Archive | Features

Flu season: more like “ew” season

By: Alyssa Kerrigan

Across the United States, the influenza virus is spreading like wildfire, engulfing the country in one of the most violent flu seasons in nearly a decade. According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “ILI [influenza-like-illness] dropped from 7.4% last week to 6.4%, but remains higher than the peak of flu activity observed during many seasons.” With alarming flu activity statistics all over the news, concern arises for families living in our community, as well as here at Waynesboro High School.

Amy Gibson, the nurse at WHS, confirmed that there have been at least “thirty [cases of the flu] that have been recorded.” With all the sickness going around, Gibson shares some of the most commonly seen symptoms of the flu at school.

“I’ve heard a lot of headaches, being dizzy, definitely a fever, general cold symptoms, mainly,” said Gibson, “some of them neck pain, like I said headaches and dizziness are some new ones that are very severe this year.”

Of the flu cases in Waynesboro, teachers are included. The photography teacher at WHS, Joshua Spees, recounts his personal experience with the flu. When first noticing symptoms, Spees said he was “tired, kind of achey, and I had the chills. Like definite chills, like shaking, cold, even though I was dressed in five layers.” Spees’ symptoms lasted for about a week, although following the flu he was sick on and off. He experienced an upset stomach and mild cold symptoms in the weeks after his bout with the flu.

In addition to the days he had to stay home from work, Spees said that as far as student absences, “there were at least 10-20% of every class gone every day, and kids were gone for over a week at a time. And it’s extended absences, which kill you in terms of school, it’s hard to rebound from that.”

Despite the large number of absences, Nurse Gibson said that in order to prevent further spread of flu bacteria, it is wise to make sure you are completely well before returning to school. “I think it greatly impacts when people come back before they’re well; they say if you’re running a fever, you should definitely not be at school” said Gibson. When students are contagious, the flu can easily be spread by way of  “coughing, mainly, people coughing in the air…other people breathing it in,” Gibson said, “and touching door handles and things like that.” Gibson’s advice for flu prevention is to wash your hands constantly, cover your mouth when you cough, and if you have had a fever in the last 24 hours, do not come to school.

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New Year, New Opportunities

By: Destiny Lam

WHS students from soon-to-be freshmen to advancing seniors are choosing their classes for the next school year. Among the usual core classes, WHS is introducing a few new classes for students. Among these options are the following: World Cuisine, to be taught by Mrs. Sherrill and Greco-Roman Mythology to be taught by Mrs. Sati.

For students interested in cultures all over the world and the history of said cultures, World Cuisine may be a good fit. In Mrs.Sherrill’s words, World Cuisine class’ curriculum is focused on “food around the world with  an emphasis on geography and natural resources depending on the climate and economics.”

Students interested in taking World Cuisine should be prepared for a class based on academic reading, demonstrations and interactive participation with peers. Sherrill hopes that her students will take her lessons and use them in their everyday life. “Like a good quilt, they’re going to pull in cooking things from different parts of the world that they might want to incorporate into their own foods with their families or as they become young adults,” said Sherrill.

If you would like to “come away with a greater understanding of world geography, the idea of the sustainable foods within a community and how important that is,” Mrs.Sherrill’s World Cuisine class would be a great fit for you.

Speaking of cultures, Mrs. Sati’s Greco-Roman mythology is the perfect class for students interested in learning about Greco-Roman myths and their correlation to our modern society. “Greco-Roman mythology actually provides not only knowledge of culture-Greek and Roman culture, but it actually prepares them for understanding the world,” said Sati.

Sati also hopes to “help [students] understand today’s society by digging in the past.” Not only will students be immersed into the stories of Greco-Roman culture, but they will also learn material from a broad range of subjects such as astronomy, science, and history.

If you are a student with an open mind that is willing to understand and accept different cultures and if you are willing to participate in reading and discussion assignments, then this class may be a good fit for you.

If any of these classes interest you, see your guidance counselor today and ask them about the availability of these classes.

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Waynesboro Drama Presents Avenue Q

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Picture by: Serenity Stacy


The Waynesboro High School drama students will be preforming “Avenue Q,” a musical drama, on March 1st-3rd at 7:30 p.m. and March 4th at 3 p.m. in the school auditorium. Ms Dianne Truslow, the drama teacher at Waynesboro High School, is the director of the play. She’s excited to preform it for the community and the cast is really excited as well.

WHS is performing the high school version rated PG-13. According to  the website , the high school version of the original Broadway production of “Avenue Q” deals with some challenging topics and includes some adult language, making it appropriate for a PG-13 rating. The appeal of “Avenue Q” for high school students is that it deals with relevant social issues including experiencing

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The set in a working process Photo By: Serenity Stacy

discrimination, navigating the perils of the internet, managing challenging romantic relationships, making difficult social choices, dealing with consequences, and finding your life’s purpose–things every teenager experiences at one point or another.

