Category Archives: In & Around AHS

Students Have Mixed Opinions On Year-Round School

 

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Student Eric Munguia feels a change in calendarwould not be beneficial.    Photo by Daris Chikliwala

By: James Nordbergand Darius Chikliwala

Summer is around the corner, and students are very eager to get out of school, but this prolonged break can have negative consequences on students of all ages. A solution is to exchange the current calendar for one that features the same total number of school days, but extends into summer while adding shorter more frequent vacations.

7 students were interviewed randomly at lunch about if they supported the current calendar or favored a year-round alternative. An example given to them was a calendar featuring nine weeks of school alternating with three-week breaks. The kids were also given two quotes from summerlearning.org before they made their decision. The quotes were “Most students lose about two months of grade level equivalency in mathematical computation skills over the summer months. Low-income students also lose more than two months in reading achievement, despite the fact that their middle-class peers make slight gains,” and “Children lose more than academic knowledge over the summer. Most children—particularly children at high risk of obesity—gain weight more rapidly when they are out of school during summer break.”

“I’d like more frequent vacations,” said student Nathan Barboza when asked if he would prefer the year-round calendar. “Yeah staying healthy is important,” was his response to if the quotes impacted his answer.

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Nathan Barboza, Sophomore, gesturing towards himself

Other students were more skeptical of the benefits of changing the calendar. “No because I still feel kids will still lose knowledge over the smaller breaks,” said student Eric Munguia when asked if the calendar should be changed.

Some students feel it simply doesn’t matter much to which calendar is used. “I don’t care,” said student Abigail Boudreau. “I’m not going to get obese,” said student Sarah Pimental when asked how the quotes impacted her choice.

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Sarah, Avery and Abby (L-R)

Sentimental feelings factored in for other students. Matt Jimenez and Will Pion both agreed that Summer has always been something to look forward to. “I like it the way it is because it’s the way it’s always been,” said student Avery Schroder.

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Will (Left) Matt( Right)

Some schools already use a year_round calendar. “During the 2011-12 school year, the most recent year for which data is available, about 4 percent of public schools were operating on a year-round schedule, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. That’s 3,700 schools, 400 of which are charter schools,” said Jaclyn Zubrzycki from edweek.org. While not many schools operate on this system nearby, it is much more common in the South and the West.

A year-round calendar doesn’t come without its own problems. According to Elisabeth Palmer and Amy Bemis, things such as increased administrator burn-out, scheduling conflicts with family vacations and school or community activities, difficulty in arranging daycare, having siblings on different attendance schedules, and difficulty in scheduling teacher in-service days are all disadvantages.

Bemis and Palmer also believe that this “May require additional operating costs, lack sufficient time for maintenance, be inconvenient for teachers (who may have to change classrooms during the year), lead to overworked clerical staff or administration, increase difficulties in communicating with staff or parents, and result in some students missing school events scheduled at off-track times.”

 

 

 

 

SAVE OUR SCHOOL

 

Save Our School

Welcome to our Blue Pride Community   Photo by: Lydia Robinette

 

By: Abbie Strobel and Lydia Robinette

The recent cuts made in regards to the budget will strongly affect the education of schools like Attleboro High School (AHS) and its students. There is a great deal of confusion and frustration over the current predicament, alongside the necessary changes that must take place.

With 25 percent of the staff being let go at just the high school alone, students are going to be forced into cramped classrooms where the number of students per class will grow from around twenty individuals to forty. This large group will most definitely impede on the learning ability of each student.

The result of the classroom size could possibly produce stress on students who suffer from social anxiety and large crowds but will also create issues with teachers laying out ground rules and lessons for students to follow. If the budget cuts insue, classrooms may turn from orderly to chaotic in just a short amount of time.

This is unfair to the remaining teachers whose workload will suddenly double with the flood of students in a single room. Classrooms at the moment manage the proper amount of pupils, but once the headcount increases, not only will rooms be a tight fit, but the issue of safety will arise.

