Archive | November, 2012

Religion in School?!

7 Nov

 

The paper starts off with a quote from John 3:16.

“For god so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whoever believes him should not perish but have everlasting life.”

You wouldn’t expect to see a sign of religion in a school setting. Common sense and the idea of a separation of church and state would lead you to believe this wouldn’t happen in school. However, Hunter Targosh has another idea.Using the powers of the 1st Amendment of the Constitution of the United States, as well as quoting the Equal Access Act, Hunter had placed posters all over our school inviting anyone to join a club Bible Club.

Though it is stated in the constitution that no Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise of practice there is a separation.The conception is that public schools aren’t allowed to have religious-based clubs, however, principal of our school said these clubs are legal.

“As long as the meeting times for the group are during non-academic times like afterschool and lunch the group is allowed to perform its duties,” said Mr. Warren.

Non-academic periods include the activity period we now face either before lunch for freshmen and sophomores and after lunch for juniors and seniors. Since the club meets during activity period the club must be accepted by the school and cannot be denied. The Equal Access Act applies to any public or secondary school that receives federal funds and allows extracurricular activities in the school after school hours.

The Act states that all schools meeting these criteria are forbidden to prevent access or deny fair opportunity to students who wish to hold meetings on school grounds. The Act is non-specific in group types and allows a broad range of groups to arise.

During a Government and Economics class with Mr. Watson the topic was brought up while learning of the court case Marbury V. Madison.

“If Bible club is allowed then why can’t we have a Satan club?” Mr. Watson joked.

Everyone laughed at the idea, but in truth the Equal Access Act would allow that.

“The school is in lack of morals with what is left in decline,” Hunter Targosh had stated before the first meeting of Bible Club this year. “I hope to bring God and morality back into the school.”

Hunter said the school is full of immorality. Some examples of this would include but don’t end with, disrespect among students as well as teachers and other adults, criminal acts, the refusal of participation and failure in studies and classes.

“I hope that the club becomes a sphere of influence on fellow students so they also can see the light of Jesus Christ, with this, participation will increase, grades will go up, discipline will go down and the overall well-being of the school will improve,” Targosh said.

Posters announcing the upcoming meeting of Bible Club are outside of Senora Meierjurgen’s room.

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Class of 2014: Participate or Bust!

7 Nov

 

 

By Caitlin Connelly

Glancing around the gym, watching students prepare for Color Wars, the maroon bleachers of the juniors exhibited great effort. However, approximately 10 out of the 80 juniors had worked on them. Others sat on the bleachers, watched from above on the track, and chatted among upper and underclassmen. If everyone were to pitch in, the Class of 2014 might have won Color Wars for the first time of their high school careers.

Mrs. Lasko, former sophomore class advisor and the juniors’ current advisor, noticed that the class of 204 came into sophomore year with little motivation nor interest in school activities. A common belief among juniors seems to be that they don’t have to get involved because someone else will. This has led to limited participation on the class float, preparation for color wars, and on fundraisers throughout the year.

The Class of 2013, this year’s seniors, had earned $6,798.90 by the end of their sophomore year. One year later, the Class of 2014 has earned nearly half that amount in the same period of time, $3,262.63 in 2 years.

Typically, those who participate most are the avid fundraisers, always taking part in the events that bring the Class of 2014 together, where working as a team is necessary. Otherwise, students learn to stand on the sidelines. Most agree nobody cares enough about our school, or possibly school in general, to lend a hand in any activities.

Jordan Doane, the top fundraiser of the junior class, said she continues to participate in events with her class to make memories. After all, there is only two years left for the Class of 2014 to make the time spent in Watkins Glen High School worthwhile. Although communicating with friends has become much easier, thanks to Facebook, Twitter, and cell phones, memories cannot be created digitally.

It isn’t only participation in class activities that has taken a blow, but involvement in fundraisers. Those who excel in fundraising often sell to their families and their parents’ work. While those with negative balances don’t feel comfortable asking people to buy from them. A simple case of discomfort has caused the average class credit per student to drop from $62.60 in 2007 to $41.30. It’s very important that each student that intends to go on their senior trip and participate in senior activities to have $650 in class credit, at least $100 of that derived from fundraisers.

“I would estimate that about 40% of the money for the senior trip comes from fundraising,” stated senior class advisor, Mr. Brubaker. “It varies for individuals, as some will fundraise the entire amount and some will pay entirely with out of pocket cash.”

Participating is a responsibility for all students. Similar to any kind of task, its completion can affect success in school and other life events.

Matthew Gill, Class of 2014 president, said that taking these responsibilities teaches self-discipline and maturity to those who try. This makes the irresponsible better students with more rewarding years in high school.

With a lack in motivation comes an additional task for the Class of 2014: getting everyone involved. Class leaders must begin to remind friends to turn in their fundraisers on time, share the excitement of school events, and gently discipline those who don’t care. To remember the best parts of high school, problems need to be attended to and students’ priorities need to be straightened out.

Its importance is colossal, and its products are never-ending. Participation creates friendships, generates excitement, and celebrates who we are, the Watkins Glen Class of 2014.