May Issue

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The Tam News — May 2016


CONTENT 04 05 06


Makers’ Class Creates Animatronic City by Hannah Chorley Art Students to Display Work by Megan Butt Special Olympics by Raqshan Khan UC Audit Reveals Bias by James Finn

04 05

May 2016

Lifestyles 07 08


17 18 19

I Don’t Read... But I Read This Book And Here Is Why You Should Too by Francis Strietmann Tamalpais High School: An Architectural History by Leo DiPierro



Here But Not Heard by Danielle Egan

Op/Ed Editorial by Staff Stay Home by Piper Goeking The Perils of Finding a College Roommate by Hannah Chorley

Sports 20 21 22


Sports Opinion: Dropping the Baton by Griffin Barry Athlete of the Issue: Nick Kennison by Connor Norton Q & A: Liam Howard by Franny Kiles

May 2016 — The Tam News



Dear Reader,

Communication is key when it comes to achieving any objective. In the classroom, in sports, and in journalism, maintaining a good dialogue with one’s peers is an essential part of accomplishing a goal. This month’s feature, “Here but not Heard” by Danielle Egan, explores an observed lack of communication at Tam that has at times hindered the progress of different groups on Tam’s campus that share the same goal. Egan’s story focuses specifically on the manner in which this lack of communication has affected groups on campus campaigning for equality for different minority groups. As Egan discovered, many groups on our campus seem to share similar goals, but are often unsuccessful in communicating their individual aims with one another. Some of the trends Egan identifies in her piece, once corrected, could lead Tam’s student body to become an altogether more supportive, inclusive, and positive environment for students of all different backgrounds.

James Finn

EDITORS IN CHIEF: Hannah Chorley, James Finn, & Raqshan Khan

NEWS: Megan Butt & Danielle Egan

Cover by: Kevin Lee On the Cover: Danielle Egan explores the effects of communication on equality in Tam’s community.

SPORTS: Connor Norton, Calvin Rosevear, & Misha Krivoruchko

INTERNS: Sam Pletcher & Adam Tolson

INTERNS: Elissa Asch, Kate Finn, & Samantha Locke

PHOTOS: Claire Donohue & Sam Toland

LIFESTYLES: Claire Donohue & Jackson Gathard

GRAPHICS: Leo DiPierro & Luke Rider

INTERN: Dahlia Zail

FEATURES: Marina Furbush, Tandis Shoushtary, & Kendall Lafranchi

INTERNS: Marie Hogan & Francis Strietmann

OPINION: Cam Vernali, Maddie Wall, & Trent Waltz

INTERNS: Nicole Anisgard Parra & Madeline Reilly

COPY EDITORS: David Hanson, Izzy Houha, & Glo Robinson

INTERNS: Kennedy Cook

DESIGN: Tandis Shoushstary INTERNS: Kennedy Cook

BUSINESS TEAM: Megan Butt, Danielle Egan, Kendall Lafranchi, & Calvin Rosevear

Tamalpais High School 700 Miller Avenue Mill Valley, CA 94941

Volume XI, No. VIII May 2016 A publication of Tamalpais High School Established 1916

ADVISOR: Jonah Steinhart PRINTER: WIGT Printing

REPORTERS: Nicole Anisgard-Parra, Elissa Asch, Maddie Asch, Griffin Barry, Vincent Boot, Aliona Brichov, Trevor Bukowski, Willzie Connelly, Kennedy Cook, Alexandra Deane, Michael Diamandakis, Keldon Duane-McGlashan, Kate Finn, Piper Goeking, Jacob Goldman, Nick Goldman, Arya Guinney, Adam Harband, Marie Hogan, Whitney Howard, Elliott Jacobs, Gibson Katz, Franny Kiles, Blake Killingsworth, Ethan Lawrence, Ginger Lazarus, Ilaria Lobo, Samantha Locke, Jackson Loder, Joshua Love, Nicholas Moe, Jack Murphy, Lilly Murphy, Elisabet Nelson, Connor Norton, Benjamin Olizar, Mitchell Pardi, Luca Pelo, Morgan Pinney, Samuel Pletcher, Max Plotkin, Alexander Price, Madeline Reilly, Isabel Rodriguez, Charlotte Rosgen, Miles Rubens, Eddie Schultz, Connor Scutt, Hannah Shulman, Francis Strietmann, Adam Tolson, Blake Villanueva, Wanya Williams, Maxwell Williams, Zoe Wynn, Dash Yarnold, Dahlia Zail EDITORIAL BOARD: Hannah Chorley, Claire Donohue, James Finn, Marina Furbush, Raqshan Khan, Franny Kiles, Connor Norton, Blake Villanueva, Peter Wynn The Tam News, a student-run newspaper publication, distributed monthly, is an open, public forum for student expression and encourages letters and article contributions. The Tam News reserves the right to edit submissions for length and content. All content decisions are made by student editors. The Tam News is published monthly, though dates may vary. The Tam News is nonprofit and any proceeds and contributions are used in the production of the newspaper publication and for journalism education. Additional information concerning contributions or advertising can be obtained by writing to the address provided above or through our website. Copyright © 2015 by The Tamalpais News. All rights reserved. Reproduction is prohibited without written consent.

The Tam News — May 2016




Maker Class Creates Animatronic City by Hannah Chorley

tudents in Geo Monley’s Computer Ap- of city planning. Falzone also focused on the plywood down to create the appearance plications class, known as the “Maker” building the raised platform and mapping of a beach and a bay. class, created a miniature animatronic out the locations of the roads, while WhiteFalzone described the construction city and presented it at the process. “We built the raised Marinnovators Faire, a youth platform by sketching how maker faire sponsored by all the scaffolding was going the Marin County Office of to go and we cut out all the Education, on April 30. The scaffolding,” he said. “Then students named their model we built the ramp by placing city Makersfield and began all the wood on top of each the project at the beginning other.” of the semester. Makersfield Monti acted as Makerswas dismantled on May 2. field chief electrician. “I The final product includstarted out just doing street ed interactive electronic and lights and then moved my mechanical features and was way into some city planbuilt using plywood scaffoldning and ended up doing all ing on a rectangular wooden the wiring for the board,” board. City structures includhe said. “Before the project, ed a model lighthouse, Trump COMPLETED PROJECT: Computer Applications students stand before their I knew basic circuitry, but I animatronic city. PHOTO COURTESY OF GEO MONLEY Tower, and power plant. had never done anything this The project was primarily student run. ley did most of the painting for the project. complex so I kind of learned as I went.” He “I was just there to help people get their “[I did] the original city design. [It] also enjoyed the freedom and creativity of things going,” Monley said. Freshmen was modelled off of Paris…[but] it was lat- the project. “[There were] no limitations to Jace Monti and Brycen Falzone and junior er scrapped for a more visually appealing... what we could do...that’s what [was] fun.” Sammy Whiteley coordinated and oversaw manner. The final city vaguely resembled According to Monley, the project the construction of the city, while other stu- San Francisco,” Whiteley said. That resem- taught students a lot of useful skills. “Troudents in the class created individual struc- blance included the model bay in one cor- bleshooting, solving problems… and worktures and buildings. ner of the city, which was constructed by ing with your hands, those are transferrable Whiteley and Falzone were in charge raising the structure of the city and sloping skills,” he said. ♦


