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theRoyalNews Vol. VIII Issue 1

Friday 10.9.09

Homecoming Week approaches

Junior Mark Cary sprays his Silly String to show spirit for the pep rally. Page 5 Photo by Sarah Habermehl New Psychology teacher H1N1 Virus Student to Student Road to College


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News brought to you with a purpose The Royal News is back for the eighth year to inform our student body of news, sports, arts and entertainment and everything in between. We are here to clear up the bits and pieces of the information you hear from your friends such as the Swine Flu and the upcoming traffic circle. It is our goal to tell you the little details you may have missed out on, like why seniors are allowed to leave early without work release, and what the IB program is all about. We strive to keep you aware of sports scores, outstanding achievements of individuals and what changes administrators are making to our school. News is constantly in action, and therefore we cannot cover everything. In order to stay as up to date as possible we have created a Facebook account in which we add additional photos and short briefs. You can be a fan of our group by searching theRoyalNews. In addition to our Facebook we have a web page,, this page has a direct link to our Twitter; which we also keep updated with quick news stories. We ask for your opinions on the school and the paper because we are only a collection of people, let us know what you think by submitting a letter to the editor. This year we will work hard to have fewer mistakes, take better pictures and overall make you as our audience more informed.



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 A6, or e-mail them to cwaugaman@pgs.k12. 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. Please submit letters to the editors by Nov. 1st for the Nov. issue.

Editor-in-Chief Kayla Carneal

Adviser Chris Waugaman

Section Editors Jami Davis-News; Mia Norman-Op/Ed; Delbria Walton-Features; Katie Adams-Ampersand; Kelsie McDaniels-A&E; Amir Vera-Sports; Devyn Pachmayr-Double Truck; Colby Eliades-Photo; Janai Cunningham-Ads Manager; Jessica Lee-Circulation and Staff Organizer

Writers Alisha Holmes-Laura Young-Sarah Habermehl-Christy Hardin-Jessica Stainbeck-Autrey Jackson-Tasa Hattori-Gabrielle Wittington-Brittany Thacker-Alison Brown-Kimberly CarnealJack McQuiggan-Grace Jackson-Jessica Marshall-Rachel Waymack-Olivia Tritschler-Mariah Blystone-Malikah Williams- Wayne Epps, Jr.- Rachel Youmans

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

Professional affiliations & awards Columbia Scholastic Press Associations Gold Medalist 2009 National Scholastic Press Assoc. Pacemaker Finalist 2009 Virginia High School Association Trophy Class 2008 Quill & Scroll International 1st Place 2008 SIPA All Southern 2009

Fighting the Scale

What’s in a name?


am me, whatever that is. And, while that means that yes, I am Mia (If you notice, Mia is even ‘I am’ all scrambled up, so you know it’s true.) It also means more than a name. If you look in Mia Norman the yearbook, there are a lot of faces, with only a name to tell you who they are. In my experience with meeting new people, I have learned that everyone has a story and everyone wants a chance to tell you exactly who they are. You will miss out on hearing some amazing and fascinating stories about people that you would never have imagined, if you refuse to expand beyond small social circles. When we were children entering elementary school, our parents entreated us to make new friends, insisting that it takes a friend to be a friend. It is not something we really understood then, but is just as true now. Sophomores just coming into their high school years, have a chance to learn from the students already here, and believe it or not upperclassmen you

can learn something from them too. (I know, it’s hard to imagine, that we don’t actually know EVERYTHING) Getting to know someone is not a very hard thing to do, and opportunities present themselves all the time. If a new student has a hard time finding a classroom, if there is someone sitting alone at lunch, or if there is a person in your class that needs help understanding something, you can approach them. Extend a helping hand, or just be someone to talk to until the bell rings. You never know what you might learn. You could meet someone who has traveled to places you’ve never even heard of, someone who comes from a not-so-typical lifestyle, or even someone who is really an alien in disguise, coming to scope out earth as a potential host planet (hey, it could happen, so make sure you get to know anyone who you think might have tentacles). There is really nothing to lose when it means getting to make new friendships, and getting to tell other people what make you special. So, when you look in the yearbook, or meet someone new, try to know more than their name, strive to know who they are.


October 9, 2009 - The Royal News - Page 3

Letters to the Editor

Making the Grade

Fighting the Scale Dear Editor,


here are multiple different grading scales in existence for students. Each of these has their advantages and disadvantages. I would like to propose that the greatest of these disadvantages lies in the very nature of having multiple grading scales. The very fact that we have various grading scales appears a serious issue. Such a system causes a large amount of undue stress on the student that he or she wishes to achieve. Those who take AP or Dual Enrollment classes constantly have to switch their mindsets between a base-ten grading scale and an irregular one imposed by the school. Just as importantly, the base-ten grading scale is the scale that most institutions of higher learning recognize. To force students to achieve at a level higher than expected at an advanced learning facility could stunt their emotional or physical health for the state of the mental. This, in and of itself seems a serious miscarriage of justice to the



individual. The mission of Prince George County Schools as per the Mission Statement is thus: “to provide a quality educational program for all students, to assist each student in reaching his/her potential and prepare students to be responsible and productive members in an ever-changing society”. To allow the individual to be all that he or she can be does not mean a complete sacrifice of the individual by becoming a mindless automaton that memorizes rote facts. Therefore, I would propose a change to the status quo: all classes should adopt the 10 point grading scale. It is clearly the most relevant to life after high school. If the purpose of any high school is to prepare the individual for an institution of higher learning, why would it fail to reform itself to adopt a scale by which students will be judged in the future?

New Projectors give

teachers a new way to get information to students, display videos, and is used by students to view PGTV.

Early Release, offered only to seniors gives the graduating class a chance to get to their jobs, to have extra time for schoolwork, or just to relax.

The Swine Flu Scare

is causing students to alienate their fellow classmates who display the simplest of sniffles.

