• Stroud Quick to Make an Impact on PHS

    This year, PHS welcomes Ashley Stroud to the Special Education Department. She has been teaching for 12 years. In the past, Stroud taught at Salem, Lafayette and Indianapolis and worked

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  • Student Council Elections Tomorrow

    The 2019-2020 Student Council elections will be held tomorrow, August 21, during homeroom. Sponsored by social studies teacher Neil Dittmer, Student Council is for any student interested in being involved

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  • PHS Golfer Tees off Senior Season

    The Paoli golf season has officially begun, and one golfer is already showing signs of a successful season. Senior Avery Owens was a medalist for a meet at Hickory Hills

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  • Griffith Heads to Home Base

    For senior Tyler Griffith, the 2019 baseball season marks the end of a great high school career. His love for baseball was first discovered when he was eight years old.

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  • Vincent Strives to Unify PHS

    This past year, Sophomore Maggie Vincent created the Champions Together Club co-sponsored by guidance counselor Rachel Robinson. The club promotes and encourages awareness, respect and inclusion of those without intellectual

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  • Patton’s Recovery Continues

    On July 17, 2018, the summer before his freshman year, freshmen Landon Padgett, Dexter Brown and Bladen Patton had an ATV accident in Padgett’s backyard. As a result of the

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  • Leone Reflects on Tennis Career

    For senior Emily Leone, the 2019 tennis season is her last of high school. Leone discovered her love of the sport in fifth grade. “Several of my friends were going

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  • Blackburn Becomes a Boilermaker

    PHS senior Joni Blackburn has been accepted to Purdue University’s all-girl cheer squad. Blackburn has been participating in cheer for 15 years, and her career won’t be ending soon thanks

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  • Rice to Become Lady Statesmen

    After a life filled with basketball, senior Jacqlyn Rice will be signing with Lincoln Trail College in Robinson, Illinois. “I feel very relieved and excited. I’m excited for a lot

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  • Spring Sports Await Sectional Competition

    As the end of the year nears, spring sports teams will be heading to Sectionals. Varsity track, baseball, tennis and softball are all looking to be competitive. Baseball Sectionals will

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Stroud Quick to Make an Impact on PHS

This year, PHS welcomes Ashley Stroud to the Special Education Department. She has been teaching for 12 years. In the past, Stroud taught at Salem, Lafayette and Indianapolis and worked with students of all grade levels in that department.

Even though this is her first year at Paoli, Stroud has already started a new project that all students can become involved in: The Caps Project. It is a community service project that is helping the First Chance Center. They collect caps to be melted into benches for adults with disabilities.

“The First Chance Center’s goal is to collect 200 pounds of caps which can be drink bottles, Gatorade, water, juice, milk, detergent, sour cream, cottage cheese, ice cream lids and medicine,” said Stroud. 

Stroud hopes that many students decide to become involved and donate a few caps. 

“Eventually, I would like to collect caps specifically for PHS and get benches made for the school,” said Stroud. 

If you would like to help with the project, Stroud will continue to collect caps all year. Caps can be turned in to any teacher in the building.

Story by Makiya Russelburg

Student Council Elections Tomorrow

The 2019-2020 Student Council elections will be held tomorrow, August 21, during homeroom. Sponsored by social studies teacher Neil Dittmer, Student Council is for any student interested in being involved for the school year.

“Students who are involved in Student Council will get to have a say in policy decisions, like the dress code. They get to help plan pep sessions, dress-up days, Homecoming and many other activities throughout the year,” said Dittmer. 

If you are wanting to be a member of this organization, you will be running against other members in your homeroom. One person from each homeroom will be selected by your classmates. You are required to say why you think you should be elected and what aspects you bring to make our school a better place. If you have been selected by your homeroom, and are in the club, you have different obligations you have to fulfill, including serving on committees.

“The committees include, Homecoming, which will plan and create the fall and winter Homecomings, Events which will plan student events, like dances, bonfires, macho man volleyball and many other things. Their is a spirit committee, which will help with pep sessions, spirit weeks, hall decorations and policy which will work with administration on policy decisions like the dress code, grade book, and any other requests from the administration,” said Dittmer. 

If you are not selected for Student Council, there are other routes you can take to get in the club. Dittmer will have at-large position applications available after elections are complete.

“If you want to be involved, help the school, create school spirit and make Paoli better, you should run for election tomorrow,” said Dittmer. 

Story by Corinne Magner

PHS Golfer Tees off Senior Season

The Paoli golf season has officially begun, and one golfer is already showing signs of a successful season.

Senior Avery Owens was a medalist for a meet at Hickory Hills on Monday, August 12. This meet was the second of the season against Brownstown. Owens had the lowest score of all the competitors with a total of 44.

“Definitely not the best I’ve done, but a huge improvement from last week,” said Owens. 

This season will be Owen’s fourth and final season playing with the team. 

“I am looking forward to the rest of the season, and I think we have a good chance of moving on to regionals as a team or some of us as individuals. I can’t wait to see what this season has in store,” said Owens.

Story by Maggie Vincent

Griffith Heads to Home Base

For senior Tyler Griffith, the 2019 baseball season marks the end of a great high school career. His love for baseball was first discovered when he was eight years old. When Griffith had first moved to Paoli, he started in little league, and his love for baseball continued.

He currently plays many positions for Paoli’s baseball team, including pitcher, catcher and outfielder. The training required to get to where he is now gave him the opportunity to travel across the country playing baseball.

“Playing in high school has been a great experience, but I have a lot more memories playing travel baseball. I still have friends today from travel baseball that I would practically consider family. Growing up playing travel baseball has brought me closer to my family and teammates, and I wouldn’t trade those memories for anything else,” said Griffith.

While Griffith has been apart of baseball, he has accomplished a lot. In 2018,  the team won PLAC conference for the first time since 1994. Griffith has also earned individual awards.

I have been all-conference at the high school level. I have also won the top defensive player award. During two years of travel baseball, I played for the Indiana Rawlings Tigers located in Clarksville, Indiana. I won the All-Tiger award. This award is granted to two outstanding players on each team. Playing travel ball, I have also helped my teams win multiple tournament championships across the United States,” said Griffith.

Griffith has learned valuable life lessons during his baseball experience.

“Baseball has taught me a lot about what it means to be apart of a team and how to work together in certain situations. I have developed a lot as a player playing travel ball through my high school career, but also as a person because I have learned how to be a good teammate and to always be supportive of others,” said Griffith.

With his many years of experience, Griffith would advise younger players to do their best, work hard and never give up.

Griffith is looking forward to his last year of high school baseball, but is sad to see it come to an end. Griffith strives for another conference title and a sectional title before he has to put high school baseball behind him.

“I’m pretty disappointed that this is my last year, but I’ve had some great memories. I will miss being apart of the sport more because I had made some many memories with different teammates over the years,” said Griffith.

Story by: Faith Wilder


Photo by: Karyas Slaten

Vincent Strives to Unify PHS

This past year, Sophomore Maggie Vincent created the Champions Together Club co-sponsored by guidance counselor Rachel Robinson.

The club promotes and encourages awareness, respect and inclusion of those without intellectual abilities. It is through the IHSAA and Special Olympics and must accomplish four tasks to become a “Banner School,” which is one that completes all four tasks by the end of the year. These tasks include: inclusive student leadership, one activity based around “whole school engagement,” participation in one “Unified Sports” activity and raise $1,500 for Special Olympics Indiana.

“I can’t wait to see the club grow and see students talking to others you would never thought would interact,” said Vincent.

Story by: Kinley Block

Patton’s Recovery Continues

On July 17, 2018, the summer before his freshman year, freshmen Landon Padgett, Dexter Brown and Bladen Patton had an ATV accident in Padgett’s backyard. As a result of the accident, Patton had a broken ankle and arm. Through six surgeries, emotional turmoil and missing out on multiple sports seasons, the experience is something Patton will never forget.

“I have had a rod placed in my right arm and two screws put in my right ankle. The screws later had to be taken out because they were too long. I also had an emergency surgery on my arm because of a blood clot,” said Patton.

Patton has had a slow recovery, but to him, how far he has come is a big deal.

At first, Patton started off in a wheelchair and had casts on his arm and ankle. He was barely able to move his arm on his own. By January 2019, Patton was able to straighten his elbow out, and the feeling in his fingers was starting to come back.

“Now, I am back to being independent on most things, but I think the biggest difference for me is that I can finally sleep on my stomach. I couldn’t do that at the beginning,” said Patton.

