Atlantic Community High School


Tiara Heal

Tiara Heal has 9 articles published.

Expect eagles pride to soar next week: Seniors’ last spirit week!

in Campus Life by

As the school year rapidly comes to an end, so do the fun events and themed activities we all love to participate in, such as spirit week. Next week, 04/24-04/28, is yours truly, Atlantic Community High School’s last spirit week for the year. Although 100% of the student body does not participate, almost ALL do. The main attraction to this week-long event is obviously the fun, out of dress code, dress up part.

So what does it consist of?
Day 1, 04/24- ‘Merica Monday
Day 2, 04/25- Mathletes VS. Athletes
Day 3, 04/26- Squad Up
Day 4, 04/27- Country Western VS. Country Club
Day 5, 04/28- Into the future Friday

Being the last Spirit week for the class of 2017, expect this one to be extravagant! To add on to the fun, the first day also consists of a color run decathlon on the field, starting at 4 p.m. Just show up with your friends and family to watch the competition in the stands if you didn’t already get to sign up! The decathlon happens thanks to ROTC and the SGA.

Spirit week is a great way to bring the student body together and really unite and have fun as one! Students, teachers, admin and staff all participate and work together to truly enjoy it.

My first spirit week in 2013. It was generation day, so freshman were babies! My first spirit week in 2013. It was generation day, so freshman were babies!

Easter events occurring in Palm Beach County

in Arts & Entertainment by

In the past, many groups of people organized spring festivals.  Many of these celebrated the rebirth of nature, the return of fertility and the birth of many young animals. These are the origins of the Easter eggs that we still hunt for and eat. Although the festivals (at least in Palm Beach County) may not be extravagant, there are lots of organized events available for families interested.

In Palm Beach County some events available April 8-9 are:  

  Egg Extravaganza, 9 a.m. Saturday, Gardens Park, 4301 Burns Road, Palm Beach Gardens. Children can enjoy a traditional egg hunt featuring prizes, children’s activities and a visit from the bunny!

  Flagler Museum Easter Egg Hunt, gates open at 9 a.m. with hunt at 10 a.m. Saturday, Flagler Museum, One Whitehall Way, Palm Beach. Children are invited to hunt for more than 7,000 eggs on the museum’s lawns. The grounds will be sectioned off into age-appropriate areas so everyone, including toddlers, will have an opportunity to participate. Children can have their pictures taken with the Easter Bunny, engage in craft projects, have their face painted, receive a balloon sculpture and play the bean bag toss game. $18 for adults and $10 for children

  Spring Egg-Stravaganza, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Congress Avenue Barrier Free Park, 3111 S. Congress Ave., Boynton Beach. Children ages 1 to 12 can hunt for eggs, meet Peter Cottontail, climb the rock wall, ride the train through the park and get their faces painted. Free.

  Delray Marketplace, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, downtown Delray Beach. Enjoy a breakfast buffet, Easter egg hunt, and photos with the Easter Bunny ($6). The buffet will take place at Bella Amici beginning at 11 a.m. followed by the egg hunt and face-painting with Mother Goose at 1 p.m. and photos with the Easter Bunny at The Grind Coffee Café from 1:30 to 3 p.m. Tickets for the buffet are $6; no charge for children younger than 3

  12th Annual Easter in the Park Worship Celebration, Mizner Park Amphitheater, Boca Raton. Service starts at 9 a.m. on Sunday.  

The mysterious origins of April fools day

in Arts & Entertainment by

Even though April fools day (also called All Fools’ Day) may not be as popular as Valentine’s day or Christmas, there are some people who wait all year to celebrate this goofy holiday. The amusing outcome of most celebrations consists of people pranking their friends, teachers, families, and even companies.

In 1878, New York Graphic published an article convincing people that Edison had solved the problem of world hunger with a machine that could manufacture “biscuit, meat, vegetables and wine” out of nothing more than air, water and dirt, and people really believed it!

However, are all these pranks what this “day for fools” is really about? Where did it come from? As dearly as we hold the tradition of making fools of the people we care about, there are more than enough theories about where April Fools’ Day came from.

