Page 1

Volume XI Issue 7


Prince George H.S. - 7801 Laurel Spring Rd. Prince George, VA 23875 - - April 19, 2013

Bus Drivers

Needed p.7

Recently there has been a shortage of bus drivers for activity runs for sports in which games have been postponed. The issue was brought to light by upset students , parents, and coaches. Photo by Kristen Schwalm.

Visit to see the latest photo galleries.

Students Remember Students Prepare For Classmate, Gerald Fouts Junior, Senior Prom p. 8 p. 15

Theater Students Present Dracula p. 19

During Spring Break on Sat., Apr. 6, junior Gerald Fouts lost his life in a tragic car accident. Students honor Fouts by reminiscing moments they shared with him.

On May 2, 3, and 4 theater students will perform Dracula as their spring production. This production is being performed as a comedy in contrast to a horror.

Prom will be held Apr. 20 for juniors, seniors and their dates at the Regimental Club on Fort Lee. It is from 8 PM to 12 AM and will be followed by after prom at Swaders Sports Park.



After Prom at Swader’s an Expensive Venture

the RoyalNews



ur mission as the school newspaper for Prince George High School is to provide a form of media that represents all aspects of student life. The goal is to present factual accounts of newsworthy events in a timely manner. Our publication will be informative, entertaining and reflective of the student body’s opinions. It is the desire of the staff to reach every student and tell as many of their stories as possible. We invite your commentary: The Royal News Opinion page is a forum for public discussion and shall be open to all students. The Royal News will print as many letters as space will allow. The Royal News reserves the right not to print a letter. The Royal News publishes a wide variety of opinions. Send letters to: Letters to the Editor, The Royal News, PGHS, 7801 Laurel Spring Road, Prince George, Virginia 23875, or bring them to room A4, or e-mail them to We reserve the right to edit for clarity, brevity, accuracy, legality, spelling and grammar. Please include your name, address and phone number. Anonymous letters will not be considered for publication. 500 word maximum. Thank you for the support this year. Please continue to communicate on

Section Editors

Illustration by Anthony.

Front page: Quetasia Faulcon-Op/Ed: Nathan Britt-News: Casey Overton-Features: Faven ButlerDouble Truck: Danielle Marshall-A&E : Deborah Gardner-Sports: Kristen Schwalm-Ampersand: Tiana Kelly-Photo Editor/Distribution and Events: Ridhi Patel-Business & Ad Editor: Chloe Alexander-Online Editor-in-Chief: Korrina Smith Online Sports Editor: Courtney Taylor-Social Media Manager: Christina Buckles

Senior Mindset Examined


Writers Debra Thomas-Genevieve Perez-Kolade OlanrewajuBlier Smith-Sarah Daniel-JoJo Taylor-Lindsay Pugh-Devan Fishburne-Angelica Martinez-Mallory Cox-Roxy Sherrick-John Shumar-Samantha Barton

Editor-in-Chief Amanda Majewski Chloe Alexander

Managing Editor Quetasia Faulcon


Chris Waugaman

Professional affiliations & awards Columbia Scholastic Press Associations Gold Medalist 2008-2011 Columbia Scholastic Press Associations Silver Crown Winner 2011 Virginia High School Association Trophy Class 2006-2011 Col. Charles Savedge Award for Sustained Excellence 2010 SIPA All Southern 2008-2011 SIPA Scroggins Award for Online Media 2013

The Royal News, PGHS &

7801 Laurel Spring Road Prince George, Virginia 23875 804-733-2720 The Royal News is printed at The Progress-Index in Petersburg, Virginia


Business Manager

ith so many drastically important decisions staring seniors in the face, it is a stressful and sometimes tormenting time for those nearing the end of their high school tenure. The bright future of life in college or as an adult is on the horizon, but the daily grind of high school work is still very present. It is easy to become complacent or lose sight of what is expected. The path of least resistance is not the most fulfilling. Attitude is very important in these last few weeks. Acceptances are in, potential careers are planned, and many students are ready to move on with their lives. However, students need to realize that high school is not time they will ever get back. Seniors need to relish the time they have here and use it to its fullest potential. Seniors should not be merely biding their time until they can leave. There is so much still left to be done and experienced in high

school and living in the future distracts students from taking advantage of these experiences and opportunities. Underclassmen should use this time to gain perspective on their future. Sometimes just getting out of bed in the morning is a real struggle. By trying to live life too fast, Seniors not only make everyday tasks more difficult, they also waste time that could be spent in much more useful ways. Seniors have got to realize that doing high school work is not yet beneath them. They also need to realize that life is so much better now than it has ever been in high school. It is also much easier than it will ever be in college. That is a combination that should cause this time to be filled with opportunity and excitement, not a complete lack of motivation. This is not to chastise students for slacking off. This is to encourage students to take advantage of what is in front of them and worry about the future when it comes.

fter Prom is going to be held at Swaders Sports Park this Sunday morning. Students picked Swaders instead of the high school gym for the location of this fun event. All should be right with the world, except the price is $35 per ticket, making the night considerably more strenuous on the pocketbook. The tickets are $20 Amanda more than last year. Majewski This price increase discourages students from wanting to attend. If a couple were to go to After Prom it would be $70 (a price that often falls on one half of the couple). That is a lot of money on top of the cost of prom tickets, a prom dress, a tuxedo, prom hair, make-up, and dinner. Fundraising is not easy in a tight economic environment, but it is essential to keeping the price of After Prom affordable for all students. This year the PTA did not pick effective fundraisers. They tried to do a Valentine’s Dance and a Glow Stick Dance but unfortunately, both had to be cancelled for lack of participation. These sort of events don’t really appeal to a wide swath of the high school population. Other fundraisers like the Homecoming Dance and Yard Sale Bazaar were more successful. According to Lynn Clark, a PTA official, it costs over $20,000 to hold the After Prom at Swaders. Next year, the PTA has to choose more revenue heavy fundraisers to pull off a successful event. The money issue is an obvious hindrance for students in the attendance of After Prom. A popular alternative for those not going to After Prom is going out partying. The reason After Prom exists is to keep students safe and free of substance abuse. Drinking and driving is unacceptable. I understand the dilemma of pricing, providing fun activities, and getting people to attend, as a couple factors may work against each other. However, it is vital that the PTA make it happen in an affordable and enjoyable fashion for the sake of student safety.