Though Patton is not far enough along in the recovery process to know of any permanent restrictions, some temporary ones include playing certain sports, writing, tying his shoes and lifting weights.

Patton is also unsure of when he will be fully recovered, but he is still determined to play basketball and football as soon as he is released to do so. One major milestone Patton has accomplished is the fact that he is now able to play baseball again. 

Because of all the obstacles that have been put in his way, having a good attitude is extremely important.

“I could’ve very easily given up by now, but that’s not me. I want to get back to doing the things I love. I look at life in general quite differently now. It can be over in the snap of a finger, and you have to be very careful. I understand that anything can happen so fast and change your life, but I know God always has a plan,” said Patton.

Story by: Gracie Walls


Photo by: Addison Wells

Leone Reflects on Tennis Career

For senior Emily Leone, the 2019 tennis season is her last of high school. Leone discovered her love of the sport in fifth grade.

Several of my friends were going to play tennis so I thought I would try it out as well.  Also, my cousin had played tennis and enjoyed it so I figured I would probably enjoy it, too,” said Leone.

Leone has enjoyed the memories and friendships she has made because of tennis throughout her years.

“There have been a lot of different stories and memories come from tennis over the years,” said Leone.

Along with the perks of tennis, Leone admits the hard work involved with participating. She also mentions that rain is an obstacle for both her and her team.

Through the difficulties, Leone has had the opportunity to grow as a player. She has noticed the placement of her tennis balls are better and she has been playing smarter.

Along with winning matches, tennis has brought Leone lessons that will stay with her into her future. Leone mentions the mental toughness she has because of the sport, and she will be able to use that later in her life.

This season, the team started off with a 7-0 record with Leone playing number two singles. She has hopes that they will continue to have a successful year. However, Leone is no stranger to success. She has accomplished winning tournaments and was part of the team her freshman year when the varsity won sectional.

With her years of experience, Leone has words of advice to young players.

“Be patient with your progress. The only way to get better is by practicing and not paying too much attention to your mistakes,” said Leone.

With her last season coming to a close, Leone is preparing to say goodbye to a big part of her life.

“This being my last year of tennis feels pretty odd. It’s weird to think that I won’t be playing next year since I have been doing it for so long. I’ve made a lot of friendships with people I wouldn’t think I would, as well as made a lot of memories with people I have been friends with forever.  Tennis is the only sport I have ever been apart of, so I’m sure I will miss playing it,” said Leone.

Story by: Faith Wilder


Photo by: Rebekah Reeves

Blackburn Becomes a Boilermaker

PHS senior Joni Blackburn has been accepted to Purdue University’s all-girl cheer squad. Blackburn has been participating in cheer for 15 years, and her career won’t be ending soon thanks to her commitment to Purdue University as a Boilermaker cheerleader. Blackburn auditioned for a spot on the Purdue all-girl cheer squad in a two-day tryout on April 12 and 13.

“It’s an honor to be accepted to such a great cheer squad. I’m so excited to continue with my cheer career with such a great university,” said Blackburn.

Blackburn will attend the practices and camps Purdue offers to its cheerleaders. Some might imagine the amount of time and dedication associated with being a member of a collegiate cheer squad is overwhelming; however, Blackburn is no stranger to dedication when it comes to cheer. In her time cheering, Blackburn has seen it all, from competing at a state level to internationally.

Be sure to congratulate Blackburn on her success and keep up with Purdue athletics to catch a peek of a PHS alumna in action.

Story by: Jace Ingle

Rice to Become Lady Statesmen

After a life filled with basketball, senior Jacqlyn Rice will be signing with Lincoln Trail College in Robinson, Illinois.

“I feel very relieved and excited. I’m excited for a lot of reasons, but the main reason is to start fresh where no one knows me, and I get to meet new people,” said Rice.

Because of her accomplishments in the sport, Lincoln Trail has offered Rice a full ride. She is happy to not have the stress of student loans.

“I feel honored because it’s like my reward for all the years of hard work, and it’s a huge stress off my parents because they don’t have to pay for anything, so that makes me happy,” said Rice.

Rice is looking forward to focusing more on her major and working on getting to where she wants to be later in her basketball career.

“I could have played D1 or at a bigger school, but I chose Lincoln because it’s the best choice for me academically,” said Rice.

Rice is eager to further her academic and athletic career at Lincoln.

Story by: Makiya Russelburg

Spring Sports Await Sectional Competition

As the end of the year nears, spring sports teams will be heading to Sectionals. Varsity track, baseball, tennis and softball are all looking to be competitive.

Baseball Sectionals will be taking place on Saturday, May 25 at Clarksville.

Varsity girls track will compete Tuesday, May 14 at Seymour against Bedford North Lawrence, Crothersville, Eastern Pekin, Jennings County, Medora, Mitchell, Orleans, Salem, Seymour, Springs Valley, Trinity Lutheran and West Washington. 15 athletes on the team will have the opportunity to compete.

I hope everyone performs their best and we have some girls who advance to the regional,” said Coach Summer Hudelson.

Varsity boys track will be competing Thursday, May 16 at Bedford North Lawrence against Seymour, Crothersville, Eastern Pekin, Jennings County, Medora, Mitchell, Orleans, Salem, Springs Valley, Trinity Lutheran and West Washington. There will be 18 athletes competing in the Sectional. According to Coach Adam Stroud, Brett Bosley, Caleb Vanmeter and Zane Anderson have the highest chance of advancing to Regional. Bosley is looking to advance in long jump and high jump, Vanmeter will try to advance in the 400 meter run and Anderson will look to advance in shotput and discus.

“It is a big stage and allows kids to see what it takes to get to the next level,” said Coach Adam Stroud.

Varsity softball will be competing on Tuesday, May 21 against Clarksville. Other teams competing in this division are Providence, Henryville, Crawford County and Eastern Pekin.

“The girls have been a blast to coach, and I just hope we can carry some good momentum into the postseason,” said Coach Neil Dittmer.

On May 15 at Loogootee High School, varsity girls tennis will be competing at Sectional. The Sectional draw will take place Monday May 13. Emma Osborn, Emily Leone, Tinsley Moffatt, Chloe Elliott, Madison Shinkle and Faith Wilder will be competing.

“The girls have an excellent chances of winning Sectional.  It will be hard work, but it is nothing that they can’t accomplish. All of them have improved as the season went on and are ready for Sectionals. I am proud of all of them and their accomplishments to this point, but we still have more work to do,” said Coach Tyla Whitfield.

Story by: Haley Owens

The Senior Class’ Last Hoorah

On May 17, the senior class will have the opportunity to travel to Kings Island in Mason, Ohio. The trip will cost $40, but students were able get a free ticket if they sold multiple boxes of chocolate during the senior fundraiser.

The students will be leaving around 6 a.m. and returning to the school around midnight that night. Students will need to bring money for any other things they want to buy on their own.

“The senior trip is a last hooray to be with your friends and do something as as class that you can enjoy,” said senior class sponsor Carol Fullington.

To attend the trip, students will need to sign up with senior class sponsor Melissa Higgin. Fullington and Higgins hope to see as many kids go as possible.

Story by: Madison Street

Chastain to Sign with Hanover Panthers

Senior Keaton Chastain will soon be signing with Hanover College to play basketball. She is extremely excited to have this opportunity and can’t wait to see what comes out of it. Although Chastain has not decided on her major, both she and Paoli girls basketball coach Scott Blankenbaker have high hopes for her educational and basketball career.

“I am proud of the fact that she is going to be attending at top notch school in Hanover, and that her basketball talent is helping her financially. Anytime you can get some of your education paid for makes all the time and effort they put into the sport worth it,” said Blankenbaker.

Blankenbaker is very optimistic that Chastain will be successful in whatever she sets her mind to.

Story by: Haley Owens

High School Gym Students Make Their Mark

Advanced physical education teacher Brian Wilson has recently had numerous girls break records for the all-time board.

Freshman Kacey McBride has broken two records. Squatting 245 pounds and benching 145 pounds has made her the fourth all-time on bench and squat. Freshman Kinsey McBride squatted 265 pounds making her second all-time for squat. Freshman Laykin Busick and senior Heidi Cochran tied for third all-time with 260 pounds on squat. For Cochran, this was one of her last opportunities to accomplish her goal.

Well, I’ve been trying to get on the board ever since sophomore year. Now, I’m a senior, and I finally made it up there. That is a big accomplishment for me,” said Cochran.

