Honors science students prepare for the upcoming Science Fair to be held in March.
By Ian Adler
As the fall season rolls in and spring draws closer, there is one thing on the mind of Red Lion’s honors science students--the Science Fair.
The fair itself is to be held March 10-11 at the Penn State York campus. The students must complete their projects well before this deadline.
For those who do not know, the science fair is an annual showcasing of science experiments created, conducted and presented by students. Schools from all over York county send their most intelligent and creative students to represent their schools well.
“I’m pretty confident we can get some first places and we have some chances to earn other prizes,” said science teacher Mrs. Valerie Stone. Along with overall place prizes, there are awards for projects in categories like engineering and meteorology or for projects that exhibit things like best statistics.
Freshman Dante Zumbo has recently settled on investigating the chemicals involved in cellular death, according to his science teacher Ms. Heather Fogell.
“When cells are stressed to the point when they realize they can’t survive, they emit chemicals that will trigger their own death,” said Fogell.
Freshman Larissa Herbert is conducting a solo project that is also unique. She plans to “take three different chickens and put them in three different environments to see how the quality of the egg is affected.”
In addition to Fogell and Stone, Mr. Blanteno, Mr. Granger, and Mr. Smith are all helping to prepare students for the upcoming fair.
With a wide range of student interests, Red Lion will have a diverse arsenal of projects to send to the fair.
From the massive amount of work that students will put in to perfect their project, Mrs. Stone has a lot of faith in her students at Red Lion.
“At Red Lion, we know what it takes to get a first place,” said Stone. “It takes a lot of work.”
By Ben Logan
The PRIDE program is relatively well known throughout the school for it’s focus on school ethics and proper behavior. However, in the coming weeks, the high school will be using PRIDE periods to promote school spirit and get students ready for the holiday season that is fast approaching.
Like last year, Red Lion Area High School will be engaging in many activities related to the holiday season. These activities include decorating hallways, crafting cards, and even just doing holiday related things. Although, these activities will replace the PRIDE lessons during activity days, they are aimed to tie into the PRIDE morals and values, all the while further promoting a healthy school environment.
‘We will be doing a lot of cool stuff,” says Mrs. Rohrbaugh. “I am really looking forward to pulling everyone together with the activities we have planned”.
Certain projects that will be undertaken during the next few weeks will not only promote school spirit, but also bring joy to those who need it most, and in particular, children whom are very sick. This is where the PRIDE period really shines; not only are students decorating their school with lights and paper cutouts, but are also sharing the experience with children in need, and making their day feel brighter.
All in all, PRIDE activity periods will be looking to promote a healthy holiday environment, and encourage school spirit in uniting students of all classes through common and uncommon ways. And even though the sparking of hallway rivalries is always interesting, hopefully students won’t get too caught up in the calamity, and not forget why they are doing what they’re doing in the first place.
By Ben Otte
Nov. 13, 14, and 15, students of the graduating senior class took finals steps to complete their final graduation project. For those three consecutive days, seniors were excused 20 minutes from one of their first three periods for their mock job interview.
Mrs. Kimberly Morris, business teacher and Career Awareness Coordinator, has been overseeing and coordinating the event for the past three years, including this one. “I see an extremely strong connection between school and employment,” Morris said. “Students will still stop along the way at college or a trade/technical school and so on, but eventually everyone winds up in the workplace.”
Seniors began developing cover letters and resumes in their respective English classes several weeks before the interviews took place. Students were interviewed by representatives from local organizations including Kinsley Construction, Cintas, and Johnson Controls in the high school library.
Morris, along with English teachers challenged students by requiring their cover letters and resumes be “perfect” in their design and to take the mock job interviews more seriously.
“People may say I’m mean,” Morris said in a chuckle. On a more serious note, her expression changed. “Ultimately, however, I want the students’ success.”
The evaluations seem to have pointed to just that. Morris says evaluation sheets she saw labeled the seniors as more positive and more mature than in past years. A lot of the sheets reflected an impressive dress code as well.
“I wouldn’t say they’re [students] mature when I’m on lunch duty, there they are students having fun with their friends, but when everyone came to the library they knew what was expected and they did it. The ‘employers’ had nothing but good things to say about our students.”
Production: Anything Goes
Synopsis: The story concerns madcap antics aboard an ocean liner bound from New York to London. Billy Crocker is a stowaway in love with heiress Hope Harcourt, who is engaged to Lord Evelyn Oakleigh. Nightclub singer Reno Sweeney and Public Enemy #13 Moonface Martin aid Billy in his quest to win Hope.