In cases of fire drills and lockdowns, it would be much more difficult to manage the large quantities of students in any given classroom. There would be less space for students to move, making it harder for them to get out of the way or remain hidden and quiet in times of emergency. Students may also have problems exiting the building safely if a fire was to occur.

Students who suffer from social anxiety and claustrophobia may have issues when it comes to doing presentations, completing work, or even feeling relaxed and comfortable in their environment.

School curriculum  is going to suffer as well because with budget cuts comes the loss of precious classes and activities that help represent the diverse students and all of their interests. If classes and teachers are being cut, students will lose parts of school that make them more passionate about their education. Schedules will become strictly academic and will place a greater stress on students, creating a less engaging day.

With so many classes in danger of being removed from the curriculum, staff members in charge of managing the schedules will face more difficulties, seeming that schedule creation has already gone under way. Students may not be able to participate in classes that interest them, which could eventually lead to a drop in grades.

Many students already struggle with the aspect of education, often times questioning the school system and whether or not receiving an education is worth their time. Eliminating beloved classes will reinforce students’ beliefs on school being a waste of time and energy.

Students may feel less inspired in classes and their work ethic is sure to drop. Without positive reinforcement and rewards, school days begin to look bleak. Elective classes provide students with skills and experience that they may not receive anywhere else.

For some students, art and music are what open their eyes to the world of learning and allow them to enjoy their high school years. Without a proper balance between academic and electives, students are more likely to struggle, which could cause an incline in behavioral and emotional issues.

If classes involving the arts, vocational practices, and electives are cut, students who look to create a career in those fields will lack experience, knowledge and ability, and may lose future career opportunities.

Alongside cuts to art programs and electives, students will be deprived of their sports. With the cuts being made to the budget, the prices will incline drastically, making it extremely difficult for families to afford such high costs. The athletes who are forced to quit may miss the chance to receive sports related scholarships when entering college.

Overall, the cuts made to the budget are going to strongly affect Attleboro and its students on a personal level. Redistribution of funds will allow for students to receive proper attention from their teachers and ensures a comfortable working environment for both the faculty and their classes. On behalf of the affected schools, consideration in the readjustment of the budget would be greatly appreciated.

 

Summer Plans: Man on the Street

By Meghan Lancaster

With summer just around the corner, students and staff alike are counting down the days until the school year is over. Here is what Attleboro High School (AHS) students will be up to this summer.

Project Unite hosts the Attleboro School Day Games

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Opening Parade  Photo by: Jenna Berg

By: Jenna Berg

 

The Attleboro High School (AHS) 2016 Special Olympics was held last Thursday. This is the 28th annual Attleboro School Day Games, coordinated by AHS teacher and Project Unite leader, Mrs. Rebecca Halsey.

Special Olympics is funded by another popular school event, Polar Plunge- an event where students fundraise money and plunge themselves into the freezing ocean.

Students volunteer from AHS, Bishop Feehan High School (BFHS), and North Attleboro High School (NAHS) to form Project Unite. Volunteers raised money through Polar Plunge and asked friends and family members to sponsor them. All of the money raised funded the Special Olympics

The project is always successful, full of enthusiastic students who are always going all out for the themes during the plunge and games. Project Unite surpassed their goal of $18,000 this year alone with Polar Plunge, but there were also other ways of fundraising; AHS raised money through Senior Assassin, a game where seniors were allowed to eliminate each other with water guns.

Volunteers were required to wear a blue team shirt and to accent their outfits with red and yellow to accommodate the circus theme.

This year, over 650 athletes from 40 different groups participated in the games. There were about 300 hundred volunteers from AHS, BFHS and NAHS. This event was coordinated since September.

Athletes looked forward to this event all year, and the volunteers worked very hard to make it the best day for the participants.

Halsey said that her favorite part was working with the staff, and she loved seeing “the pieces coming together.” The Attleboro Day Games is a huge event that takes a lot of organized effort in order to run smoothly. This year’s event was the largest one yet.