All of the girls have worked extremely hard to get to where they are, but their work is not over yet. They are hoping to improve further, but are happy to accomplish what they have. Wilson is extremely happy to see his students working hard and the excitement surrounding it.

“I’m proud of all the hard work these girls have put in and very happy to see it paying off for them. They come in wanting to get better and do the right things the right way every day. That’s simple secret behind their big accomplishments. It was a lot of fun to watch their excitement at becoming a part of history,” said Wilson.

Story by: Faith Wilder

PHS Choir to Perform Last Show of the Year

Tonight everyone is welcome to watch the final show of the year for the PHS choir. The variety show will begin at 6 p.m. in the auditorium and is free of charge.

The students, along with teacher B.J. Crowder, have been working on the show entitled “It’s a Total Mood” for five weeks. It incorporates different genres of music and will feature skits prepared by the choir members.

We will be singing songs from musicals such as Phantom of The Opera, Dear Evan Hanson, The Greatest Showman, as well as several pop songs,” said Crowder.

They are displaying color in their concert in order to portray the feelings of their musical performances. The songs Crowder and the choir have chosen are also being used to tell a story. The choir has carefully selected the music in order to maintain the emotions they want the audience to feel.

It is the final show for seniors Tessa Robbins and Jillian Keen, and Crowder wants them to finish on a high note. He also wants to bring excitement to the remaining students in the junior high, beginning and advanced choir classes for future years.

I hope we have a big turn-out,” said Crowder.

Story by: Masden Embry

Throwback Feature: Padgett’s Time at PHS

Not a lot of people stay in their hometown their entire life, but this is not the case for PHS graduate David Padgett. Padgett attended Paoli from kindergarten to senior year and graduated in 1977. Following graduation, he went to work at Brittany Factory for 8 years. Padgett was then a student at Indiana University Southeast and earned his teaching degree. With his degree, he returned to Paoli High School and became a fourth grade teacher at Throop Elementary.

Padgett got married to his wife, Kathy, on June 21, 1997 and has two children. His oldest child is Nick, a senior, and the youngest is Libby, a sophomore.

Having spent a lot of time at PHS, Padgett has the ability to offer important advice to the students here.

“Enjoy school as much as you can and participate in everything that you can,” said Padgett.

In high school, Padgett was involved in FFA and really enjoyed going to the football games, basketball games and cheering on the Rams. Padgett’s biggest regret was not playing sports in school.

“You may not think it is, but school is one of the best things in your life. So enjoy it while you can and make many friends and memories before you graduate,” said Padgett.

Padgett has been teaching at PHS for 22 years, and at the end of year he will be retiring.

“I am looking forward to retirement. I hope to be able to go camping more, working in my yard and doing things with the family. I am going to also try to find a job so I can work some to help with the bills,” said Padgett.


Story by: Haley Owens

Miller Encourages ISTEP Takers

A little encouragement can go a long way for students, and ISTEP is no exception. This is what English teacher Rachel Miller had in mind when creating The Testing Encouragement and Motivation Project (TEMP).

The Testing Encouragement and Motivation Project (TEMP) is a way for teachers and administration to show their support for the students during ISTEP testing and to reward them for putting forth their best effort,” said Miller.

This two-part project included staff members writing personal, uplifting notes to boost students’ confidence and prompt them to do their best on the standardized tests. An incentive was also put in place, which was watching Aquaman in the auditorium with snacks and drinks.

After noticing that there wasn’t much support for students who were taking ISTEP, Miller decided to do something about it. She chose to restart the project she had previously done at Marion C. Moore High School, her previous school in Louisville, Kentucky. With a little help from Principal Chad Johnson and guidance counselor Brandi Kerley, Miller was able to put her plan into action.

Students work very hard to prepare themselves for the ISTEP and it’s often not a very fun experience, so a little added levity can be encouraging,” said Miller.

Miller hoped that she would be able to motivate students, alongside other teachers and administrators, to look at ISTEP as something more than just another pointless exam, but as a preparation for the future.

“I want students to understand that although these tests may not be fun or seem relevant, they’re actually a good model for obstacles they will face in life,” said Miller.

Feedback from students showed they enjoyed the notes and rewards, and teachers saw that students were positively affected by them. Through this, Miller was able to see the ability staff had to help students. That only reaffirmed her plans to continue and expand this project in years to come.

Story by: Masden Embry

NJHS Headed to Bloomington

Every year, the National Junior Honor Society (NJHS), takes a trip to reward students for their accomplishments in service throughout the year. NJHS is an international organization that consists of middle school students who excel in academics, leadership and character. On Friday, May 3, NJHS will be going to Urban air, a trampoline park, in Bloomington. While there, they will jump, eat and spend time with the other NJHS members. They will be leaving PHS at 9:30 a.m., and students are encouraged to wear comfy clothes and be ready to jump. NJHS sponsor Melissa Higgins and bus driver Aaron Reckelhoff will be supervising the event.

“The bus will leave Urban Air at about 1:30 p.m., so the people who are going will have plenty of time to jump and eat before we have to leave,” said Higgins.

Although all members are invited, there are requirements to participate.

“In order to come to the field trip, you need to have the required services and GPA,” said Higgins.

This year, in order to raise money to fund the trip, NJHS sold chocolate bars and paid dues at the beginning of the year.

“The students all sold chocolate bars to help with cost. If they didn’t, then they have to pay for part of it to attend the trip,” said Higgins.

Members attending are excited to spend a day away from the school to round out the end of the year.

“I am excited to hang out with my friends and be able to hang out with them other than at school,” said freshman Hayley Taylor.  

Students will arrive back at the school at 2:30 p.m. and attend their seventh period class.

Story by: Corinne Magner

Throwback Feature: Laswell Impacted by PHS

Paoli High School alumna Lora Laswell graduated in 1982. Laswell attended Paoli from kindergarten through graduation, and stayed even after graduating for her job and her family. While in high school, Laswell played volleyball as a setter and basketball as a guard. During Laswell’s high school years, sports had more of an impact on her compared to the actual school material, as well as her coaches more than her teachers.

“Ms. Baker and Ms. Phillips made an impact on my life when I was in high school. They were both my coaches, and I could go to them for anything, and still could. Ms. Phillips was my coach when my dad died. I was 13 when he died, and she helped me through that a lot,” said Laswell.

Besides volleyball and basketball, Laswell was also in chess club and worked in the summer at the vocational school in Rego for low income families.

“I didn’t really have high school jobs; I just worked through the summer. I worked at the vocational school when I was 14, and I got paid $3.65 an hour,” said Laswell.

Laswell now works for Paoli High School, acting as a groundskeeper, doing bus maintenance and helping coach girls basketball. She is married to her husband of 28 years, David Laswell, and has two kids, Logan and McKinzie.

Laswell doesn’t have any regrets from high school, but she did enjoy her time as a student.

“I loved attending PHS. I cried at graduation because I knew I would have to work full time and I would miss my friends. My advice to students today is to enjoy your life as a teenager and choose something you love to do as your career because if you love what you do, it makes it easier to go to work,” said Laswell.

LoraLaswell_OLD (1)Laswell Now

Story by Gracie Walls

Throwback Feature: Sanders After PHS

It is a given that people go their separate ways after graduating high school. For former PHS graduate Hannah Sanders, “separate ways” was completely leaving the state of Indiana. Sanders graduated from PHS in 2017, and she was an avid participant in tennis and cheerleading. Being on each of those teams, especially tennis, is what she misses the most from PHS.

After graduation, Sanders attended Ivy Tech Community College and majored in Graphic Design. After some time at Ivy Tech, Sanders made the decision to transfer to University of Central Florida (UCF) in Orlando. While still studying graphic design at UCF, Sanders is registered in Disney World’s College Program which provides internships for students. Making all of these life changing decisions did not come easy to Sanders, especially being so young.

“It was really hard at first, and I do miss my family a lot, but I have made so many great friends here and that really helps,” said Sanders.

Sanders’s internship lasts from January until May, but because Sanders loves working there so much, she has decided to continue working at Disney World part time until she graduates from school. Currently, Sanders works in the custodial department for Disney’s ESPN Wide World of Sports. Her job is to help keep the different complexes clean for the athletes and fans who come to watch. Once the internship program officially ends in May, Sanders will be moved to “quick serve” food and beverage. Lastly, because Sanders’s major is Graphic Design, she can draw water art as a part of her job. Drawing Disney characters on the ground for park goers to view would be an example of a job she would have.

“Working at the most magical place on Earth makes life a little easier,” said Sanders.