Director: Angela Wise (first year)
Performances: March 6, 7 and 8. Times TBA
By Chanel Boyce
Homerooms have raised $550 to Sponsor A Square Foot, a fundraiser to benefit Habit for Humanity.
Several years ago, a home at 101 Schoolhouse Lane in Windsor was engulfed in the flames of a house fire, leaving behind the charred remains of what was a former home. Left abandoned and uninhabited for a number of years, the foundation truly was left in the dust.
Meanwhile, there are numerous families in need of a forever shelter to call their own, but are unable to afford the costs and upkeep of a house. That is where York’s own Habitat For Humanity comes to the rescue with the help of the Red Lion Area school district.
For the first time ever, York Habitat For Humanity has made the decision to partner with a single school district. Although the family has yet to be announced, the combined efforts of Red Lion and York Habitat are for a good cause with what will hopefully result in a great home.
Signed on April 15, 2013, The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) has bound York Habitat and Red Lion Area School District, allowing the two to work together on the project.
The plan is to use the existing structure as a basement and build the new foundation on top of that. The upcoming home is planned to contain three bedrooms and one bathroom, and the construction is expected to start in June of 2014.
York Habitat and Red Lion have set a goal to reach $90,000 to go towards the building of the new home. $26,534 of that amount has already been raised since the signing of the MOU in April of 2013.
To put the minds of all taxpayers at ease, none of the money that is raised for the construction of the home will be collected from taxes. In fact, all of money will be raised from fundraising events or donations.
There are a number of events planned for later this year, but only a few that are currently happening. One of the events for the last month is “Sponsor a Square Foot.”
The purpose of this fundraiser was to raise money in order to buy some of the necessary supplies for the new house. The money for this event was collected in a small brown box located in every classroom in the school, along with a 12 x 12 grid to track the progress.
Any time a student or faculty member dropped a quarter into one of the brown boxes, a check mark will be placed in one of the 144 squares on the grid. This allows those who wish to help with the project take part in doing so and every little bit helps.
Every chart is worth $36 which can buy a variety of items such as bathroom fixtures, four tubes of caulking, 12 feet of wall, two gallons of paint, 30 pounds of nails, one bundle of shingles, and one roll of insulation. When it comes to helping out for a cause, 25 cents can make a world of a difference
The overall goal for York Habitat and Red Lion is to have the project completed by June of 2015. The more help they receive, the more effective the building progress will be.
Learn more about the district's project here.
By Nicolas Stoneham
On November 7, the Red Lion school board met to discuss some of the issues and improvements occurring in the district. A lot of these changes involve costs and improvements regarding the school buildings and programs for special education students.
Tonja Wheeler, the first member of the board to speak, shed light on the fact that Red Lion is currently the third poorest school district in the county. According to Mrs. Wheeler, we have been improving our economic situation throughout the past two years, and are continuing to do so by saving more money. Saving up money each year and only spending when absolutely necessary has profoundly helped the well-being of the district.
Krista Antonis, director of curriculum, instruction and assessment, then shifted the focus of the discussion to the students of Red Lion by bringing up the many changes and improvements for “at risk” and special education kids throughout the district. One of these changes includes conducting a universal screening for schools to identify students who may be at risk so they can get the extra help they need.
Mrs. Antonis also brought up the issue of technology. In recent years, the use of iPads and Smart Boards in the classrooms of Red Lion have become increasingly popular and very useful. The problem is not every teacher is getting the opportunity to use this new technology, especially the special education department and teachers of at risk students. It was stressed that every teacher should be given the advantage of these devices, not just certain teachers.
Superintendent, Dr. Scott Deisley shared that $10,000 was raised for Habitat for Humanity throughout the district, referencing Tonja Wheeler’s previous statement that we are one of the poorest districts in the county. Deisley described the Red Lion community as generous and kind regardless of how low the district ranks economically.
Afterward, board member Jeffrey Fix brought up new changes regarding security systems in the school buildings. With recent tragedies such as the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, the safety of students and staff is top priority, according to board members. Deisley noted that a future $25,000 grant from the state would be used to implement new state-of-the-art security systems to all district buildings. It was said that a major security system being looked into is SchoolGate Guardian Security Systems.
Throughout the meeting, members of the board brought up some very necessary points such as the improvements for special education students, budgeting, technology, and school security. All of these issues are very important in making the school district strive and work towards being a great learning environment for all students.
By Rebecca Hosier
A priest, a rabbi, and a reverend walk into a high school classroom.
