Book Worm Takes on Library

This year, English Teacher Book Worm Rachel Miller has taken on another position in the building, part time school librarian. After passing the Indiana CORE Assessment for school library, Miller was certified to fill the spot.

Already, Miller has several goals to accomplish with the library. In addition to teaching freshman English, Miller will spend two periods of her day in the library. Miller has made a few changes to the library so far, most noticeably the appearance in the front window of the library as they walk by.

“You may have noticed the library opening up a bit. The curtains have been removed, and I’m doing some fall cleaning to spruce things up. I’m also creating displays to highlight new books every few weeks. More changes will be coming over the course of the school year, so pay attention and come see what’s going on,” said Miller.

Miller wants to increase overall student and class usage of the library this year. She plans to “re-digitize” the library to create easier access to books for students.

“Getting the titles of our books back online will be a huge improvement. Students will be able to search for books online, scan the books to check them out easily, and it’ll make checking books back in a lot easier as well,” said Miller.

In order to make the library digital, Miller plans to label every book and scan them into the system. With the help of Registrar Sara Parks, she will be able to get the information needed to input all of the students into the system. She is also working on marketing the library by building a website and rebranding it “The Ram Resource Room”.

“The library houses Ms. Manship’s office, the Paoli College and Career Academy student union, study spaces, our book collection, and your friendly neighborhood librarian, as well as working closely with the Essentials Project. The library really is a great place for students to access all kinds of resources,” said Miller.

Miller will be in the library available for questions and requests during first and second period and during homerooms. For more information email millerr@paoli.k12.in.us.

Story by Angie Ceja

Walls a Sucker for Her Eyes

I’ve always been a sucker for psychological thrillers. “Bird Box”, “Ma”, and “The Conjuring” are just a few of my favorites. Yet out of all the suspenseful shows I am madly in love with, I have recently fallen deeply for a new series, called “Behind Her Eyes”. This Netflix original is based on the novel written by Sarah Pinborough, with all the same expectations and cliffhangers. I’m not one to rewatch a show or series, but this show – especially the ending – made me restart from the beginning immediately. That’s just how surprising and jaw-dropping the finale left me. (I promise, no spoilers to follow… just reasons for you to watch.)

The Plot

Louise is a single mom who works as a secretary at a psychiatrist’s office. It all started when she got stood up on her date at the pub. Just as she was about to give up and head home, she ran into a dark, handsome man named David, new in town and in need of company. The two had an undeniable spark… until their goodbye kiss was interrupted by David’s sudden regret and rushed departure. Confused and dejected, Louise continues about her days. Prior to the next day at work when she discovered the new psychiatrist was (you guessed it) David. Ignoring the inconvenient circumstances, one morning on her way home from dropping her son off at school, Louise coincidentally (or so we think) ran into David’s wife of ten years, Adele. Oddly enough, these two also hit it off, and become closer friends than Louise would have imagined. Things continue to get messier; Louise begins to have an affair with David, Adele and Louise start to spend more time together, and secrets only get worse. Keeping both of these relationships private from the other, Louise doesn’t realize what she has truly gotten herself into until it’s too late.

Everything from the settings and actors to the plot kept me hooked until the very end. The foreshadowing is insanely clever, and the last episode will leave you sitting in silence trying to process everything you just absorbed. I totally recommend this show to people who like magical, majestic mysteries. This is one of those shows where the conspiracy theories are endless and you won’t be able to stop talking about it.

Story by Gracie Walls

Stout Returns to Classroom for Science

Since the start of the school year, PHS has been on the hunt for a new seventh grade science teacher.

With no luck so far, the administration continues to advertise this opening on both the school’s website and with the Indiana Department of Education. In the meantime, Retired Math Teacher Cindy Stout has been covering the role. As luck would have it, Stout is a licensed science teacher, the perfect fill-in until a permanent teacher can be hired.

“Mrs. Stout is an amazing teacher. She has a track record of excellence! Her willingness to fill in until a replacement can be found is truly an asset to Paoli Schools. I am confident that our seventh graders are receiving science instruction equivalent to what a permanent teacher would provide,” said Principal Sherry Wise.

According to Superintendent Greg Walker, at this time there are currently no applications for the position Stout is filling.

For more information on the open position visit the corporation website.

Story by Gracie Walls

Nobel Takes On New AVID Program

AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) is a program which focuses on helping students to become college and career ready during their junior high and high school years. English teacher Tamera Noble has taken on the role of AVID training this summer and officially became the AVID site coordinator and elective teacher this school year.

