Open post

New math teacher solves schedule problems

New math teacher to RAHS, Edward Tompson teaches students at Highline High School
Photo by Ava Yniguez

A new math teaching position has been filled by Edward Tompson for the 2018-19 school year. He will be taking over both Algebra I and II classes.

Tompson currently works at Highline High School. Being a proud part of the Highline School District for many years, he is excited to start working at RAHS come this fall.

“I am currently teaching geometry at Highline High School,” said Tompson. “I am a product of the Highline School District, being a member of the Highline Community for 20 years.”

He is currently scheduled to teach five periods in the RAHS math department after hearing about the opportunity.

“I heard about RAHS from my supervisor from Seattle University during student teaching. What interests me about Aviation [RAHS], or teaching in general, are students,” said Tompson. “I find our diversity fascinating, and the opportunity to teach at a high performing school is something that I have not experienced, and I look forward to learning from my students and continuing to grow within my profession.”

Tompson also enjoys extracurriculars such as coaching sports, and creating bonds with his students by creating a fun learning environment incorporated into his teaching.

I am a big basketball fan; [I have coached] basketball for ten years,” said Tompson. “I have never lost to a student in a timed multiplication test, recording a record of 220-0. Still searching for a student who can beat me.”

As far as school and class dynamics, Tompson’s presence changes the schedule of other current RAHS teachers; Karen Wilson, for example, who currently teaches Algebra 2 and Pre-Calculus, is affected by this as well.

“I will be teaching 3 different subjects that I have never taught before,” said Wilson.

Teaching standard Calculus, Intro to Robotics, and a new class, Bridge to College Math, will be a change for Wilson, but she sees this as a positive thing overall.

“I see this as more positive since we will be able to spread the math classes around to more teachers, thus freeing up open periods for new electives – drones, digital electronics, CAD production classes, etc,” said Wilson.

As far as the hiring process is concerned, it is quite a simple transfer of staff within the District for RAHS Principal Therese Tipton.  

“In our case, because we had the math spot when all of the district [Highline] shuffled out, there were several teachers [where] jobs were reduced in their current school,” said Tipton. “He was already a teacher at Highline High School, and it was just a lateral move over to our school.”

In order to expand the classes offered at RAHS, the math department teachers were dispersed based on personal interest of classes and availability.

“Our math teachers all have other passions that met our school mission and vision and the work that we do here,” said Tipton. “So we were able to take all of the classes that we have from Algebra up to AP Calculus, add in those classes that the teachers are really passionate about, and that freed us up to add an additional teaching position.”

Incorporating new elements into already offered classes is another way the school was able to hire Tompson.

“One thing that we did do was that every school has additional funds that they can use for a variety of purposes that support student learning,” said Tipton. “We were able to use part of that to open college math classes that we don’t already offer. We also got extra funding this year since we no longer offer Ground School, and now offer a drone class starting next year which have elements of Ground School.”

Tompson looks forward to a new experience surrounded by planes and everything aviation.

“What interests me is learning. Aviation [RAHS] does things differently than anything that I have experienced in education,” said Tompson. “I am excited to learn as much as possible and be a positive member of RAHS staff and community.”


Open post

Farewell to Journalism

Dear the readers of The Phoenix Flyer:

With sadness in our hearts, we have the unfortunate duty of telling you that this issue will be the final issue of The Phoenix Flyer.

With our longtime advisor Jacob Savishinsky moving on to the new position as the Dean of Students at RAHS and with the increased need for art credit electives as opposed to CTE electives such as Journalism, we have come to the conclusion that there is no possible way of continuing this newspaper to the same high standard. Therefore, we have decided to end the newspaper while it is still at its best.

For the past nine years, The Phoenix Flyer has been honored to represent our school, our students, and our culture. We have strived to serve our school and community, and to do so with integrity. Journalism and journalists have an important responsibility in an open, democratic society, and it has always been the mission of The Phoenix Flyer to uphold the highest professional principles and ethics in our reporting. The work has been challenging and rewarding, and we are grateful for the support of the RAHS community over the years.

Although we are sad to see the newspaper go, we want to thank you, the RAHS community, for being the best readers we could ask for. Seeing students laugh because of a midspread or learn something new because of one of the articles we’ve written make all of the long nights spent editing articles, taking photos, and laying out pages worth it. We are proud to have been an integral part of the RAHS community and we hope you’ve enjoyed reading our newspaper.