Are textbooks necessary in classrooms?

With the use of tablets in the classrooms becoming more and more prevalent, some are suggesting that e-readers be used to cut down on the cost of textbooks. Is it really a practical idea?


hat if there were no more books in the world? Would we still have record of past occurances? People know about the past because of ancient books. Texts can be passed down from generation to generation. Books are universal and have been translated from language to language and culture to culture. The presence of textbooks, although never fun, can be extremely useful to students. It is important to have books in schools because they provide a resource for information. If a student does not understand a lesson, or misses the lesson, they can easily look back in their textbook and learn it. Books make school work significantly easier. Printed works are generally more reliable than technology. One can always rely on a book being one hundred percent correct. Unlike technology, books are resources that have truthful information that has always gone through an editing process. On the other hand, technology can shut down, run out of batteries, and sometimes even give false information on the internet. Using technology sometimes requires wi-fi. This can be a very expensive problem but it can be avoided with the use of textbooks. Books need to be in schools because they are reliable sources that everyone can use. People also have easy access to any book they want. If books were taken away in school, then students would not have all the resources possible for a successful education. Many people also enjoy reading as a hobby. A good book can take one’s mind off everything. They are relaxing and a good source of entertainment. Most of the oldest books out there are the books that tell our history. If they all disappeared, then nothing would be left. Students need books in school for things such as research and entertainment. If a school took all the books away and put new technology in, then students could not get all the information needed without difficulty. Books need to be in schools because they are reliable and useful and they are a tangible source of all society’s knowledge.


PRO CON JoJo Taylor

Courtney Taylor


fter adding up the total cost of all of my textbooks, according to their original value, it came out to be over $600, which is only one year worth of books. A Kindle can be bought for only $69. This is less than one textbook and would definitely be the more eco-friendly and more pocketbook friendly option. Not to mention, a Kindle could last several years, whereas new textbooks have to be bought every few years to provide for revisions, when one is lost or damaged, or when more students are added to a roster. The use of textbooks in schools, in a time full of technology, is no longer necessary. Much like how writing letters to people has become antiquated with the development of email and texting, textbooks are also decreasing in relevance due to the development of e-books and tablets. The best way to make this work would be to provide each student with a Kindle in elementary school that they can use up through high school. Of course, these Kindles would need to be replaced if they die or are lost. This could be up to the student or the tablets could be insured by the school. At the beginning of each year, teachers can instruct students to go on their Kindle and find the appropriate textbook for the class. As assignments are given, whether in or out of class, students can just use their e-book and go to the needed textbook to do their work. Using e-books would be beneficial for several reasons. Most importantly, it would save the school hundreds of dollars per student. Also, in a time of emphasis placed on “going green” ebooks would reduce the number of trees cut down for the use of printing textbooks. Technology is now a part of students’ everyday life and it will continue to be a part of their lives well into the future. It would only make sense to incorporate technology into the normal school day. This would not only make each day more efficient, but students would also feel more comfortable using technology over books since it is what they have grown up using.

Making the Grade Making the Grade is the staff’s report card for student interest topics.


Girls soccer beat Thomas Dale on Apr. 11th 2-0, the first win against Dale in 18 years.


The excitement is building for prom on Apr. 20th at the Fort Lee Regimental Club.


Report cards are being released for the third quarter. This may or may not be a good thing.


The high cost of After Prom tickets has discouraged participation this year.




Takes Place at Ft. Lee >> Prom Prom will be at the Regimental Club on Fort Lee.


The actual dance will be from 8:00-12:00 PM and it’s required to dress formally. After Prom will be held at Swaders from 12:00 till 4:00 in the morning. Show Modeled In Auditorium >> Fashion The Fashion Show was held on Apr. 12 from 6:308:00 PM. Various styles of clothing were showcased.

Briefly >>Earth Day


Middle School Presents Godspell On Apr. 19-20, the musical Godspell will be performed at J.E.J. Moore Middle School in the auditorium. On both days it starts at 7:00 PM and it is three dollars per person for admissions. Community Walks Against Drugs The Third Annual Walk Against Drugs will take place at Scott Park on May 4, starting at 8:00 AM. Registration has to be finished and turned in by Apr. 15. Running the 5K is free for students.

>> Boston Marathon

In 1970, Gaylord Nelson founded Earth Day to raise environmental awareness (land, water, and air pollution) in America on Apr. 22. To promote this awareness, he used the antiwar (Vietnam) movement’s spirit to benefit his cause. What spurred his own environmental awareness was an oil spill a year before in Santa Barbara, California. The establishment of this day led to the eventual creation of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

On Apr. 15, two bombs went off during a Marathon in Boston towards the finish line. Close to two hundred people were injured, many undergoing surgery and some even amputation. Three people have died from these bombings: an eight year old boy, a twenty-nine year old woman, and a Chinese Boston University grad student. The FBI found that one bomb was made in a pressure cooker. Further investigation on this terrorist attack is being diligently done.

>> PG County

>> Autism Awareness

Teacher of the Year

On Mon., April 15 math teacher Leon “Buddy” Darby was announced as the county teacher of the year.

Month Autism is a condition that may be present in young children by three years of age. Motor skills, physical development, and communication skills are typically lacking in these children. Some children with autism may be gifted in certain areas like music, art, and math. This month is set aside to spur awareness of this condition and to educate people about what this condition is really like.