May 2016 — The Tam News



Student Art to be Publically Displayed

uring the week of May 30, art teacher Zach Gilmour’s fifth period mixed levels drawing and painting class will be displaying their artwork in locations on and off campus. The project is meant to educate students about the different steps of visual art. “The point [of this project] is to show the culminating skills [of students] and also to show that the other half of visual art is that someone else has to see it,” Gilmour

by Megan Butt

said. As a part of the assignment, the students will prepare their artwork for viewing, display it, and hold a viewing of their work. Students will create flyers or cards to invite others to their art viewings during tutorial or lunch periods. “I don’t necessarily know if the entire school realizes the amazing work that is being done in this room, so it’s a way to try and help the whole Tam community see the amazing work these

students are doing,” Gilmour said. The fifth period art students are required to complete two new pieces for their displays, and are encouraged to include previous works as well. “I really enjoy this project because it allows us to have a lot of freedom as artists to do what we enjoy personally as far as medium and subject,” junior Rio Quezada said. The art will be up for a week and will be taken down during the week of June 6. ♦

Tam Students Compete in Special Olympics


by Raqshan Khan

tudents participated for the first time director Christina Amoroso, who helped classrooms as us during the day, they are in the Special Olympics United Track coordinate the logistics of the events, the still our fellow students. Events like these meet, hosted at Sir Francis Drake High students’ creation was complete. The Spe- can really bring our school and community School On Thursday, April 28. The track cial Olympics United is different from together. Just like the Unified Sports Basteams from Drake, Redwood, and Tam all the traditional Special Olympics events, ketball game against Redwood, the crowd participated in the Special Olympics Unit- as Lovejoy explained. “Special Olympics went wild for both teams. It was an outed. United works with general ed athletes, standing moment to witness.” Michael Lovejoy, special edTam had three athletes cation teacher said, “The meet Willy Ocean, Charlie Allred, was fantastic. Our team memand Rowland Buffingtonbers had uniforms, just like the Wong compete in the track other people on the track team, meet. Buffington-Wong met with their partners on the competed in and won the track, worked out their stretchlong jump competition with ing routines and everything.” a jump of 12 feet. Ocean, Special ed students and track Allred, and Buffington-Wong team members performed side all competed in the 100 meter by side in both the long jump dash. and 100 meter events. There was a large turnout This is the first year that the at this meet, which is unusual special education class has par- TEAMS UNITE: Tam Special Education students Charlie Allred, Rowland for track meets in general. ticipated in the Special Olym- Buffington, and Willy Ocean pose with Athletic Director Christina Amroso at Parents, track athletes from pics. “It started about, at the the Special Olympics United Track meet. all three schools, and comPHOTO COURTESY OF KYRA MOWBRAY beginning of the year,” Lovemunity members gathered joy said, “Five students; Courtney Chang, sometimes called partners and special edu- together to support and enjoy the meet. “I Brooke Butler, Dylan Harris, and Theo An- cation athletes,” Lovejoy said. The events saw great camaraderie. People with their drews came to me and asked if there was take place with partners, one member of the arms over each other’s shoulders. People a Special Olympics Team at Tam. I said general track team and the special educa- just happy for each other,” Lovejoy said. no, so they had the idea to get one started. tion track team, working together to par- “There wasn’t really the stress of winning, We checked with Redwood High School ticipate in the events. just the idea of doing your best, and celand Drake, and they had a similar type of Kyra Mowbray, teacher’s assistant for ebrating it with a team. The people from club going on and they were just starting to Lovejoy’s class and photographer at the Drake, the hosts, were wonderful. People work with Special Olympics United.” event said, “I think that people were able to cheered for different schools- not just their After joining forces with the two other learn a lot from this event. While students own. So it really felt like a community schools and recruiting the help of athletic with disabilities may not be in the same coming together.” ♦

The Tam News — May 2016




UC Audit Reveals Bias

he California State Auditor released a report entitled “the University of California: Its Admissions and Financial Decisions Have Disadvantaged California Resident Students” in late March, revealing an admissions bias on the part of the University of California towards non-California residents who pay

more in tuition than their California counterparts. According to the audit, non-California residents pay annual tuition of $37,000, compared to the $12,240 that in-state residents pay annually. In addition, from 2010 to 2015, non-resident enrollment at UCs increased


May 2016 — The Tam News

by James Finn

by 82 percent (a total of 18,000 new students). The 116-page document also calls for heightened admissions requirements for out-of-state students, as well as a greater emphasis on recruiting minorities who live in California. Students across the state are upset by the allegations raised by the audit. “The intention of the UC system is to give students in California a good education at a reasonable price,” senior Joe Kim said. “We’re paying tax dollars for that. It doesn’t really make sense to give that opportunity to people out-of state.” Kim will attend either UC Berkeley or UC Davis next year. Besides the increase in the number of out-of-state resident attendees of the Uni-

versity, the audit identifies that a substantial number of those out-of-state admittees were less-qualified than many California students who were refused admission, a trend that has persisted for more than 10 years, according to the report. Senior Sammy Lebuhn feels that California students are now at a greater disadvantage than ever before when it comes to applying to college. “A lot of other states like Texas and North Carolina accept a huge majority of in-state students [per state policy], so Californians are at a disadvantage when applying to out-of-state schools,” Lebuhn said. “And now California students are also at a disadvantage when applying to in-state schools.” The UCs released a report of their own in response to the audit, entitled “Straight Talk on Hot-Button Issues: UC Admissions, Finances and Transparency.” In a statement accompanying this report, UC president Janet Napoletano said that “the draft report [of the audit]...makes inferences and draws conclusions that are supported neither by the data nor by sound analysis.”♦ GRAPHIC BY LEO DIPIERRO


I Don’t Read... But I Read This Book and Here is Why You Should Too I

t was a typical Sunday afternoon. My parents and I were visiting an old friend of theirs who lives with her husband and two daughters. The older, who will start high school next fall, had just moved out of her shared room with her little sister and was eager to show me her “new room,” the cleared out basement. Her younger sister was also excited to show me her new room too. Each living space was unique to the girl who occupied it. Both were fairly simple, holding things that were special to them without excess. I told my mom how lovely each of their rooms was and how envious I was, due to the fact that since my earliest memories my room has never stayed free of mess for even a single week. These perfect rooms, my mother explained, were due to a book the mother of the girls had read, the methods of which she had employed. Though my mother knows that suggesting book titles to me mid­-school year is similar to telling my brother to get a life, she took a chance and went for it. “The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up” by Marie Kondo is a best seller and will land you on a week long wait list if you wish to check it out from the library. This is just enough time to cope with the fact that as a high school student you are already reading a self-help book. Clean rooms and unassigned reading material are two things that are usually not points of interest for many kids our age. But the rooms of the two young girls were just so beautiful. I read the whole book cover to cover on a Tuesday: between classes, at lunch, before and after school, and even in the car. I am by no means a fast reader. I have never been the first to finish a reading in class, nor second, third or probably fourth. I do not have a particular passion for cleaning either. I never make my bed, and I hate doing laundry. That being said, I am completely confident in saying that this book did change my life. Kondo makes eloquent statements in her book such as, “The ques-