The staff of The RAHS Phoenix Flyer

The 2017-2018 journalism class, posing together on the day of printing the last ever issue of the Phoenix Flyer.



Open post

Powerhouse biology teacher leaves RAHS cell

Biology teacher Mr. Gwinn talks with students in biology group discussion
Photo by Sam Hart

On Wednesday, 23 May 2018, biology and health teacher Nathan Gwinn announced to his class that this will be his last year. He will be teaching at Vashon High School next year, a shorter commute from his home in Port Orchard, Washington.

“The commute is ridiculous, it’s untenable, I can’t do it long term. It’s at minimum an hour and a half each direction,” said Gwinn. “So after some time, and me talking with my wife a lot about it, it’s just what we needed for our family.”

Even in his short time here, Gwinn’s teaching experience at RAHS has been unexpectedly interesting and educational on both ends, even though he didn’t think he would enjoy teaching at the school.

“My past teaching experience has been with kids with much more personal damage or personal trauma in their lives, and so when I first got here, I wasn’t sure if I would like it that much,” said Gwinn, “and I told my students this, I wasn’t sure if I would even like teaching them that much.”

Gwinn was proven wrong. He found he enjoyed teaching here even more than he had at previous schools.

“Teaching these kids basically taught me that I’m a pretty good teacher for the most part, in that it’s actually something I want to do long term. I’ve always been thinking, ‘I want to go into administration, that’s what I want to do, I wanna get out of teaching’ for whatever reason,” said Gwinn. “But these kids have taught me I want to teach for a while, this is what I want to do. It’s been huge for me; it’s really encouraging and inspiring to be able to teach kids and then see them do some of the things that you teach them.”

Being able to see students directly apply what he’s taught them has been a unique experience for Gwinn, in comparison to when he taught in Tennessee, where he focused more on students’ personal growth than the curriculum itself.

“In my past, I would teach them and try to keep my kids from making horrible decisions or just help them be healthy, help them grow and be healthier people,” said Gwinn. “Here, it’s like, I get to do that and then so much more. It’s been really awesome.”

Sophomore Joe Pacini agrees that Gwinn has learned a lot from his time at RAHS.
“I’m really bummed that he is [leaving], but I think it’s good for him,” said Pacini. “It’s a new opportunity for him, and I think he’s learned a lot from the class of 2020 and I really like that.”

Pacini has been good friends with Gwinn, having bonded with him during one of the info nights.

“Mr. Gwinn and I really bonded on one of the info nights because I hung out in his room, so we really started talking,” said Pacini. ”I’ve always been one to share out and ask questions, and his 5th period is really a lot of fun, so that’s basically how we bonded and strengthened our relationship over the school year.”

Pacini thinks Gwinn is a very unique teacher, and that in his absence, next year’s biology class won’t be the same.

“Mr. Gwinn’s a very unique teacher that has a very unique style of teaching. So I think it will be a lot different for freshmen that will take biology next year,” said Pacini. “But I also think that him leaving makes sense just because he’s commuting so far, and the things he wanted to do in Highline didn’t work out. So I find it reasonable that he’s doing it.”

Mr. Gwinn’s students appreciate what he’s done as a teacher and will miss him.

“I’ll remember that we’ll always banter each other and just talk crap about each other a lot. That was a lot of fun,” said Pacini. “If Mr. Gwinn reads this, tell him that I love him and thank you for being a good biology teacher.”

Open post

Students get their foot in the door before college

Brightwater Treatment Plant

Employers are much more likely to hire a RAHS student with internships and work experience rather than someone with a generic resume who lacks experience. Junior Ruby Whorton will be part of the Brightwater Water Treatment Center internship this summer. The plant is part of King County’s regional wastewater treatment system.

“Graduating students with paid or unpaid internships such as the one I’m taking on their resume have a much better chance at landing a full-time position upon graduation,” said Whorton. “Students are doing internships as undergraduates, and it is now not unusual for recent grads to take an unpaid internship with hopes of turning it into a permanent position or at least making some contacts and building their résumé.”

Employers do not create internships just to be nice to students and others interested in a certain career. While an interview or a company test can add to what an employer knows about a person, an internship helps an employer evaluate how an individual would fare in the workplace.