Sincerely, Ryan Phillips and Amika Crockett

Pro/Con: The Bathroom Policy

With new students arriving, the administration has a chance to see how the bathroom policy that was put into effect last year, is received by the incoming sophomore class. Is it still necessary, hygienic, and fair to all?


lthough the majority of the student body believes the bathroom policy should be changed, there are multiple benefits of the policy as it stands. The reason for the bathroom changes during the ’08-’09 school year was due to vandalism occurring in restrooms. Even since, bathrooms are to only be used between classes and only one is open during class, in which a person must sign in and out of a logbook, admitting one student at a time. Due to the bathroom policy, there have been improvements to the bathrooms Jessica Stainbeck around the school. There has been no recent vandalism to the bathrooms with the policy in effect. Therefore, the policy has already been proven effective. Not only has the policy lessened vandalism, but also the number of students leaving class has dropped significantly. Because students must go through a great ordeal in order to get to use the restroom during class, students have began to stay and learn. This policy also keeps students from wandering to other places around school. By making students sign in and out of class, teachers are able to keep a better watch on students. Bathrooms around the school have also been noticeably cleaner and have become nearly smoke free. By having fewer students use them throughout the day, the more sanitary and clean the restrooms stay. The bathroom policy has achieved the goals it has set out to enforce among students. In limiting bathroom usage to between classes and in-class emergencies, the policy has been able to lessen vandalism, secure cleaner bathrooms, and has kept students in the classroom rather than meandering in the halls.


“Due to the bathroom policy, there have been improvements to the bathrooms around the school.”

UnFair “The majority of the students had nothing to do with why the policy was created and now they are suffering the consequences of something they didn’t do”

Want to hear more about this issue? Go to to read more points of view.


oming back to school, new and old students are starting to know where their classrooms and lockers are and getting use to the workload. Along with all the homework and projects, students have to get use to the fact that they can only use the common’s bathroom. The policy came into effect last year. So why do we still have this policy? The majority of the students had nothing to do with why the policy was created and now they are suffering the consequences of something they didn’t do. With it being flu season and the swine OLIVIA TRITSCHLER flu going around we need to be extra careful about washing our hands and doing our best not to spread diseases; and all 1,408 students in the school using two bathroom creates multiple germs. This does not create a healthy situation and it is imperative that we start thinking about our health. With this policy in place it shows that the teachers don’t respect us. We are all in high school now and they are treating us like we are five year olds. They all teach us that we should respect them and they should respect us but where is this respect that they say they are giving us? They need to give us the responsibility to have our bathrooms back. There are about 14 bathrooms in this school and what is the point of having them if we can’t use them? So if they aren’t going to change this policy this year, when are they going to change this policy? They can’t keep it like this forever because in a few years no one will even know why the policy was put in place. They should change it now because it has already served its purpose.

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Seniors gain new privilege News briefs

There will be an SGA meeting Tuesday, October 13th, at 2:35 in the library. This meeting is mandatory for all Officers, Class Officers, and Senators. To help with After Prom costs, purchase a ticket to Pancake Breakfast on Saturday, October 31st. Tickets are $5 and can be purchased from Mrs. Overstreet. The final date to register for PSAT test is Wednesday, October 14th. The cost is $14 and the test will be given Saturday, October 17th at 8:00 a.m. and will take approximately 3 hours. Homecoming Dance will occur Saturday, October 17th from 8-11 in the commons. Tickets are $5 and will be sold October 13th16th during lunch blocks.

Ability to leave school early gives students more opportunities Kayla Carneal editor-in-chief


or the first time ever, the senior class has the option to leave at 1:00 PM without work release. The administration and guidance have been considering the decision for seven or eight years. In the spring of 2009 Guidance Counselor Bill Havard and Principal Tracey Smallwood took the idea to the school board. In previous years in order for a student to leave early on work release they would have to take a marketing class. “Allowing students to have an option to leave early without work release opens up more room for those who are actually interested in taking those classes,” Smallwood said. Though there are fewer students towards the end of the day, all the classes offered in previous years still exist. “Despite that fact that some seniors leave early the only thing that has changed is a decrease is the amount of people that do work release,” Smallwood said. In order to leave early you must meet the graduation requirements. Nobody is

allowed to leave before fifth block. “We require seniors to take at least five classes because most of them have to take the four core classes anyway. We believe that there are enough classes offered here that everyone would be able to benefit from at least one of them.” Along with five required classes, students must get permission from their parents or guardian. “When the schedules were being done for this school year the decision was not final for early dismissal. Students who signed up for it had to get a permission slip signed by the parents saying they would agree to it,” Smallwood said. “Over the summer another permission slip was sent out for those who wanted to leave early to confirm the decision.” The complete process of finalizing the decision took a couple of months. Julie Brail surveyed other counties that use early dismissal systems similar to ours such as Hopewell, Dinwiddie, Colonial Heights and Petersburg. “Because the system has worked for other schools, I do not believe that seniors who take fewer classes will have a hard time getting into college,” Havard said. “Colleges do not look at the amount of classes that you take but the quality of them and the grades you earn.” Senior Jeremy Newman has no worries that his schedule will affect his college plans. He leaves early only on even days and is getting an Advanced Diploma. “I decided to do early dismissal so I would not have to be in school all day

Seniors Jennifer Peterson and Philip Wicker walk through the parking lot utilizing their early dismissal privileges. Photo by Devyn Pachmayr. everyday,” Newman said. “As a senior I wanted to take advantage of all of our privileges.” With Newman’s schedule, he now has extra time. “When I leave early I either go home, hang out with friends or get something to eat. I currently do not have a job. When I turn 18 I will start to look for one after school because I will not be limited to particular jobs,” Newman said. Senior Shauna Causey leaves at one o’clock everyday. She uses the extra to get her homework done because she dances three days a week and works two days a week. “I love being able to leave, it is especially nice to not have to fight traffic,” Causey said. “I also find school a lot less stressful because I have more time to do stuff and not as much homework to worry about.” This new privilege has given the students that are offered it a new way of seeing their school day. “It did not hit me that I was really a senior until the first day of school when I was standing in the parking lot to go home at one o’clock,” Causey said.


