Louisville commit Glenn Albanese will be the anchor of our
pitching staff this year along with senior Ben Lynam, who is headed to Parkland College. Both saw a lot of innings last year and will need to be our workhorses this year as well. Look for juniors Tyler Munoz (C) and Brent Norkus (OF) to provide offense for the Bulldogs.” Outlook for this season: “I am excited for the number of returning players we have this season,” Holm said. “Last year, we called on juniors to step up and play every day and they were up to the challenge. Now, they are the leaders of our team. That being said, we have a number of newcomers that will contribute greatly this season and I’m excited to watch them succeed. It is always tough replac-
ing a catcher like Matt Musielak and some great pitchers like Nick Rogalski and Even Acosta. Biggest team challenge: “Our biggest challenge comes in reducing the numbers of defensive mistakes from last year,” Holm said. “We were on the losing end of many one run games that came down to an error or defensive lapse. We have made that our biggest point of emphasis in the summer and offseason. Our starting pitching looks strong, but our bullpen will need to step up and shut down opposing offenses. We have the offense to score runs and we need to keep the pressure on opposing teams all season long. Top players/teams in the Upstate Eight:
“I can honestly give the same answer to this question every year,” Holm said. “Batavia, Geneva, St. Charles North and St. Charles East have tremendous
baseball programs, and it is always a battle between the four schools. I make no predictions other than the guarantee that those four teams will be in the hunt at the
end of May.” Start of the season: The Bulldogs open against Minooka on March 24 at Pfund field at Wheaton College.
First basemen Ben Lynam (left), Shortstop Kyle Niemiec (center), and second basemen Tyler Kledzik congratulate outfielder Luke Beckmann as he crosses home plate. All four will be an important part of the Bulldogs’ success this baseball season as they hope to improve upon their 16-19 record from a year ago. (Photo courtesy of Batavia Baseball)
Season preview: Softball Hoffman uses track to set to repeat success recover from ACL injury Team won 2015 Regional Title By Rachel Morano Staff Reporter
Head coach: Lupe Castellanos Years coaching at BHS: Six Last year’s record: 19-17 overall, 12-7 in Upstate Eight Conference play Top returnees: Racheal Lovestrand (Upstate Eight All Conference last season), Toni Galas (Upstate Eight All Conference as a freshman), Kaylan Waldron, Alyssa Klemm Top newcomers: Jaelen Lisberg , Lauren Wencewicz, and Jessica Kleist Outlook for this season: “We have 9 returning players from last years team so we bring back a lot of experience,” Castellanos said. “We have the team capable of having a 20-win season and making a
nice run in the playoffs.” Top players/teams in the Upstate Eight: St.
Charles East, St. Charles North, West Aurora and Bartlett
By Marissa Spears Staff Reporter
Running down the grass field in the crisp, spring air with her parents and family members cheering for the winning goal just might not be a realistic vision this spring for junior Francesca Hoffman. Unfortunately, sitting on the bench might be the only thing Hoffman will be doing this coming up season. Hoffman’s recent torn ACL may make team manager her only option if she wants to remain a part of the BHS soccer team, an incident that occurred when switching to Campton United and playing up in the U-18 division. “It saddens me because I really enjoyed being able to play with a lot of my friends from school,” Hoffman said when asked about her
injury. “The spring season really helps you build bonds with girls that you usually wouldn’t be able to make during club. But hopefully I will be able to be a manager, so I can build onto those bonds, and see the girls play.” Instead of participating in the high school soccer season this spring, she has broadened her horizons by joining indoor track and Key Club. “At first I wasn’t able to do anything sports related: run, kick,” Hoffman said. “But now that I am close to four months recovered, I think track will be the better option because of the less physical activity against other players, like you have in soccer.” Growing up, Hoffman has always been a part of sports and activities to keep her busy. At one point in her grade
school life she was participating in soccer, horseback riding, girl scouts and basketball all at the same time. Hoffman has been described by her high school coach, Christopher Payton, as “hard working on the field and very competitive.” But her responsible and hardworking habits don’t stop on the field. In the classroom Hoffman is always contributing to class and involved in class activities. “In general I would describe Chess as a “work hard, play hard” kind of person. She is cognizant of her performance in school,” said Kevin Jensen, Hoffman’s pre-calc with trig honors teacher. “She is responsible and tries to understand material in class, but she also likes to try to have fun in class.”