by Francis Strietmann

tion of what you want to own is actually the question of how you want to live your life.” These ideas will transform your living space as well as your way of thinking about it. The book suggests that “the best way to choose what to keep and what to throw away is to take each item in one’s hand and ask: 'Does this spark joy?' If it does, keep it. If not, dispose of it.” This approach to your belongings will transform your room into a you­ -centric wonderland of positivity and beauty (in your own eyes at least). Do not go into this book expecting Kondo will teach you the secret to folding all of those ugly T­-shirts you can’t throw away into a shape that fits 10 times as many into your drawer. This book is a physical, as well as mental, journey. Not only will it teach you to create and maintain a clean living environment, but also one which will help you become the best possible you. A book that promises to change not only your cleaning style but also you may seem intimidating at first. Kondo’s gentle suggestions, you will soon discover, are far from that. She will tell you things like “The true purpose of a gift is to be received,” in regard to letting go of things that you do not particularly enjoy but were given to you, a common source of clutter for the average teenager. Throughout the book she addresses any issue a person may have with giving or throwing away things that are no longer relevant. “The space in which we live should be for the person we are becoming now, not for the person we were in the past,” she writes. This topic is very relevant for people of all ages, but even more so to the high school student who is changing the most rapidly on their journey to self­discovery. Immediately after reading the book I transformed my room. I went through every storage space, dumped it out, then sorted it into two piles, those which sparked joy and those that did not. Previously I needed the top of my dresser, shelf, and

underneath my bed to store things. After this I do not use any of those spaces. My table next to my bed is clean for the first time in years and my drawers are not overflowing. My room is a beautiful, clean, and happy place that I am relieved to return to after a long day of school and sports practice. I never lose my clothes at the bottom of drawers anymore, due to the suggested method of having all objects visible when the drawer is opened (no vertical stacking). I now make my bed regularly for the first time in my life. This book will transform your room, your tidying habits, your ways of thinking about tidying, and additional lessons which may extend to your world outside of your room. “It is the same with people," Kondo writes. "Not every person you meet in life will become a close friend or a lover. Some you will find hard to get along with or impossible to like. But these people, too, teach you the precious lesson of what you do like, so that you will appreciate those.”♦

The Tam News — May 2016



Tamalpais High School:

by Leo DiPierro


be moved because of exposure to the elements. Classes continued with 64 students inside the unfinished Wood Hall. In its early years, the building housed classrooms and the school cafeteria, where the current administrative offices are. The clock tower was not originally part of the building, and was partially funded by the class of 1946 as a memorial to those Tam students who lost their lives in World War II.

am High has arguably the most beautiful and memorable campus in Northern California. Many students walk our halls oblivious to the rich history of the buildings. Since 1908, Tam’s campus has changed drastically, and has serviced countless people. The names of the various buildings around Tam often go unnoticed by students and faculty alike. However, these names are as entrenched in the history of Tam and Mill Valley as the physical buildings themselves.

Keyser Hall (2) Constructed in the 1920s and then demolished in 2006 after discovery of extensive problems with drainage and toxic mold, Keyser hall was (and still is) Tam’s largest building. When originally built, Keyser housed the majority of English and Foreign Language classes. The rebuilt Keyser includes three science classrooms as well. The original building was constructed in 1922, with the ‘upper Keyser’ sec-

Wood Hall (1) The oldest building on campus, and one of the most prominent buildings in Mill Valley, is named after Ernest E. Wood, the first principal of Tam and the founder of the school in 1908. In the first year of the school’s existence, classes began in small tent structures which had to (9)

tion being added in 1924. The building is named after Tam’s celebrated first teacher, Elizabeth Keyser. The building was dedicated to Ms. Keyser after she retired from Tam in 1947, the last of the original staff to retire. The modern Keyser hall began construction in 2008 and was finished in 2010. Hoetger Hall (3) Hoetger Hall, or the Commercial Building as it was originally known, was actually designed, in part, by the architecture students and their instructors during the late 1910s (the very same students helped design the iconic arches at the foot of Wood Hall). However the building was officially named after well-regarded Tam teacher Conrad Hoetger came to the school during the 1960s and proceeded to teach at Tam for some time. Hoetger Hall was also one of the first buildings in, addition to Wood Hall, to be built.



(6) (2) (11) (10)





May 2016 — The Tam News




An Architectural History George Gustafson Gym (4) Gus Gym, as it is more commonly known, has been an iconic part of Tam since the 1920s. It is named after George Gustafson, who coached football, baseball, tennis, and swimming for 37 years at Tam, starting in 1933. After he retired in 1971, the gym was formally named after him. During extensive school renovations in the 1990s and 2000s, the gym received seismic upgrades. The original design for the gym included four towers, two on each end of the gym, and extensive windows on either side. These were removed as part of the retrofits. Ruby Scott Gym (5) The second gym on campus is named for Ruby Rowena Scott. Scott was a foreign language and English teacher at Tam from 1913 to 1957. The gym was built during the 1950s and officially dedicated to Scott in 1957, under the name “The New Girls Gymnasium of Ruby Scott Auditorium.” Ruby Scott also began the tradition of the annual Tam Roman Dinner. She taught Latin, and in 1935, she began to hold an annual banquet with Roman decorations, music, and food. Scott was one of the most prominent teachers to come to Tam during the 20th century, and even after she retired, her students often wrote and called her, at home in Berkeley. In the 1960s, the gym was renovated to improve its acoustics and seating capacity, and was also upgraded as part of the Caldwell Theater project in 2006.

back of campus among the trees, the building is situated on the edge of the hillside adjacent to Mead Theater. It was built during the 1930s and is named after Glidden Benefield, who was the head of the boys’ PE department and was the athletic director at Tam during the middle of the 20th century. The building once housed photography studios and drama prop storage, but is now used for to storage space and custodial items. The old murals that once adorned the sides of the Mead Theater stage, which was demolished in the 1970s, still lie in Benefield Hall. The building is condemned due to drainage issues stemming from the hillside it is situated on. Mead Theater (8) Mead theater was constructed in 1937 by members of the Works Progress Administration (WPA). This was an organization formed as part of the New Deal during the Great Depression to help with unemployment and civil works projects. The WPA built Mead Theater and a large stage, which was destroyed in the 1970s due to dry rot problems. The theater itself is named after Earnest Mead, a member of the Tam School Board from 1920 to 1944. The WPA also constructed the Myrtle statue that sits atop the fountain in orange court.

Woodruff Hall (6) The current math building was constructed after Keyser Hall, in the early 1930's. Its namesake is derived from Margaret Woodruff, who was the head of the social studies department at Tam and the founder of what was originally known as the Honor T Society, which dealt with high-ranking academics at Tam.

Mary Baker Student Center (9) Not many Tam students know of the official name of the student center. It is named after Mary Baker, a member of the class of 1932. The student center was completed in 1972 and dedicated to Ms. Baker, who spent over 40 years at Tam as a student, English and history teacher, director of physical education, Dean of girls, and even assistant principal. The student center was constructed as an area for students to congregate, and includes an expanded cafeteria after the original one in Wood Hall was remade into administrative offices.

