Archive | October, 2017

Roper soars to secretary position

 

By Sydney Furr

Once a former Delta Airlines flight attendant, Mrs. Nadine Roper is the new WHS secretary. Before coming to WHS, Roper worked at Unisys Corporation at Tysons Corner, and Virginia Western Community College in the human resources department. Roper loves her job here at Waynesboro High School and enjoys being a secretary because she feels like a bigger part of the WHS community. She has never worked with high schoolers before, but to her, the students aren’t difficult. According to Roper, things that students consider urgent are often not as urgent as they think.

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Mrs. Nadine Roper busy working at her desk. Photo by Sydney Furr

“It’s a matter of awareness and trying to understand sometimes where they’re coming from,” Roper said. “It’s perspective I guess.”

 Roper’s favorite part of her job is interacting with the students. To Roper, being a secretary is not a lonely job because there is always something going on. For a while, she was a homemaker, but that got lonely for her. Now, she never finds a dull moment at WHS.

Roper thinks highly of the staff at Waynesboro High School. She looks up to them and thinks that they are skilled in what they do.

“Most of them have been here for over ten years, and so I respect that they have a lot of expertise in their field and the community of WHS,” she said.

 Mr. Brian Stamm,  WHS Assistant Principal, has a high opinion of Mrs. Roper. He said that she is very organized, keeps track of his schedule, and lets him know when he needs to be somewhere.

“It’s a benefit for me because a lot of times my days are so busy. She helps kind of keep us organized as we move throughout the day” Stamm said.

Stamm enjoys working with Roper, as she knows what he needs when he needs it. According to Stamm, Roper works with the guests that visit WHS very well. She knows how to make sure they feel welcomed even when everyone else is busy behind closed doors.

Stamm says that Roper has fit in with WHS. “She comes in and you come into a building with over 1000 people in it a day doing a different job and there’s a big learning curve with that but at the same time she’s taking it all in stride and really try to sit in with what we do and she’s done real good with us so far.” 

Roper and Ms. Kendra Jones, WHS Assistant Principal, are the only African American women in the office.

“I think it’s good for students to see, especially other black students and let them see people who look like them, working in a office and having someone to engage with and interact with.” Jones says. Jones thinks that Roper carries herself very professionally. Jones went to say that regardless of race or gender, Roper tries to build relationships with everyone.

 Stamm and Jones agree that Roper has brought new ideas to WHS and brings a positive energy with her every day.

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Former WHS Student Comes Full-Circle

By: Victor Sansing

Erick Biggs. Photo by Victor Sansing.

Erick Biggs. Photo by Victor Sansing.

 

 

      Erick Biggs is a new aide here at Waynesboro High School.Biggs got his job at WHS after Mr. Teachey approached him about the position. Teachey thought he would be a good fit for the job. Before getting this job he thought about joining the Marines because he wanted to “travel the world and blow stuff up.”

       This job is sort of a stepping stone for Biggs. He never really wanted to work with kids. “Kids are terrible. They have too much attitude,” said Biggs. But after a while, he started enjoying the aide job a lot more than he thought. “The job is very challenging, but also very rewarding,” said Biggs.

        Mr. Biggs does, truly,  enjoy working at WHS more than he thought. He works alongside Mrs. Lunger and Mrs. Upson as LaQuinn Torian’s one-on-one aide. He is around Torian for all parts of the day. His usual day goes like this: He gets Torian off the bus at 8:10, then, he goes with him to the cafeteria for breakfast, next, they watch CNN Student News and practice the alphabet and phonics, afterwards, he goes to first lunch, eventually, he goes to ASL for third block, and, finally, he goes to the gym for fourth block. He is with Torian during all of these steps in his day.

       Biggs has quite a crazy early life. Originally, he is from Chicago, Illinois. Biggs then moved with his family to Florida and then to Virginia. After settling into Virginia he and his parents went on a missionary trip to the Philippines. His parents were helping to build a school for orphans and he went along for the ride. This helped Biggs  to, “appreciate all of the things I have.” In the Philippines he saw people using heaps of trash for shelter. The trip, “really, really, really, really,” helped him. After coming back from the Philippines, the Biggs family went back to Virginia.