Spirit Week leads up to Homecoming Variety of themes brings enthusiasm to student body

Spirit Week Monday

Be What You’re Not Day

Colby Eliades trn photo editor


ressing crazily, acting goofy, participating in the ‘Wall’, and supporting the Royals are a few things that students do during Spirit Week. Spirit Week is an event that anyone can participate in. The days range greatly, so there is something for everyone. “Monday is ‘Be What You’re Not Day’, Tuesday is ‘Battered Opponent Day’, Wednesday is ‘Wacky Tacky Day’, Thursday is ‘Match Your Wall Day’, and Friday is, of course, ‘Spirit Day’,” Sophomore Class Representative Carrie Young said. On Thursday’s “Match Your Wall Day” students dress up to match their wall that will be hung in the Commons. The Student Government Association decided on the overall theme, which are the “decades”. From there, each individual class in the Student Government chose which decade they would have. The seniors picked the 60’s, the juniors picked the 80’s, and the sophomore’s picked the 70’s. “I will go all out because it is my senior year,” said Senior Taylor Jones. Students are encouraged to come support their class by helping to design the wall. “Word of mouth and publicity get students involved with the wall,” Senior and Student Government President Taylor Fletcher said. At the end of the week, the walls are voted on by a select group of teachers and administrators. The wall with the most votes wins. “[Our goal is] that we get at least 90% of students participating, and that we get all sophomore’s involved and they get in the swing of things,” Fletcher said. Spirit Week precedes the Homecoming game on Friday, October

October 9, 2009- The Royal News - Page 5


Battered Opponents Day Led by junior Cameron Thrift, varsity football players break through the banner and flood onto the track during the first fall sports pep rally. Photo by Gabrielle Whittington. 16 against Meadowbrook. At this game the Homecoming King and Queen are announced. “[People are] nominated once, then a ballot is made. For two days students vote on the top ten people, and then vote again to get the top five. Those five are in Homecoming Court,” Fletcher said. The Homecoming Dance will take place on Saturday, October 17 from 7:00 P.M. to 11:00 P.M. “The dance is basically a sophomore class PTA project, so sophomores will help with [organizing] that,” Student Government sponsor Michael Nelson said. During the dance last year, flashlights were used to break up students the administration thought were dancing too closely. “SGA is trying to get our Communications Committee to talk with the administration to get the flashlights out. That is why we did not have a lot of people come last year, and if [students] did not know about the flashlights [and came] they were highly upset,” Fletcher said. Last year the flashlights may have deterred students, but Junior Alyssa

Isham will not let the past influence her attendance. “I may be going to the dance; if somebody makes it sound interesting then I would go,” Isham said. Sophomore Doug Buchanan is less concerned with the restrictions at the dance and just plans on enjoying himself. “I will just hang out with friends,” Buchanan said. The Student Government Association is expecting to have a good turnout at the dance this year, and is encouraging everyone to attend. “We had really great ticket sales in previous years, and I think we sold around 400 tickets last year. I hope to see even more this year,” Nelson said. The Student Government Association is currently organizing the events for Spirit Week. “I hope that lots of students get energized and excited for the game, and increase participation, as well as have fun. School is not only just a place for learning, but a place for fun,” Nelson said.


Wacky Tacky Day

Thursday Dress Like Your Wall Day

Friday Green and Gold Day

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Potentially deadly virus easy to contract Jami Davis trn news editor


he H1N1 virus, more commonly known as swine flu, has become a source of confusion and fear for people across the globe. Cases of swine flu have been confirmed in all 50 states in the United States as well as in about 70 other countries, allowing it to be declared a pandemic. Swine flu originated in Mexico where it transferred from pigs to humans. It has since then morphed into a form that can be passed from human to human with no contact with pigs being necessary to contract the virus. H1N1 is not suspected to travel from one person to another just as the more common flu virus does. It can be contracted by touching an object that someone who is infected has touched and then touching your nose, mouth or eyes. “It can be easily spread from person to person through coughing and sneezing,” Nurse Kim Smith said. The everyday way in which the swine flu can be spread is part of what makes it so dangerous. A simple handshake or sharing of a drink could cause the spread of the virus. According to the Center for Disease Control, people can start spreading the H1N1 virus a day before they show any symptoms and up to seven days after the first signs of illness. Symptoms of swine flu are similar to symptoms of the regular flu. Most cases of swine flu show at least two or more of the following symptoms: fever, runny nose, headache, fatigue, chills, cough, body aches, diarrhea or vomiting. Although contracting the flu seems very easy to do, so is protecting yourself and others from the virus. “If you are coughing or sneezing you need to cough or sneeze into your elbow or a tissue, not your hand,” Smith said. Doing so will keep cough or sneeze

droplets from entering the air where the virus can infect other people. Also, dispose of used tissues properly. If you show any signs or symptoms of the flu, it is recommended that you stay home for the safety and wellbeing of yourself and those whom you would have come in contact with. Hand washing is vitally important to stop the spread of the virus. Washing hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water is the best method to prevent germs. Hand sanitizer is also a good way to kill germs. Disinfecting surfaces is also a good way to prevent the spread of the virus. Using disinfecting or sanitizing wipes or solutions can help kill the virus on the surfaces of toys, household surfaces and other commonly used objects. Preventing the virus is of the upmost concern, however an outbreak of the swine flu may still occur. In such a case households are recommended to have at least a two week supply of food and water and to keep nonprescription drugs on hand in the event of an outbreak. The CDC approved a new H1N1 vaccine on September 15th, 2009. It is expected to be available to the public sometime in October. The threat of a widespread and disastrous outbreak of the swine flu seems to be lurking just around the corner. However, H1N1 hasn’t become as damaging as it has been feared to. “Most cases of people getting the swine flu aren’t very serious. It’s most dangerous for people who already have medical conditions and pregnant women. So far it appears that the regular strain of the flu virus each year kills more people than the swine flu has killed,” Smith says. The swine flu has deadly potential but can be avoided without incredible effort. Prevention is the key in this epidemic.