“Internships have always been important,” said Whorton. “I think that what young people are trying to do is build work experience, build portfolios, build skills and internships are a really critical way to do that.”

Many internship opportunities help set the foundation for your career. It is important that you choose you internships based on your interests and career prospects.

“I really love nature so I chose an internship that will help me work closely with that such as Brightwater,” said Whorton.

Many times students identify early what careers they don’t want to do and that information can be just as valuable when learning about career options. Junior Mitchell Turner also sees the importance of internships.

“High school internships are a win-win for both employers and students,” said Turner.

Many students begin college with no idea of what career they may want to pursue, but by completing an internship, they begin to get acquainted early with some of the career opportunities that are available.

“For students, work experience is the key to ensure they make a good career decision and build their professional network,” said Turner. “By employing students, companies get exposure to talent early in their career journey and help support the well being of the local community.”

Internships during high school are not as prevalent as those that are completed during college. This is why doing a high school internship is so important because it sets students apart from peers.

“Internships set you up to stand out when applying to colleges, and along with that it gives you a chance to see if you would enjoy a certain job through this ‘test run,” said Whorton.

The majority of internships during high school can be found by networking with family, friends, teachers, previous employers, etc., or by prospecting by contacting organizations of interest to see if they are interested in hiring a high school intern.

“In this economic downturn, employers are relying increasingly on interns to take up areas where full-time hiring has been cut,” said Turner.

In this intern-boom, it’s vital to comprehend all aspects of the job before commiting.

“It’s greatly important to understand what you are applying for since you will be stuck partaking in that field for the length of the internship,” said Turner.


Open post

Marshalla reflects on a golden year

Marshalla poses in front of South America in her fabulously decorated room
Photo by Will Garren

Over the past decade, the RAHS community has seen dozens of amazing instructors who have left a profound mark on the school’s culture. This year, there was a sterling new addition to the world language department; Ms. Ramana Marshalla. As the end of the 2017-2018 school year nears, Marshalla reviews her first year as a Profe.

“It feels amazing to be working, finally, in my chosen profession,” said Marshalla. “I’ve wanted to be [a] teacher since I was very young, and specifically a Spanish teacher for about a decade. It’s hard to believe that we’re reaching the end of this school year. It has been a challenging year in many respects.”

Throughout the school year, Marshalla went the extra mile in her efforts as a teacher, putting her students and work first in many regards.

“Learning to divide my time and attention between three different levels of Spanish, my professional responsibilities outside of direct instruction in the classroom, teaching advisory, and being [an] advisor to three clubs has at times felt like trying to summit an icy hill with oil-covered feet,” said Marshalla. “Grading, planning, doing research, designing curriculum, writing tests, etcetera, regularly overtook my attempts to maintain some semblance of a personal life.”

With her determination to succeed as a teacher, Marshalla’s first year at RAHS has not gone without recognition. Earlier in the year, she was nominated by the Highline School District Foundation for her excellent performance as a brand new teacher.

“I genuinely love what I do and I certainly want to be the best I can be, but I did not expect any sort of recognition for my work this year. Thus, to have been nominated was a dream come true. I cried when I first saw the nomination because it felt like recognition for all my hard work,” said Marshalla. “My dedication, and the hours I’ve put in to be the best Profe [teacher] I can be.”

Students such as junior Katie Taylor have grown accustomed to her bubbly teaching style.

“I really enjoyed having her this year. She’s a very nurturing teacher,” said Taylor, “and you can tell that she really loves teaching Spanish. She’s so energetic.”

Junior Logan Lemieux was initially uneasy about switching Spanish teachers during his junior year. However, he was pleasantly surprised.

“I was kinda scared–it was like, this teacher is not Sr. P. I don’t know how this is gonna go down, right?” said Lemieux. “So I suppose I had pretty low expectations going in, but even if they were higher, I would not have been let down.”

Although being nominated, Marshalla has also been working closely alongside William Peterson, the lead teacher of RAHS’ Spanish program, to become better acquainted with the program. Because the program is one of a kind, and a rarity in traditional high schools, it took extra time.

“It feels great to be able to mentor another Spanish teacher, especially Marshalla, because she is so passionate and wants to do well,” said Peterson. “She wants to advance the program, and I feel like that I have a lot of effective ideas for how to learn Spanish that I can share with her.”

Marshalla was thankful for how welcoming and helpful Peterson was. Giving most of her appreciation to how his positivity and encouragement helped her.