Benefield Hall (7) One of the most enigmatic buildings on campus, Benefield hall is a small and inconspicuous building that has existed for most of Tam’s history. Located near the

Palmer Hall (10) The current science building, Palmer Hall was constructed during the 1960s and deviated into a more modern form of architecture for Tam’s traditional campus. It is


named after Ray Palmer, who was head of the Tam science department from 1927 to 1959. The building stands in the footprint of principal Wood’s original house, which served as a classroom, home, and teacher lounge until it was demolished to make way for the science building in the 1960s. The large redwoods planted to the right of the building were planted by Mr. Wood, to celebrate the birth of each of his four daughters. The trees have thrived throughout all of Tam’s construction and remodels. Daniel Caldwell Theater (11) The second newest building at Tam, the Caldwell Performing Arts Theater, was completed in 2006 and currently serves as the headquarters for the Conservatory Theater Ensemble (CTE), Tam’s theater department. Daniel Caldwell was a former student at Tam who in 1976 formed the Ensemble Theater Company (ETC), as it was originally known. He headed the theater department for many years, and ETC was renamed to CTE in 1994. Original Swimming Pool Additionally, the original Tam pool was constructed out by the tennis courts on the remains of an old barge, and had to be demolished in the 1950s after it began to sink into the landfill. The modern pool was also constructed in conjunction with the Keyser Hall project. Tam’s campus has survived for over a century, and has gone through many changes. Despite these changes, the original spirit abides on the campus, rooted in the rich history that connects Mill Valley with the people who have been part of the Tam community through the past 108 years. ♦


The Tam News — May 2016


by Danielle Egan

Graphics by Tandis Shoushtary and Kevin Lee



May 2016 — The Tam News


hile the Sexuality and Gender Alliance Club (SAGA) was working to designate new, gender-neutral bathrooms, the unaffiliated Gender Alliance Club was putting up signs on school bathrooms saying that anyone who identified as female could use the female bathrooms, and anyone who identified as male could use the male ones. “[SAGA was] not aware that another such club existed on campus,” senior and SAGA copresident Elodie Townsend said. “Obviously, having another supportive group is fantastic, but the fact that they did not reach out to us or communicate with us was worrisome. We have been working on getting gender neutral bathrooms for two years now, and the signs came as a shock for us; not a bad one, of course, but they diverted attention from our cause.” This event highlighted that the progress of social movements and the acceptance of diversity at Tam is often hindered by a lack of communication. Diversity can refer to ethnicity, wealth, sexuality, ideology, mental or physical health, and a hundred other classifications. Although diversity at Tam is being addressed on various levels, by site and Tamalpais Union High School District (TUHSD) administrators, as well as within targeted programs and clubs, concrete progress is restricted by a lack of communication between programs and throughout Tam as a whole, according to many students, teachers, administrators, counselors, and community advocates.

Features “I don’t know that we have [concrete plans to decrease discrimination]. I think there are things done in service of it...but this is an issue we need to address,” Assistant Principal Brian Lynch said. “I think we’ll have a greater outcome if it’s coming from the students...and working off of there.” But because of the lack of correspondence, students don’t know that the administration wants them to lead the effort in addressing diversity, according to students interviewed. “There’s very poor communication [between the administration and students]… There’s basically no way to communicate,” junior Gwen Tosaris said. “If they do communicate [information], it’s over the speakers [during tutorial announcements], but no one listens to the speakers. My [tutorial] classroom doesn’t even have a working speaker, so I have no idea what’s going on in the real Tam community.” In over 25 interviews with key community members, a reality of fractured efforts for social change emerged. Administrators have the jurisdiction but not the studentadvocated ideas, programs have the resources but not the student engagement, and individuals have the ideas but not the authority or unified student body effort. Without active collaboration, each group can’t get farther than the indeterminate and eternal goal of “raising awareness”—rather than forming concrete solutions. Raising awareness is a respectable goal, but it isn’t enough to change the entire culture of a school, according to students interviewed. “We need to decide as a com-

munity that equity is a priority for everyone because…it makes the whole community stronger when everyone is getting what they need to be successful,” Wesley Cedros, the TUHSD Senior Director of Student Services, said. “There are definitely pockets of this work going on. We just need to be more intentional about it to broaden the scope of influence.” It’s important to consider what separations are present at Tam to understand the lack of communication in reducing them. One of the most prominent gaps in the Tam community is wealth. The average income in Marin is $92,000, while it’s $61,000 in California and $53,000 in the U.S, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Counselor Evelyn Dorsett stressed that the wealth of our society can ostracize those who aren’t as wealthy. “I think [the greatest division at Tam is]

We need to decide as a community that equity is a priority for everyone.

The Tam News — May 2016



I don’t have white friends.

” 12

May 2016 — The Tam News

wealth, students feeling excluded because their friends use money as a bargaining tool or identity,” Dorsett said. This division is reflected not only culturally but also academically. According to the Tamalpais Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) report, the percent of economically advantaged students at Tam who scored “proficient” or “advanced” on the 2013 California Standards Test (CST) was 85%. However, only 46% of economically disadvantaged students scored “proficient” or “advanced.” This indicates a significant and concerning achievement gap. Another issue is the racial divide. Junior Harpreet Kaur, who immigrated from India her sophomore year, feels that while the Tam culture as a whole is very open to discussing social issues compared to India, in practice, students still self-segregate based on their differences. “The one thing that disturbs me most here [is that] people are very separated,” Kaur said. “They’re not very integrated, as most of my

friends [at Tam] are immigrants. I don’t have white friends or any other friends. They are like separated within their culture, within their race.” The 2014 WASC report indicated that the population at Tam isn’t equally representative of different races. Tam’s 1332 students were 71% White, 10% Hispanic, 10% Asian, 5% African American, and 4% unknown. Unequal representation isn’t inherently harmful, but it can lead to minorities being overlooked. From 2009 to 2014, Tam’s average AP passing rate of white students was 84%, Hispanic students was 82%, Asian students was 85%, and African American students was 59%, according to WASC data, and African American and Latino students have consistently lower test scores and California High School Exit Exam (CAHSEE) pass rates than the Tam average. “Tam is a community created for a specific type of student...So it’s really hard for everyone else to be successful here,” senior Cece Haynesworth, president of the


Black Student Union, said. “[This type of student is] someone who doesn’t go through the same things as people of color go through...creating a space where we don’t talk about the issues that a lot of kids go through day by day.” According to students, there is not only an achievement gap, but also a social one, which prevents minority students from addressing stereotypes that their peers may hold. “There are a lot of ways people discriminate not even knowing and a lot of people still use offensive stereotypes as jokes,” junior Jacob Nishimura said. “I’ve gotten the ‘you’re Asian so you must be good at math’ joke maybe a thousand times from sixth grade until now. So there definitely are...underlying tones of racism.” These economic, racial, and social issues are already being addressed in programs available at Tam. The problem is that many students don’t know about them. “[The amount of students aware of these programs is] very small... We need to work on PR and marketing around what’s available for students,” Lynch said. “I think it would be presumptuous to assume that [everybody who could use these programs knows about them]. I think every student would benefit from accessing all of these things...I think they’re underutilized. So we can only increase support and services for our students.” Tam programs include Peer Tu-

toring, 10,000 Degrees, Bay Area Community Resources (BACR), and Peer Mentoring. These programs, while greatly beneficial, cannot give more time to a student who needs to work to support his/ her family or to afford college and cannot give students the childhood music lessons a wealthier family could buy. Greater opportunities can be given to disadvantaged students, but they should be assessed by what they’ve achieved within their constraints, not by how they compare with advantaged students, according to Lynch. “It’s important everybody’s held to the same standard but I think for different populations, we have to support the individual student, based on where they’re at, and where we want them to go,” he said. Other divisions arise out of ideological, rather than cultural or racial differences, but respecting others’ ideas is just as important of an issue. Diversity is about more than just innate classifications. It also means allowing others to have their own beliefs. “There’s this stigma at Tam about people who are religious or conservative,” junior Joey Diaz said. “If I ever say that I am a conservative, people kind of give me a funny look, they have these [negative] assumptions. The majority of Tam is liberal…[Conservatism is] just something that is different to them that they’re not used to, that they don’t appreciate, I don’t think that they enjoy.”

