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No school on the 29th of May

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  On May 29th, 2017, schools will be closed to celebrate Memorial day, including the students and administration. On Memorial Day, we  thank the people that have died in the American Armed Forces over our time.

  For some students and administrators, it may just be another reason for a day off school, but for those that have people in the armed forces or lost people in the armed forces, it is much more than just a day off school. My uncle, Sergeant Jason Peifer, who is currently serving in the Army, once said after he came home due to injuries that “this is proof that people love this country and are willing to protect the people and things it represents.”

  One way we can start Memorial Day off is thank all the people that have fought and either died or got injured, or are still serving during the fight to protect the United States of America, and the things it represents, like happiness, freedom and equality. My cousin, Major General Desi Rodriguez, in the Air force once said when he came back that, “I love doing what I do, no matter the danger. I  love doing this because it protects the place I love, and the people I love, so I have no problem if I die doing this because I will die protecting the place and people I love.

  This is proof that people are willing to die for this country and have died for this country. Maybe it’s time that we remember what the true meaning of the holiday is.

The 21 gun salute taking place at Walnut Grove Source: http://worthingtoncemetery.com/
The 21 gun salute taking place at Walnut Grove
Source: http://worthingtoncemetery.com/

Delray Students First: helping students excel

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  Delray Students First is a privately sponsored tutoring program. This program is helping students get tips to ace their ACT and SAT. The chairman of this program is Mark Sauer. He has a whole team of volunteers behind him to make sure students excel. Tammy Mose-Cooper, Gary Alexandre, Retha Prescod, and Debra Weier are teachers that specialize in different subjects to teach students significant skills to ace their ACT and SAT.

Pictured above left to right, top to bottom is Tammy Mose-Cooper, Gary Alexandre, Retha Prescod, and Debra Weier.
Pictured above left to right, top to bottom is Tammy Mose-Cooper, Gary Alexandre, Retha Prescod, and Debra Weier.

   Last year, students were hand-picked based on their determination to join this prestigious group. This program was in full effect this past summer. They met for tutoring over the summer, but they mostly got acquainted.

  This program takes you to college tours. For example, students partook in the Florida Gulf Coast University tour and at the end of this month they will be enjoying University of Central Florida and the University of South Florida. Every Tuesday and Thursday the club meet for ACT or SAT tutoring. A junior, Brianna Flerestil says, “This program made me a better test taker.”

  This program will be ongoing. Next year, there will be newcomers in the program.they will be selected by teachers that see potential in students and based off their determination to succeed. They will be incoming juniors, while the newly seniors will still gain educational help to prepare them college. The focus will be on college essays and college applications for the seniors and the juniors will be focusing on ACT and SAT Prep.

  This program is all about helping students succeed and reach their highest potential. If any sophomore have any questions or concerns about joining, it may be best they talk to Mose-Cooper.

  

Atlantic High Marching Band moves forward

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 Most memories that come from adolescence involve high school and the weekends. No one remembers “that one Wednesday.” Some of the most iconic memories IB student Mary Dillon will take with her are her Friday nights at the football field.

  Mary Dillon, Former Junior Drum Major, has been in the Atlantic Marching and Concert Band for all three years of her high school career so far. When asked how she feels about her time with band she said, “the band at Atlantic is just like a family. I’ve been in marching band going on four years and going in as a freshman, it’s really nice to know that you’re welcomed and accepted by people before school even starts.”

  William Bowman, the band director here at Atlantic, wanted students to know that, “We [the band] take everyone. If you’re low on experience, come talk to me and we can get you fitted on an instrument and go from there.”

  As far as time commitments, there is a “Mini Camp” being held June 5th, 6th, and 7th. The camp just entails getting everything set up for marching band, which happens later in the summer. The camp also includes learning the fundamentals of marching, as well as your instrument, getting to know your section, and making sure all paperwork is in order.

  Marching Band Camp begins the 24th of July and lasts roughly about two weeks. Flyers can be found around campus and if there are any further questions Bowman can be found in the band room (Room 2-121).

See the flyer here: 201705091344

Atlantic Community High School Marching Band participating in the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Photo Courtesy of timstepein.smugsmug.com.
Atlantic Community High School Marching Band participating in the annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade. Photo Courtesy of timstepein.smugsmug.com.

Goodbye journalism

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  • atlantic-trivia-2_orig.jpg
    Atlantic High school at the Palm beach Post High school Journalism 2017 event. (From the left ) Megan Cortes, Caden DeLisa, Gerard Kassi (me), Ria Reddy, Derek Shavell, and Rebecca Radic (our teacher).

When I joined journalism at the beginning of the school year, the class (which was in the library) consisted of three students. Although it was a small (a very small) group, there was obvious interest in the subject of writing. My interest in that skill is the reason why I joined in the class first place: I wanted to be a better writer.