“Working with Sr. P as a mentor has been tremendous,” said Marshalla. “He is such a pro, such a master of his craft that I felt intimidated coming in as a total novice. I had such fear that I wouldn’t measure up to his standards, but this year, Sr. P has proven time and time again that he has my back.”

Peterson was thrilled to help Marshalla throughout the year because he also was a first year teacher at RAHS six years ago.

“She is so passionate and wants to do well. She wants to advance the program,” said Peterson, “and I feel like that I have a lot of effective ideas for how to learn Spanish that I can share with her. Such as BBC Mundo, Notes in Spanish, [and] the communicative approach.”

Like a well oiled machine, Marshalla swiftly navigated through her first year at RAHS and remembered some of her favorite memories from this year.

“There are so many awesome memories I cherish from this year!” said Marshalla. “From my room being filled with tissue paper confetti after making Día de los Muertos flowers that I found it [on] the carpet for a month, to being laughed at for slithering across the floor to try to teach students a verb without using English, to the many ‘ah-ha’ moments when things clicked for students… I mostly remember the feeling I got so many times in the classroom when my kiddos and I laughed together.”


Unit project brings class curriculum to life

What is the What character, Moses, posing with his family for a recent Christmas photo while living in America.
Photo Courtesy of Arianna McDowell

When RAHS junior, Arianna McDowell, embarked on her newest project in Junior Literature, she was definitely not expecting the interview of a lifetime. The classJunior Literature is currently doing a project that is related to the latest book that they read, What is the What by Dave Eggers. This project involves the real stories of immigrants in American society, and the journeys and stories they have had. McDowell received the tremendous opportunity, in that she got to of interviewing an important actual character from this non-fiction story.

When RAHS junior Arianna McDowell embarked on her newest project in Junior Literature, she was definitely not expecting the interview of a lifetime.

“The project we’re doing in savsSavishinsky’s right now is interviewing immigrants or refugees that have found their way here,” said McDowell. “I brought this up with my mother and she told me that the Smith tower had a lot of refugees who worked for them in maintenance.”

What is the What is the story of Valentino Deng, who, at 8 years old, fled Sudan with over 20,000 other children (The Lost Boys of Sudan), while under constant hardship.

“I brought up the book we are reading, “What is the What”, and she said there was a Lost Boy who worked at the Smith tower.,” said McDowell. “So she gave me a contact of a close family friend, who gave me a contact of one of the refugees, who was Moses from the book (Valentino’s best friend).”

This unlikely connection helped her learn the story of someone she had known forever, but never knew the backstory of.

“It was a connection of people that iI found him through,” said McDowell. “I even used to know him when iI was really really young — he used to greet us whenever my mom would go to work with me.”

This contact almost sounded too good to be true at first, but McDowell was able to confirm Moses was the real deal.

“At first i was a bit suspicious — I was suspicious because the book told a different story than what Moses did,” said McDowell. “That is when Sav told me Valentino (the main character of the book) was only 7 when everything  happened, so of course he’s not gonna remember everything.”

The verification did take a little bit of inquiry and digging, but it all paid off.

“I did a lot of research before asking moses if he was moses from the book, and when he said yes, I thought it was insane. ,” said McDowell.

McDowell was able to interview someone who is exactly the same in real life as he was in the book.

“He [Moses] is such a sweet person, the personality of Moses conveyed in the book is exactly like who he is,” said McDowell. “He is so eager to tell his story, after one question he just took off and told his whole story without having to ask any questions.”

Moses was able to give amazing detail of his harrowing journey.

“It’s almost like he read my question sheet and knew what to say beforehand,” said McDowell. “But he has just told his story so much. He even told me about the differences in climate between Seattle and Sudan.”

The story starts with the civil war in Sudan.

“It all started because of the war in sudan between the north and the south,” said McDowell. “His village was raided and he was separated from his family. So he started to run away, and he walked for months, going through deserts, going through crocodile infested rivers. He even found safe havens, but sometimes they were not safe for long enough.”

The story was massive, and it displayed endurance.

“He kept going on and on, and it was just super thrilling because these bad things were happening, but he’d find a way to lighten the mood, said McDowell.

One interesting story is how his name is not actually what it is currently.