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Ms. Truslow the director and Marina Johnson a cast member Photo By: Serenity Stacy

“Avenue Q” is a fun play and has an important message in it and a message you can take and use even after school,” said Ms. Truslow. Marina Johnson, a senior who plays Christmas eve, said “There are some bad words and well there is a character who kinda sleeps around.” “Ms. Truslow and Mr. Ryman said they’ve been watching it for a few years and they’ve always wanted to do it, so I guess they finally decide they wanted to do it this year,” said Johnson.


Photo provided by Dianna Truslow

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Student Spotlight: Jacky Dietz

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Photo by: Amber Law

Q: What grade are you in?

A: I’ve already graduated from German high school, and I wanted to come here to the US to do a study abroad experience before I go back to Germany to continue my studies.

Q: What is your favorite class you are taking at WHS? Why?

A: I’m taking art, concert choir, ecology and journalism. My favorite class is Journalism because I like a small class where we can talk to each other and when we’re learning. Now that I’ve been in this class, I am thinking that maybe I would like to do something with journalism when I return home.

Q: Which teacher have you most enjoyed having and what do they do to encourage you?

A: Mrs. Hellerman has helped me during my first few weeks here in the US because she helped include me in the class. She treats me just like the other students.

Q: What is the thing you like most about Germany?

A: I live in a really small town, and we have a bakery, coffee shop and butcher. There’s not that much, but you can be in a big city in twenty minutes riding the train.

Q: What are some things you like about Waynesboro?

A: I haven’t done that much in Waynesboro, so I’m not really sure.

Q: What do you miss most about Germany?

A: I miss my boyfriend, my family, my dog and the German bread.

Q: Who inspires you the most?

A: My grandpa. He was a great person. He was nice to everyone, and he tried to make friends wherever he went. He was also always there for everybody.

Q: What are your interests and hobbies?

A: I do air acrobatics and I like to ski and meet friends

Q:  How does the time change between Waynesboro and Germany affect you?

A: The only problem I have with the time difference is that it’s hard to get in contact with my friends and family [back in Germany].

Q: What was the hardest thing to leave behind in Germany?

A: My boyfriend, friends and family, and bread.

Q: What drives you to keep going even when you’re away from your family?

A: So much to do, time flies fast and I don’t have time to worry.

Q: How did you adjust to being in Waynesboro instead of your hometown in Germany?

A: I had the Wions’ to go to and talk to if I ever needed help.

Q: You told me you are in Concert Choir, who is your favorite German singer and American singer?

A: AnnenMayKantereit is my favorite German singer, We usually listen to a lot of American music because the German music is weird. I listen to Twenty One Pilots.

Q: What was your weirdest experience during your trip from Germany to the U.S.?

A: The first three hours in the states because I forgot the date that I was going to fly back to Germany. They thought I was going to stay in America.

Q:What are some of the biggest differences between Germany and the US?

A: People are nicer in America. Everything is bigger here, like the streets. And when you go to the grocery store, they have bigger packages [of products] than in Germany.

Q: Have people at WHS been friendly to you? What was hardest about being new and trying to make friends?

A:Yes, I’m the only new one [foreign student] and everyone has their own friend groups already, and they have done things together, so it’s hard to become their friend.

Q: If you had a chance to come back in the future to WHS, would you? Why?

A:Yes, because I’ve started to make very good friends with people, and its hard knowing you have to leave in 6 months.

Q: If given the opportunity, what would you tell other students about WHS?

A: I’d probably tell them about how much fun I had during my exchange year and that the high school here is just great. I’d tell them about all the school clubs and sports because we don’t have those in Germany.

Q: You’re staying with Mr. Wion, an Earth Science teacher here at WHS. Can you tell us how you are connected with his family?

A: My grandfather hosted Mr. Wion’s aunt in Germany, and then his aunt hosted my mother when she was 17, and now I am here.

Q: Could you share a little bit about your family’s situation during World War II? Were they involved in the war and, if so, how?

A: My grandfather was a kid during WWII, and he was at a boarding school. And he didn’t want to be apart of the Nazi movements, but my great grandfather was a doctor.

Q: When you return to Germany, what will you miss most about Waynesboro, the U.S., or the people you’ve met?

A: I’ve started making really good friends, and it’s crazy that you have six months to make friends and once you’ve started, then you have to leave. I think that’s what I’ll miss most about Waynesboro.


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The life of Amber Law

By: Hannah Lam

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Amber Law is a junior with a big heart for children. As her future career, she hopes to take that love for children and put it to use by doing something in the childcare field. She is more interested in working with infants and toddlers because she finds older kids are more stressful. To make that career path happen, Amber hopes to attend Valley Vo-Tech next year to take a class in childcare. Amber knows she loves kids because she babysits her cousins who range in ages from 5 to 12. Her 11 year old cousin, Ariana, drives her to be better because of the connection and bond they share. Amber never grows tired of spending time with Ariana, they could spend hours together talking and having fun. No matter what happens between them they will always share a special bond. One of the most important people that Amber has love for is her grandad. She says he was always the type of person to be happy even when circumstances made it difficult. “My grandad always had that attitude that people wanted to be around,” said Amber. “Even after the cancer hit, he was still that person. After his death, everyone felt the loss more emotionally because the sense of his happy was gone.”  Amber is a bright, young, and caring person who is ready for challenges to take on.  