Walton Elementary School teacher receives shot to combat the flu administered by Ukrops Pharmacist. Photo by Colby Eliades.


October 9,2009 - The Royal News - Page 7

By the Numbers

1930 earliest known

date H1N1 began circulating in pigs.

90% of flu related deaths

occur in people over 65.

2-8 hours: the amount of

time it takes for a person to become infected after being exposed to the virus.

1/3 of the worlds population could become infected with swine flu.

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photos and information by Mia Norman

The Anatomy of An Anatomy Classroom

Photo & information compiled by Alexandria Binford

Seniors brought in the ZooPal plates around four years ago, students usually find these the most interesting.

Mr. York has the only all-metal projector in the school, which he still uses regularly.

Bob the Skeleton is both a learning tool and class mascot of sorts.

The shelves lining the wall hold many interesting artifacts, like a cow’s skull that was found in the Mojave desert, and this preserved rat that is stained so it’s internal structures are visible.


October 9, 2009 - The Royal News - Page 9

New teacher fills empty classrooms; minds Students gain both new instructor, and knowledge of human mind Mia Norman trn opinion editor


s students began their first week of school, they filed into class, picked out their seats, and noticed something was missing. There was no teacher. The school’s previous psychology teacher, Dr. Kent Horton had resigned before the first week of school, resulting in the search for a new teacher. After an entire first week with no instructor, professor Mark Dailey was found to fill the position. “I am not sure why I took the job, I am just at the point in my life, where I am like, ‘let’s just see what happens,’” Dailey said. In addition to teaching here, Dailey has also taught at Virginia State University. “I have been teaching for four or five years. It was never my goal to be an educator, but I have embraced it and am energized by doing it. Teaching psychology, and psychology itself comes very naturally to me,” Dailey said. Before he began his career as a psychologist, he was a full time minister for 30 years, and served in the military. “Ministry and psychology go hand in hand most of the time, the connection between the two of them is people. For me, being a psychologist just kind of happened. I had a propensity for it.” Dailey said. “A good psychologist has to want to hear what people have to say. They cannot be selfish; it has to be about other people. They have to be able to empathize, and not just hear, but listen,” Although he has worked with many different people to help them solve their problems, he has not forgotten the first person he helped through psychology. “I counseled a young couple

who was having marriage problems, and a few weeks later, he expressed that the things he talked about with me really helped. It felt amazing to know that I had helped them, and possibly helped save a marriage,” Dailey said. Psychology requires various ways of thinking that help understand the power of the human thought processes. For Dailey, the most fascinating thing about the science are the small ways that people interact. “There are these little things called phenomenons, and they are about people and how they respond to one another. Little things that people do that seem unimportant, but really mean something deeper are interesting to me,” Dailey said. “Little breakthrough moments that occur while I am trying to counsel someone, where they seem to just ‘get it’ are some of the best experiences. It does not happen often, and when those little ‘Aha!’ moments do happen, they are extremely memorable.” Teaching psychology at a high school has proven to be an extremely different experience for Dailey, who is used teaching it to college students, and using it to counsel people who need it. “My favorite part about teaching at a high school is that everyone is so interactive, everyone participates. The small classroom size allows everyone to communicate and really have interesting and complex relationships. I always like to start off my classes with a card trick exercise because it helps the students to realize that there is more to psychology than they originally thought,” Dailey said. The card trick usually involves Dailey asking a student volunteer about the types of cards that make up a normal deck. During the questioning, Dailey prompts his students, like senior Christy Kobelt, with subtle hints to get them to choose the one card that he has removed from the deck. “I thought the trick was really cool, it was neat to see how someone could do that without someone realizing. Now I want to try it on someone,” Kobelt said. “I thought psychology would be more by the book, but his teaching is really interactive and hands-on.” Although Dailey’s job is to make sure the students leave his classroom with a better understanding of the science of

psychology, he hopes that the students also take with them a valuable message. “I want all of my students to know that they get to choose what kind of people they are, and think about what kind of people they want to become. The can choose their own path, and do not have to be locked into being any set type of person,” Dailey said. It is because of his drive to not only teach the intended material, but to also reach out to the students that make Dailey’s teaching something to remember. “I like how he can relate the lesson to real life, and how he always has a real life story or moral for pretty much everything we learn,” Kobelt said. “My philosophy on life is, never take life too seriously, and never take people to lightly,” Dailey said.

Mark Dailey instructs students in his new role as the Psychology teacher. Photo by Colby Eliades.

Page 10 - The Royal News - October 9, 2009


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Page 11 - The Royal News - October 9, 2009

Student to Student program reaches out Classmates extend helping hand to new peers Delbria Walton trn features editor


magine walking into school, knowing no one and watching as people pass you by without a second glance. Not seeing a familiar face in a sea of people; you are lost, afraid to approach anyone and ask for help. A terrifying feeling that most of us never had to experience, but for those that have the program Student to Student helps to ease these fears. English teacher Crystal Lipscombe and Biology teacher Richard Upton sponsor this program in order to help new kids transition into a different environment. “We are a student governed affiliation with the SOAR* (Student Online Achievement Resources)

a military based program,” Lipscombe said. “Our goal is to assist in transition not just with military kids but all new enrollees.” SOAR is a program designed to help military families, but not limited, especially children, to adjust to their new surroundings. The solution is directed toward the strains placed on military children throughout the nations public school system. “When enrolling new students receive a goody bag from guidance the bag consist of candy, a thermos, and information on Student to Student and where to come if they are interested in the organization,” Lipscombe said. Student to Student like its name suggests, not only relies on teachers but students to help their peers. Some were chosen by guidance and others approached by Lipscombe or even suggested from teacher recommendations. Junior, Trey Carter remembers the moment he was approached with this opportunity. “Mrs. Lipscombe approached me and explained to me what the program consisted of and after I discussed it with my mother and I

decided that it would be a great opportunity,” junior Carter said. As a military child, Carter knows all too well what it is like to move around and enter into a new school. He does not remember a program such as this one when he was adjusting to a new school, but he feels that it is beneficial to everyone. “We have helped a few people and they are very grateful. Some probably would still be lost,” Carter said. Most new programs have rocky starts. Although it has been in existence for two years, Student to Student has taken off with a tremendous response within the student body this year. It is not just about the new students but the older ones too that feel that they can help in a way that serves someone besides’ yourself. “The eagerness within the school is greatly appreciated by the newly enrolled students,” Lipscombe said. An ice cream social recently took place where students in each grade level, old and new, attended to be recruited as future helpers. They had icebreakers, bonded