“One of the best part of his story is about when they were in a city between Sudan and Ethiopia,” said McDowell, “where the UN was helping them and doing immigrancy checks to pick and choose who they wanted to have immigrate. He actually failed the test, but because his friend (who went back to South Sudan) was not there, he took his name and was able to come to the US.”


Moses’ story was not only funny at times, it was also filled with intense, violent, and unforgettable moments.

“He also told me a prominent story in the book where he was carrying his teacher’s goat across a river after they were raided,” said McDowell. “He heard gunshots and then saw blood all over him. He checked all over for a wound even though he felt no pain, He thought he was simply in shock, and realized it was the goat in his arms that was shot. It is definitely an intense story.”

The class overall seems to be very excited for this unlikely connection, and interest throughout the school is rising.

“It has become increasingly popular,” said McDowell. “Ive had alot of people ask me about it, people asking how the interview went and stuff like that. A Lot of people are excited because it’s the best friend of the main character in the book, and a prominent character in the novel. Its has just surprised everyone that this connection has been made.”

McDowell is still stunned that this was the direction her project went.

“I am overwhelmed myself because i know i have to make this good,” said McDowell.


ASP Seniors say goodbye

John Dulski stands among his fellow classmates in the first year of ASP after receiving his diploma, pose for a photo after a wonderful presentation.
Photo By: Will Garren

The Museum of Flight’s (MoF) Aeronautical Science Pathway (ASP) is saying goodbye to its senior students, the first graduating class to go through both years of the program. On Tuesday, 5 Jun. 2018 the inaugural class will have a graduation ceremony from the program they have worked hard in.

Michael Graham is a teacher for the first year students, high school juniors, at the MoF. He feels like the students are fortunate to be given this opportunity.

“I want these students to take away a few things,” said Graham. “1, free college credit. College is expensive, any sort of help is worth pursuing. 2, I want them to find a way to make their passion a career. 3, I want them to realize how lucky they are to have programs like this. Our goal is to give these students a head start on that career path.”

Senior Hunter Whitlock is in the ASP graduating class of 2017-18, and has been a part of it since its inaugural year. Whitlock learned about the program through his connection with the Vice President of Education at the MoF, Reba Gilman.

“I saw it as a opportunity and Ms. Gilman, the cofounder/former principal of RAHS, was looking for people to join the program,” said Whitlock. “I was friends with her from that, so that is how I found out about it. The museum was looking to start the program and looking for people to test out the program. They needed a group of students to provide the feedback and be the inaugural class. So I didn’t initially join the program because of itself but because Ms. Gilman. I stayed because it is a great opportunity and I earned all the credits the first year.”

This year was junior John Dulski’s first year in the ASP program, he has learned a lot from being in the ASP program and had many opportunities from joining this class.

“Some valuable lessons that I have learned is mostly regarding soft skills, group work, as well as public speaking. We also have had some presentations that we had to perform in front of the MoF executives,” said Dulski. “Adding [onto] to that, we have had many opportunities to connect with industry professionals at events such as the AIAA brunches that they have every few months or so.”

Changes are being made next year in the ASP program to spread time to other aspects of the class.

“Next year we will be changing the format of year,” said Graham. “Instead of having three classes back to back during a semester we will be combining 3 classes to look like 1 semester long class. This will allow us to do a lot more for each class and allow for more simulator time.”

The program comes with a lot of benefits, the most significant to Whitlock being the college credits.

“I earned all 60 credits, 30 last year and 30 this year, and most of them are transferring to the college I’m going to,” said Whitlock. “Combined with my AP classes I’m also taking, I will be starting as a second semester student. I got a year and half off college because of ASP and AP classes.”

Whitlock learned valuable life skills other than aeronautical science from being in the program. Students that are dedicated have to give up their time and effort to success with high quality.

“Hard work and time management [are] a big lesson I learned and I also learned my limits,” said Whitlock. “Last year I tried to do Science Olympiad as a zero period and I took ASP after school, so it kept me at school for 12 hrs a day, not including homework. So this year I dropped Science Olympiad to do ASP more effectively.”

ASP gives students the feeling of what being in college is like with real instructors rather than being in a normal high school class.

“[ASP is] improving me academically, just getting me used to how a college course works because they are taught by Green River instructors,” said Whitlock. “It is not like AP [classes] where you see the teacher everyday at the high school, it’s actual college professors.”