Notice the following statement about April Fools Day from the Encyclopedia Britannica: “Although it has been observed for centuries in several countries, the origin of the custom is unknown. It resembles other festivals, such as the Hilaria of ancient Rome (March 25) and the Holi festival of India (ending March 31). Its timing seems related to the vernal equinox (March 21), when nature ‘fools’ mankind with sudden changes in the weather.” Regardless of its origin, people use April Fools’ Day as an excuse to “play the fool.”

According to, one theory is that it began in 1582, when France adopted the Gregorian calendar. Before then, New Year’s Day fell on March 25, not Jan. 1st. and April fools were those who still celebrated the holiday in the spring, and were the subject of pranks and ridicule by those who observed the new year months ago.

In the Netherlands, the origin of April Fools’ Day is often attributed to the Dutch victory at Brielle in 1572, where the Spanish Duke Álvarez de Toledo was defeated. “Op 1 April verloor Alva zijn bril” is a Dutch proverb, which can be translated to “On the first of April, Alva lost his glasses.” In this case, the glasses (“bril” in Dutch) serve as a metaphor for Brielle. In shorter words, they turned it into a mocking of Alvarez, making him look like a fool.

Even though history does not provide an authoritative source to determine this holiday’s exact basis and origin people will continue to celebrate and use it as an excuse to pull crazy pranks, and get away with it.

This is old European art representing This is old European art representing “fools.” Photo Courtesy of The Grateful American Foundation.


Spring break creates diverse plans

in News by

A51675A7-714D-4309-AA35-7E08C4B94F7A-9215-000004ED1ABDBFBD_tmpSpring break is an exciting time of year for everyone who partakes in it. Based off of a little experiment conducted in a coffee shop in downtown Delray, there is a close relation to lots of the trips families plan!
A large majority of spring breakers we have are from places as far as Montreal and Quebec in Canada. All of the tourists I spoke to from these places spoke French and had strong French-Canadian accents. They all said very similar things when asked about why they come to Florida (Delray in particular) for spring break; all opinions coincidentally pertained to the weather. Naomi (last name unknown), fluent French speaker from Quebec, said that, “At home it’s beautiful, I will not complain ever about where I’m from. But sometimes it’s nice to get away from the 10 degree F (Fahrenheit) weather. I take a few months every year to defrost.”
Two other very popular places tourists seem to be from are New York and New Jersey. As a surprise, opinions among these families were also similar to each other’s and to the Canadians’. A large majority of tourists are fleeing from the cold, dry weather and coming to the tropical “heat,” even though for us Floridians weather has been off lately!
Obviously, our beautiful Delray Beach, Florida is a very popular tourist destination all times of year, but spring break in particular is one of the biggest and busiest times. As far as going out of town, two popular Florida spring break locations for Florida residents are Orlando (Disney World and Universal Studios/Islands of Adventure) resorts and the Florida Keys. At some point in every Floridian’s life they will vacation here.

Canada gone wild?

in News by

   When most people think of Canada, it consists of positive, friendly news! That doesn’t mean that’s all there is, though.

   Recently, Bruce McCallum, a math teacher on sabbatical (paid leave) from his job at Albert Campbell Collegiate Institute in Scarborough, died in Costa Rica. Reports state that the beloved man had been out at the beach early in the morning enjoying and photographing the exotic sunrise when two teenage boys jumped him and stole his backpack and fancy camera equipment.  When McCallum tried to fight back, he was stabbed twice in the stomach. Local cops said McCallum was found lying on the side of a road outside Puerto Viejo on Sunday morning.

   Bruce McCallum was an extremely loved man.  Principal of the school he was a part of for eighteen years, Carol Richards-Sauer, says McCallum had a passion for photography and travel and that, “His energy and work ethic were an inspiration to us all.”

  This unfortunate death has also had an effect on a large amount of former students of his.  One student, Michelle Zhao, wrote on Facebook that, “Mr. McCallum was hands down one of my favourite teachers I’ve ever had, he had an amazing personality and taught well..I’ll never forget the memories he gave me and the lessons he taught. He only wanted to do the one thing he loved over there but it was taken away from him, it’s so unfair. RIP Mr. McCallum you will be missed.”