“AVID is a great program with many benefits for students and teachers. I love teaching the AVID elective and can’t wait to share more strategies with teachers throughout this school year,” said Noble.

During the class, the students get the chance to learn strategic preparations to help further their education as they go throughout school. These include strategies in taking notes and tests, time management, studying, and using WICOR (Writing, Inquiry, Collaboration, Organization, Reading to Learn) for exploring college and career options. This year, Noble is hoping to be able to plan extra activities for the students who are in the course so they can get more experience and familiarity with the program, including field trips and guest speakers who share their career experiences.

If you are interested in joining AVID, you may apply at the end of the school year for the 2022-2023 school year. Since AVID is new this year, students who are in AVID currently have been hand selected by their previous teachers.

“AVID targets students in the academic middle who have the desire to go to college and the willingness to work hard. These are students who are capable of completing a rigorous curriculum but may be falling short of their potential. AVID’s goal is for these students to reach their full potential through the support AVID offers,” said Noble.

If you have any questions or comments about AVID, you can learn more by contacting Noble for more information.

Story by Corrine Magner

Fall Seasons return in Pandemic

Athletes, Coaches Adjust Programs to Continue Ram Activities

At the start of the 2020 school year the Indiana High School Athletic Association provided a detailed list of how schools should manage their sports programs in the unknown time of the coronavirus pandemic. A year later, the virus is still impacting schools but the IHSAA guidelines have changed, allowing schools to set their own guidelines.

“We just have to keep following the guidelines we are given and adapt, adjust and overcome as things change,” said Athletic Director Darek Newkirk.

Football

For football, guidelines lessened moderately, but some, however, remained the same. Athletes and coaches are still expected to maintain a distance of six feet from another person when in locker rooms if possible, face masks and gloves are permissible and hand-shaking during introductions and post-game have been suspended.

Washing hands should still be done thoroughly and frequently. Games have also been opened to an unlimited number of people this year, rather than an occupancy limit like last season.

At the start of the school year many students faced the challenge of quarantine, which in turn impacted players time at practice.

“If you miss eight to 14, days you must makeup four practices before you can play. If you miss more than 14 days, you will have to make-up six practices. This is different from last season, in that it is days missed and not days of practice missed,” said Varsity Football Coach Neil Dittmer.

Cheerleading

Girls cheerleaders for football games have had guidelines loosened for them as well. Last football season, the girls cheering had to wear masks when performing stunts, which is not a mandated requirement for this football season.

“So far we have dealt with quarantined athletes as best we can – moving girls around and adjusting to still allow our cheerleaders to cheer. I think forcing us to constantly adjust is exhausting, but ultimately it may make us better. We have to constantly problemsolve and that’s a skill that everyone can benefit from,” said Varsity Cheer Coach Heather Nichols.

Volleyball

For volleyball, there were only slight changes to guidelines from previous years. Due to how many athletes that were quarantined, or out completely for having Covid-19 last year, the IHSAA adjusted their rules and regulations of practices. The athletes now have to have four practices in. Pre-game warm-ups no longer count as practices. There was also a recommendation list that provided ideas that would best benefit the team, yet these were not official changes.

Teams do not switch benches in between sets, bench personnel are limited to observe from a three to six foot distance, a player is to remain three to six feet apart from the referee when substituting in, sanitize equipment during and after the warm-up period and eliminate the shaking of hands between teams.

“This has affected our team because it makes it difficult for us to get four practices in when we are playing three nights a week,” said Varsity Volleyball Coach Alexis Speer.

Golf

Girl’s golf also remains the same for their 2021 season, with no restrictive Covid protocols.

“I think this whole ordeal will make everyone aware of staying healthy and safe,” said Varsity Girls Golf Coach Brad Bledsoe.

Cross Country

Cross Country guidelines are also very similar to last year. Athletes still have to maintain a distance of six feet from another athlete, no hand shakes, fist bumps or hugging for encouragement is allowed and sanitization of frequently touched surfaces is mandatory.

“These athletes, or runners, are missing races because of being quarantined. They won’t get to compete and those are races they won’t ever get back or be able to do again,” said Varsity Cross Country Coach Summer Hudelson.

Covid has taken its toll on athletes, students, coaches, parents and Paoli’s school system as a whole in the past couple of years. This year, however, is the year students are looking forward to being back to a bit of normalcy within their sports.

Story by Makiya Russelburg