Disney’s College Program experience will help Sanders with her future career in graphic design. Sanders plans to do a professional internship with Disney and eventually do graphic design work for The Walt Disney Company.

Looking back at her life at PHS, Sanders definitely has things that she misses. As aforementioned, Sanders misses playing tennis and being able to play with her teammates. Not being able to see her friends every day, as she lives in a different state, is hard too. Most of all, Sanders misses media teacher Heather Nichols the most.

Sanders’s life in Florida with attending UCF and working for one of the most popular theme parks in the world will prepare her for future work in graphic design, and she is excited about the future work that will come.


hannahsanders (1).jpg

Story by Sara Kesterson

New JAG Teacher Starting Off Strong

After former head football coach Jeremy Lowry left Paoli, there was a need for a new JAG teacher. Substitute Katie Cook stepped up and accepted the position. She has been a substitute for Paoli for about three years now, and this will be her first time instructing her own class.

Cook was born and raised in Paoli and also graduated from PHS. She has three kids who go to Paoli and one son who attends University of Southern Indiana. She has her BA from Indiana Wesleyan University in General Studies, and she is working on her master’s degree in Special Education. She is very grateful for the opportunity to teach here at PHS.

“I am looking forward to making a difference in the students’ lives. JAG is a great program that teaches students the skills they will need to survive life after high school. I also follow up with each student after graduation for a year. I am looking forward to staying connected to them and staying involved in their lives. I can’t wait to see where life takes them,” said Cook.

The JAG class took a field trip to Indiana University Southeast on April 20. Cook wanted her students to learn about college and where they would like to attend.

“I hope they gained some knowledge of college life in general. Even if it’s not the college they choose, it gave them a good idea of what a college campus looks like, what housing looks like and if they think the college experience is something they are interested in,” said Cook.

Story by Angie Ceja


Throwback Feature: Oceguera Reflects on PHS Memories

PHS graduate Marixa Oceguera was involved with a lot of activities in high school. She ran track, was a cheerleader, marched in the Pride of Paoli band and earned a couple of crowns throughout her senior year. She can still remember all the fun times at PHS when life was a little bit easier.

Oceguera was a cheerleader most of her years at Paoli. She started her seventh grade year and continued to be involved until her sophomore year. She was the cheer captain along with her best friend, Michala Robertson, and enjoyed going to football games on Friday and cheering on her fellow classmates to victory.     

“My favorite thing about cheer was learning new stunts. I miss cheering with my friends, and Friday night games were always fun,” said Oceguera.

She also ran track her freshman and sophomore years with Robertson. Oceguera would usually run the 100 meter dash, 1600 meter run and hurdles.

Oceguera’s senior year was the most royal of them all. She participated in a pageant, and although she didn’t win queen, Oceguera enjoyed the experience. She was also nominated for Homecoming Queen. She and one of her best friends, Keegan Anderson, were the Homecoming King and Queen that year. She was also the Prom Queen her senior year with Anderson as well.

The one activity Oceguera stuck with throughout her high school years was marching in the Pride of Paoli. She marched the saxophone, and it was her favorite activity during her high school experience. She looked up to the seniors each year and tried to set a good example for her section. Her very first year of marching band was 2012, and the show was “The Phoenix.” Her last show was “A View From The Top.”

“My favorite marching band show was ‘A View From The Top’ because it was my senior year and the most memorable,” said Oceguera

Oceguera was in band for a total of eight years and was in the marching band for six years. Along the way, Oceguera learned a lot of life lessons from former band director Bill Laughlin.

“Mr. Laughlin taught me lots of life lessons that I’m very thankful for,” said Oceguera.

Oceguera is now a student at Indiana University Southeast in New Albany. She is working for her degree in psychology. She is open to many different career paths within the field of psychology. She faces all the new challenges every college student faces. At one point, she had three jobs at once to try to keep up with all her financial needs. She now has her own apartment in New Albany and works at Texas Roadhouse as a waitress. She shares the apartment with her high school sweetheart Cyrus Dodson and their two dogs.

Although Oceguera graduated not long ago, her life has completely changed from high school to college.


Story by Angie Cejá

Lady Rams Basketball Recognizes Accomplishments

The Lady Rams basketball team concluded their season in the second round of sectional. Despite not matching their previous season standings, the 2018-2019 season was a productive one. Lead by only three seniors who have played Varsity since their freshman year, many doubted this team and their lack of leadership. However, the Lady Rams proved several people wrong and ended their season on an impressive run.

The players had their annual banquet on Wednesday, April 24 at Superburger. The banquet signifies the conclusion of the season and awards are given out based on play throughout the season. The awards handed out included: mental attitude award for Madison Cunningham, most assists and rebounds for Jacqlyn Rice, highest field goal percentage, captain and offensive MVP for Keaton Chastain and highest free throw percentage, captain and defensive MVP for Madison Street. Audrey Blankenbaker and Street shared the award for the highest three point field goal percentage.

Many of the awards went to the seniors, and for good reason. They headed the team all season and provided the roles as leaders. As the Lady Rams 2018-2019 basketball season officially ends its chapter, we look forward to turning the page and seeing what is in store for next season.

Story by Jace Ingle

Throwback Feature: Magner Thankful for PHS Experience

Mary Magner graduated from PHS with the class of 1994 and learned many valuable lessons from high school over the course of her years. She was involved in many clubs, including Student Council, National Honor Society, Tri-Hi-Y, Booster Club and Spanish Club. Magner also participated in Speech Contest each year.

“I won the humorous duo category freshman year, and it was so much fun. I would not regret doing all these extra curricular activities for a second,” said Magner.

Magner was not just a member of these clubs.  She was often in leadership roles, including Student Council Secretary and Booster Club President.

“I will say that the leadership roles and activities I participated in in high school did lead me to continue to pursue leadership roles in college and in my career,” said Magner.

Magner also had three sisters who went to school with her, which made her experience at PHS more exciting.  

“On our way to school, all of my sisters used to pile up in my older sister’s car and go to school. This was one of my favorite ways to start off my school day,” said Magner.

With graduation being 25 years ago, Magner has since taken greater steps in life. After attending high school, she was admitted to Franklin College the next fall semester.  

“Going to high school prepared me for college, and I was so excited to step foot on campus,” said Magner.

After graduating from Franklin in 1998, Magner became employed at Mitchell Community Schools and then transferred to Paoli in 1998. Through the years, Magner also obtained her master’s degrees. In 2001, she received a master’s in education from Indiana University Southeast. In 2016, Magner earned a master’s in counseling at IUS.  Magner’s husband also attended PHS, and both of her children currently attend.

Although Magner enjoyed high school, she is grateful for the opportunities she has had since graduating from PHS.


Story by Corinne Magner

Geometry Students to Experience Math in Real Life

On May 10, math teachers Aaron Key and Cindy Stout will be taking their geometry classes to Holiday World on a math field trip. They will be leaving the school around 9 a.m. and will return around 3 p.m. the same day. Stout believes this will benefit the kids in math.

“The field trip will give everyone a chance to experience the math in real life and real time. They will be working on an assignment while they visit the park. All elements of math are found at an amusement park. We will be focusing on the geometry branch of mathematics. I look forward to having the students experience shapes and apply the formulas we work on in class,” said Stout.

Stout and Key appreciate the School Board approving their field trip, in hopes of teaching the students lessons by using real life and real time.


Story by Faith Wilder

Throwback Feature: Jones at PHS Then and Now

PHS holds many memories for our current staff. Whether it revolves around hanging out with a friend group, going to basketball games, going out to eat or just walking around the town, there was always something to do. Art teacher Chris Jones has worked at PHS for 24 years, serving for our art department. He has been at Paoli since he was a kid and graduated from PHS in 1990.

“I’d just like kids to know what an awesome history Paoli really has. They may not think it looks like it now, but Paoli was a very neat little town at one time. It was a lot like Mayberry. We rode bikes to town, sledded on snow days and cruised town on Friday nights. We had homecoming parades and bonfires. There weren’t a lot of closed up businesses and boarded up storefronts. People seemed friendlier and more concerned for one another. There was always something to do, and when there wasn’t, we made up stuff to do,” said Jones.

Jones’s life at PHS was heavily influenced by many teachers and administration.

“Mrs. Tish Alder probably had the greatest impact on me. She was my art teacher and wouldn’t accept anything less that your best. And your ‘best’ was a matter of her opinion, not yours. She was tough, but I thank her for it,” said Jones.