(left to right) Juniors Rebekah Bridgers, Nathan Beatty, Alex Cain and Zack Fuller participate in a getting to know you game. Photo by Delbria Walton. over ice cream, and raffled off four Kings Dominion tickets. “We are working to have a meeting every second Wednesday of every month,” senior Aaron Skinner said. Because of the influx of families from Fort Lee, the organization is constantly growing, planning, and making adjustments so that no one is left out. All are welcome to come and share in the fun and activities that are held monthly. The interest in Student to Student is building and as more become aware of its influence on the student body its staying power and effectiveness has grown immensely. “I hope this program stays around. It does a lot of good for many people,” Carter said. *

Page 12 - The Royal News - October 9, 2009

Fast Road to College


hat do graduation, GPA, senior prom, and applying to college have in common? All are stress factors that are exhausting the minds of senior students across the United States. Students have enough on their plate already, applying early for college can help alleviate those senior year stresses that prey on the student body. When applying early to college, applications are usually accepted in November, and you will be notified of your acceptance in December or early January. Students that participate in early action or early decision often have a higher acceptance rate than students that wait until later in the school year. The process also benefits the colleges. By applying early, the colleges can be positive that the students they are bringing to their facility are students that are enthusiastic about attending. There is a difference between early action and early decision. Early decision is binding, if you apply early and get accepted, you must commit to that school. Early action is not binding, if you get accepted you can choose to commit early to the college, or you can wait until the spring.


any students are committing early to the colleges they plan on attending in the fall, including Senior Desi Scott. “I decided to apply early in order to secure my scholarship,” Scott said. Scott earned an athletic scholarship for excelling in indoor and outdoor track. “Mt. Saint Marys was my school of choice. Ever since i visited the campus, I knew I would be happy running track for them,” Scott said. The college of Mt. Saint Marys does not require binding early decision, which is when a student applies early and they must attend that college. But in order to ensure security for ones scholarship, one must verbally commit to the school. “I’m going in two weeks to make my verbal commitment. I’m both excited and nervous,” Scott said. Approaching college coaches about scholarships takes the pressure off of coaches searching for athletes to join their team. “I saved the coaches trouble by going to them, most of the time they have to travel and recruit students. I went up to them, and one thing led to another,” Scott said.


etting an early start on your application means dealing with less stress during senior year. “I started my application in spring of my junior year. The school I’m applying to, West Point, requires the applications earlier in the school year,” senior Aaron Skinner said. West Point does not use binding early decision. If you get accepted, you have some time to decline. Many students across the United States choose military careers for the excellent benefits. “It is a free ride to a great education, it guarantees me a job after i graduate, and I’d be going to the same school my brother attends,” Skinner said. A future in the United States military, whether it be the Army, Air Force, Navy, or Marines, can ensure a student with a


any students attend institutes of higher learning whose tests involve reading, writing, and stressful memorization. But some students, such as senior Savanah Stricklin, pass their courses by preparing a gourmet meal. “I decided I was much more interested in cooking than in other things. My grandfather was a chef, he is my inspiration, I guess being a chef runs through my veins,” Stricklin said. Stricklin’s career choice wasn’t always as exotic as becoming a professional chef. “As a child i aspired to be a lawyer or a psychologist,” Stricklin said. The process of become a chef is very stressful. “I’m applying to L’Academie de Cuisine, Stricklin said. “They suggest turning in your application in as soon as possible. It gives them time to read all essays and it shows a general interest in attending the school.

Step Three

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Visit the Campus

Step One

Step Two

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For more information visit

Relax and Wait for Acceptance

Designed by: Devyn Pachmayr

Step Four

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October 9, 2009 - The Royal News - Page 13

Page 14 - The Royal News - October 9, 2009


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Fashion trends create problems As styles are changing, dress code violations remain Janai Cunningham trn ad editor


nxiety starts when the school year begins. Students are excited to walk through the school doors with the hottest outfits to show off to their friends and the transformation that they took over the summer. However, not everything that is in fashion meets the requirements for the school dress code. The attendance office was flocked with students on the first day that stood there wearing skimpy skirts and jeans sagging off their waist. “The first day of school can be so chaotic. There is so much going on

that it [dress attire] can slide under the radar,” Monica Curtis, who works in the attendance office said. About 10 parents were called in to bring clothes to their child at school. This takes time not only out of the meetings, appointments, and work hours of parents’ schedules but also, the students can miss quizzes, tests, and assignments from their class lesson. This can take hours of free time away in order to make up the work and not fall behind in that class. “Most [parents] are understanding, some are angry that they have to come up here,” Curtis said. Male students usually have an easier situation to fix, although there is the occasional crude shirt that can go unnoticed. The majority of the hassle seems to come from female students having to change their entire outfit, because one piece is not acceptable. “They are trying to keep up with fashion. I do not think they do it to go against the dress code. I just do not think they consider it,” Assistant Principle Chris Romig said. Students, however, do not see the need in it. They feel having to modify their outfits to fit with the school

rules and regulations puts their self expression and creativity on the back burner. “I think it is stupid!” Senior Markeda Anglin said. “I was kind of shocked because it’s not like I’m showing any skin’.” England was in the office because she wore pants that had rips climbing thigh-high and above. She had to sit in the office fiddling with her thumbs until her parents came with the pants that met the dress code requirements. Even though the dress code has remained the same for the past several years it seems that the same thing happens year after year. “We have so many students that are new to the school and building; and styles are always changing,” Romig said. At JR Tucker High School in Henrico there was an issue, reported by Fox News, that the cheerleading uniform that the girls wore at games were too short to comply with the dress code. The Superintendant said that the sports attire has to comply with the school dress code as well. In order to be allowed to wear the skirts now they have to wear pants under them. The same conflict arose here. The