Thursday’s weather was warm and sunny, a great day for the outdoor event. Volunteers arrived early and helped with the setting up. Everyone was festive in their colors with tutus, socks, bandanas, suspenders and clown noses or bow ties.
The parade began and finished before 10 a.m. All the schools and groups were welcomed with a big round of applause. Music was blasting through the speakers, and people were singing along, creating a fun and positive atmosphere.

When the parade finished, the games began. Groups rotated around like a clock. Athletes competed in turbo jav, the softball throw, long jump or any running events such as the hundred meter dash.

Athletes could also go to Olympic Town, an area dedicated to games. Volunteers ran everything such as a dunk tank and face painting. Food was also provided for all participants.

At each event, all the volunteers met the athletes, and were filled with excitement. No one was left behind; everyone who competed was given an award.

AHS sophomore and second time volunteer, Julia Hayes said, “It is wonderful to be a part of an eye opening event.” For the participants, it was very special to see how important the day meant to the athletes.

Abigail DesVergnes, an AHS junior, said her favorite part was the opening ceremony. DesVergnes also liked seeing the kids and how happy they were.

A BFHS student, Brad Nelson, volunteered for his first time this year with friends. He explained his favorite part of the day was “working with the kids.”

Kyle Johnson is an NAHS senior who volunteered and participated in Polar Plunge all four years, and was the awards coordinator the past two years. He felt that the athletes “didn’t always get as much recognition,” which is why his favorite part was awards.

AHS student and project unite coordinator, Hadley Porreca, described the event as “magical.” Porreca wanted to do everything she could to support their one day. All of the work that was put into it, was worth it.

The 2016 annual Attleboro School Day Games was a success. Volunteers are already looking forward to next year’s event.

School Leadership Saves the World

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“Ban the Bag”   Photo by: Delaney Nisbet

By: Delaney Nisbet

During the day on Monday, Attleboro High School (AHS)’s School Leadership teacher Mrs. Rebecca Halsey, presented projects that the class hoped would save the world some day in the future. Multiple projects were out on display in the pit for students who passed by to see.

“We are trying to spread awareness with these projects, so that we can save the environment” said junior Cassidy Dias, who was a participant of the “Ban the Bag” presentation.

Ban the Bag has been an ongoing project created by senior Patrick Collins in order to ban plastic bags from being used. “The plastic bags are harming the environment because the animals tend to eat or swallow them, and the bags are killing them” said junior Kassandra Alves.

Other projects that were presented were anti-tobacco support for Special Olympics and against drug abuse. “We are really trying to get everyone around us aware of the issue at hand. The best way to start is within the schools,” said senior Samantha Spaziano who ran the Special Olympics table.

“The projects were a huge success and I’m so happy with how they came out,” said Senior Morgan Fulton who had been working on the project almost all year long. Ultimately, the School Leadership projects were a success with raising awareness.

 

BMX at AHS

 

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Biker Allen, before he does a back flip off a ramp over Mr. Runey      Photo By: Ashley Liriano

By: Delaney Nisbet

On May 6, Attleboro High School (AHS) held an assembly that was supported by the National Guard. It featured a BMX group called “Bring Your A Game,” which showed students the five core “As” that all students should follow throughout their day.”

Alliance, Attitude, Authentic, Ability, Active, Anti-Bullying and Achieve.

The National Guard believes that these five As will be able to make students successful with things they hope to accomplish. “I want them to come back to AHS, they did the coolest tricks I have ever seen,” said sophomore Emma Humphrey.

To show a core A, the BMX group asked volunteers from the crowd to help one of the bikers perform a trick. Four students lay on the floor while Allan, one of the members, jumped over them. “I thought it was very cool and dangerous. That’s something I would never do,” said sophomore Julia Hayes about the stunts the group performed.

The National Guard members explained that they were able to help to pay for college in the future. They offer many assistance programs that help pay for college tuition. “I would definitely join the National Guard as long as they help me pay for college,” said sophomore Arianna Susi.

“I wish that seniors were allowed the opportunity to go to the assembly because I heard it was super cool” said senior Angelia Littig who wasn’t able to attend the event. Some  seniors said that they wished they were able to go to the assembly because some students like to feel involved with the school as well.