The program caught Dulski’s attention because it directly connects with the aviation field and industry, even more so than RAHS.

“The best part of joining the ASP program is that you get not only to be around people that are interested in aviation, but also that you get [to] take many more classes relating to aviation that I would not have found at this school,” said Dulski. “Best of all, you get credit for all of these classes (for me a high school GPA booster as well as a money saver in college).”

Dulski has to find a flexible schedule to handle school at RAHS and the ASP program, but overall it was worth the time and effort.

“Usually, I would have to take the bus home, so I would actually spend the same amount of time on the bus as I would in class. If one does join I would recommend on not doing a 6th period so that you have some time off before ASP begins,” said Dulski. “I would recommend for people to join ASP because it not only is about the passion of flying, it also grants you 60 college credits if you do it two years (so you save a good deal of money).”

Open post

A new dean in town

Vice Principal Tremain Holloway discusses the tasks the Dean of Students will take responsibility for in RAHS with future Dean, Jacob Savishinsky.
Photo By: Chloe Cho

With Assistant Principal Tremain Holloway heading off to become a co-principal at Highline High School next year, RAHS is in need of a new administrator. That’s where Jacob Savishinsky, current RAHS literature and social studies teacher is stepping in. Savishinsky will be the Dean of Students for the 2018-2019 school year.
Savishinsky received confirmation of his new position on 9 May 2018 and immediately informed students of the change. He will be utilizing this position to fulfill an internship in administration through a program correlated with the Highline School District at Western Washington University.
“Ms. Tipton knew that I was in a graduate program to get my principal’s certificate,” said Savishinsky, “it was just the perfect combination of my need and the school’s need.”
Principal Therese Tipton plays a large part in figuring out what the Dean of Students will do to aid the school as needed.
“Off the top of my head, his biggest role will be really to support all of our students on campus [and to] help with academic support,” said Tipton. “We’ll do a lot of the tasks and responsibilities of really important work that the Assistant Principal Mr. Holloway did,” said Tipton. “Helping coordinate assessments, there’s always supervision type things, a lot of just really supportive roles.”
Even though the Dean of Students does not evaluate teachers as an Assistant Principal does, Tipton will give Savishinsky administrative tasks to provide him opportunities for experience in the field.
“He’ll also be learning a lot of things like budgeting and school management and attendance,” said Tipton, “just the myriad of things that school administrators do to support the whole community.”
The Dean of Students is a very flexible job so it allows Tipton to assign Savishinsky tasks which match the school’s current needs.
“One of the most important responsibilities is just to be available for unexpected needs that come up,” said Savishinsky.
Savishinsky will also be taking care of disciplinary needs and making plans for standardized testing.
“On a more practical level I will probably be handling a lot of discipline; what little discipline there is at this school will probably come my way,” said Savishinsky. “I will coordinate all of our annual testing, HBA, SBA, PSAT, SAT, [and] AP tests.”
Savishinsky believes that being Dean of Students will improve his managerial skills and give him a foundation of knowledge for a future job in administration.
“It’s a great opportunity to learn a lot of what I need to learn about being an administrator and getting a chance to [do] things I’ve never done,” said Savishinsky.
The reason why the assistant principal’s position is not being filled by another assistant principal is simple: RAHS does not have enough financial support to pay for one.
“With [Holloway’s] departure, we weren’t funded here for another assistant principal, we were only funded for the Dean of Students position,” said Savishinsky.
Currently as a full time teacher and a full time student, Savishinsky has a lot on his plate. Next year, however, becoming Dean of Students will help Savishinsky fulfill his requirements for his internship in administration, meaning that instead of being an administrator, a full time student, and an intern, he will only have to be an administrator and a full time student.
“A lot of the work the Dean of Students does is work I need to do for my administrative certificate anyway,” said Savishinsky, “so the school benefits from me needing to do that work on the schools behalf and I benefit because instead of working three jobs I only have to work two.”
Savishinsky wants students to know that this is his first experience with an administrative role and he wants to keep those connections with his prior students.
“I do want everyone to know that this is a learning position for me,” said Savishinsky. “I’m not coming in here as the master of this role [and] I hope people will both support and forgive me.”
Savishinsky wanted to depart from his teaching role with students knowing that the decisions he makes as Dean of Students will be made be because he genuinely cares about the school.
“I’m bound to make some mistakes and I hope people can see that I’m doing what I’m doing and making the choices that I make because I love this school and I really want what’s best for it,” said Savishinsky.