Tam is a community created for a specific type of student...So it’s really hard for everyone else to be successful here.

The Tam News — May 2016


Features There are many separate social movements at Tam addressing race, wealth, sexuality, and ideological differences. But they all are working to promote the same idea: that on an academic and social level, students should be equal, integrated, and free to express who they are. “[We need] to see the bigger picture,” Counselor Sarah Gordon said. “To see ourselves as a bigger community, with different branches of the community. Not everybody’s going to be alike but all in all we’re definitely all in one place and we’re here for one reason.” Bringing their programs together would further their collective success, according to TUHSD Superintendent David Yoshihara. “I think increasing the level of communication with our stakeholder groups and figuring out ways to empower our youth in meaningful ways would be a great first step [to increase acceptance],” he said. A clear example of connecting the Tam community to promote awareness and acceptance is seen through the Special Education de-


May 2016 — The Tam News

partment. “Mr. Lovejoy’s group, the developmentally disabled kids here, that’s a huge, diverse part of our population,” Gordon said. “We have kids from drama and kids from the art area and they are embracing [Special Education students], developing programs for them. I have kids that love being a [teacher’s assistant] for Mr. Lovejoy’s class because they love working with [Special Education students]... Kids have really begun to embrace them and bring them in as part of this community and that has been just wonderful to see because 12 years ago I have to say they were very separate.” Thus, a clear theme arises: communication needs to increase not just between administration, programs, and clubs, but also throughout the whole school. The best way to increase tolerance and celebrate diversity at Tam is to make it a targeted, school-wide effort that every student can contribute to. “[Students can] create relationships,” Haynesworth said. “And [students can be] trying to start conversations or wanting to be more inclusive and learning how to share this community and appreciate everyone who goes here.” If Tam increases its communication, community members can take a multifaceted ap-

proach to increasing diversity. “I think we need to start dealing with the amount of racism that is day by day and trying to form relationships without trying to ignore the problems,” Haynesworth said. “[We should be] trying to figure out how we can be more successful day by day, not just some of us, but finding ways for all of us to actually learn in our classrooms and want to participate and feel like we’re part of this community instead of looking from the outside in.” Another way to increase tolerance is to teach students about these issues. “[To promote acceptance we need] more education,” English teacher Abbey Levine said. “I have a friend who is transgender and he came into my AP Comp class last year and spoke to my students and it was really interesting for my students to again, bring down those myths...I think the more you learn, the better informed you are, the more accepting you are.” Through administrations, departments, clubs, targeted programs, and individual initiatives, awareness and integration with the goal of acceptance at Tam is being addressed. But the impressive task of changing Tam’s culture will continue to be stunted if

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The Tam News — May 2016



[Teachers need to] pay attention. There’s a lot of things that go on in classrooms that [they] don’t know.

all these movements work separately. Awareness can be raised until the end of time, but to make acceptance a reality, the entire school needs to take action and work together. “I want to see more school-wide diversity programs as well as more student involvement...I would love to see that it is a Tam-wide approach to Black History Month or gay-straight issues for gender equality or celebrating the Latino/Latina community,” Dorsett said. “I think we missed celebrating culture on this campus... the student body needs to look at how we build leaders for the future.” If you’re a student, in a club, a member of the administration, or any other stakeholder in the community, consider reaching out to each other. Consider not only talking, but taking action, whether planning diversity rallies, petitioning to add more culture lessons in the classroom, devising a new system for administration to relay information, or even talking to someone who has strong ties to a culture or idea. “It would have been wonderful for [SAGA and the Gender Alliance


May 2016 — The Tam News

Club] to collaborate and communicate with each other, especially since SAGA has been working with administration for quite a while,” Noah Radetsky, senior and co-president of SAGA, said. “Nevertheless, I am glad that there are so many people just here at Tam working towards the same goal. I feel hopeful that SAGA and the Gender Alliance [Club] can work together in the future to make Tam a more actively accepting community, and to bring it into the modern era of awareness around gender identity.” People of different race, class, gender, sexuality, ideas, mental and physical health—they’re all here. In one category or another, we’re all minorities, and it’s our duty to make sure that they’re heard. It’s our duty to make sure that we’re heard.♦



EDITORIAL: Standards-Based Grading

tandards-based grading (SBG) is a popular and new grading strategy whose use has expanded in the district over the past few years. SBG aims to assess students solely on whether they have acquired identified skills or knowledge and doesn’t take into consideration outside factors such as homework, attendance, or deadlines. In theory, this allows maximum flexibility for students by letting students meet the goal using the learning strategies that work best for them. While SBG has always been an optional tool for teachers, the previous district administration encouraged teachers to implement it in their courses. Many Tam students have experienced SBG in some form in recent years, often in the form of proficiency scales that teachers use to assess the skills and/or knowledge on a scale from 1-4. Now that we have a new district ad-

ministration, it is appropriate to revisit SBG’s implementation at Tam. Students have found that the differences between SBG and traditional grading are most pronounced in the areas of homework and retaking tests. The very flexibility that makes SBG a valuable tool also has its drawbacks. In homework-optional classes, less disciplined students can find themselves struggling to learn all of the material the night before a test, or not studying at all because they know they ’re able to retake tests. While many students and teachers point to the lack of daily deadlines in college as a reason to decrease them in high school, study habits and a work ethic are required in “real life” whether that means college or the workforce. High school is not college. Students need to learn study skills and frequent, graded homework that is enforced by deadlines is what many stu-

Crackin’ and Slackin’

dents need. However, not requiring daily homework can also be a boon to students. It dramatically reduces students’ workloads. And less homework can improve students’ engagement and work ethic when they do need to complete assignments. The open policy of retakes are also a consideration when looking at the effectiveness of SBG. Theoretically, under SBG, students should be able to retake a test or quiz an infinite number of times until they can show proficiency. Retakes do provide an impetus for teachers and students to revisit material so students don’t move on from a concept without understanding it. However, retakes take time, both the time required for the student to retake the test outside of class, and the time required for teachers to create new tests and oversee retakes. There is a finite amount of time in a school year, so a student can’t retake every test. In addition, in some subjects such as math, more than one retake is not feasible because concepts build on each successive concept. Besides the logistical challenges, retakes are have been used by students as a way to game the system and not work to learn material before the test. Because they know that they can retake the test as many times as they want, some students have reported taking a test to figure out the bare minimum required to pass the test without fully learning the topic. There are, however, some specific policies teachers might put into place to limit students taking advantage of SBG, such as limits on retakes or requiring students to complete test corrections before retaking a test. At the same time, students need to buy into the system and respect the flexibility and responsibility it gives them. If there is a problem in a SBG classroom, and learning is suffering, teachers have the right to reimplement various structures such as daily graded homework. In education there is no single system that fits every students. In a perfect world every student should have a tailored learning plan. While we lack the resources to truly customize learning, teachers should operate from a position of flexibility, even going as far as having a different assessment systems for each student. ♦