This sad case seems as if it was a botched robbery but Canadian consular officials in Costa Rica are in contact with local authorities to gather additional information and are providing assistance to the family as well.   

This is a photo of beloved Bruce McCallum. Photo courtesy to CBC News.
This is a photo of beloved Bruce McCallum. Photo courtesy to CBC News.

The life and death of Malcolm X

in News by

Fifty-two years ago on Feb. 21, Malcolm X, later known as el-Hajj Malik el-Shabazz, was killed while delivering a speech at the Audubon Ballroom in Harlem. The shooting of the then 39-year-old took the life of a complicated figure who had been legendary in the eyes of his followers.

   Malcolm X was the public voice of the Black Muslim faith and challenged the mainstream civil rights movement and the nonviolent pursuit of integration championed by Martin Luther King Jr. However, instead of living by the law of peace,  he urged his followers to defend themselves “by any means necessary.”

  Once Malcolm X completed the eighth grade, he dropped out of school and got caught up in the street life. He went by the name “Detroit Red,” straightened his hair, and even wore a zoot suit.

  When he turned 21 he got sentenced to prison, but this may have been the best thing to happen to him. While serving his time, he spent his days in the prison library and he also met Elijah Muhammad, leader of the Lost-Found Nation of Islam, popularly known as the Black Muslims, which inspired him for the rest of his life.

  After six years, Malcolm was released from prison and eventually became the minister of Temple No. 7 in Harlem, but all of his beliefs went much further than just New York. He was known worldwide.

  In 1964, he left the Black Muslim organization (because he lost trust with Muhammad), traveled to Mecca, and discovered that orthodox Muslims preach equality of the races, which led him to finally abandon the argument that white people are “devils.” He did, however, remain convinced that racism had corroded the spirit of America and that “only blacks could free themselves.”

This is Malcolm X's mugshots early in his life. Notice his straightened hair!
This is Malcolm X’s mugshots early in his life. Notice his straightened
hair!  Photo courtesy of:

This is one of Malcolm X’s most popular photos a few years before he was assassinated. Photo Courtesy of:

Take a trip through African American history!

in Campus Life by

 The month of February is dedicated to African American history, but did you know that it began as “Negro History Week”? The week was created by Carter G. Woodson, an African American historian, author, journalist and the founder of the Association for the Study of African-American Life and History.

  Fortunately, in our community we have educators, such as Stacy Stephens-Miller (ACHS History teacher), who care to share their wealth of knowledge on the history and the struggle that African American people have endured for the past centuries.  

  There will be an event for Black History Month on Feb. 23 and 24, and according to Stephens-Miller, students will receive a “guided tour” of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade, Plantation slavery, Slave rebellions, the Haitian Revolution, the History of Delray Beach, and the Civil Rights Movement.

   The goal is to allow students to experience the history of African Americans.  Unfortunately, there are not often events like this, so do not miss out on this opportunity!

   This event will be brought to you by The Spady House Museum, Lake Worth Playhouse, ACHS Construction Academy, ACHS Art Club, African and African American History Committee.  It will take place in the library.

Valentine’s Day’s meaning lies beyond general knowledge

in Arts & Entertainment/News by

   Typically, Valentines Day is thought to be a romantic holiday intended to spread love and chocolate around!  However, there is more to the real origins of this celebration on Feb. 14.
  The roots of St. Valentine’s Day lie in the ancient Roman festival of Lupercalia (Lupercalia was a very ancient, possibly pre-Roman pastoral festival, observed on Feb.15, to avert evil spirits and purify the city, releasing health and fertility).  The Romans had dedicated this day to the god Lupercus.
  On Lupercalia, the men sacrificed a goat and a dog, then whipped women with the hides of the animals they had just slain – but not by force.  The woman would line up and wait for the men to whip them!  It is said that they believed this would help with fertility.
  The “romantic” part of this is that the brutal festival included a “matchmaking lottery,” in which young men drew the names of women from a jar and those women would then be their sexual partner.
  Apparently, the ancient Romans may also be responsible for the name of this lovely holiday. Emperor Claudius II executed two men — both named Valentine — on Feb. 14 of different years in the third century A.D.  They were honored and celebrated at the Catholic Church on St. Valentines Day.
  It seems as if most holidays celebrated now-a-days have darker roots, but over time became less extreme. It seems fortuitous, then, that Shakespeare romanticized it in his work, and the nicer version of St. Valentines Day gained popularity throughout Britain and the rest of Europe.