English teacher Ruth Uyesugi, Spanish teacher Rachel Greathouse, now known as Rachel Carter, and math teacher Tom Stuckwisch all made Jones’s high school years memorable. Once he finished his education at IU Bloomington and IU Southeast, obtaining his Bachelor of Science and Masters of Science in education degrees, Jones came back to work for PHS. James Babcock was the principal at the time, and Jones fondly remembers his time under Babcock.

Having grown up in a small town, Jones did not have many people in his life who went to college to turn to for inspiration. It was not common for the students to go to college at the time, but Jones was determined.

“I don’t know that I had a lot of ‘big dreams’ or anything. Growing up in a small town like Paoli in those days, we were very insulated from the rest of the world. It seemed like everything we needed was right here. It wasn’t until I was about a junior or so that I even considered college as an option. I was always a good student, but didn’t really give much thought to what I was going to do next. By the time I was a senior, I decided I needed to go to school and get a degree. There wasn’t as big of a push for every kid to go to college back then. Most of my inner circle of friends weren’t going and my parents hadn’t gone, so when it was time to navigate the whole college thing, it was pretty scary. There was no internet and no email. People didn’t take college visits. You were kind of on your own,” said Jones.

After teaching for several years at PHS, there have been many changes to not only the school but also the community. Technology, involvement, the pressure to succeed and the physical appearance of the community have drastically changed since Jones was in high school. The students and staff use chromebooks for homework, tests, science labs and informational purposes, but Jones does not necessarily agree with the large usage of technology.

Jones also recalls that the push for college education was not as high as it is in today’s society. Students are now put under a lot of stress for their future compared to when Jones was in school. Jobs in Paoli were much more accessible for teenagers because of the factories and “Mom and Pop Shops.” There were many different stores that made Paoli more historically appealing and created an enjoyable atmosphere for students.

“We were allowed to be kids much longer when we were younger. Our parents weren’t as involved in our lives as they are today. I’m guilty now of it too, being overly involved in my kids’ activities. Back then, my parents worked, I went to school and in the evening and on weekends, we were home. Life has gotten a lot more hectic now,” said Jones.

High school comes with many lessons and regrets. Students may feel pressured to try something out, good or bad, or they may let other classmates influence their decision making. Whatever the case may be, Jones wants to change a few things about his high school career.

“I wish I’d taken more chances and gotten involved in things that I was afraid to try, and I regret caring too much about what other people thought and feeling like their opinions defined who I could be,” said Jones.

Jones and his wife, Katie, both work with students every day. His wife has been working at East Washington Elementary School as a school counselor for 14 years. The two have been married for 20 years and have three children together, senior Isaiah Jones, freshman Caleb Jones and third grader Hannah Jones. The Jones family attends Paoli Christian Church, and Chris serves as an elder.

Throughout his years in high school, Jones has learned a lot from his past experiences. He may seem to be just another teacher to some students, but to a lot of PHS students and staff, Jones has a huge role in their lives. He has several pieces of advice to share.

“Take advantage of all of the opportunities that have been laid out in front of you. Whatever you choose to do, do it well. Don’t blame others for your circumstances. The world won’t accept anything less than [your best]. Your circumstances are a result of the decisions you’ve made,” said Jones.

jonesChris and Kate

Story by Kinley Block

Annual Photo Show to be Held May 1

On Wednesday, May 1, the Paoli High School Journalism Department will be hosting their twelfth annual Photo Show. It will be located in the Ruth Farlow Uyesugi Auditorium lobby, beginning at 12 p.m. and lasting until 5 p.m. The event is open to the public as well as anyone in the high school.

The photo show gets better and better every year, and the competition for who will win which display gets a bit more aggressive,” said senior photography student Mahalia Taylor.

While at the show, guests can vote for which display is their favorite, and the photographer with the most votes will win the “Best in Show” award and a $50 prize. In addition to voting, guests can also purchase any photos they like. One dollar of the proceeds will go to the journalism department, but the remainder of the profit will go directly to the student.

The Photo Show is about so much more than photography, though the photos are a big part of it. The Show is about learning how to put a large presentation together, talk to the public and defend your work. I love going to the show and seeing lots of people interact with the students’ work. I am always so proud of what they accomplish at the show,” said journalism adviser Heather Nichols.


Story by Michael Hannon

Workman Sisters Working Together

It is inevitable that siblings spend a lot of time together. For junior Erica Workman and sophomore Elizabeth Workman, this holds true. Along with school, the Workman sisters participate in many things together, including track, cross country and 4-H. They have been participating in 4-H for 7 years together.

Erica, the oldest, shows pigs, makes scrapbooks and is involved in Junior Leaders. Junior leaders is a program for 4-H members in grades 7-12 that teaches leadership skills and community service. The members assist with local activities, events and charities. Because she has been in 4-H for 8 years, there were many opportunities to learn along the way.

“I’ve learned that you have to take control when you are dealing with pigs. It is not easy, but I love it,” said Erica.

Elizabeth shows pigs, decorates cakes, and is involved in Junior Leaders.

Similar to Erica, Elizabeth is also very involved with her pigs. She has won Reserve Grand Champion and first place in her class several times.

“I love showing pigs. We get the pigs several months before fair, and that gives us time to work with them. When we get to the fair, we wash the pigs a couple times and shave them. Erica and I help each other clean the pigs and get them ready to show,” said Elizabeth.

Elizabeth plans on being involved in 4-H for the next two years alongside Erica. Being a part of the 4-H program has brought the pair closer together. They have grown together, worked side by side and learned how to encourage each other to do their best.

The girls look forward to spending the next two years together doing something they love.

Story by Kaden Lewellyn

Academic Bowl Team Victorious in District Meet

On Tuesday, April 16, the Academic Bowl Team traveled to North Knox High School to compete in the District Academic Bowl meet. The team is coached by history teacher Chris Lindley and math teacher Cindy Stout. The theme for this year’s competition was The Fertile Crescent.

Participants included senior Brooklyn Pittman, senior Ming Wang, junior Lauren Rutherford, sophomore Ben Tapp, sophomore Briannah Andis, sophomore Tori Tuell, freshman Gracie Walls and freshman Michael Hannon.

The team competed against seven schools in their class at the district level. They competed in six categories, including English, Fine Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies and Interdisciplinary.

The team received first place in English and third place in science.

It was a tough topic this year as well as our difficulty in getting practice time as many of our team members being involved in either a spring sport or drama club’s production of Footloose. We could certainly have done better with some more preparation, especially with Fine Arts and Social Studies,” said Lindley.

The team prepared by doing online activities for each category in the competition.  

After all the district level competitions were scored, the English team currently ranks sixth and has been invited to compete in the State Academic Super Bowl at Purdue University on May 4.


Story by Lili Seals

Throwback Feature: Key Reflects on PHS

Math teacher Aaron Key is a PHS graduate of the class of 2013. Key’s memories from PHS were too positive for him to leave forever. Therefore, he came back to make more memories, but as a teacher instead of a student this time.

When looking back, he thinks of some of his most memorable times, including graduating in the top five of his class. Academics were very important to Key, and it was the thing he took the most pride in as a student. He always put his academic responsibilities before anything else. One of the classes he enjoyed most was U.S. history with history teacher Chris Lindley.

“I loved getting to learn about what happened in our country over the years. I really liked the time period during the Oregon Trail. Mr. Lindley would also dress up occasionally, which also made the lessons we were learning engaging,“ said Key.

Although it wasn’t his favorite class, Key found he excelled at math. He continued to improve through high school and put his skills to work by becoming a math teacher.

Reflecting more into his high school career, Key was basketball player for head coach Dusty Cole all four years. From sophomore to senior year, he was a football player for former head coach Brian Balsmeyer. Key enjoyed the experiences of playing for both coaches.

“Both my football and basketball coaches really influenced me in a positive way. They demanded the best from you at all times. They pushed my teammates and me to get better each and every day and also hold each other accountable. What I loved most was not only did they teach you the skills required for the sport, but they both strove to teach us lessons that would be helpful in real life after high school,” said Key.

He also enjoyed playing with his teammates due to the fact that they were all close friends. Key describes the friendships as a brotherhood. They went through all of the long summer workouts and tough practices together.

“We had a lot of success in basketball and football my senior year. I attribute that to great coaches, great teammates and great leadership. It wasn’t easy. We practiced hard and pushed ourselves to the limits, but we were able to enjoy success because of it,” said Key.

Key also participated in different clubs, such as SADD, Booster Club and choir. SADD allowed Key to be a part of a group of students that were supporting each other in making the right decisions. He also was fond of choir due to his love of singing and playing music. Being a part of Booster Club gave Key the opportunity to support classmates in their sporting events as well.