Open post

RAHS gets a makeover

Junior Gracie Murray shows off her fashionable, in-dress code outfit for a warm weather day.
Photo By: Semay Alazar

Every year, minor edits are made to the RAHS dress code. But on 16 May 2018, the RAHS administration implemented big changes to the student handbook, including an AP Testing section and a Spirit Day section. In addition to all of these changes, the 2018-19 dress code will be entirely gender neutral.
Junior Nico Wilson became a member of the committee that helped form the new dress code because he felt it was important to share his insights, rather than being silently frustrated.
“I want to have a say in what kids get to wear,” said Wilson, “because no one else was going to take initiative. [I] was thinking ‘why not just take this easy opportunity to have a say in next years’ dress code?’ because I think we all care about it.”
While some may find the changes unnecessary, they were made for the sake of clarity and consistency.
“A lot of the changes this year in terms of wording were to make it simple, and to make it easy to follow so that there wasn’t so much verbiage and grey areas,” said Wilson. “We wanted to make it more clear so that people weren’t wasting time arguing with teachers about what they can and cannot wear.”
One of those grey areas that the dress code hasn’t really specified before is AP testing days. Without strict guidelines for these days, many students have taken the liberty to dress in casual or comfy clothing. The updated dress code provides directions for testing days in order for students to clearly know what is allowed.
“Students must comply with casual Friday dress standards: No leggings, No sweats, No pajama bottoms, No shorts,” according to the latest edition of the Student Handbook.
Even though he has yet to take an AP test, Freshman Noah Dooley will have to abide by these new standards when he does take them.
“I firmly believe that the dress code should be way looser for all major testing days,” said Dooley. “If the students are going to be going through miserable testing then they should at least be able to be comfortable when doing it. The students are going to be sitting still in an uncomfortable chair for a long period of time.”
While certain dress standards have been enforced by teachers during spirit weeks in prior years, this is the first version of the student handbook to include a specific spirit day section. It prohibits leggings, shorts, pajamas, and any other clothing that disrupts the learning environment.
Even though the intent was to make the expectations for attire more clear, Dooley feels as though the Spirit Day section subtracts from the purpose of the spirited event, and may have added a new grey area to the code.
“I think that the restrictions put in place are taking away from the fun of spirit week,” said Dooley. “I feel like the part that says ‘no clothing that otherwise disrupts the students learning environment,’ is going to be enforced however administration wants. It isn’t really defined so they can pick and choose what isn’t good for a students learning environment.”
In hopes to make the new dress code less biased against any gender, the new dress code is not gendered at all, and students are happy about it. Although, Dooley feels as though there are still some inconsistencies.
“In concept, I think that the idea is awesome. It will make the dress code be more fairly enforced for everybody,” said Dooley. “However, no guy is gonna wear a skirt to school. If skirts are allowed then shorts should also be allowed with the exact same restrictions.”
Despite any issues he still has with the dress code, Dooley feels that overall it is an improvement from prior years.
“I think that the dress code is going to be abided by a bit more. The part where it says that you can wear any solid color non-graphic t-shirt underneath an open button-up seems like its gonna be the new go-to thing to wear,” said Dooley. “Little things like this that are more relaxed make it easier for students, making it more likely that they will abide by the dress code.”