No, this is not the start of a joke. World Religion teacher Mr. Vanada has been inviting holy men and women into his classroom to speak to students since 2006.
Every year Mr. Vanada has pastors, priests, and rabbis speak to his students about their respective faith. When asked why he finds guest speakers beneficial he called them authoritative and personable.
“I have sat at my desk and had to think through some of the things the speakers say,” Mr. Vanada said.
Mr. Vanada believes that the speakers add a face to the religion. To him the speakers provide a non-judgmental outlet for students to ask their questions about faith. Many of the holy men and women can enlighten the students without them having to completely immerse themselves in a certain religion. The students can listen and pick what they want to believe.
Retired pastor Rev. Patrick Rooney spoke to the students of the Red Lion Senior High School World Religions class on Nov. 14, 2013. He is a former Roman Catholic monk and has been a Lutheran reverend for over 20 years.
Rev. Rooney explained the basics of the Lutheran faith and how it differs from its mother church, the Roman Catholic Church. He also answered numerous questions posed to him from the students.
The reverend explained Lutheranism and discussed the sacraments, Heaven, the Virgin Mary, and creation. He told the class that the sacraments, in the Lutheran Church, are physical ways to show their faith in God. “Sacraments are God’s way of hugging us and letting us know he loves us,” Rev. Rooney said.
The reverend introduced the students to the word theotokis, meaning god bearer. In Lutheranism the Virgin Mary was immaculate and free from all sin. In the Lutheran faith Mary remained a virgin her whole life.
He was asked questions from ‘Is Heaven a physical place?’ to ‘Is God still relevant in today’s society?’ Rev. Rooney said that Heaven couldn’t be grasped by the human mind.
“Hell is an absence of God,” Rev. Patrick Rooney said.
Upon being asked the question, ‘Can Satan be forgiven?’ he countered with a simple question. “Does Lucifer want to be forgiven?” Rev. Rooney asked.
Along with the Lutheran pastor Rev. Rooney people of other religions visit Red Lion High School. Buddhist Mr. Bob Hayes spoke to students on Nov. 21, 2013.
Mr. Hayes spoke to the students of the historical Buddha, also known as Siddhartha. Buddha was human. He lived and died as a human.
“Buddha taught well into his 80’s. He died when he was given poisoned food,” said Buddhist Mr. Hayes.
The Buddha was born as Siddhartha, an Indian prince. It was not until long into his adulthood did he became enlightened and become the Buddha most commonly known today.
One of the first things said by Mr. Hayes was that Buddhism has no divine deity. To a Buddhist, Heaven and Hell have no meaning. Many Buddhists believe in reincarnation and karma.
Mr. Hayes also walked the students through how to meditate and focus the mind.
Rev. Rooney and Mr. Hayes are the beginning of a list of speakers and holy men coming to speak to the Red Lion world religions class.
By Kelly Heilman
The way grade point average is calculated may be changing. The newly formed assessment committee is now discussing ways that the school can take another look at the fairness and validity of the grading system.
“Right now, we are in the fact finding stage,” said guidance counselor Mrs. Pam Scott, who is a member of the assessment committee.
The assessment committee is made up of teachers, administrators and students who showed interest in improving the way our grading is done. Students were able to apply for a position on the committee in the beginning of the year.
As of now we use the letter grade system for our final grades. This meaning, A’s, B’s, C’s, D’s and E’s. Some schools use percentage grades for final grades. “There is a big difference between a 91 and a 98 percent,” Mrs. Scott said.
Another topic the committee is addressing is how grade point average is determined.
“We are thinking about what works and what does not work,” Mrs. Scott said.
There is now an online survey for students in which the committee can receive feedback from the student body about what we wish to see changed in the way we grade and calculate grade point average.
Change has been a running theme in the high school schedule in the past few years.
This year “Flex” scheduling is in place, with an extra twenty minutes rotating through every class period but fourth period. Next year, administration, staff and students were bracing themselves for block scheduling.
But block has stopped in its tracks.
According to a news release on the high school’s website, “We have decided to maintain our traditional seven period schedule for the 2014 school year.”
The time committee formed at the high school looked into block as a potential solution …”as we work toward our building goals of eliminating failure and focusing on learning,” Principal Mr. Mark Shue said on the website.
Teachers including some from the time committee visited Eastern York High School and Central York High School in October and returned with a decision.
“The consensus from the teachers who visited the neighboring schools was a renewed sense of confidence in the rigor of our educational program and a reluctance to change bell schedules when we are making significant progress towards attaining our building goals.”