Leading by example Frazier’s team-first attitude, abilities catapult girls’ basketball team to regional title By Emily Risner
Standing on the sidelines, watching Hannah Frazier score over 2,000 points in the four years he’s had her as a player, BHS Varsity basketball coach, Kevin Jensen, has watched Frazier not only grow as an individual, but also with her team. Although Frazier’s biggest personal accomplishment is being the school’s all-time leading scorer, she is most proud of her team winning a regional title this year, an example of her teamfirst attitude, according to Jensen. “My team has taught me a lot about communicating well with others, because it’s not just an individual sport,” said BHS varsity basketball player, Hannah Frazier. Frazier started out playing basketball an interesting way, it turns out that it wasn’t even her choice to start up the sport. “When I was in fifth grade my mom forced me to go to a park district basketball summer camp,” Frazier said. “I was reluctant at first, but I ended up loving it!” Although Frazier wasn’t expecting to start a basketball career, she ended up setting the school record by scoring over 2,000 points and signed to a letter of intent play for the St. Louis Billikens this year. “It’s hard to not say scoring over 2,000 career points and recording over 1,000 career rebounds is her biggest accomplishment,” said varsity girls basketball coach Kevin Jensen. “Each of those on their own is very rare, but to do them together is even more so. No one in Batavia has ever recorded that combination. Even with that record, her growth as a leader and becoming an aggressive
player will help her tremendously at St. Louis.” Although Frazier has all these amazing accomplishments, she is a team player. When asking her who she is closest with on the team, she decided that she couldn’t just pick one person. During the season they do everything together. She described it as “being with your 16 best friends everyday.” Jensen believes that when Frazier is on the court, she is extremely focused. He said that she worked very hard over the summer and she works even harder during practices. According to Jensen, her hard work has caused her to have an injury-free season and has made her very strong. He thinks that during her last season at Batavia High School, Frazier’s competitiveness came out more than ever. According to Jensen, even though Frazier is a very competitive player, and practices as much as she can so she is able to improve and become the player she is, she cares
greatly about her team. “Hannah is great with her teammates,” Jensen said. “She is respectful of everyone’s position on the team. However, she also has the respect of others to put herself in a position to be vocal about her expectations.” Bethany Orman, one of Frazier’s varsity teammates, also believes that Frazier is very respectful of the team. She said that Frazier is one of the most sweet and kindhearted girls she’s ever met. She thinks of Frazier as being humble and a very hardworker. The Batavia High School girls’ varsity basketball team is made up of different players every year. Although it is different every year, according to Orman, the team is always very close. “Every year, the team dynamic has been different,” Orman said. “Not in a bad way, just a different group of girls every year. This year was extremely special though because we were all best friends and my senior year was by far
my favorite team to play with.” According to Jensen, Frazier and Orman, the team is very hardworking. They stay after school everyday during the season and practice until they are drenched in sweat. With all this practice, Frazier was able to grow as a player. “Hannah’s best feature is that she is still
growing as a basketball player,” Jensen said. “She has great ability to score, shoot and rebound. However, the fact that her game will continue to develop is a great feature as she moves to the next level.” According to Orman, Frazier gets along with everyone on the team, and with everyone else that she meets. And
Jensen said that Frazier is great with her teammates. Jensen and Orman can both agree that Frazier is a respectful and hardworking player. “I used to play volleyball,” Frazier said. “But I gave it up because nothing could compare to basketball, it will always be my favorite sport.”
The girls’ basketball team celebrates on Feb. 19 after beating Glenbard North 50-40 to win the regional title. This season, the Bulldogs’ Hannah Frazier became the first player to score 2,000 career points and grab 1,000 career rebounds.
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