The Tam News — May 2016



Stay Home by Piper Goeking


was sitting in class when I heard the attempted suppression of a series of wet, seemingly lung-compromising coughs. I turned and saw one of my classmates, her face pale, eyes glazed over, battling to stay awake. My teacher noticed, and asked why she wasn’t home resting. She croaked that she had two tests she couldn’t miss, so she had to come to school. Throughout the rest of the period, a constant chorus of sniffles and coughs around the room seemed to acknowledge this commonly shared sentiment. At first I was reproachful, and wondered why she and my classmates were being so obstinate in neglecting their health. Then a few weeks later, my own immune system failed me. I fell ill with a sore throat, a walloping cough, and a pounding headache. Just as my classmate had, I forced myself through a Monday deathmarch in the name of not falling behind with my schoolwork. At the end of the day all I could manage to do was drag myself to bed, where I stayed for the rest of the week. When I came back to school the following week, it felt as though I had missed a whole semester. I used several sheets of paper to write down every assignment that had to be made up because they wouldn’t fit in my planner. Several of my teachers

furrowed their brows when I explained I couldn’t go to their tutorial, as my tutorials for the next two weeks were booked by my other teachers. Nights that week were spent playing catch up until the a.m, while simultaneously attempting to complete current assignments. In those early morning hours I wondered why my classmates and I felt the need to jeopardize our health. Teachers can’t just halt their curriculum when one or even several of their students are out sick. It’s also unrealistic for teachers to seek out students outside of class to catch them up on the work they’ve missed while sick. Students would rather suffer through classes to pick up that day’s assignments than risk falling behind. In this community the path taken after high school is usually the one to college, and students often get tunnel vision believing their grades must be perfect to allow them entrance to the future they want. Grades are compared amongst students and are subconsciously used to compare one another. By losing just one day at school students believe they are risking their GPA and are putting themselves at a disadvantage in keeping up in this high achieving atmosphere set by our classmates and ourselves. “Based on my own past experiences I believe students go to school out of the

Heard “So GUESS WHO DISCOVERED WHICH TRAFFIC in LIGHTS AREN’T PASSWORD Tam PROTECTED?” - LIBRARY 18 May 2016 — The Tam News Hallways by the Opinion Staff

fear that they will fall behind,” sophomore Taylor Kibrick said. “When you miss one day you are missing several hours of classes. Within that time a lot of material could be missed and info that might be crucial to succeed in the learning environment.” This survival of the fittest atmosphere leads to the need to go to school sick. As a school community, there should be more empathy in helping one another succeed, especially when we face a challenge like getting sick, which is out of our control. “There needs to be a better structure of learning outside the classroom to support absent students,” Kibrick said. “Teachers could post videos online that might cover information from class, then keep links posted on an online calendar.” Freshman Charlotte Johnson also supports an online solution. “An online option would be good so students can work from home when they feel up for it, rather than having to make it up right when they get back,” she said. Though individual, outside attention isn’t always a viable option, teachers should consider this way of support as well as fully engaging with a student that has sought them out and try to aid them as thoroughly as they can to help them after returning from being sick. As classmates, we should support our peers and friends by offering to help them keep up with assignments. Both of these things sound obvious, yet I’ve been hard pressed to find this kind of support when I’ve been forced to miss school. As high school progresses, the stakes get higher, and it becomes increasingly critical to stay on top of schoolwork. Of course, try your best to attend all the classes you can, but when you get sick take the time your body needs to get better. Your health comes first.♦ GRAPHIC BY LUKE RIDER



The Perils of Finding a College Roomate “IF YOU’RE READING THIS ROOM WITH ME” the Facebook post read in the Drake-esque font. Along with this creatively edited photoshop masterpiece, Danny had included a long paragraph of things about himself, and most importantly, warned all readers to “disregard the confederate flag” in one of his high school pictures because “that kind of stuff doesn’t align with his actual political views” and he’s “genuinely a decent person.” Reading posts like Danny’s has become a common afterschool activity for me as I near the end of my high school career and anticipate my upcoming four years of college. If you’re unfamiliar with the roommate process, this is how it works: you can either choose the random option and have the college match you or you can attempt to find a roommate yourself. Ever since I was little, I have dreamed about having that perfect college freshman experience, one in which I showed up on the first day of college and instantly became best friends with my roommate. After being accepted to college, I was determined to avoid the roommate horror story that’s fictionalized in TV shows and movies, and find my perfect roommate. I began by investigating the random roommate option, but instantly decided that the seven question internet forum wouldn’t do the trick (three of the seven questions centered around whether I “fold my laundry right away, set my laundry down and fold it later, or never fold it at all.” How would my laundry habits help me find that perfect roommate out of 1,000 other people who probably have a very similar laundry experience.) So, I made the decision to take my roommate fate into my own hands and join both the “Northwestern University — Class of 2020” Facebook group and the “Northwestern University Class of 2020 — Admitted Girls Looking For A Roommate”


by Hannah Chorley

Facebook group. Most people began posting in these groups in the beginning of April. People would post roommate bios, ranging from the length of a tweet to a full essay about their living habits. What I’ve found–and I’m sure those who are also heading to college next year can corroborate this–is that college Facebook groups seem to bring out the weird in people. “Please be my roommate, I make really good math jokes. If you integrate don’t forget the C otherwise your grade will become one,” read one Facebook post. “Single, friendless female seeking roommate who will tolerate obsessive cartoon watching, spontaneous showtunes singing, and experimental light shows,” read another. There was the self proclaimed “long-time anarcho-communist,” the “ironic 1D lover,” and the “extreme tetherball fanatic,” all looking for likeminded individuals to room with. Yet, despite reading numerous posts detailing my future classmates’ odd interests and roommate desires, as I kept scrolling through the groups, I found that just about everyone likes trolling Buzzfeed, listening to Kygo and Drake and Kanye, watching Netflix (especially Friends and The Office and How I Met Your Mother), eating at cute coffee shops, and living by the motto “work hard, play hard.” Searching for a roommate in these groups felt like a form of awkward teenage online dating. After lurking around on the Facebook pages for quite a while, I finally decided to “swipe right” and chat a girl, Ashley, out of the blue. Conversation felt awkward and stilted at first, as we exchanged favorite music and movies, after school activities, summer plans. Yet, one thing lead to another, and we ended up meeting for lunch (she lives in Palo Alto). Over burgers and coffee milkshakes, we decided to room with each other next year.