County Battles Bus


Driver Shortage


Combined, all of the buses drove 656,229 miles only driving students to and from school in the 2011-2012 school year.


There are 85 full-time bus drivers currently employed for the county.

Lack of bus drivers causes problems throughout the county Chloe Alexander trn editor


n Mar. 15, two softball games were postponed due to the lack of bus drivers available for activity runs, which produced an immediate response from parents, coaches, and players. “I feel like it disappointed a lot of people: coaches, players, parents, and the other team,” senior Sydney Landreth said. The postponed games brought to light the issue of a bus driver shortage that has been ongoing for about one and a half years. The effects reach farther than the extra curricular activities, with late and double-back bus routes becoming the norm for some students. “We don’t have enough bus drivers in the schools,” varsity girls’ softball coach Patrick Waguespack said. “It’s something we’ve never addressed before.” Earlier in the week, the Department of Transportation had tried to work with the athletic director to move the departure time to after four 4:00PM, rather than the scheduled 2:15PM and 2:45PM times. “If we have the trips later, we are much better able to accommodate trips with bus drivers,” Director of Transportation Ronald Rhodes said. The response was that the fields where the teams would be playing did not have

lights for later games. Adding that to the ongoing shortage of bus drivers and eight late buses due to several drivers being on sick and medical leave that day, the games had to be postponed. “That particular game, all of the elements of not having drivers and drivers being out accumulated into one day,” Waguespack said. The need for bus drivers is directly related to today’s economy. With the starting salary of a full-time bus driver being $13,000 a year, most bus drivers need to have a second source of income in order to make ends meet. “We have a 21% turnover rate with new drivers,” Rhodes said. “We lose people because it’s not enough money or because they realize it’s not the right job for them. Not everyone has a backup system.” There are several training requirements in Virginia that school bus drivers must go through so that they can drive a bus. “To be a driver, the state requires you to have a recent physical, positive driving record with [the Department of Motor Vehicles], a criminal background check, drug screening in one’s county, two recommendations within the county, and a reasonable amount of driving experience,” Rhodes said. In order to work towards solving the driver shortage regarding athletics, the Department of Transportation will be offering Saturday Commercial Drivers License (CDL) classes with a $10.40 per hour compensation for interested coaches.

100 Buses stand ready before drivers go out on their afternoon routes. Although there are available buses, the county is in lack of bus drivers due to the low pay. Photo by Kristen Schwalm “Hopefully we will get a few coaches that will be willing to enroll in these classes and get their CDL’s,” said Rhodes via e-mail to the school board and athletic director. “Our goal here is to give the coaches more flexibility with their team schedules. Also, coaches can assist each other during their off season.” This effort is hoped to accommodate the teams’ schedules during the next school year. Some coaches and players approve of this means to resolve the issue. “I think every coach should have the opportunity to drive a bus,” Landreth said. To help coaches meet the required driving experience, the classes will involve behind the wheel training without students for fourteen hours, a DMV road test, and behind the wheel training with students for ten hours. While the driver shortage has caused for the postponement of two softball games, the Department of Transportation is focused on working with the bus driver shortage to make sure students arrive to and from school for this school year “Our number one goal for this department is to get kids to and from school in the safest manner possible,” Rhodes said.

The county has 100 busses.

1 There is one activity bus that is driven by coaches, but has a limited amount of seats.

32k Buses have driven 31,751 miles so far this year only transporting students for school trips.


7.91% of the county’s proposed budget for 2013-2014 has been allocated towards transportation. Scan code to see more breaking news on www.



Gerald E. Fouts, Jr. “Bubba was more than a best friend. The times we shared are more memories. He’s my saving grace. Bubba and I used to spend hours talking about everything under the sun or taking pictures in history. He’s still here with me, his smile will be forever engraved in my heart, soul, and mind. There are so many things I wished I had told him, but I know he hears me now. I love and miss you dearly, Bubba.” Junior Jessica Cunningham

“I’ve only known Bubba since the beginning of the year, but the short time I did know him he left quite an impression. He was a great kid, relatively quite, but funny. I used to call him Slim Shady and he’d retort by calling me Immigrant. We’d entertain our breakfast table going back and forth trying to one-up one another. I’ll miss that kid. Who else am I going to rap with?” Junior Bradley Smithson “Gerald was a phenomenal football and frisbee player and was always really enjoyable to be around. I had a great time on the football field. He will be missed greatly.” Junior William Bonnell

“Bubba was always a full person. There was never a dull moment when he was around. His smile lit up a room and he always kept a positive mood.” Junior Savannah Hackley

“Bubba and I grew up together, he’s like a brother to me and I’ll never forget him! He always made me smile and had a smile on his face! I love him miss him. RIP Bubba.” Junior Victoria Miller “Bubba was a really good friend of mine. I remember that he always had a smile on his face and loved to make people laugh. He would always listen to everybody and was just an amazing friend.” Junior Samantha Barton “I will always remember Bubba used to bring a bottle of ketchup to our lunch table, just so all of us would have enough.” Senior Shelby Emerson “Bubba was my best friend from 1st- 5th. He was like family. I love him and miss him like crazy.” Junior Alexandria Wiseman

On Fri. Apr. 5, junior Gerald Fouts was killed in a car accident. He was with three other people, including his sister. Fouts, nicknamed Bubba, was a member of the class of 2014. He is another Royal that will be greatly missed in lives of students. Friends and classmates show their respect by sharing how they will remember Fouts.