“My junior and senior year, when the girls basketball teams won Sectional and went to Regional, we had the cheer block ROCKIN’ and it was PACKED with students. That’s something I wish would get back to how it used to be. We have a great group of student athletes, and I wish there would be HUGE cheer blocks to cheer them on this year and in the years to come at sporting events. It makes the games and atmosphere so much more fun,” said Key.

Key also enjoyed competing in the speech contest every year. His favorite memory was from his senior year when he and his high school friend Ian Bostock and won the contest by performing a comedy skit called “Bring Me My Brown Pants,” and they had the opportunity to perform in front of the school.

Although Key had a comical side to share, he made sure he was generally known for how genuine he was when it came to his behavior towards others.

“I was known as a good student academically, but more than that, I wanted to take pride in how I treated other students and staff. I always tried to be polite and say ‘good morning’ and ‘how are you today.’ It’s nice to see young kids take time out of their day to just simply ask an adult how they’re doing and be polite and respectful. That’s something I want to instill in my students now: not only being good in school, but being a great person,” said Key.

From his time at PHS in high school to his employment, Key has noticed changes in PHS.

“Everything was paper and pencil when I was in school. Cell phones are also a big issue now. When I was in high school, most people had smartphones, but we weren’t addicted to them,” said Key.

One of the main things Key misses the most about PHS is being with his friends. Most of them went their separate ways as they started their young adult lives.

Although there are many things he misses about being a student, Key will always remember the importance of what he learned from PHS.

“I grew up in the Paoli school system, and I plan on retiring from the Paoli school system. This is a great school. It provided me memories I’ll never forget. It provided me life lessons and prepared me for college and life after high school. That is why I came back. I care about Paoli schools. I care about this community and the kids that make it up, and I want to be a positive influence who prepares students for life and their future endeavors. I am truly Paoli Proud,” said Key.

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Key can be found teaching one of his math classes.

Story by Ashlyn Bonta

Wells Photography a Full-Time Job

Not every student can say they earn a paycheck for the work they do at school, but junior Addison Wells has been earning a regular check for her work for the past two years.

Wells started to become interested in photography her freshman year. Ever since then, she has grown to be an important photographer for the PHS Media Department. Wells is most interested in sports photography. This interest was sparked when she was asked to be the sports team photographer for the media department her freshman year.  

“My favorite sport to take pictures of is basketball. Once you get a good shot, it looks pretty cool,” said Wells.

Wells realized her talent with photography when she exhibited some of her photos at the 4-H fair.

“I had actually gotten awards for 4-H, and that’s when I started to know I was a good photographer,” said Wells.

Wells’s photography skills have even taken her to the Indiana State Fair.

“I’ve always gotten first place. One year, I had gotten Reserve Grand Champion, Champion and I went to State,” said Wells.

As a staff photographer, Wells has had many of her photos published in the yearbook each year.

“I am glad that I can be part of the Paoli Media Department and am able to take pictures,” said Wells.

Wells plans to continue being a media photographer through the rest of high school.

In addition to taking photos of sporting events and school activities, Wells also gets a paycheck for her photo work.

“What Addison does for our department is a real job, and she does it so well. I am so grateful for all her work,” said Journalism Adviser Heather Nichols.

Wells does not believe she will be taking photos in the future, but she is glad she has done it through her high school years.

“I cannot wait until I can look back and see the progress of what I have done and how I have shaped as a photographer,” said Wells.

Story by Corinne Magner


Junior and senior National Honor Society members will be heading to Nashville, Tennessee for the third time since 2005 as a part of the annual NHS trip. Students will be doing multiple activities in Nashville.

The day starts off at RCA Studio B, where students have the opportunity to professionally record a song and have it burned on a CD. They will then depart to Ryman Auditorium, a live performance venue.

After spending time in the Ryman Auditorium, students will walk to the Wildhorse Saloon for lunch, where they will also learn how to line dance. The venue will play the songs on the CDs students recorded at RCA Studio B to line dance to. Students will then depart to Fort Nashborough, a historical area where pioneers lead by James Robertson built shelter from Indian attacks in 1780.

After a quick photo, students will then walk to the Country Music Hall of Fame to learn more about the culture and history of the genre of music. Close in the area is the Hatch Show Print, where students can print their own design of something on a product of their choice, such as a t-shirt. Similarly to the Country Music Hall of Fame, students will be able to visit the Music City Walk of Fame Park. Engraved pavements of Nashville music legends reside there. Students will then eat at BB King’s Blues Club, a well known restaurant which serves southern specialities. Students will also be able to enjoy the musical acts which complete the country-loving Nashville atmosphere.

NHS sponsor Melissa Higgins enjoys this annual trip both for the NHS students and for herself. Higgins believes the students are most excited about recording a song and being able to line dance to it.

“It gives the kids that work hard all year long a chance to relax and unwind before finals,” said Higgins.


Story by Sara Kesterson

Calling All Cadets

Officer Doug Soltwedel is often seen walking through the halls or even attending extra curricular activities managing the crowds. Beginning next school year, Soltwedel may be accompanied by some new faces.

These shadows will be the first members of Soltwedel’s Cadet Explorer program.

“I got the idea at the boys Sectional game at Crawford when I saw a couple kids with khaki pants and matching shirts walking with some of the officers. What really struck my attention was when I saw a little girl standing near an officer with ‘cadet’ on the back of her shirt,” said Soltwedel.

The girl turned to the officer to ask him a question about Soltwedel when he replied, “why don’t you ask him yourself?”

“Next thing I know, I feel someone tug on my pants and say ‘what’s your name?’ She took initiative after he gave her some motivation, and she came up to me prideful and confident,” said Soltwedel.

His hope is that through this program students are filled with a sense of confidence and leadership, much like the young girl.

“This program is really to help kids who may just need some guidance or a positive role model in their life and just to help them make it through with confidence,” said Soltwedel.

The program will be open from fifth grade all the way through high school seniors. Students will apply to be in the program and then will be selected by a committee. Twelve students will be welcomed into the program after the application process.

“We will go off of teacher recommendations on why they think they should be in the program, grades and some other discipline factors,” said Soltwedel.

Once a student is in the program, they will be shadowing Soltwedel and the other officers involved in the program. Students will accompany the officers to after school activities such as football games and other events.

“We may have them walk around, and if there are kids running around being unsafe, we may have them go talk to them and just overall show them how to approach people and accomplish a task,” said Soltwedel.

Soltwedel is very excited about the new program and can’t wait to get it up and running for next school year.


Story by Maggie Vincent

Agriculture Program Earns Innovation Award

This past weekend, the high school agriculture department was selected as the winner of the 2019 Indiana Uplands STEM Innovation Award.

We are honored that they have chosen to recognize us for the efforts that we are making to change the way we learn and teach. We are constantly changing, building and innovating ways for students to explore new ways to create food in an environment that they can learn from failure and be excited about their successes. It is nice to be recognized for the hard work and dedication that our staff and students put into their own learning,” said Agriculture Teacher Cory Scott.

The website for the awards states, “The Indiana Uplands Regional Innovation Awards provide an opportunity to recognize deserving people, organizations and projects that have made meaningful improvements to education, economic development and/or quality of place within the 11 counties of the Uplands region. This is our chance to highlight the amazing people and groups working to make the Indiana Uplands a terrific place to work, live, learn and play!”

On Thursday, April 18, students from the agriculture department traveled to the French Lick Resort for the award luncheon.

“I’m very happy we received this award. It shows that we are getting our program’s name out there, and people are learning about what we are doing here in the Paoli Agriculture Department,” said Senior Council Member Nick Padgett.

Students who attended the ceremony were Jayln Engleking, Elizabeth Workman, Myranda Hickman, Tony Lowe, Tara Robbins, Harley Bush, Baylee Crane, Nick Padgett.


Story by Michael Hannon

Speech Contest Winners Recognized

On Wednesday, April 10, PHS hosted the annual Speech Contest. For this contest, students presented a piece to judges. The categories include Classic Poetry, Contemporary Poetry, Humorous Poetry, Narrative Poetry, Dramatic Duo, Religious Reading, Humorous Duo, Dramatic Reading, Dramatic Monologue, Humorous Monologue or Inspirational Reading.  Any student has the opportunity to perform.

Different classrooms throughout the school were filled with contestants of the Speech Contest.   