The entire roommate search caused me an unreasonable amount of stress, and looking back, I can now see how insanely superficial the whole process is. It pains me to say this, but one of the only reasons I began talking to Ashley at first was that she just seemed cool. She’s pretty, likes to go out and have fun, seems like the popular girl at her school. Yet, as I got to know her over the course of our semi-awkward online and in person interactions, I began to like her for so much more than how she looked and how many friends it seemed like she had. Although Northwestern’s automated roommate questionnaire was basic at best, it looked past superficialities and “generic” beauty, and posed questions to match incoming freshman with people they would simply live with best: night owls with night owls, neat freaks with neat freaks, etc. So, it might be best to just skip the unnecessary stress and avoid picking a roommate based solely off “good looks,” and leave the roommate matching up to the experts. I also began to feel guilty for scrutinizing so many people in the college Facebook group after reading just one post about their quirky interests and habits. College is a place to learn from, and live among, people who have a range of passions, who are excited about what they are involved in, who are eager to talk about the activities they participate in. It’s going to be much more exciting to strike up a conversation with someone who has been part of an archery team for 12 years than to spend the entire time talking to people who have done journalism and mock trial throughout high school (like me). If you choose to judge your future classmates because of their infatuation with classical sonnets and flow dancing, you risk limiting your college experience before even setting foot on campus. ♦



SPORTS OPINION Dropping the Baton by Griffin Barry


n sports, there are winners and losers, coaches and officials, spectators and people judging the spectators, but there is one group that is always overlooked. This group of blunderers does not bring the team success, in fact, most of the time they bring the team loss, shame, and even murder. People who belong to this group do not wish to be. Commonly known as choke artists, the anti-clutch, they are the athletes that make mistakes. Mistakes that have made them failures and cause their teams to lose games. These are the absolute worst people ever. If my entire family was murdered, I’d prefer that these people get the death penalty over the person who decapitated my family. These people must live with their mistakes. All except for one lucky guy in Colombia. His mistake was accidentally scoring a goal for the opposing team, which knocked his country out of the 1994 World Cup. He doesn’t have to live with his error because he was shot six times and died. I learned about this event, after I made a terrible mistake in a track event. It really made me suspicious of my teammates and a plan they had devised called, “Squash the Barry.” For now, however, let’s take a journey to a time when that Colombian soccer player was still alive, and there was only one version of “Full House.” In 1994, everyone’s hair was as big as their computers, and the O.J. Trial was in full swing. During it all, unbeknownst to many Americans,

the World Cup was happening. However, in Colombia not only did they know the World Cup was underway, many Colombians passionately believed their team would come out victorious. Sadly, this is not what happened. Colombian defender Andrés Escobar (no relation to the drug lord Pablo Escobar) gave the other team a goal by deflecting one of their passes into his own net. Colombia ended up losing 2-1, and many Colombians blamed Escobar for the loss. The Colombian people’s anger towards Escobar reached such a tremendous peak that he was shot and killed on July 1, 1994. Its probably not a coincidence that Escobar’s infamous own goal occurred on June 22, three days after the end of spring, the same season as track. And guess what happened during the track season? My painfully unforgettable sports error. I recently learned that when running in a relay race, the most important aspect of it is not dropping the baton (the

stick thingy you carry around with you). Of course, the first time I ran in a hundred meter relay, I dropped it. Probably like Escobar, I don’t know how it happened. The baton hit the track during the hand-off between me and the person passing the baton

along. One second it was in my hand and the next it was on the ground. By the time the baton hit the track, I was about three steps in front of it. I ran back, picked it up, and sprinted to catch up to the other runners. We ended up losing that relay, and like Escobar, the fault fell on me, and I must live with that. Every day, I wake up and look at myself in the mirror for two solid hours (I just get lost in my own eyes), and I always think to myself, “Why did I drop that baton?” My teammates on the relay team did chastise me for my error, but it never came from a place of judgement. Nothing will ever make up for the guilt I feel for dropping that baton (nor the million dollars I now owe the person I bet I wouldn’t drop the baton). What is the lesson in all of this? Is it don’t drop the baton? Don’t run in relays? Don’t mess with Colombia’s chances of winning the World Cup? Is it that if your last name is Escobar, everyone will believe that you are related to the drug dealer? Or is it that we should all just take a chill pill before someone else gets murdered? Athletes should not get killed for the little mistakes they make. They should get yelled at by overweight men in face paint. Their errors do not define who they are and what they are capable of as athletes. I have so many things to live for, such as not dropping the baton again.♦ GRAPHIC BY LUKE RIDER

BY THE NUMBERS Score of the varsity baseball team’s victory over Novato on April 29. May 2016 — The Tam News

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The place of the mountain bike team at Petaluma in the NorCal Cycling League for the fourth race of the season on April 23.


Athlete of the Issue: Nick Kennison Boys’ Varsity Baseball Pitcher by Jack Murphy

age four. “Both my parents had played baseball and softball when they were younger so they signed me up for all the sports when I was younger,” Kennison said. “I liked [baseball] because I was always really small growing up and it was nice that you didn’t necessarily have to be the biggest kid to be the best .” In 2013, Kennison moved from Seattle to Mill Valley. He described how was made easy through his involvement in school sports, such as football and baseball, where he was able to meet new friends. Kennison played on the freshman baseball team at Tam. The next year, as a sophmore, he moved up to varsity. A NEW ERA: Junior Nick Kennison stands on “The transition between freshman the Tam field before a win against Redwood. and varsity was really tough because obPHOTO BY CLAIRE DONOHUE viously there is a big difference between he varsity baseball team sits third in the freshmen and seniors. The speed of the MCAL league standings with an over- game in general is just a lot faster,” he said. all record of 11-8, as of May 4 with hopes Kennison has since solidified his spot of continuing to play well in MCAL. A vi- in Tam’s pitching rotation and has relished tal part of their success this year has been the opportunity. “It has been challenging starting pitcher, junior Nick Kennison. definitely to throw a lot more innings than “When he’s pitching nothing really I have in the past, but its been really fun seems to bother him,” varsity baseball third and I have really enjoyed getting to play a baseman, junior Jack Dickson said. “Pitch lot,” he said. after pitch [Kennison’s] demeanor stays Coming into the season there had been the same, whether he has just let up a home questions and controversy surrounding the run or just struck someone out, which not baseball program due to the unexpected fironly restores our confidence in his ability, ing of previous head coach Scott Osder. but also restores our confidence in our own Despite the flared tempers associated ability,” says Dickson. with the issue, Kennison said that new Kennison has posted a 1.74 ERA coaches, social studies teachers Nathan (Earned Run Average), has a 4-1 record, Bernstein and Aaron Pribble, and volunteer and has struck out 40 batters in 52 innings. Don Kemper have all done a great job, and Kennison began playing baseball at that the team has adapted to the change.


“It’s not easy to switch coaches like that halfway through your high school career, but we’ve handled it really well and [Bernstein, head varsity coach] has done a really good job coming in,” Kennison said. During this period of change, Kennison has taken on a leadership role on the team. He embodies the philosophy of the program as he leads by example and inspires others through his own actions. “I knew Nick was going to be great on the mound for us, but he has worked incredibly hard this year to put himself in a position where he also helps us at the plate,” Bernstein said. “Nick is someone I hope the younger guys look at as a role model, because he does all the right things to improve individually and help the team succeed. He brings a phenomenal work ethic, positive attitude, and a competitive attitude that is invaluable to our chemistry and success as a team.” In terms of goals for this season, Kennison said that the team’s main focus coming into the season was to win either an MCAL championship or an NCS championship or both. Kennison also has his own personal goal of playing after high school, which he hopes to pursue. “I would like to play college baseball, but I wouldn’t choose a school just to play baseball,” he said. While Kennison will hope to continue his superb pitching through the rest of the season, he will still remember what baseball means to him. “It’s my favorite thing to do and…. it has taught me that you need to work to get the things you want in life,” he said.♦


Check the Tam News online ( for fast and fantastic sports coverage.


Number of years since the boys’ varsity lacrosse team has played a home playoff game before making the playoffs this year.

Losing score of the boys’ varsity tennis team in the MCAL Finals against Redwood on April 28.