“I knew Gerald Fouts and I had a few classes with him. He was always happy and in good humor. What I remember him most for was his amazing speed, precision, and craftsmanship in woodshop. He’d make a project look great, but when I’d try to replicate his work, I’d be left with splinters and cracked wood. Gerald was a great friend to me and many others and he will be missed. ” Junior Adam Kyle “I will remember Gerald Fouts as a student with impeccable character and a strong work ethic. He always greeted me with a smile and a kind word. His manners were of a caliber I seldom see anymore. In regards to his schoolwork, he exhibited a positive attitude and a desire to learn- a recipe for success. He will be missed by many.” English Teacher Sonya Lee


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Prince George Fire & EMS Celebrates National Volunteer Week April 21-27, 2013

Our volunteers give the best gift of all - themselves! We recognize and thank the men and women who give so much back to our community. “Neighbors helping Neighbors” (804) 722-8614

10 | THE ROYAL NEWS | FRIDAY 4.19.13


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It’s Not Just An Experience... It’s An Education! Member of A Professional Dance Teacher Membership Association, DEA, Inc.

JROTC Congratulations

Cadets on a 98%

Annual Formal Inspection

This Year’s Show is May 10th and 11th at Prince George High School! For more information, contact Tara R. Peyton-Burgess, Owner, Artistic Director, Instructor Radford University, B.S. Recreation; Dance Minor. Certification in Elementary Education. Member, Dance Educators of America, Inc.

FRIDAY 4.19.13 | THE ROYAL NEWS | 11


Bland Offers Benefits

Chester Orthodontic

Associates, P.A. Dr. Anh N. Tran, DDS, MS

Richard Bland College provides education, opportunity to transfer after two years Debra Thomas trn writer

“Smiles for a lifetime!”


his time of year one of the most pertinent things on a senior’s mind is college. Where to go, how much is it going to cost, and how to apply for scholarships and student aid are only a select few of the questions running through their minds. Richard Bland offers a two-year associate’s degree program or two years of classes towards a bachelor’s degree to all students who are accepted and able to apply themselves. Many seniors in the class of 2013 have applied to Richard Bland. “I applied to Richard Bland because it’s a good school, and it’s a good way for me to work while I decide on what I want to major in,” senior Sara Eggleston said. Richard Bland is a junior college. There is an application process, and one can be denied admission. However, the application process is simple and doesn’t require an extensive amount of work. “The application process is pretty simple,” senior Ellen Scudder said. “You had to put three questions into a paragraph, and fill out a paper for student aid. You also need your SAT scores and two letters of recommendation.” In addition to these terms, one must also have a GPA of at least a 2.0. Applications were due on April 1st. However, this deadline is not set in stone and Richard Bland will still be accepting applications up until July 15th. Richard Bland is significantly less expensive than four year colleges and universities, It only cost $1,800 a semester, but many students still apply for student aid

including grants and scholarships. A popular organization for aid is the free application for federal student aid, also known as FAFSA. FAFSA gives students an estimated family contribution, which is the amount of money your family is expected to pay. It also tells students the unmet money, which is the amount of money students could receive through grants, scholarships, and loans. “I am applying for student aid to help pay for college,” Eggleston said. “It’s a good thing to take advantage of.” In addition to FASFA, there are student aid opportunities like the Prince George Masonic Lodge Scholarship or the John Randolph Foundation Scholarship Program. “I chose to apply for the Masonic Lodge Scholarship because my dad is a mason,” senior Tyler Thompson said. To apply for this scholarship one must fill out a standard application and write an essay of at least 200 words about a given prompt. The recipient of the scholarship is based off of the necessity for the applicant’s financial aid and the student’s GPA, and is

Senior Ellen Scudder is one of the many students accepted into Richard Bland. Scudder is anticipating attending this school in the fall. Photo by Ridhi Patel. chosen by the faculty board. Applications for the masonic lodge scholarship are due April 19th. Richard Bland is a traditional two year junior college, and many people, after graduating, plan on transferring to another school. “[After graduating from Richard Bland] I plan on transferring to Gardner Webb University,” Scudder said. With an associate’s degree from Richard Bland, students can transfer their credits to another school and continue on in their education. Students can pursue another degree, or can opt out on education for the “real world” and a job. “The biggest benefit to Richard Bland is that it is a comparatively inexpensive way to achieve two years of coursework towards a bachelor’s degree in a competitive academic environment close to home,” guidance director William Havard said.

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12 | THE ROYAL NEWS | FRIDAY 4.19.13

“Se Ove

“Selfie”, the m

Senior Chris Henry

Sophomore Cody Fortner

Sophomore Rebecca Jarratt

Sophomore Alexandra Wood

Senior Daja Edwards

Sophomore Ashuani Trapp

Sophomore Jerron Ramsey

Junior Angelina Smith

Sophomore Alex Yam


Lindsay Pugh trn writer

t is a testament to the popularity of the selfie that a Google Image search brings up 17, 700,000 images when a user types in the single search term “selfie.” What began as an online trend, in the long-gone days of MySpace, has become a commonplace around the world and in Prince George county. A selfie is a picture of the subject taken by the subject, usually in a mirror or with a front facing camera on a cell phone. Selfies have been made famous by celebrities like Justin Bieber and Rihanna. The selfie has even made its debut in space, when Japanese astronaut, Akihiko Hoshide, took a shot of himself floating in his space suit. Selfies are likely to show up in any typical teenager’s Instagram or Twitter feed. Most people have taken selfies of themselves to use as a profile or cover image. Some even have entire Facebook albums of self-portraits. A popular form of the selfie is the #ootd or “outfit of the day”, which can be seen on

Sophomore Nick Adair

elfies” Prevail er Social Media

modern day self-portrait, becomes fierce habit of students and teens. all major social networks and has inspired many “outfit of the day” blogs. A popular angle to take a selfie is from above, with the subject looking up at the camera, which has a slimming effect on the face. Often seen in selfies are the duck face and peace signs. Sophomore Rebecca Jarratt takes selfies on a regular basis and posts them on Instagram and occasionally Facebook if she wants a new profile picture. “If you take a picture yourself, you can look at it afterwards,” Jarratt said. “If other people take it, you’re not sure if it turned out right.” Junior Bradley Smithson feels the same. “Selfies are easy to take[ by yourself]. It can be awkward to ask someone else to take a picture of you, especially if takes fifty times to get the right one,”Smithson said. Jarratt believes technology has led to the rise of the selfie. “Now there’s front-facing cameras [on smart phones] that make selfies really easy to take,” Jarratt said. “Social networking has also led to more selfies, because we all want people to see what are friends are doing.”