(left to right) Junior Anita Tyler, Junior Matt Harris, Junior Alyssa Wilkerson and senior Lindsay Warren all show risky attire. Photo by Alisha Holmes. outfits that the cheerleaders have to wear in school are causing conflicts between cheerleaders and teachers even though Principal Tracey Smallwood approved it. To end the confusion cheerleaders just stopped wearing the skirts because of the conflicts and confusion that it was causing. That will be the last time those skirts will be seen worn throughout the hallways. As the new school year is geeting into its groove dress code violations have started to simmer. Although there are fewer occurances there are still some concerns. Cheerleaders are not allowed to wear the “taboo” skirt anymore. “Teachers were saying that they were too short to wear and kept sending certain girls to the office,” junior varsity cheerleader, Amber Williamson said.

Page 16 - The Royal News - October 9, 2009


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October 9, 2009- The Royal News - Page 17


he world watched in disbelief on June 25, 2009, as the legendary King of Pop, Michael Jackson, was rolled out of his rented Los Kelsie McDaniels Angeles mansion underneath a white sheet soon after he had passed away. Jackson was scheduled for a 50 show tour in London, England to start just three weeks after his sudden death. Not long after his death, footage of his “This Is It” tour leaked to the media. The video showed Jackson dancing and singing just a day before he died. After his death all I saw on TV was Michael this and Michael that but after I actually got past that and watched the movies on him I felt like something big was taken from the world and that this generation had been deprived from the person who made the music industry what it is because of all the bad things that were being said about him. Director Kenny Ortega, who is famous for his work on the Disney High School Musical movies, came up with the idea to take the video clips from rehearsals, interviews and backstage footage and make it into a documentary with the same title as the would be concert. Ticket sales started on September 29 and the movie will open on October 28 for two weeks. Sales have reached a high mark selling over one million dollars in Japan on the first day that they were sold. The movie will be available in select places including Virginia. I expect that the movie theatre will be overly packed and there will be tissues and crying faces everywhere. I know that this movie will bring all hearts and minds together in a once in a limited time tribute to an international icon. A movie that will allow the memories of an icon to never be forgotten. The sentimental experience that can leave the world saying “this is it.”

Eleemosynary chosen for small budget, props and cast Kelsie McDaniels A&E Editor


he theatre is quiet as the reading of the four finalists is read aloud to over 300 audience members at the Viginia Theatre Association competition. When it is time for the last finalist to be called they are hoping to hear their name. The final play is announced and to their disappointment it is not them. The four chosen plays were to be performed the following day and judging would follow. The Players go to support the other schools and wish for the best the next year. “ I cannot think of any experience other than VTA where you are so surrounded by people who are so passionate about their craft.,” said senior Meaghan O’Hare. This year’s VTA came in the middle of a very bad recession and the economy was failing rapidly. The Players were unsure that there would even be a

second chance for the first place award. Not having as much money as previous years made all of the decisions for them, such as choosing the play Eleemosynary. “When the cash flow is cut back it is hard for us [theatre] to afford technical elements such as lighting and costumes. It also affects trips because we are not able to travel as far and take as many students as we would like,” said director Darryl Phillips. The play is a memorial play about mothers and daughters and the special kinds of emotional and spiritual conflict which can surround any woman’s journey toward clear personal identity and inner strength. Cutting into the budget of the theatre also cut out the need for props to be used. Having a small cast and limited transportation let the directors choose a play without those essentials. “We always try to do small props and cast for travel. This play does not require props which make traveling easier,” Technical Director Beth Houlihan said. The financial restrictions reduced the amount of actors drastically from last years cast. Having a smaller cast than other schools may affect the outcome of the Players winning an award, but senior Alex Sleeper thinks otherwise. “I am used to working with a larger cast because I have been in musicals but I think the smaller cast creates stronger

Junior Lindsey Story (left), Seniors Alex Sleeper (middle) and Meaghan O’Hare (right) act out a scene for the VTA competition. Photo By Kelsie McDaniels. connections within the actors,” said Sleeper. Though the economy has driven the theatre to make decisions that may affect the outcome of the award won in the actual competition, the confidence is still there. The directors chose a small play that allows the girls to bond with each other and to create a real life family experience for the audience to enjoy that would not be as strong as a bigger cast. “We have a greater chance of winning because each girl carries her part strongly. There will be a strong core with no weak spots,” said O’Hare. Two out of the three cast members are veterans of the VTA, which usually has a larger cast, except junior Lindsey Story. “It is my first year doing VTA. I am looking forward to the experience with all of the different schools,” said Story. The play will be performed at the VTA competition in Reston, Virginia on Friday October 31. The players will be competing against over twenty other schools from all over Virginia. “It is not so much a competition as an amazing life experience,” said O’Hare.

Page 18 - The Royal News - October 9, 2009


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Information and Layout by: Katie Adams

What Do You Want To Be For Halloween?

Ten Reasons Why I Didn’t Do My Homework You see what had happened was...

Monique Williams, 12

01. “My dog ate it.”

“Eggs over easy and a piece of bacon, because who does not like breakfast?”

02. “I thought it was due tomorrow.”

03. “I had a family emergency.”

04.“I didn’t understand the material.”

Ben Bailey, 11

05. “You sure you didn’t get my e-mail.”

“I want to be Barack Obama because he reminds me of myself since I’m going to be president one day.”

06. “I had to work.” 07. “I haven’t been home.”

08. “My printer/computer is broken.”

Brittany Yocum, 10

09. “I lost my jumpdrive.”

“This year, I think it would be cool to be Cruella De Ville. She is mean, but elegant. “

10. “You never gave it to me.”

