Wheel of Wonder

Senior Artist Dusts off Ceramics Wheel

Senior Taylor Becht is the only student enrolled in the AP Ceramics and Sculpture class for the semester.

For the first time, Becht has had the opportunity to use the pottery wheel – a skill taught only in this course. In order to be in this class, one must first take ceramics where students sculpt only with their hands.

Past Projects

The wheel enables Becht to create a symmetric, round piece of art, though she admits it is not an easy tool to use.

“Throwing clay on a wheel is an extremely hard talent to learn,” said Becht.

So far, Becht has made several different types of pieces, the variety of pottery teaching her different techniques. She has plans for more intricate, complicated works moving forward.

“So far I’ve made mugs, pots, watering pots, teapots and a variety of shaped water containers,” said Becht.

The Future

In the future, she plans to take pottery and woodworking classes when she goes to college.

“When I go to college this will be fantastic to know. It will really put me a step ahead of my other peers,” said Becht.

Becht is ready to see what these next weeks have in store for her as she continues to use the wheel.

“Throwing clay on a wheel is an extremely hard talent to learn. Most people at our school who have done it are football players because you need the strength to form the clay and keep it centered. It really has been a great experience,” said Becht.

Story by Corrine Magner

A new resource officer for the 2021-22 school year

As students saw in the presentation on the first day of the 20-21 school year, many new staff members joined. This includes new School Resource Officer Andrew Streble. 

Three years ago, Streble moved to Paoli from Louisville, Kentucky where he got a job at the local police department. 

“I came across a Facebook post that the Paoli Police Department was accepting applications for the position of School Resource Officer so I decided to apply,” said Streble. “Paoli has felt like home since the day I moved here and I wanted to do my part to help better the community and thought this would be a good way to do it.”

After working as a police officer for over 10 years, Streble describes working for a school as “a nice change of pace.” Sometimes, he does miss working for the Louisville Metro Police Department,where the work was fast-paced, but the predictability of his schedule and his interactions with the students make it worthwhile. 

“I do like interacting with the students although most days you all make me feel extremely old,” said Streble.

He warns students if they see him out walking his three-legged pitbull Khali — she is friendly. All you have to be worried about is your fashion choices.

“I see a lot of kids wearing Nirvana shirts,” said Streble. “I may start asking you what your favorite Nirvana song is just to be sure it’s not just a fashion choice.”

Streble wants to make sure students are aware that he has an “open door policy.” If you have any issues or questions for him, he will help you to the best of his ability. You can find him in the hallways or in his room located in the main office.

Story by Jozalyn Kempf

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