Photography teacher Kendell Weston also believes that technology is involved behind the evolution of the selfie. “[This] generation is born and bred through social media. It’s Instagram, it’s Facebook, it used to be MySpace. They can pop a picture and post it in a matter of seconds. That ties in with the popularity of selfies,” Weston said. “If it weren’t for the phones with good quality cameras and social media, selfies wouldn’t exist.” Self image is another factor in taking a selfie. Taking a self-portrait allows the subject to control how others perceive them online. “It seems that the people who take more selfies have a high opinion of themselves or put more emphasis on other’s opinions,” Weston said. “Any appearance [you present] can sway others’ opinion of you. If you’re always posting creepy pictures, people are going to think you’re creepy.” Although the idea of the “selfie” seems to be an expression of individuality, it actually can be traced back psychological and sociological idea of oneself. Charles Horton Cooley is credited with the concept of “the looking glass self.” He believed that, “we imagine

how we appear to others, imagine the judgement of that appearance, and develop ourself though the judgments of other.” Therefore, people are very interested in making their “selfies” look as presentable as possible. While for some a selfie requires an outfit change, make-up, and elaborate hair, Jarratt has a simpler process. “I prepare for a selfie by fixing my hair and my makeup, if I’m already wearing some,” Jarratt said. “If I’m not, I don’t bother.” Smithson has a similar mentality. “I don’t prepare to take a selfie. I just take it,” he said. Smithson posts a few selfies a week on Facebook and Twitter. Almost as frequent as regular selfies there are intentionally unflattering selfies, usually accompanied by ridiculous facial expressions and captioned with hashtags like, #prettygirlsuglyfaces, #handsomeguysuglyfaces, and/or #uglyselfie. “If you’re smiling in every picture, it’s boring,” Jarratt said. “I make other faces to mix it up.” Logging onto Facebook? A selfie is sure to pop up and greet you.

FRIDAY 4.19.13 | THE ROYAL NEWS | 13


18% take

more than one selfie a day

76% of

students have a cell phone with a front facing camera

58% use

Instagram for posting their selfies

84% of

students surveyed take a selfie Junior Bradley Smithson

Sophomore Azaria Jones

Junior Stephen Garrett

Surveyed 100 students with a return of 79

14 | THE ROYAL NEWS | FRIDAY 4.19.13

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FRIDAY 4.19.13 | THE ROYAL NEWS | 15


Prom Season Returns

As preparations are being made, students become increasingly excited for a school dance. Roxy Sherrick trn writer


rom is one of the most noted events in a student’s high school career. Television and movies set high expectations for how prom is presented, as well as how one is asked (or asks someone) to the dance. The dress code for the prom has also been raised to be the most extravagant out of every dance that the school participates in. Before the actual dance itself, many wish to create a special way to ask someone to be their date for the event. “I took my date out to dinner beforehand and when we arrived back at my house, I had ‘Prom’ spelled out in lit candles,” senior Zach Harrison said. “I did this because I wanted it to be something that was special and memorable.” Prom will take place on Apr. 20th at the Ft. Lee Regimental Club, and after-prom will take place at Swaders starting at 12 a.m. Some people think of after-prom as a tradition, while others prefer to do something on their own afterwards. “My friends and I are planning on going on a midnight picnic. But tons of people are driving down to the beach and going to the usual parties, too,” junior Libby Cherry said. Many personal preparations are made by those attending in order to get themselves ready on the day of prom as well as the days prior. Both females and males have a list of priorities to accomplish before attending the dance. “I plan to just treat myself the day before, like get my nails done, skin treatments, etc., and the day of prom I’ll just do my own hair and makeup,” Cherry said. Although the guys and girls have very different plans, all of them are considered to

Graduates of 2012 Dax Ellison and Carrie Young were last year’s Prom King and Queen. The last day to vote for the court of 2013 was Wed., Apr. 16. The winners will be announced publicly on the day of the Prom. Photo by Unique Larry. be necessary for each person to be completely ready. “I have to pick up my tux, get the corsage, get my hair done, and fill up the car

with gas, too.” junior Garrett Holt said. Another tradition that usually takes place is the exchange of the corsage and the boutonniere between the two dates, which are usually

chosen to correspond with the female’s dress. “I usually try to find out if my date has a favorite flower, but I also keep in mind what would complement the color of the dress,” Harrison said. There are many reasons why people find prom so exciting, or what they feel will be the best part. Students find it interesting to see their peers dressed more formal than they normally do. “Seeing what everyone wears will be great, because it’s exciting to see people who don’t normally dress up go all out,” Cherry said. Along with the dance itself, students also believe that who they go with will make prom what they expect it to be. “The most important part of prom is to have a great date, that you know you will have a great time with, because without a good date, prom won’t be as fun.” Holt said. With their date included, those who attend believe that their peers and friends will help make prom special to them, as well. “I expect prom to be a night that I will remember for the rest of my life.,” Harrison said. “The people that I am going with are all really good friends. I believe that the company is what determines whether or not I have a good time.” The anticipation for prom can be felt throughout the entire school as the actual date draws closer. There is a great amount of chatter about dresses, dates, dinners, and everything that is being planned for the evening. Sophomores, juniors, and seniors who are planning to attend are feeling the excitement as the major preparations begin to take place. “I expect prom to be loud and exciting. There will be a lot of good vibes, because everyone has been waiting all year for this night.” Cherry said. The expectations for the event are very high, as everyone hopes for this to be one of the greatest nights of their high school experiences. Teachers usually stress the importance of safety during this event, since many students get carried away in all the excitement. In addition to staying safe, students hope to make this night as close to perfect as possible. “It is definitely the biggest dance of the year, and you only have two in your lifetime. So, they have to be really special.” Holt said.