Important Dates for October -Monday, Oct. 12- Student Early Release 11:45 a.m. -Wednesday, Oct. 14- Interims Distributed -Friday, Oct. 16-Homecoming Game vs. Meadowbrook -Sat, Oct. 17- Homecoming Dance 8:00 - 11:00 p.m. $7/ticket

Senior Countdown...

154 Days Left!

Page 20 - The Royal News - October 9, 2009

New year, new man in charge


Former Windsor coach makes his place in football program Amir Vera trn sports editor


n March 10, 2009, the school board decided on the new head Varsity football coach: Bruce Carroll. Since then, he has been coaching the football team in his own way, leading them to new levels of success. The transition from Windsor to Prince George has been a smooth one for Carroll, as well as the other new coaches. They all met during the preseason to discuss how they would adapt to the new program. “When we first met, we talked about what our interests were,” Carroll said. “We pretty much came to the agreement that as long as we kept the kids interests at heart we were going to be fine.” Unlike previous years, the Varsity and Junior Varsity football team are two separate teams with two separate squads of coaches. “Everyone helps with Varsity on Friday nights, but the primary Varsity coaches are Coach Chandler, Coach Butler, Coach Keeler, Coach Thomas, and myself,” Carroll said. Along with the new coaches, comes new discipline. No longer is the term “now” used. It was originally used to signal to the players to quiet down and alert them that a coach was approaching, that

Coach Bruce Carroll looks up to the press box as he receives the next play during the Thomas Jefferson game. Photo by Amir Vera. was discontinued during the preseason. “We are more nonverbal now, so we just walk in the room. They’re respectful kids,” Carroll said. Friday nights are also different. The team does not watch film of previous games on game days anymore. “My thing is this: if we do not get it done between Monday and Thursday, there’s no point to spend a lot of time on Friday, they should be relaxed and getting ready to play,” Carroll said. With the Friday films being abolished, the “silent time” before every game has also been terminated. In previous seasons, before every game, the team would sit in the locker room for about half an hour and stay in complete silence to get focused. Though it works for some, Carroll believes not every player should be kept silent. “I think every kid gets ready differently, we try to provide whatever environment they desire. If they want to stay quiet they can stay upstairs where the lights are completely off. If they want to be semi quiet they can go in the locker room and if they need to talk they can go in the weight room,” Carroll said.

Along with believing that every player gets focused in his own way, Carroll also believes that it should not take a lot to “liven up” the team before a game. “We work hard all week, Friday night is supposed to be show time. We try to get to the point where they are self motivated. I can get in there and give a ‘rah-rah’ speech, but the bottom line is as human beings we have to learn to be self motivated,” Carroll said. While Carroll has instituted his new rules, he lets the team make decisions every now and then. He let the team choose who they wanted as captains. The players nominated people who they thought were worthy of being leaders. Ten to twelve players were nominated. The coaches discussed who they believed to be leaders and six where chosen. They include: senior Kiydaar Baucom, senior Chris Taylor, senior Mitra Cook, junior Larry Harrington, junior Trey Taylor, and sophomore Joseph Pervall. Each feel that they deserve the captain spot because they feel that others look up to them and they’re role models for the team, even young Pervall.

“I’ve heard it’s unusual for a sophomore to be a captain, but I think anyone can be a captain if they work hard enough, if they’re a good leader and role model and they do what they’re supposed to do,” Pervall said. The captains, as well as the team have both taken a liking to the new coach. “I feel good about the new coach. We’re developing a relationship, like a bond. He helps us realize that we’re a family and not just individuals on the field,” Cook said. “It’s more of a family this year, there’s no separation in the locker room anymore. Its like we’re a brotherhood,” Trey Taylor said. They also appreciate his new coaching style. “Coach Carroll just isn’t a talking coach, he will actually do what he has to do and inspire you to get it done,” Chris Taylor said. With the season coming to its mid point, it is clear that Carroll has made his place in Prince George County, and the players have taken him in with open arms.

October 9, 2009 - The Royal News - Page 21



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Page 22 - The Royal News -October 9, 2009

Spor ts

Senior Spotlights

Jeremy Carrell Golf

Kimi Bayes Field Hockey

Travis Spain Volleyball

1. How long have you been playing golf? “Since I was 9 years old.”

1. How long have you been playing field hockey? “Since 9th Grade.”

1. How long have you been playing volleyball? “Since 9th grade.”

2. What inspired you to start playing? “My uncle because he played all he time and I played with him. I just thought it was fun.”

2. What inspired you to start playing? “Friends inspired me to play.”

2. What inspired you to start playing? “My dad plays, I’ve always played.”

3. How do you train for field hockey outside of school? “Running and hitting with other players.”

3. How do you train outside of school? “I practice at my home volleyball court.”

4. What position do you play? “Right Forward.”

4. What are your rituals before a game? “I listen to music, hardcore rock.”

5. What are your pregame rituals? “Switch drill and corners.”

5. Do you eat anything specific before a game? “I always eat different things, the parents always bring food for the games.”

3. How do you train for golf outside of school? “I practice at the golf course.” 4. What are your pregame rituals? “I don’t have any.” 5. Do you eat anything specific before a game? “No.” 6. What do you enjoy most about golf? “The atmosphere of playing.” 7. What has been your best match? “Last year against Dinwiddie, I double bogeyed the first hole and I had 4 birdies on the rest of the holes.” 8. Do you plan on playing golf after high school? “Yeah, in college.” 9. What is a little known fact about golf? “It’s harder than it looks.” 10. Coach’s Corner (Coach Earl Burton) “He’s been a four year starter. He’s not just an outstanding player, but an outstanding individual as well. As a senior he’s been a role model for younger players. He’s not only going to have success in golf, but in life as well.”

6. Do you eat anything specific before a game? “Yea, I eat chocolate chip granola bars.” 7. What do you enjoy most about field hockey? “I enjoy the competition and just playing the game.” 8. What has been your best play/game? “The game against Maggie-Walker last year because I played well and scored twice.” 9. Do you plan on playing field hockey after high school? “Yes, either club or division at James Madison University or Virginia Commonwealth University.” 10. Coach’s Corner (Coach Roy York): “Kim is very fast and determined. She’s an asset to the team.”