To figure out who won in each category, all of the scores from the judges were added in together and averaged. The category winners were Mackenzie Robertson (Classic Poetry), Scott Caruso (Contemporary Poetry), Hunter Roach (Humorous Poetry), Jillian Keen (Narrative Poetry), Rachel Umpleby (Religious Reading), Alex Jones and Sean Willett (Dramatic Duo), Keaton Chastain and Joni Blackburn (Humorous Duo), Taylor Becht (Dramatic Reading), Libby Padgett (Dramatic Monologue), Isaiah Jones (Humorous Monologue), Ming Wang (Oratorical), Taylor Becht (Inspirational Reading)

The Grand Champion was Taylor Becht with an averaged score of 96.88.

“I really love doing the Speech Contests because I love to perform. You just have to have confidence. I had so much fun with it this year, and I cannot wait until next year,” said Becht.  

The Reserve Grand Champion was Libby Pageant with a score of 96.50.

“I had a great time with the speech contest this year. I enjoyed presenting my speeches and listening to everyone else’s. I thought everyone did a fantastic job, and I cannot wait until next year,” said Padgett.  

The category winners presented their pieces to the school on Friday, April 12.


Story by Corinne Magner

Softball Alumni Day Tomorrow Afternoon

On Saturday, April 13, Paoli Softball will host PHS Softball Alumni Day at the softball field.

Softball Alumni Day is an event that allows all former PHS softball players to return to the field for a day. This will be hosted at 3 p.m., after the varsity and junior varsity games against Springs Valley.

Coach Neil Dittmer has invited all past players to come watch the current Lady Rams softball team play in a PLAC game against the Springs Valley Blackhawks. Dittmer, along with the softball players and other coaches, will host a cookout for former players to enjoy after the game as well.


Story by Makiya Russelburg

Health Science Students to Attend HOSA Convention

On April 16-18, Paoli High School medical students will being going to the HOSA convention in Indianapolis, IN to participate in competitions, learn about HOSA and different health occupations and meet new people.

During the convention, students will be competing in competitions such as being a nursing assistant and other career skills. If they receive first, second or third place, they will go to nationals in Orlando, Florida in the summer.

“The reason I am going to HOSA is to learn more and meet new people. It is a great opportunity, and it looks good on college applications or a résumé for the future. I hope everyone will get involved in a class at the Lost River Co-op. I love my health science class, and I will be taking medical terminology next year at the Co-op. It has really opened my eyes to a lot of things,” said sophomore Libby Padgett.

For more information, visit the HOSA website at http://www.hosa.org or email health science teacher Mara Eisele at eiselem@paoli.k12.in.us.


Story by  Jozalyn Kempf

Cheer Tryouts for Football Squad This Month

High school cheer tryouts for the fall of the 2019-2020 school year will take place on April 24 at 3:30 p.m. in the main gym, with winter cheer tryouts taking place sometime in September. Leading up to this event, there will be a tryout practice taking place on April 17 from 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. During this practice, the students trying out will learn the format of tryouts, ask questions and have time to practice.

To be accepted on to the football cheer squad, participants have to meet a minimum score when they are being judged. They will be judged on their jumps, skills, an original chant, group chants and a group cheer. They will also be judged on their appearance, spirit, knowledge and overall presentation at tryouts, as well as attendance, attitude and behavior at school.

There will be only one cheerleading squad, and the cheerleaders will not be divided into a junior varsity and varsity team. Anyone in grades 8 through 11 is welcome to come and try out.

Last season, we had five fantastic cheerleaders who cheered on the Rams to a Sectional Championship, and this year, we hope to have more students come up and support the Rams,” said high school cheer coach Heather Nichols.

Junior high cheer tryouts will take place April 17 and 18. Coach Liana Baker is looking for 6 to 10 cheerleaders to join the squad. She will being doing one squad for both basketball and football.

“I am very excited about this season. This will be my first season, start to finish, that I am the coach. I took the job last year late in the season. I am eager to have the opportunity to spend time this summer and early fall prepping for the season,” said Baker.

For more information on junior high and high school cheerleading, contact Heather Nichols @NICHOLSHJ@paoli.k12.in.us or Liana Baker @bakerl@paoli.k12.in.us.


Story by Gracie Walls

School Board Meeting Tonight

On Monday, April 8, the Paoli Community School Corporation will be holding a School Board meeting beginning at 6 p.m. The meeting will begin with the closed executive session followed by the regular session. The regular session will include a Throop Elementary presentation and Recognition of Students of the Month.  

One item on the agenda is to discuss making April 13 “Ruth Uyesugi Day.”

“As you may know, Mrs. Uyesugi recently passed away. They are having a memorial service for her on April 13 in the auditorium. I am asking the Board to declare that day as Ruth Uyesugi day,” said Superintendent Greg Walker.

The last item on the agenda is a presentation form Officer Doug Soltwedel discussing a possible Cadet Explorer Program.


Story by Maggie Vincent

Throwback Feature: Stout’s Return to PHS

Paoli High School alumna Cindy Stout graduated in 1978. After graduating, Stout attended IU Bloomington and studied to become a computer programmer.

After one week of attending college at IU Bloomington, Stout married her husband, Lex Stout,  and they both moved to Virginia. After moving to Virginia Stout, continued her college education until Stout’s husband decided to leave the Air Force. They decided to move back to Paoli to spend time with their families. Stout later quit school and started a family, and 16 years later, finished her teaching degree at Indiana University Southeast.

“I would not recommend quitting college that long and then going back. It was one of the hardest things I have ever done,” said Stout.

Stout has had many accomplishments throughout her life during and after high school.

“I would have to say that Ruth Uyesugi was the most influential teacher in my life, but she was also good friends with my in-laws and she went to my church. I knew her through many avenues. While a student here at PHS, I spent much of my time in her classroom or at her house working on the newspaper. However, when I started teaching here, Mr. Phil Andry was so very helpful and always willing to advise me to get me started in my career. He was also my geometry and physics teacher while I was a student. I actually worked as a TA for him my sophomore year,” said Stout.

During Stout’s high school years, she participated in track her freshman year, and played on the first girls tennis team. She played number one doubles with alumna Angie Bosley. Starting Stout’s junior year, she wrote for the sports section of the Paolite, and her senior year, she became the first female to write for the Paolite.

Stout had academic success through National Honor Society and graduating fifth in her class. Stout was fortunate to be able to play many sports and earn awards during her time at PHS. However, Stout also spent time building her family.

“I have been married 39 years to Lex Stout, and we have 2 kids. Joe Stout is 37 years old and is a day manager at FEDEX in Indianapolis. He and his wife Melissa have 3 boys, Owen, Gavin and Harrison. Our daughter, Amy Wesner, is 34 years old, and she runs the office for Silver Creek Engineering in Indianapolis. She and her husband Damien have a daughter Olivia and a son Maddox,” said Stout.

Stout has taught at Paoli for 22 years, and enjoyed each one. She has had many different experiences and opportunities throughout her lifetime. Before she was a teacher, Stout’s first real job was writing community sports stories for the town paper. She has also worked as a Pizza Hut waitress, a math lab supervisor and an elementary school aide at Throop. Despite these different jobs, her favorite has always been being a teacher.

“I have really enjoyed being a math teacher. I appreciate all the hard work my students do and all the support from my colleagues,” said Stout.


Stout is pictured today in the halls of PHS.


Story by Lili Seals

Speech Contest to be Held April 10

On Wednesday, April 10, students in advanced English and speech classes will be participating in the annual PHS Speech Contest. The contest will consist of two rounds. Students will be dismissed to Round One shortly after the morning announcements, and Round Two should end before B lunch.

Students will have the opportunity to present a piece of their choice in front of classmates and judges. Students will be scored in several categories. The categories include the following: Classic Poetry, Contemporary Poetry, Policy Presentation, Oratorical, Humorous Poetry, Humorous Duo, Dramatic Duo, Original Speech, Inspirational Reading, Religious Reading, Dramatic Monologue, Dramatic Reading, Humorous Reading, Humorous Monologue and Narrative Poetry.

The category most students are participating in this year is Contemporary Poetry.

The judges for this year’s contest are Rob Brown, Janice Pickens, Gary Swick, Paul Walerczak, Steven Tate, Karie Becht, Greg Walker, Kevin Street, Janet Perry, Scott McGowen, Karen Hudelson, Ruby Crowder, Martha Nice, Bruce Hawkins, John Hutcheson, Evie Shellenberger, Jamey Sullivan and Dave Dedrick.

An awards ceremony will be held on Friday, April 12 in the Ruth Uyesugi Auditorium. Winners from each category will have the chance to present their piece to the staff and student body. Reserve Grand Champion and Grand Champion will be awarded to the top contestants of the entire contest.