16 | THE ROYAL NEWS | FRIDAY 4.19.13

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FRIDAY 4.19.13 | THE ROYAL NEWS | 17


Showcase of Annual

Fashion Show

>>RIGHT: Dr. Jeffrey Witt, Probability and Statistics teacher, guest starred in the scene It’s Raining Men with students dancing in the fashion show.

>>Above: Sophomore Tye’ Shaun Harris, Senior Tyra Coleman and Senior Amanda Terry strut down in strips to Crazy Train by Ozzy Osbourne.

>>ABOVE: Senior Cedric Wyche imitates the Dougie during the Hip-Hop Evolution dance. >>LEFT: Seniors Jasmine Jones, Corrine Harris and Tyaunna Cleveland dance to Rhythm Nation by Janet Jackson for the Hip-Hop Evolution scene. Photos by Ridhi Patel

For more images scan this code and see them at

18 | THE ROYAL NEWS | FRIDAY 4.19.13

Wood-Dale Swim Club BECOME A MEMBER!

Give us a call over the summer! (804) 458-6376

Our Location: 3409 Norfolk Street in Hopewell, VA

Visit to download your employment application today! E-mail to inquire about membership!

Container First Services (804)748-8324 866-587-HAUL 333-B Industrial Drive Petersburg, Va 23803

Friday 4.19.13 | THE ROYAL NEWS | 19


Players Present Dracula

Oz takes new spin on classic story


scar Diggs, a traveling magician known by the name of Oz, is caught up on life. Trying to make a decision to stop the love of his life and what kind of man he wants to be, an angry guy comes to chase him down in his trailer. While he stays in this magical place a few moments longer, he realizes the people of Oz need a savior from the wicked witch. Oz tries to convince himself he is not the one for the job. This movie has amazing graphic effects, but the storyline is lacking. There is a twist in the story, but they are incredibly predictable. Which witch is which? Well, if you are a serious fan about the Wizard of Oz, you will automatically know which witch is which. The movie also holds some funny scenes. As Oz scurries away from this muscular guy, he jumps into a hot air balloon without noticing a tornado. The tornado ends up taking him to this uncharted territory. Everything is bigger or smaller than what he usually knows it to be. While he stays in this magical place a few moments longer, he realizes the people of Oz need a savior from the wicked witch. Oz tries to convince himself he is not the one for the job. When everybody else has faith him, he decides to make massive illusions to defeat the witches. All these magical creatures appreciate everything he has done for them and make him the ruler of the emerald palace. This movie has amazing graphic effects, but the storyline is lacking. There is a twist in the story, but they are incredibly predictable. Which witch is which? Well, if you are a serious fan about the Wizard of Oz, you will automatically know which witch is which. The movie also holds some funny scenes. They give a miniscule giggle here and there, but they are something to remember.

Genevieve Perez

Students prepare to perform play with comical plot Sarah Daniel trn writer


he PG Players are taking on a new genre for the production this spring. The players will be performing the House of Dracula; a play that has a comical plot, including a bit of a scandalous love triangle. “It is purely a comedy play that is sort of poking fun at the genre of horror movies,” director Daryl Phillips said. “And it is purely a piece of fun.” Written in the 80s, this play is a bit outdated, so the PG Players are accepting the challenge of updating this play to the 21st century; the director and cast are both excited to make this play their own. “While there is a script, we will also be working with improvisations to embellish the story and make it our own, also to update the material,” Phillips said. For example, where the play makes references of Lady Diana, they would change them to be about Prince William and Princess Kate. Also, they plan on updating ref-

erences to movie stars to more recent and popular stars. They will be making these changes based “purely on what is popular with today’s culture.” These improvisations are not the only difference that the Players are looking forward to. The House of Dracula also allows many different makeup and costume opportunities for the actors. They will be able to experiment with more outgoing makeup and they will be able to have fun with the options they choose. “We’ve never done anything that had big makeup components in it,” Phillips said, “and this script allows a wide range of makeup opportunities.” Something that has not changed are some of the actors. Many of the actors that are starring in this play have performed in many other plays as well. Sophomore Matalin Collins, who plays one of Dracula’s Concubines, has starred in over 20 plays in her life. Some of these being Ladies of the Tower, Honk, and Annie. She auditioned for the play for the same reason that most of the cast did: simply to have fun. “I just like being the storyteller in an artsy way and getting to see how the audience reacts,” Collins said. Being a comedy, the House of Dracula allows the cast to have fun with the play. “It is a fun way for me to be something that I’m not, and it’s a way for me to be brave,” Sophomore Christina Howe, who plays another one of Dracula’s concubines, said.

Members of the cast of Dracula rehearse a delicious scene. The play is being adapted with modern references and humor. Photo by Adam Blakemore. For the seniors in the cast of the play, this will be their last performance as a part of the PG Players. Senior Cody Hanshew, is happy with the selection of this play for his last performance. Hanshew will be performing the role of Talbot, better known as the Wolfman. “As far as I am aware, this is farewell,” Hanshew said, “After completing 10 shows over the past three years, I think that this is an awesome piece to finish with.” The seniors are glad to take this fun and comedic approach to the performance and be able to step outside of what they are used to doing. “This play will be different because we are taking a cartoony approach to the piece and really pushing boundaries to make it a comedic crowd pleaser,” Hanshew said. The new approach to this play is not the only unique quality about it. The PG Players will be putting on four performances instead of three. They will be adding a Saturday Matinee that will benefit the Marvin Massenburg fund for the Senior who had died in a car crash earlier in the year. “I think that people should see this performance because of the hard work and the extreme that we are going to in order to make this the best show that we have ever done,” Hanshew said.

