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The Paw Print

November 2012

Homecoming Game Results WL 35 : LR 8

Paw Print Features New Teachers page 2

Editorial: Students Want Advisory Back page 7

•5460 Trumpeter Rd. Columbia, MD 21044 •

•Volume 40 Issue 1 •

Wilde Lake Girls Soccer Earns Redemption Against Oakland Mills By Rayma Kochakkan Business Manager

“We’re friends and all, but when it’s game time Wilde Lake is our opponent and there’s a huge rivalry,” said Nia White, junior varsity soccer player for Oakland Mills. The rivalry between the two teams runs deep. This was evident last year when the Oakland Mills girls’ varsity soccer

team defeated Wilde Lake 4-1. The rematch on October 16 was a chance for the girls to redeem themselves. Concerning last year’s game, former girls varsity coach Mr. Robin Sawyer said, “It was all rubbish. We were winning for 80 minutes. They scrambled together and managed to score to tie the game. The referee made a bogus call in the last minute and they scored on a free kick.” Junior Becca Riley, starting defender, recounted the previous year’s events. “I had to leave early to go to a chorus concert, but afterwards no one told me anything, so I didn’t even know the score,” said Riley. With last year’s loss still clear in their minds, the girls all had the same drive, and it showed. O’Toole scored early in the game off of a corner kick from Senior Maria Pascale. A second Wilde Lake goal followed shortly

after from Freshman Brinn Drury, assisted by Rachel Lazris, also a freshman. Oakland Mills kept pressure on Wilde Lake when Fern Peters put the ball in the back of the net late in the first half. Although Wilde Lake was dominating possession and pushing forward for most of the half, the Scorpions created quick counterattacks and strong passing plays. According to Junior Averie Stovall, who sat out the game due to injury, “We were playing hard, did a good job finishing and dribbling, and had great ball placement.” The second half was promising for Wilde Lake when Junior Julia Rocha found a ball from Junior Ni-Ja Richards and pushed the ball past the keeper to give Wilde Lake a 3-1 lead and round off both teams’ scoring for the game.

Wilde Lake’s captains lead the team on both ends of the field. Juniors Sarah Hulit, Carliane Laguerre, and Becca Riley, and freshman Kate Glaros made up a solid defense. Oakland Mills had aggressive forwards in Sophomore Fern Peters and Senior Rachel Hunter but failed to connect in the offensive third to score on more than one opportunity. Alex Phillips-Patterson, senior and goalkeeper for Oakland Mills, prevented Wilde Lake from capitalizing on numerous opportunities. Wilde Lake’s own goalkeeper, Junior Julia Crowe, also helped out, saving goals and directing the defense. As for the final score, Sawyer said the girls looked better than last year. “Wilde Lake is much more dominant this year. Revenge is sweet.”

Apprehension Surrounds Implementation of New Standardized Testing By Christina Kochanski Editor-In-Chief

Students will be hit by a new wave of standardized tests, featuring both multiple-choice questions and numerous writing pieces, in 2014. According to the Maryland State Department of Education (MDSE), these tests are designed to hold students to a higher standard of academic achievement. These PARCC assessments will replace the current HSA tests as a graduation requirement within the next few years. But, other than the addition of narrative and document-based essays, the specifics of the tests are still unclear to the faculty. According to Mr. LeMon, “There are too many unanswered questions. They haven’t released the PARCC test or written the curriculum yet.” Teachers have access to only a few example questions online, so there is still uncertainty about how different PARCC tests will be from the HSA. When asked about how she felt about the two assessments, Ms. Pennington said, “I would vote for a replace-

ment of the HSA, but I need to see the PARCC test first.” Students and teachers will have one year to prepare for the transition between the 2013 implementation of the new curriculum and the first round of PARCC testing in 2014. Raising the bar does raise concerns for students, faculty, and parents. Students who fail the HSA multiple times currently take a Mastery class or fulfill the requirement through the Bridge Program. Ms. Midgley currently teaches the English HSA Mastery class at Wilde Lake. “There are about 18 students in [my] class this year . . . I don’t know if there will even be a mastery program for the PARCC test,” said Ms. Midgley. PARCC testing has the potential to leave even more students behind, particularly during the first few years as students and teachers are adjusting to the new system. “There’s obviously some concern about how to prepare students for a test we haven’t seen yet, especially because these are high stakes tests for graduation,” said Ms. Midgley. Cathy Zhu, a senior taking five AP classes, believes that state mandated tests like the HSA and PARCC assessments can also negatively impact students who pass. “They’re unnecessary, especially for the upper level class-

es because the students are taking time off for these tests when they could be learning other things,” said Zhu. When asked if she believes tests like the HSA accurately reflect student ability, senior and AP student Yelena Malorodova said, “Personally, I’m not motivated to try my hardest on the tests. And too many factors can affect students’ scores, like how much sleep they got that night or if they’re stressed about other schoolwork.” Maryland’s wave of educational reform will begin in 2013 with the Common Core State Standards. This new curriculum focuses on ensuring students’ college readiness, with the PARCC tests tracking their achievement from third through twelfth grade. Concerning the rush to reform, Ms. Vernon said, “The majority of teachers believe in it, but they are pushing it too fast.” The state’s reform initiatives are designed to ready students for college and careers, but the questions surrounding the program could potentially leave teachers and students unprepared for the change.

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