The picture above demonstrates the ancient traditions of Lupercalia. Photo Courtesy of
The picture above demonstrates the ancient traditions of Lupercalia. Photo Courtesy of

National Signing Day! Success Among Student-Athletes

in Sports by

   For those of you who don’t know, February 1st is National Signing Day for student-athletes in the United States.  Recently at Atlantic Community High School, there were multiple seniors signing to colleges spread out throughout the country.

   First, Dadley Louis signed to East Tennessee State University. How Max Polyakov was in scramble – read at this article.  They contacted him and fortunately he received a full ride scholarship!  Dadley grew up in Port Au Prince, Haiti with his mother and moved to Delray Beach in 2015 but attended Santaluces High School.  What made him choose ETSU over all his other offers? Dadley explained that the environment is somewhere he feels as if he can be successful faster and easier than if he were to go somewhere else.  He will be able to focus solely on what he’s there for- his education and football.  

   The second senior football player was Datrone Young, also known as “Speedy.”  He signed to Iowa State University, also with a full ride scholarship!  Before attending Atlantic, Speedy was at Forest Hill High School.  He was raised in Delray, though!  Datrone’s inspiration is his family and his uncle who played college ball at Jackson State University.  Whether you talk to students, teachers, or coaches who he’s interacted with, everyone will agree on something: “He’s very humble and ready to work.”  Corey Lamey, fellow teammate stated, “Big things coming his way!”

   Next and final football player is Kevin Norris Jr., more popularly known as “Sody.”  Sody will be attending Coffeyville Community College in Coffeyville, Kansas.  His mother, Jeannie Rogers, stated that Kevin not only helps her with everything, is very respectful, and has a big heart, but he also has a passion for mentoring little kids on the field.  He grew up in Boynton Beach, FL, and has been on Atlantic’s Varsity Football team for 3 years.  However, he played for Boynton High for a semester.  We’re happy to have him back!

   Another signee was Maxwell Charnin, who will be attending Palm Beach State College for baseball!  Max was adopted from Russia at a very young age and since then has grown up in Boynton Beach playing baseball with other local youngsters.  He has received a full ride scholarship and is very happy to have the opportunity to stay close to home.  Max feels that PBSC’s baseball team is the best team to help aid him in his mission to go to the Major Leagues!  

   Our 2nd and final baseball player was Justin Varisco.  Justin also grew up in Boynton Beach and has played baseball for majority of his life.  He will be attending George C. Wallas Community College in Dothan, Alabama.  “He was the 2016 district player of the year and the backbone of our team,” Coach Wilson, baseball coach, shared.  

   Atlantic Community High Schools final student athlete to sign on National Signing Day was everyone’s favorite… Bailey Myott!  She will be attending Florida Atlantic University for Volleyball.  Bailey was captain on the Varsity Volleyball Team for 2 out of her 4 years.  She is inspired by her family, her best friend, and God.  

   Atlantic High School Principal, Mrs. O’Campo, is very proud of all the accomplishments these student athletes have made academically and athletically.  She is confident they will represent ATL for their years to come.  She’d like to thank the community and the parents for all the support.  GO EAGLES!

Kevin Norris Jr. signing to Coffeyville Community College. Staff Photo
Kevin Norris Jr. signing to Coffeyville Community College. Staff Photo
This is Datrone Young signing to Iowa State University. Staff Photo
This is Datrone Young signing to Iowa State University. Staff Photo
All 3 football players with family showing support. Staff photo
All 3 football players with family showing support. Staff photo


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