     Biggs attended a Christian school and then later went to WHS. After graduating from Waynesboro High he attended Radford University. Where he graduated with a degree in Pre-Med Biology.

     In five years Biggs hopes to be away from Waynesboro, though. He explained that after five years of working at a school his federal student loans will be repaid. So, he plans to spend five years in Waynesboro and then get a change of scenery. He still wants to teach for a while, but maybe in Roanoke or Colorado. With that being said, teaching is not his end goal. He wants to eventually use his degree in some way. The only dilemma with this plan is that most jobs need more education than he already has. He would really like to work at the National Institute of Standards of Technology. The Institute does a lot of high tech work and is the closest nuclear reactor to Waynesboro. Working at NIST is sort of an end goal for Biggs. He believes he will achieve his goal, eventually, by, “Staying on track and getting my student loans paid off.”

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Meet Our New School Nurse: Mrs. Gibson

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Nurse Gibson working in her office.

By: Jamey Archie

Amy Gibson is a new nurse starting at WHS this year. She worked at Wayne Hills pre-school for 6 years before coming to WHS.  “Coming from a school with only 170 students to a school with almost 900 students is a huge difference,” says nurse Gibson. Since there are more students at WHS than Ms. Gibson is used to, she stays busy at all times. Her craziest experience as a nurse was a de-gloving accident with a girl whose class ring got caught in a door, taking her skin off. 

Growing up, Ms. Gibson always wanted to be a nurse. ”I always liked helping people and caring about people,” said Gibson. “The regret I have is not doing it while I was younger.”

Some advice that she has for anyone who wants to become a nurse is to start at as early of an age as possible. Starting with early classes and learning information sooner could help you a lot in the future when searching for a good job.

Gibson attended Piedmont Community College because it was the closest to her. There, Gibson got an EMT ( Emergency Medical Technicians) and a CNA (Certified Nursing Assistant) degree. She says working as an EMT in the past helps a lot when it comes to emergencies. 

She has substituted as a school nurse at Kate Collins Middle School and she says there is a huge difference in the students and their attitudes. Nurse Gibson sees herself at WHS in 5 years from now. She really enjoys her job here.  

Lynn Watson, head nurse of Waynesboro Public Schools, feels that Gibson is a very big asset to their school nurse team.  “She has experience in assessment and treatment of acute illness and trauma,” Watson said, “Nurse Gibson has many strong qualities which make her a good fit for WHS.  She is able to make good judgement calls and assessment as well as follow the guidelines set forth by the Department of Education.”  Watson has worked primarily in the Emergency Room environment as a Registered Nurse.  She has done some prison and jail nursing in the past.  Also, Watson did travel nursing for over 9 years to many states within the United States. Many of her years of emergency nursing helped Watson a great deal in being able to function independently in a school nurse role and also be able to lead our team of nurses.

Assistant Principal, Bryan Stamm says, “Mrs. Gibson and Ms. Watson provide a valuable safety net for students at our school by working with our students and parents to make sure their needs are met.”

 

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Teachers go purple to support LGBTQ students

WHS teachers and staff wear purple for spirit day.

By: Jamey Archie

Photo provided by: Amber Loyacano

“Spirit Day is a means of speaking out against LGBTQ bullying and standing with LGBTQ youth, who disproportionately face bullying and harassment because of their identities. Pledging to “go purple” on Spirit Day is a way for everyone — forward-thinking companies, global leaders, respected celebrities, neighbors, parents, classmates, and friends — to visibly show solidarity with LGBTQ youth and to take part in the largest, most visible anti-bullying campaign in the world.”  http://www.glaad.org/

For more information click here: https://www.glaad.org/spiritday?thanks=pledge#intro

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Student Spotlight – Thihn Ton

Thihn Ton doing a magic trick Picture by Victor Sansing

Q: What grade are you in?

A: 11th

 

Q: How long have you been a student at WHS?