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Serenity talks about her life

By: Shauna Wilson


Serenity Stacy Photo by: Shauna Wilson

Serenity Stacy, a Journalism 1 student, is in 9th grade at Waynesboro High School. She has, 2 younger brothers and 1 older half sister. When she’s with her family, Serenity enjoys having family time to go out to eat, have good conversations, and play board games. Growing up in a large family, Serenity enjoyed being able to do something bad and blame it on her older sister. She looks up to her dad and her dad’s girlfriend. “Even though I can be a brat, they never gave up on us even though they were going through tough times,” said Serenity. She uses her weird, random, sense of humor to make her friends happy when they’re down or sad. Serenity is proud of being able to get through hard times by putting a smile on her face even though she’s dealing with something difficult in her life. Serenity is involved with JV basketball and softball for WHS. She enjoys letting out all her anger when she’s playing, traveling around, competing, and making new friends that enjoy the same sports. As an athlete and a student, Serenity has set goals for herself. Serenity wants to either attend Louisiana State University or James Madison University for softball or James Madison University, University of Connecticut or the University of Virginia for basketball.

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Shauna opens up about her life and feelings

By: Serenity Stacy

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Shauna Wilson Photo by: Serenity Stacy

Shauna Wilson is a 9th grader from State College, Pennsylvania, who moved to Waynesboro,Virginia when she was three.She has one brother named Joseph. They have a good bond, but he likes to attack her. Having whole family dinners is her favorite thing to do with her family. Shauna would like to pursue a career as a teacher because she wants to work in a elementary school. “I really like working with kids and they make me feel loved,” said Shauna. To reach her goal, Shauna wants to attend either James Madison University because it’s close to home, or Penn State because she loves Pennsylvania. To Shauna the most stressful thing about school is having a lot of work to do in a short period of time. She looks up to her grandma because she doesn’t let anything get to her and she has always been in her life. Very weird, kinda smart, outgoing, loud, annoying, and scared very easily is how Shauna thinks her friends think of her. In her free time she blast music, hangs out with her friends, and sings at the top of her lungs. After high school she wants to go to college, become a teacher,start a family and get a English bulldog. At her age now she wants to travel to North Carolina or West Virginia because one of her friends cousin named Connor and lots of family live there.




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The life of Hannah Lam

By: Amber Law


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Hannah Lam Photo by: Amber

Hannah Lam, a sophomore at WHS, has a bad case of social anxiety. She is hoping that journalism will help with that. Hannah’s dad is her biggest inspiration, and he used to tell her that she could do anything she set her mind to. Hannah also has her future in mind but is indecisive about what she wants to do. In the future she hopes to have at least one kid and a stable job so she can provide for her family.  Hannah hopes to accomplish many things in life and would like her best friend, Lorene, to be there during all of them. Lorene gives her a sense of hope in a way that no one else can. Lorene has always been there for Hannah and she knows Lorene will always be there for no matter what. Hannah also wouldn’t mind living with Lorene since they share a very special bond.  Someday, Hannah would love to go to college for teaching. She is very passionate about kids. “My teachers used to tell me when I went to Wenonah Elementary to mentor kids that my face would light up whenever I talked about them. They mean everything to me,” Hannah said. Hannah’s future career goal would be to become a successful person. She feels that she can drive herself to be a successful person because she knows how to boost herself into doing what needs to be done.

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An insight into the life of Alexis Schifflett


Photo by: Jaqueline Dietz

By: Jaqueline Dietz


Alexis Schifflett is a sophmore at Waynesboro High School. Lexi likes  journalism class because she is learning a lot and she is having fun. Before living in Waynesboro, she lived in Charlottesville and Crozet. After Graduation in 2020, Lexi wants to attend school in Harrisonburg to become a beautician. To prepare for her career, Lexi is planning to take classes and do an internship. She already has gained some experience in cosmetology by doing her family’s hair for specific events. Lexi also has work experience helping her mother serve food and as a member of Interact Club at WHS. In her free time she likes to watch drama movies and like to listen to RnB music. She also likes to play basketball, her position is shooting guard.But she hasn’t played on a team since 2016. Her favorite school subject is mathematics and she learns the best when teachers talk to her directly. She wants to go to California  and  Greece on a vacation because it’s so beautiful there. “After graduation, I would like to move to Richmond because it’s a bigger place than Waynesboro.” ,said Lexi.

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Little Giants Vs. Blue Streaks

Photos by :Millineum White

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