The first few weeks of the class I was taught how to write in a journalistic matter. Since there was nothing in place for us to publish any articles, our teacher, Rebecca Radic, had to make a website herself so that we could publish on it. When we started writing articles, I wasn’t close to being a good writer, but our editor in chief, Derek Shavel, who was also a student in the class, encouraged me and taught me how to better articulate myself when writing.

Our teacher, Mrs. Radic did not have a degree in journalism but her love for the this small journalism class showed whenever she taught; she really wanted us to be better writers. The journalism program in Atlantic High School was not going to be a thing without her.

The learning environment that was journalism wasted no time teaching me something everyday, and that was mostly due to Mrs. Radic and Derek. They were patient and cared deeply about my improvement. The more time went by, the more progress I made in my writing. I had to write an article every week, and I always looked forward to it. My love for writing increased to a substantial amount, and I am very grateful.

On April 27, journalism students were invited to a gathering by the Palm Beach Post to “honor excellence in High School Journalism.” I sat with the group at a half filled table with a piece of paper saying our school’s name, waiting for it to be mentioned, only to be disappointed. Atlantic High School did not win anything, no honorable mention… nothing. As I walked out of the building, I felt really sad that we did not win, but never I have I ever regretted being part of journalism. This feeling echoes my sentiments towards leaving journalism and ending my time in high school.

Summer Europe trip available to ACHS students

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   Atlantic High School is partnering up with EF tours to offer the opportunity for its students to take a summer trip to Europe in 2018. Any student that currently attends Atlantic High School can apply for the trip by contacting the people listed below.

   There are two different tours available. The Artist’s Tour is directed towards students who are interested in the arts. The trip gives students the opportunity to tour and observe the rich artistic history of France and Italy. This tour is sponsored by Julia Zuniga and Natalie De Feliz. You can contact them at natalie.defeliz@palmbeachschools.org and Julia.zuniga@palmbeachschools.org or for more info on this trip you can visit www.eftours.com/1974888AA.

   The other tour is an all inclusive 9 day trip to learn about the history and culture of Germany, Italy and Switzerland. Ewa Maas and Christine Palulis sponsor this trip. You can contact them at Christine.palulis@palmbeachschools.org and ewa.maas21@gmail.com or for more info on this trip you can visit www.eftours.com/1972532hh.

   

Source: eftours.com
Source: eftours.com

The deadline for these two trips was originally April 21st but, is being extended to April 28th. All registration and payment plans must be arranged by this date. There are only a few spots available.

Getting ready for prom

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Atlantic's prom flyer, courtesy of SGA's Instragram.

   Atlantic Community High School students prepare themselves for prom 2017. Prom will be held at South County Civic Center Delray Beach on April 28th from 7 p.m. to 12 a.m. This year, Durgin announced that the theme was based on nature. Tickets are still available for both seniors ($50) and juniors ($60) during lunch by Kevin Logan. Each week tickets go up $5.

   As we all know, getting ready for prom can be very stressful and expensive. Students in Atlantic have been making preparations such as appointments for hair and makeup. Girls in Atlantic said that it may seem very simple but in reality, it takes time because we all want to look our best. The closer prom is, the more pressure we feel.

   In a survey of a couple seniors, they said dress shopping has to be the hardest decision. This includes picking the color, style and size. Prices range from $100-$600; it all depends on the store. If it’s a department store, you’re likely to find a dress for a reasonable price but, if it’s a boutique, chances are the price will be higher.

   On the other hand, boys have it a bit easier because it’s all about a tuxedo. They usually go with the simple black suit and accessories of a color that pops out. In some places, a tuxedo can be purchased on special for $60, but they’re usually $100-$150 (rental). Here in Atlantic, students love to go all out so guys typically rent fancy cars like BMW’s, Mercedes and Mustangs.

   The class of 2017 says they are “very nervous and excited” because this is their year. Prom is something students would never want to miss. It’s a very special night for everyone, the night where students put all their worries to the side and just enjoy. Atlantic High School is ready to have some fun this year.

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

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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!

April Is For Authors comes to Atlantic High

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  In a world that has become not only less focused on books, but reading as a whole, it has become increasingly more difficult to spark interest in young readers. April Is For Authors is a way for professional, published authors to make personal contact with readers.

  Jason Reynolds, author of 6 books including Ghost, a story about a young sprinter whose past continually slows him down, will be coming to Atlantic Community High School. After him will be Aaron Hartzler, who has written What We Saw, a novel about a town that has committed a crime, and their struggle to attempt to keep in under wraps, and Rapture Practice.

  Students can find these talented authors on campus on April 28. Reynolds will be presenting in the gym during periods one and three, in which teachers can sign up to bring their classes, and Hartzler will be available during periods five and seven in the library.

  If a student has read Hartzler’s Rapture Practice or What We Saw please see Rebecca Radic to sign up for the event in the library.

  There will also be an additional field trip taking place April 29, to Palm Beach Gardens High School. The event includes panel sessions, where 25 authors will speak and can be questioned about their work. There will be food trucks available. The trip will be available for the first 28 people that sign up. After those spots are filled, interested students can still attend, given that the event is open to the public. Students will leave with Radic at 8:30 a.m. and are set to return at around 4 p.m.