The school year is almost over, but the fun isn’t

As the school year comes to a close, RAHS busies itself with a multitude of end of the year celebrations and events.
RAHS principal Therese Tipton is excited about all of the events that will occur in June.
“We’ve actually created this [calendar], and I’ve shared this with our ASB because I meet with them every week,” said Tipton.“The end of the year [is] really cool because even for a small school we have a lot of really neat traditions.”
After SBAC testing was completed on 24 May 2018, end of the year events, such as award assemblies, began to come in.
“There’s all of the testing stuff obviously,” said Tipton, “but we have the freshman-sophomore awards assembly, the junior-senior awards assembly, we have the senior scholarship awards, and we have the all-school end of year assembly”
Some big events that have happened very recently include the 7 June 2018 all school awards assembly and the 7 June 2018 release of the yearbooks.
Another important event that occurred was the new iteration of the school lip dub on 8 June 2018. Kenny Pham, RAHS junior and ASB president, came up with the idea.
“The lip dub is a filmed video of participants lip syncing to songs while walking through the entire school.” said Pham. “As they walk around, everybody else in the school will be in the sidelines cheering and representing their clubs.”
The lip dub included fun songs like “Glorious” by Macklemore, “September” by the band Earth Fire & Wind and “Finesse” by Bruno Mars & Cardi B, featuring the entire school.
“Students who signed up to participate as lip dubbers will be lip syncing to songs as they walk through the entire school with clubs and students in the sidelines,” said Pham. “I’m going to be filming the lip dubbers go through the first floor, third floor, then second floor, through locations they were assigned to.”
The final cut of the lip dub video will be presented to the RAHS community on the last day of school.
“An edited, finished version of the lip dub will then be shown to the entire school,” said Pham, “most likely during the last day of school assembly. It’s a really awesome way to celebrate the end of the year in my opinion.”
An exciting part of the lip dub is the importance it holds to the connectedness of the school.
“As they walk around, everybody else in the school will be in the sidelines cheering and representing their clubs.” said Pham. “It’s a fun end of the year video to create with the entire school to celebrate the amazing community we’ve built with each other as RAHS students.”

Article planning and outlining – This is a required, graded assignment

Open post

The Space Between

(Left to Right) Therese Tipton, Anne Simpson, Brynne Hunt, Sheryl and James Raisbeck, and Matt Hayes stand near the plaque to promote the new addition to RAHS.
Photo By: Chloe Cho

‘Cosmic Lady’, the oil mural painted by Sheryl Raisbeck, was opened for viewing on 14 May 2018 in the gravel firelane between RAHS and the Museum of Flight near the parking lot. This location is now labeled ‘The Space Between’ and designates a new physical connection between RAHS and the Museum of Flight, allowing for students to traverse between the two locations easily.
As CEO of the Museum of Flight, Matt Hayes felt that something had to be changed in order to connect the Museum and RAHS.
“The connection between the highschool and the Museum has always been there, but the physical connection has not been,” said Hayes. “And so creating something that could inspire the students and create that physical connection almost seemed obvious once we thought of it.”
Hayes is proud to have students interested in aviation on his campus and wanted there to be an easier way of moving between the Museum and RAHS.
“We’ve always had a great connection,” said Hayes. “We’re so proud to have you, the students, and the faculty to be on our campus, but there never was an easy way of moving between one to the other. It was like 2 countries right next to each other without a bridge or border crossing or anything.”
Hayes believes having art as the physical bridge provides more inspiration than a fence.
“When we came up with a concept of trying to come up with a physical bridge between the highschool and the museum itself, we couldn’t think of a better way of doing it than to actually have some artwork so it wasn’t just a piece of concrete or a couple fences but something that could help inspire.”
Sheryl Raisbeck wanted to make sure that the community realizes that art is everywhere, even in science.
“As far as what I want people to take away from these paintings is that I want you to think that art is everywhere in your life,” said Ms. Raisbeck. “That life and science have been tied forever, and that all arts and sciences can work together and nothing happens unless there’s the viewer, or the doer, or the learner, or the teacher.”
Ms. Raisbeck decided to paint this image because of her husband, James Raisbeck, who believed that it would connect to our school.
“The inspiration of the painting is hubble imagery, this is the galaxy M-82. The red coming out of there is ionized hydrogen blowing out out of the galaxy. But to me, it kinda reminds me of a Valentino model,” said Ms. Raisbeck. “James suggested that I do this painting here because phoenix is your mascot, phoenix rising. This painting reminded him of that.”
Working with oil isn’t an easy task. Ms. Raisbeck had to work with the properties of oil, good and bad.
“It was mostly trying to make gloppy oil look like gas, to make sure that I was letting layers dry so that I wouldn’t have mud,” said Ms. Raisbeck, “In an oil painting there’s refractions going on, so light that comes into these bubbles get bent, and then when light comes back out of the painting these lights rays [allow] you to see different, subtle layers”
Overall, Ms. Raisbeck wants others to realize there is more than just themselves
“I’m hoping that if there is an interaction in the school and someone notices something and maybe thinks of something else besides themselves, that’s probably cool,” said Ms. Raisbeck.
Students are now allowed to freely walk to the Museum of Flight’s Aviation Pavilion from the lobby of RAHS.

Posts navigation

1 2 3 4 5 17 18 19
Scroll to top