Story by Lili Seals

Throwback Feature: Satterfield Instills Work Ethic in Performers

Color guard instructor Steve Satterfield graduated from Paoli High School in 1985. Satterfield was accepted into Indiana University and received a degree in psychology. This lead him to become a behavioral therapist for Dockside Services in Madison, Indiana. When he was in college, he became interested in color guard and has been an instructor since.

In junior high and high school, Satterfield was a part of drumline. He marched with the BlueCoats Drum and Bugle Corps from Canton, Ohio and was a world finalist. Despite his drumming success, color guard peaked his interest in college. Satterfield enjoys the appearance and outcome.

“I enjoyed the pageantry of color guard the first time I saw it and knew I wanted to be involved with this activity right away,” said Satterfield.

Satterfield found his high school instructor very demanding of him and his peers, but his color guard instructor, Kelly Stemple from New York City, inspirational.

“She was very strict and not very empathetic to students, being good at what we did,” said Satterfield.

The teaching habits of Stemple rubbed off on Satterfield as he works with his own guards. In the 29 years Satterfield has instructed, he has worked with many different schools but currently reaches 4 high schools and a university. He works with Paoli Jr Sr High School, Washington Co. Ky High School, Southwestern High School, Madison High School and Campbellsville University. Satterfield has won awards for nearly “everything there is to win.” This includes state championships for three states and the finals for each group he works for. Trophies aren’t everything to Satterfield, though. The real reward is his progressing students.

“The joy of seeing a group evolve and mature and blossom into a great performance is what makes it all worthwhile,” said Steve.

Satterfield’s work can be stressful at times. Parents and students don’t cooperate and put full effort in all the time, and when he already has so many other responsibilities, it can take a toll on him. Each group he tends to needs a lot of work apart from practices and designing the shows. No matter how much hard work is thrown at him, he sticks to lesson he learned in his own guard days.

“The other big reward I get is seeing students learn to have work ethic and learn that it takes a lot of hard work to win at anything in life,” said Satterfield.

Satterfield doesn’t intend to quit instructing anytime soon. He wishes to continuing teaching the skill and the unspoken lessons that come with it.

“Watching students become strong and confident in knowing how to work to achieve the goals they strive for is important in all aspects of their lives,” said Satterfield.



Satterfield is pictured with his color guard team.


Story by Jozalyn Kempf

Youth First Social Worker Coming to PHS

Paoli High School has put together the money needed to have the Youth First social worker be a part of our school system, starting the fall of 2019-2020 school year.  The $35,000 the school needs to provide as their portion came from the Casino Fund.

“We will now have a certified social worker to work with students and families to help meet their many needs and ensure success at school,” said Superintendent Greg Walker.  

The process is still in the beginning stages, and much more has to be determined and decided.


Story by Faith Wilder

Poe Prepares for Future Through Choir

Junior Megan Poe has been in choir for seven years. She has competed in events that require a high level of vocal ability, such as Solo and Ensemble and Honor Choir. Solo and Ensemble consists of learning a solo and performing it in front of a panel of judges, while Honor Choir involves auditioning for a coveted spot in a prestigious choir that performs difficult songs in front an audience.

However, the competition of being in choir isn’t why she participates.

“The complete reason I’m in choir is to just sing and have fun with my choir family,” said Poe.

Poe has many memories, but her favorite has to be from when former choir teacher Debbie Stroud was in charge of the program.

“My favorite memory has to be when I got my first ever solo with Mrs. Stroud in junior high. It was so much fun,” said Poe.

Poe enjoys singing tenor, which is one of the lower parts. For Poe, choir doesn’t come with any downsides.

“It always seems like I have fun in that class,” said Poe.

Choir not only provides fun for Poe. It also gives her an edge on what she wants to do once she leaves PHS.

“I plan on going to Indiana University for musical theatre, so choir helps me develop my voice so I’ll perform better in college,” said Poe.

Poe plans on singing for as long as possible.

“I’ll be in choir and doing things with singing for the rest of my life. I can tell you that for sure,” said Poe.


Story by Chandler Hinton

PHS SAT Testing Dates Announced

PHS has recently been approved to be an SAT testing location for the 2019-2020 school year.

“[We’ll be testing] August 24, 2019; October 5, 2019; May 2, 2020 and June 6, 2020,” said Vice Principal Fred Unsicker.

The demand for SAT testing has caused more test dates to be added.

The College Board has added the August testing due to a high demand nationwide from students to take the SAT early their senior year so they can get the early college admission process started,” said Unsicker.


Story by Chandler Hinton

AP Exam Incentive Program Continuing

Students planning on taking AP Exams this year could potentially earn $125 due to their performance on the exams.

If a student passes an AP exam, they receive an incentive check. The amount of money they receive depends on the score they earn on the exam.  

AP tests are scored on a 1-5 scale. A score of three is considered passing. Any student who earns a 3 will receive a stipend of $125. Students earning a score of 4 or 5 will receive a $175 stipend,” said Assistant Principal Fred Unsicker.

The state of Indiana pays for the science, math and English exams.  The school currently pays for the remaining exams, such as Studio Art, Music Theory and United States Government and Politics. If a student passes an exam the state does not pay for, the school takes out the cost of the exam from their incentive check.

“Tests are not cheap; they’re about $85 a piece,” said Unsicker. “This stipend is a way of offsetting the cost of tests that the state isn’t paying for.”

However, not everyone approves of this system.

”Several AP students have asked us to modify how we do our incentives program,” said Unsicker. “We are looking to modify our grant and policy so all of the incentive money goes toward the student.”

Students who are taking the AP exams can expect to test May 4 through May 17. Each test is a scheduled for a certain date and time. For more information, visit https://apcentral.collegeboard.org/courses/exam-dates-and-fees.

Story by Chandler Hinton

Throwback Feature: Cole Continues Basketball Legacy

PHS class of 1999 alumnus Dusty Cole was involved in many activities as a student at Paoli. Cole was a member of the basketball team, football team and baseball team.

Cole was captain of the basketball, football and baseball teams. He also received many awards, such as Gold Glove in baseball, MVP in basketball, Highest Field Goal Percentage, Highest Free Throw Percentage, Most Assists, Offensive MVP in football, Academic All-State, Small School All-State and All-Conference in each sport.

Cole also set many school records, including most home runs in a game, most receptions in a season, most receptions in a career, most touchdown receptions in a season, most touchdown receptions in a career, most touchdown receptions in a game and most interceptions in a game.

“I have tons of stories, memories and experiences. To be honest, I remember the people and the relationships just as much as I do the events and the experiences,” said Cole.

Cole will always remember the athletic competitions, especially play-offs and tournament games. Cole’s basketball team went to state the 1998-1999 school year, which was his senior year. His football team had an upset against highly-ranked Southridge, who had defeated them earlier in the season.

Cole’s mentors throughout his high school years have also shaped him into who he is today.

“Mr. Magner, Mr. Stuckwisch, Mr, Kirby, Mr. Sutherlin, Coach Brown, Coach Hahn, Coach Bless, Mr. Stroud, Mr. Babcock and Dr. Combs were all were great mentors for me,” said Cole.

The people who Cole is most fond of persuaded his decision making when choosing to become a teacher and coach.

“I can look back at so many people and so many experiences that molded me into the person I am today. At times, I learned some hard lessons. I was successful, and I failed. I made good choices, and I made bad choices. Most importantly, I feel like I learned from all of those things. There was always someone there for me trying to keep me on the right path and trying to explain to me how to learn and get better from each experience. I was so blessed to have so many people who cared about me,” said Cole.

Cole is now married to Shae Cole and has three kids, Fletcher, 12, Finnley, 7, and Fitz, 5. Cole resides in Paoli along with the rest of his family, and is now approaching his tenth year as a teacher and coach at Paoli.

“I believe Paoli is a great community. That is why I am still here raising my family here,” said Cole.

Cole doesn’t live with many regrets in life, but he does believe he wished his high school experiences away too fast. His advice to the students now would be to enjoy the process, take it all in and don’t rush too much.

“At some point, you have to realize who the people are that are trying to help you and who really doesn’t care what you do or how you turn out. Always try to find the positive in people, no matter what happens, and don’t be one of the ones that complain about everything. Just find what makes you happy and try to be content with certain things in life. If you’re always looking for something better, you will never find true happiness,” said Cole.


Cole is pictured above.

Story by Makiya Russelburg

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