   More information can be found on the April Is For Authors website: www.aprilisforauthors.org/april-29-2017.html.

Calendar changes proposed to help increase efficiency in Palm Beach schools

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   Palm Beach County students could see some changes to the school calendar this upcoming school year. One of the biggest modifications the district will consider is making Thanksgiving break a week long, instead of giving students just three days. The proposed calendar also eliminates early release days for students in elementary and middle school and late-start days for students in high school. Five half-days that have been used for teacher training in previous years would become full days for students. Another reason for eliminating half days is the low attendance rates. The school district found that many parents kept their children home, sometimes because the altered schedule disrupted their work schedules.  On Oct. 20, 2016, on a typical full day, 3.7 percent of elementary school students were absent, according to school district officials. Although on Oct. 13, which was a half day, 9.3 percent stayed home. District staff say students would get more instructional time by extending the half-days.

proposed school calendar for 2017-2018
old school calendar 2015-2016
old school calendar 2015-2016

   “Everyone is agreeable to this, ” said Kathi Gundlach, president of the Classroom Teachers Association. “The half days were not useful because a lot of kids didn’t show up and you couldn’t do a lot academically.”

   Since,  Thanksgiving break would be extended from three days to a full week, the school year would drop from 180 days to 179 days. Many elementary school parents keep their children home the days before Thanksgiving break. The absentee rate was 8.5 percent on Nov. 22, the day before the break this year, compared with 3.7 percent the previous Tuesday. Superintendent Robert Avossa said the district will save $25,000 in diesel fuel and $150,000 in utilities by closing all of Thanksgiving week.

   Despite the changes, the school year would still start and end approximately around the same time as it does currently.  The new school year would start Aug. 14 and end May 31, 2018. If hurricane days are needed, they would be added to the end of the school year.

  “The calendar keeps all the the traditional fall and spring holidays, and there won’t be any gaps in pay for employees,” said Aeriell Jordan-Robinson, a specialist with the district. The changes are part of a proposed Palm Beach County school calendar that was met favorably by district staff and School Board members on Wednesday. The School Board is scheduled to officially vote on the proposal April 19.

 

Pledging to read!

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  Taking place in the summer of 2017, Florida’s First Lady Ann Scott and the Florida Department of Education have partnered with the Florida Lottery and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection to bring students the Summer Literacy Adventure. This project is to help students stay on the appropriate reading level for their grade, and stay motivated and excited to read and learn literature.

  The 2017 “Just Read, Florida” challenge is aimed to help students in Florida have a little bit of reading and literacy in their life over the summer. The goal of the project is to get students to read and write a little on a regular basis. To make this a little more fun though, the campaign is challenging people to make a pledge to read as many books as possible throughout summer break. The top ten schools with the highest rate of participation will be recognized by the Department of Education, and the schools whose students read the most books will receive a surprise visit from Florida’s First Lady Ann Scott.

  This challenge is to help maintain and improve students’ reading skills over the summer. This is a fun activity that lets parents be involved in their students education. One thing the Department of  Education suggests is that if a student’s school has any open media center days during the summer, they should go and get more books to read at school during the summer. They also suggest that the student should talk with anyone about what they are reading.

  One of the benefits with this challenge is that it gives everything the student needs; they just need the books and motivation to do it. The challenge even has websites (see below) that they can go to to help get themselves motivated to do this challenge. They suggest that parents read the books as well and engage in a conversation with their child, or make worksheets that follow what is happening in the book, to make sure they get both the reading and the literacy aspect in there, too.

  Overall, this is just meant to be a fun challenge to help students stay on track during the summer months so they do not do nothing school related over the summer.

ADDITIONAL STUDENT, PARENT AND TEACHER RESOURCES:

Students:

• The Just Read, Florida! website provides a list of suggested summer reading selections as well as tips for helping children with reading skills at home. http://www.justreadflorida.com

• Sunshine State Young Reader Awards Program is a statewide reading motivation program for students in grades 3-8. http://www.floridamediaed.org/

Teachers and Parents:

• Florida Public Libraries http://dos.myflorida.com/library-archives/research/floridainformation/libraries/florida-libraries/public-library-homepages/

• The Just Read, Florida! website provides a list of suggested summer reading selections as well as tips for helping children with reading skills at home. http://www.justreadflorida.com

• Just Read, Florida! parent site http://www.fldoe.org/academics/standards/just-read-fl/parents

• Just Read, Families! http://www.fldoe.org/academics/standards/just-read-fl/families

• Sunshine State Young Reader Awards Program is a statewide reading motivation program for students in grades 3-8. http://www.floridamediaed.org/

Florida First Lady Ann Scott kicking off "Just Read! Florida" in Tallahassee Source: http://www.flgov.com/
Florida First Lady Ann Scott kicking off “Just Read! Florida” in Tallahassee
Source: http://www.flgov.com/
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