A: 1 year

 

Q: You’re known around school as “the kid who does awesome magic tricks.” How do you feel about that? Did you know that?

A: It makes me feel happy.

 

Q: What inspired your interest in magic? Why is it important to you?

A: I think it’s really fun.

 

Q: Are you from Waynesboro? If not, where are you from?

A: Yes, I’m from Waynesboro.

 

Q: What are some of your other interests/hobbies?

A: I like to play soccer.

 

Q: What is your favorite thing about school? Favorite class?

A: My favorite class is Mrs. Benson’s class (English).

 

Q: Are you involved in any clubs/do you play any sports?

A: I’m in the International club.

 

Q: What’s your family like? Who do you look up to?

A: It’s big – my dad, my mom and my sister.

 

Q: In three words, describe yourself. 

A: Funny, handsome, and skinny.

 

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Mrs Elaine Mahler the new SPECIAL addition to whs

By: Chloe Mclaughlin    

 At the start of a new school year you may find many new, fresh and friendly faces. Mrs. Elaine Mahler is a new edition at WHS as a Special Education teacher. 

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Mahler previously worked at the Kate Collins Middle School as a Special Education teacher. She said that the biggest differences coming from the high school to the middle school is the maturity level in found in high school students. She feels that they are much more independent and follow routines better and are also more trustworthy and open.

“Most of the students are very friendly, and you don’t have to nag them a lot. They seem to have a grip on what they are supposed to do and how they are supposed to act,” said Mahler.

Mahler believes that there are benefits to teaching Special Education.

“You learn how to reach each student and and their different needs. Each student appreciates what you do and they want to learn,” said Mahler, “I go home everyday feeling good.”

She also believes that she creates personal connections with her students.

“You study what they are able to do and you learn their likes and dislikes. It’s a work in progress. You can’t expect even an adult to change right away,” said Mahler.

Mrs Mary Lunger, a fellow coworker and Special Education teacher feels that Mahler is friendly, always helpful, and has also been a great help assisting students in their elective classes.

“She’s a calm presence in our active program,” said Lunger,“Her calmness is an asset to some of the students that have anxiety,”

She also believes that Mahler’s personality is a great fit for the high school and she relates really well with the students.

Mahler feels that her personality reflects on her decision to teach because she loves helping people and enjoys doing paperwork.

Due to her decision to teach she attended multiple colleges, receiving a master’s degree in special education, administration supervision and English education.

When Mahler first began college she was taking classes for Biology. She was later diagnosed with Mononucleosis which forced her to be on complete bed rest and withdraw from all her labs and science classes.She  found that she was doing much better in English classes and struggling in science, so she decided to make English her major.

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Mrs Elaine Mahler busy at work on her computer Photo By: Chloe Mclaughlin

Mahler has taught in various places such as Alabama for a year and Nelson county for 11 years. She has also substituted in Augusta County for 11 years and did secretarial work for 14 years in Christiansburg and Waynesboro. She also attended and graduated from WHS which was a part of her decision to teach here this year

Some things that have helped Mahler in her career as a Special Education teacher, and advice that she would give to aspiring Special Education teachers is to always keep up with your paperwork and to always use your support system. Make sure you try to get along with the parents and teachers around you and stay on the same page. It works much better for the students when the adults are all together.

Mahler’s journey in education involved many hardships and experiences; it’s safe to say that Mahler’s destination at WHS has sparked a positive reaction among students and staff.  

 

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Friday the 13th Senior Night Football game.

By: Jamey Archie

Photos by: Jamey Archie

Pictures from the senior night football game on Friday October, 13th. WHS lost a home game against Rockbridge County with a score of 28 to 35.

WHS takes a time out.

WHS Defense lines  up.

WHS Varsity Cheerleaders Standing in formation

WHS Defense lining up.