20 | THE ROYAL NEWS | FRIDAY 4.19.13


The Art of Yelling

Coaches effectively communicate with players Devan Fishburne trn writer


etween the lines of a field or court the air is tense and no one wants to be the one to mess up when the coach is steadily watching the team on the sidelines. The coach helplessly looks on while trying to encourage his players. One of the ways they try to do so is by yelling. In the wake of the coaching scandal involving former Rutgers basketball coach Mike Rice physically and verbally abusing his players, coaches that constantly berate their players with shouts of frustration have become an increasingly touchy subject. Even on high school fields, coaches are prone to yelling at their players. “You are scared to hear that yelling so you just do what they want,” sophomore Heath Pack said. Not only the effectiveness, but the amount of yelling a coach does has been a hot topic in the media with most of the world speaking out against the “bully coach.” Coaches that yell make their athletes think about their actions, but they also make them respond negatively to constructive criticism and lose all confidence in the process. “Different players respond differently, but overall I don’t think they appreciate being yelled at,” boys varsity soccer coach Tommy Harrison said. Even though yelling can not make an athlete respect the coach, one positive thing that comes from it is the fear that motivates each player to work harder and to do it. “When I need motivation on the soccer field or in practice [yelling] motivates us because it is a scare tactic,” sophomore Winn Watson said. Yelling always seems to carry a negative connotation, although it can have some positive aspects. “Yelling doesn’t always have to be a negative thing,” offensive coordinate coach Hezekiah Butler said.

Butler says he often yells because of the distance he is from his players, to make a point, or just express the emotions of a rough practice or a close game. “I rarely speak loudly to an individual if I’m trying to make a point,” Harrison said. “Taking them to the side is more effective. I find it ineffective to yell because [the players] tune out what you are saying.” Step one in becoming an effective yeller is effectively communicating in all situations, whether it be in practice or a game, its remaining calm in tense moments. “I’m consistent in the way I raise my voice.” Harrison said. “I want them to know when I raise my voice, it is important.” Step two in effective yelling is understanding the feelings and thoughts running through the players’ minds and in turn knowing how to get the point across. “You have to treat each individual, some respond to things differently,” Harrison said. “That is what is great about being a teacher, we have different dynamics in each class.” Step three is knowing the moments when to yell and when to address someone firmly one on one. Harrison noted that he tries not to yell at individuals, he often tries to take them aside after practice and followup with them to see how they feel regarding what they were critiqued on. “If you are yelling all the time I do not think that is effective,” Harrison said. “The time to raise your voice is to motivate or correct something. When I yell it is directly at the team not an individual,” Most players appreciate when coaches use methods using soft, stern words like Harrison versus the violent blows of Rice. Step four is understanding the situation from a players perspective. “A coach always has a good pulse of where their players are at,” Butler said. “There are times when I won’t yell because I know other things may be happening in their lives.” The secrets to being the master of the scream may not fall out of the sky for a coach. “Coaching is all about teaching with intensity,” Butler said.

Varsity football coach Hezekiah Butler instructs a player what play to call during a home football game. Butler has been coaching the varsity football team for 7 years. Photo by Tasia Faulcon.

FRIDAY 4.19.13 | THE ROYAL NEWS | 21

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Soccer Gains Momentum

SENIOR SPOTLIGHT Valerie Belcher Girls Soccer

Soccer players play on travel teams to gain experience for school soccer John Shumar trn writer


xcited parents cover the bleachers surrounding a field covered in green grass and marked with fresh paint. Coaches attempt to rein in the anticipation of a game with warm up stretches and practice shots. Finally, after lining up the antsy players, a whistle blows signaling the start of a game, and a chaotic dash towards the ball ensues. High school soccer started on Jan. 29. Along with the different leagues provided by Recreation Department, this means the beginning of an exciting time for many people in Prince George. “Soccer is the second most popular sport behind baseball/softball,” Assistant Athletic Director Robert Eley said. “We offer two seasons, the spring and the fall, which is not true in most counties, who usually just offer soccer in the spring. We sign up 400 to 500 players in the spring, and around 300 in the fall, since we are competing with football and other sports.” The Prince George Recreation Department provides a variety of opportunities to play soccer other than the high school teams. “We have a 4-year old program, a 5-6, 7-8, 9-10, 11-13, and a 14-16 year-old program,” Eley said. The 14-16 year-old program is a travel league. Practicing in Prince George, they compete in Colonial Heights against other teams. “I really like the travel league,” sophomore Griffen Dunn said. “It is a lot of fun, and it is a good way to practice for school soccer. It also is cool to hang out with my friends and have fun.”

When did you start playing organized soccer? “I have been playing for thirteen years.” If someone want to get involved, but does not want to be a soccer player, there are also opportunities to coach. These requirements do not necessarily mean an in depth knowledge of the game. “If people are interested in coaching they can come here, ask questions, and we give them coach’s numbers and then usually the coach would contact them,” Eley said. However, coaching the youth of Prince George is not taken lightly by the Recreational Department. “We pride ourselves on finding good people you would want to leave your kids with,” Eley said. “ Soccer is a difficult sport to coach, and not everyone grew up with the sport, so they do not always know the game. We give them a manual, we have coaching clinics, and then we give them some knowledge but for the most part, the most important factor is that the kid is someone who we would leave our child with.” Students can also help out with refereeing. Junior Mitchell Smith, who has been playing soccer for ten years now, has helped out with youth soccer in Prince George for three years. “I move goals back and forth and then I get to referee the game,” Mitchell Smith said. “It is a good way to interact with the kids. I like watching them score. It is also a good way to make money; I get paid twenty dollars a game.”