The Tam News — May 2016




Liam Howard: Tam Mountain Biker by Franny Kiles

DEVELOPING RIDER: Sophomore Liam Howard races at the Sea Otter Classic on April 17. PHOTO COURTESY OF LIAM HOWARD


ophomore Liam Howard rides for the mountain bike team, racing in the JV category. He’s also on the Bear Development team. He is an extremely serious, accomplished biker with ambitious goals. Q: How long have you been biking? Since preschool. That’s really when I got off the training wheels and such and that was just when I was out riding in parking lots and with my dad. As time progressed we would do longer and longer rides throughout Mill Valley. We live very close to Mt. Tam, so it was really convenient just to head up the mountain from there. Q:What is the Bear Development team? Bear Development is a development team pretty much for anyone under the age of 23 to be riding at an advanced level. When you get on the team you get assigned a coach, and you do daily rides with them, and you follow a training plan. It takes a lot of commitment. You have to eat right. You have to stay hydrated constantly. You have to ride, and you have to follow the rules. We have a number of sponsors. I think the number was 11 [spon-


May 2016 — The Tam News

sors] this year. The team manager is really staying on us so we have to acknowledge them. We have to post Instagram photos of us using the products that they give us because they benefit us a lot. One of our big sponsors is Trek Bikes and they practically give us these $10,000 bikes so we have to treat them with kindness. Part of the mission for the [Bear Development] team is to set a goal and do everything you can to get there. My initial goal was to get top three in the national championships coming up in July, and that’s up in Mammoth, so that’s what I’m aiming for. Q: How has the Tam team been doing as a whole this year? We made a huge improvement from last year to this year. Last year we had a lot of really fast riders. This year we have three girls on the team who get podium results pretty much every time and that helps us along the way. We won [in] Petaluma last weekend. We were [the] first place D1 team which was a really big deal. Q: What have been some of the highlights from this season? I think the Sea Otter Classic [was a

highlight]. That’s one of the biggest festivals in North America and some people even say it’s the biggest in the world, but pretty much everyone gathers and there’s a ton of racing going on. I raced cross country in that with the [category 1] 15-16 [year olds] and it was a super tight finish with me and [fellow Tam rider and sophomore] Julian [LePelch] and that was a huge highlight. Battling it out with him and doing really well in that race. Top ten. That felt really good. Q: How do you hope to improve in the next two years at Tam? I really want to get riding technique down. I want to get faster and stronger. I want to stop growing up and start building more muscle. I’ll be racing varsity categories next year and the year after that so for Tam, for the Norcal series, my goal is to be varsity state champion, and that’s something that I want to chase and with Bear Development. I definitely want to receive my national title and there’s also these opportunities to go race with Team USA at world championships, and that’s another goal I have. Q: Do you have any favorite places to bike? Believe it or not, we live in one of the best places in the world to bike. Mt. Tam is a great mountain. There’s prime time trials and if you do it right and you know what you’re doing, it can be a really good time. Q: What is the best part about biking? I think it has a really good environment around it. I mean you can’t really say anything bad of it. It’s like, you’re outside getting exercise, and it’s pretty much doing what you love. Racing totally has something to do with it. When I’m racing it’s almost like I hate it. It sucks, but afterward it feels so good to know that you did so well. That’s the feeling I’m really trying to chase.♦

The Tam News Thanks Its Patrons Adrienne & Garrett Lawrence Alan Frankel & Lily Chen Allen & Lisa Preger Ana Levaggi Andrea and Jerry Lane Anne Courtney Annie Lazarus Arthur Antonio Barbara Bowman Barbara Laraia & Chris Pilcher Barbara Wingate Bill & Heidi Whalen Blake Sgamba Bryce Goeking & Tina Miyamoto Cabana Family Caroline Donahue Caroline Frost Catherine and Jim Long Chris & Kelly Haegglund Chris Hill Christine Hildebrand Chuck Gathard & Kay Arentsen Claudine Murray Cynthia Koehler + Gordon Renneisen Cole Jordan Connor Scutt Cynthia Stone D.M. Hanson Dale Rice & Jeff Johnson Daphne de Marneffe & Terrence Becker David & Leanne Hansen David & Stefany Harband David Furbush Dawn Dobras & Eric Swergold Dee Dee Taft Diana Coupard Diane Chang Diane Worley Donna Wenig Eric Lagier Erin Butt Ethan Moeller

Fox Family Fran Chouchena & Stephan Thomas Francia & Ian Grant Gary Ferroni Gillian & Richard Reilly Gretchen & John Boyle Hanna Ostroff Harold Ball and Amy Zimpher Heather Young Holly Parkin Howard and Valerie Wynn Ingrid & Andrew Tolson Isabel Smoyer Jan Hiti Janie and Joe Karp Jeff & Tracy Brown Jennifer & Kyle Klopfer Jennifer and Kyle Klopfer Jennifer Duffy-Bello Jennifer Oreste Jerri Sellick Jim & Sally Simpson Jim Finn & Janice Vorfeld John & Karen Sellick Jon & Gale Love Jonathan & Deborah Goldman Judtih Weaver and Steven Blackburn Julie and Tripp Taylor Karen and Steve Jaber Karen Benke Karen Fritz Kathleen Clifford & Bill Lampl Kathy and David McMahon Kathy Sonderby and Rich Ross Kelly and Dennis Leary Kerstin Bastian Kevin Head Kim and Vic Rago Labeeuw-Anderson Family LaDuke Family Laurel Johnson Lauren and Jerry Hancock

Laurie and Ralph Eddy Liam Shore Lide Jordan Lisa Hukari Lisa Terry Lori & Mark Coopersmith Lowry Parko Family Lynn & Mark Garay Mara Brazer Marcie Meyers Margaret Kirvoruchko Margie Herman Mari and Richard Allen Marianne Shine Marie Furtado Mark and Shonalie Guinney Marnie Furbush Mary Anne Vorfeld Maureen Keefe Max Perkoff and Melanie Wice Perkoff Maxine Bonnette MC Handsome Mcquaid Family Mia Krueger Micaela Breber Michael and Amy Thomas Michael and Ruth Chavez Family Michael D Tadlock Michelle and Jeff Tripp Mike Webb & Patty Mullen Molly Baumhoff Molly Brown Nancy Conger Nessa Brady Nicola and Paul Stiff Pam Sowerby Patricia Prince & Leonel Figueredo Peter & Julie Butt Phyllis Manning Lee Pierre Levin Richard Rider Robert Schultz Rubens Family Ruth Ann Spike and Elliot Neaman

Sam & Aaron Wall Sandy & Peter Goetz Sarah McNeil Sasha Faulkner Sharon Brusman Shawn Yarnell Sol Broner Steve & Jan McDougal Steve and Jan McDougal Steven Podesta Sue & Steve Weinswig Sue Oliver and Tim Pozar Susie Pung Suzanne DiBianca Tamara Goldman Teresa McGlashan The Alamin Family The Allen family The Begler Family The Berlinger Family The Bishop Family The Boot Family The Ferro Family The Gant Van Vliet Family The Griffin Parker Family The Kiles Family The Korngut Family The Kuhn Family The Levine Family The Oliver Family The Parker Family The Parkin Family The Pulgram Family The Rose Family The Rosevear Family The Weisert Family Tina & Jeff Taylor Tina and Jeff Taylor Toussaint Family Trish Bernal Tristan Naramore Waluk Family Wei Yin Wong Wendy Tobiasson & Raoul Wertz Whitney & Peter Bardwick Wil & Barbara Owens

The Tam News — May 2016


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Volume XI, Issue No. VIII - May 2016

May 2016 — The Tam News