6. What do you enjoy most about volleyball? “Hitting people with the ball.” 7. What has been your best game? “Last year at Matoaca, we played really well.” 8. Do you plan on playing volleyball after high school? “Yes, club volleyball.” 9. How does it feel to be the only returnee on the Varsity team? “It’s more difficult. I started playing volleyball with the seniors that graduated last year. I’ve never played with this team. Its weird.” 10. Coach’s Corner (Coach John Pelter): “It’s good to have Travis and his experience, but Travis and I both have to have been patient this year because we have a lot of new or inexperienced players learning their positions.”

Spor ts

October 9,2009 - The Royal News - Page 23

Scoreboard&Schedule Football (1-3, 0-1) 9/11/09 9/18/09 9/25/09 10/2/09

Clover Hill 27-46 (L) Thomas Jefferson 49-25 (W) John Marshall 20-22 (L) Matoaca 0-46 (L)

9/28/09 Colonial Heights 3-0 (W) 9/30/09 Thomas Dale 1-4 (L)

Boys Cross Country

Boys Volleyball (2-8, 1-3)

9/9/09 Matoaca 72-15 (L) John Honaker 9th Place, 20:52

9/3/09 9/9/09 9/14/09 9/15/09 9/17/09 9/21/09 9/22/09 9/24/09 9/28/09 10/5/09

Deep Run 0-3 (L) Henrico 3-1 (W) Hermitage 1-3 (L) Matoaca 0-3 (L) Colonial Heights 0-3 (L) Maggie Walker 0-3 (L) Meadowbrook 3-0 (W) Thomas Dale 0-3 (L) L.C. Bird 1-3 (L) J.R. Tucker 0-3 (L)

10/1/09 Thomas Dale 79-15 (L) Ben Hall 11th Place 20:22

Field Hockey (6-6, 3-1) 8/27/09 8/31/09 9/2/09 9/3/09 9/9/09 9/11/09 9/14/09 9/21/09 9/23/09

Maggie Walker Deep Run Henrico Trinity Lee Davis L.C. Bird Maggie Walker Matoaca Hopewell

Girls Cross Country

1-3 (L) 0-2 (L) 5-0 (W) 3-4 (L) 2-0 (W) 3-0 (W) 1-2 (L) 4-0 (W) 4-0 (W)

9/9/09 10/1/09

Matoaca 25-30 (W) Amanda Tomlin 1st Place, 21:20 Thomas Dale 21-38 (W) Amanda Tomlin 1st Place, 21:07

Golf (5-1-1, 6-1-1) Girls Volleyball (6-6, 3-2) 9/3/09 9/9/09 9/10/09 9/14/09 9/15/09 9/17/09 9/21/09 9/22/09 9/24/09 9/28/09 9/29/09 10/5/09

Deep Run 3-1 (W) Henrico 2-3 (L) ARGS 3-0 (W) Hermitage 3-1 (W) Matoaca 1-3 (L) Colonial Heights 0-3 (L) Maggie Walker 1-3 (L) Meadowbrook 0-3 (L) Thomas Dale 3-0 (W) L.C. Bird 3-0 (W) Petersburg 3-0 (W) J.R. Tucker 2-3 (L)

9/3/09 Matoaca & Maggie Walker149-149156 (Tie with Matoaca) 9/9/09 Colonial Heights 158-176 (W) 9/14/09 Thomas Dale 154-143 (L) 9/17/09 Petersburg 150-268 (W) 9/21/09 Hopewell 155-178 (W) 9/24/09 Dinwiddie 156-171 (W)

Where’s the Sportsmanship?


was at the football game against Thomas Jefferson Sept. 19, enjoying myself and watching the Royals demolish them in a game that would end 45-25. But, during the game, something caught my eye. It was after a tackle was made and everyAmir Vera one but two players was going back to their respective positions. In the red and white, number 8 was exchanging some harsh words with the green and gold number 2, Mitra Cook. I thought there was about to be a little scuffle when I saw Cook do the respectable thing any athlete should do in his situation, he walked away, thus leaving number 8 stunned and angry. This situation is all too familiar in sports. There are always those who talk and say things they are not supposed to say. But situations such as the one mentioned above, are where the true athletes show their talents: a little thing called sportsmanship. Walking away was the best thing Cook could’ve done because giving in to his emotions could have resulted in a personal foul or even being thrown out of the game. Situations like these tend to happen in sports, whether it is a bad call by the referee or an opponent talking too much. What they do about it is the key issue, and Cook demonstrated the best way to deal with it. Unfortunately, not all close calls like this end in the same way. Some end with fights, leading players to get a personal/technical foul, a red-card, or even a 2 game suspension. Worse could also happen. Look at Serena Williams. During the U.S. Open semifinals, she simply lost her footing and stepped over the line in which to serve, and was called for it, a term in tennis known as a double-fault. She then lost her cool and began to yell expletives at the line judge and slamming her racket. Her actions resulted in a penalty point to her opponent, thus causing her to lose the match. Had she just stayed calm, cool, and collected none of this would have ever happened, and she would probably have a trophy. So, to all athletes out there who are prone to losing their cool I ask you one question: in the end, is it really worth getting that personal/technical foul, red card, or 2 game suspension? Think about that the next time a number 8 decides to come your way.



Jeremy Carell advances to the state golf tournament October 19th .

Girls varsity volleyball defeated Petersburg 1-0 Sept. 29.

Boys varsity volleyball lost a hard fought battle against J.R. Tucker 3-0.

New head varsity football coach has new program p. 20

Senior Chris Taylor (right) and sophomore Joseph Pervall (left) both prepare for the Friday night game against Thomas Jefferson. Photo by Amir Vera



Varsity football travels to Colonial Heights today at 7:30, but takes on Meadowbrook at home next Friday.

Girls volleyball travels to Colonial Heights Tuesday, October 13th.

Cross country travels to Hopewell Wednesday, October 14th, at 4:30.

October 09  

The Royal News October 2009