Travel soccer team member Cameron Schwalm prepares to take a shot at practice on Wed., Apr.. 10. This is Schwalm’s first year as a member of the travel team. Photo by Kristen Schwalm. Although the Prince George Recreational Department does not have any soccer leagues for players older than sixteen, there are numerous opportunities for those who want a continuation of their soccer careers; and the Prince George High School team is not a soccer player’s only option. “I play travel soccer for Chesterfield United U-17,” senior Brandon Hilliard said. “The level of soccer played in travel is a lot higher.” The competition and skill required for the travel league tournaments not only hones the skills of a player, but also attracts a lot of positive attention. “We get a lot of look out for colleges and the coaches promote the players,” senior Mike Kanney said. “When we go to tournaments the coaches tell the college scouts about us.” Soccer requires endurance, teamwork and a soccer IQ. However, there is more to the game than the competition. The camaraderie, teamwork and tough practices helps mold the character of every soccer player willing to learn from the experience. “It has made me a better person and player,” Hilliard said.

What position do you play? “I play forward.” How do you think the team will do this year? “I think that the team will do well, because most of our players are returning from last year. For me, I can not do well if the team does not do well.” What are your personal goals for the season? “I want to win the district.” How do you balance your sports life with your school and social life? “It is easier for me because I have been doing it for so long, plus a lot of my friends are on the team.” What do you love most about soccer? “I love when the whole team comes together to get a tough win. Anyone can beat the easy teams.”


Spring Calendar

Varsity Boys Baseball Schedule

Varsity Girls Tennis Schedule

Varsity Girls Softball Schedule

Tues., Apr. 23 @ Hopewell - 6:00 PM Thurs., Apr. 25 vs. Dinwiddie - 6:00 PM Tues., Apr. 30 @ Petersburg - 5:00 PM Wed., May. 1 @ Benedictine - 4:30 PM Thurs., May. 2 @ Meadowbrook - 5:00 PM

Mon., Apr. 22 @ Meadowbrook- 4:30 PM Tues., Apr. 23 vs. Hopewell - 4:30 PM Thurs., Apr. 25 @ Dinwiddie - 4:30 PM Mon., Apr. 29 @ Henrico - 5:00 PM Thurs., May. 2 vs. Meadowbrook - 4:30 PM

Mon., Apr. 22 @ Lee-Davis - 6:00 PM Tues., Apr. 23 @ Hopewell - 6:00 PM Thurs., Apr. 25 vs. Dinwiddie - 6:00 PM Mon., Apr. 29 vs. Douglass Freeman - 6:00 PM Tues., Apr. 30 @ Petersburg - 5:00 PM

School Track Record Broken Faven Butler features editor

J Aaron McIntosh competes in a relay race trying to advance the baton to his teammate. McIntosh and teammates Da’juan Harding, Michael Kanney and Jaysean Skrine broke the school record for the running of the 4 by 2. Photo by Becky Shumar.

unior Da’juan Harding and seniors Jaysean Skrine, Michael Kanney, and Aaron McIntosh broke the school record of running the 4x2, which consists of four teammates competing in a 200 meter run, in one minute and 33 seconds. All four of the members agree that day was one of the best moments of the season. The teammates broke this record in indoor track, and plan on continuing to make new accomplishments for the outdoor season, with the exception of one. Recently, Harding moved due to the military stationing his family in Georgia. “We’re really going to miss him running and just playing around with him,” Skrine said. “My teammates are what motivate me the most. They’ll keep you going even though sometimes you mess up.” Skrine also had the experience of moving due to the military. He used to live in El Paso, TX, before he moved to VA. He ran track for the first time during his freshman year at N.B Clements Jr. High. Skrine describes the best thing about running track is “getting the feel of the competition”. He believes their team dynamic is what allowed them to reach their goal in breaking records. “Now we’re aiming to win some district titles,” Skrine said. “Track is the only sport I have ran since freshman year. I want to study psychology in college and continue to run in the meantime.” On the other hand, Kanney has a different path he is planning to take. “I love track, but I do not plan to run in college,” Kanney said. “I’m going to focus more on schoolwork and my goals to get a degree in biology.” Kanney has been accepted into Old Do-

minion University, which is the college he has decided to attend. He has been running track for 7 years now, but he also plays soccer during the outdoor season. He usually goes to soccer practice after school but continues to show up at track meets to participate and support his teammates. “Coach Stevens definitely motivates me to work harder. When he starts yelling, we know it’s time to get serious,” Kanney said. He mentions how Harding also broke the 300m record before he moved. “Da’juan was a really good runner, too. We all had fun together, but we when it was time to get serious, we got the work done,” Kanney said. McIntosh describes Coach Stevens as being the “best coach he ever had.” “He actually makes me work out during practice. There’s no time for being lazy,” McIntosh said. McIntosh is going to the University of South Florida, which is the state he is originally from, next fall. He received a full scholarship to the university for his skills at running track. “I’ve been running track since 6th grade and I’d say Da’juan, Michael, and Jaysean are the best runners I’ve ever ran with. We are determined to win titles coming up in May [Districts],”McIntosh said. Coach William Stevens has no doubt the team as a whole will perform well at districts. He has been coaching since 1990, but has only been working with the Prince George Track team for 2 years. He is, however, familiar with the area. Stevens used to run track for Petersburg High School and was the 5th state champion in the 55m high hurtles. “Dedication is the most important characteristic to have,” Stevens said. “When the boys broke the school record, they brought into the system what I have been trying to teach them.” Stevens believes the team as a whole is capable of winning the district championship. “The most important thing is to believe in yourself,” Stevens said. “They’re all good runners, but they have to believe in themselves before they can make changes.”

April 2013  

The April issue of the Royal News.