 

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Friday the Thirteenth at WHS

Sarah Jackson and Kristen Wagner Picture by Sydney Furr

Angel Stevens Picture by Sydney Furr

Josi Henry Picture by Sydney Furr

Jhanaysia Walker Picture by Sydney Furr

Shauna Wilson Picture by Sydney Furr

Shauna Wilson
Picture by Sydney Furr

Sofia Valle and Molly Short Picture by Sydney Furr

Jordie Roberts Picture by Jamey Archie

Zach Coburn and Michael Smith Picture by Jamey Archie

Zach Coburn and Michael Smith
Picture by Jamey Archie

Jordan Gaylor Picture by

Jordan Gaylor
Picture by Jamey Archie

Brianna Johnson and Jackie Crispin Picture by Jamey Archie

Brianna Johnson and Jackie Crispin
Picture by Jamey Archie

 

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Fall Band Concert

By: Victor Sansing

Come support the WHS Band for their Fall Pops Concert on October 15th at 6:00! Donations will be taken at the door. Come out and hear music from the Avengers, Harry Potter, Halo, and more!

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Mighty Giants basketball brings smiles to WHS!

By: Victor Sansing and Ethan Burch

 

WHS Unified Basketball team picture. Photo provided by Mary Jane Upson.

WHS Unified Basketball team picture. Photo provided by Mary Jane Upson.

Q: How did you feel playing with your team in front of such a big crowd?

 

Joseph “JT” Trout:“I felt good because playing against other teams helps me understand what I’m doing and how to [do] it. It felt good to encourage the teams to pass, to shoot, and [to] score. The games help me keep busy.

Devin Brooks:“Good because I made the hoops.”

Ethan Holley: “Good because it was fun to play with my team.”

Cassie Furr:”I feel like I got to be a better team player.” Although Cassie didn’t go to the first game, she still practiced.

LaQuinn Torian:” I had a great time playing in front of the crowd.”

Darwin Hernandez:“I was excited because I made a lot of points and helped my team.”

Anna Grainger:“I felt excited because I got to show the people how it is possible for someone like me to play a game like that.”

 

Q: What was the hardest thing about playing on your team?

 

Trout: “I had to make sure all my other team mates knew what they were doing and [were] having fun.”

Brooks:“Passing the ball was hard to do. I had to make [it] go to the right team.”

Furr:  “Dribbling was [e]specially hard.”

Torian:  “It was hard to work with everyone else.”

Hernandez Hernanadez: “It was hard to do everything at first, but I got better [and] better.

Grainger: “Baskets were hard to make since they were up so high, [but] I got them after that.

 

Q: Have you ever done anything like this before?

 

Trout: “Yes, I’ve done the Special Olympics.”

Brooks: “Yes, I’ve done Buddyball.”

Holley: “No, but it was fun.”

Furr: “No.”

Torian:”Yes, I played on the Stuarts Draft Unified Basketball team.”

Hernandez Hernandez: “I have played for SOCA.”

Grainger:“Yes I have done Buddyball, cheerleading, soccer, kickball, tennis, softball, and soccer.”

 

Q: What’s the most important thing your coaches taught you?

 

Trout: “They kept me on track.”

Brooks: “They told me [to] block the other team.”

Holley:  “They taught me passing and scoring.”

Furr: “They taught me layups and scoring,”

Torian:”They taught me defense and dribbling.”

Hernandez Hernandez:”They taught me free throw[s].”

Grainger: “The coaches help[ed] me dribble and play defense.”

 

We then asked Aarin Moss, a coach, a few questions.

 

Q: How did you become a coach?

 

Moss: “They asked Darius to coach and Darius asked me to coach, too. It sounded like fun.”

 

Q: How did you feel after the game?

 

Moss: “I was excited. Everyone played very well. I was especially proud of Darwin and LaQuinn. They were buckets.”

 

Lastly, I asked Mrs. Upson a few questions about her students.

 

Q: What do you think your students are gaining from this experience.

 

Upson: “I think they benefit from having a school sport as an opportunity that they would not normally have. I’m sure the kids feel more included. It also provides a neat experience for the community to come and support them and see that they are capable.”

 

Q: How did WHS get into the unified basketball program?

 

Upson:  “We heard about Wilson and Draft playing and we knew that we wanted to participate.

 

 

 

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