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Senator Square: CHS graduation like never before

CHS’ Class of 2020 graduation ceremony plan is unlike any other in history, so put on a seatbelt, and hold on for a first ever drive-through ceremony beginning at 8 a.m. today. Receiving a diploma will be a great deal like a ride at Disneyland, only without the actual ride of course, but this does not make it any less exciting. Graduates and their families must look at the bright side of this unprecedented historical opportunity, because according to CHS Principal Gavin Ward, “The graduating seniors will exit their vehicles, their names will be announced on the loudspeaker, they will walk on stage to pick up their diplomas, and their immediate families will have an unobstructed front row seat in which to video or take photos from their cars as the students are recognized individually.” Talk about a photo opportunity! Additionally, students will see a virtual graduation slide show, which will include a slide of every student along with their photos and many accomplishments, and, in the evening, the CHS Class of 2020 Seniors’ Parents are putting on a graduation parade through downtown Carson City, and Safe Grad has hired Instaimage to film all of it. Even though Safe Grad’s annual all-night celebration and trip to Magic Mountain has been cancelled, do not forget they created the Downtown Street Banner event with photos of the CHS Class of 2020 on each banner. It is going to be amazing to have all graduates meet in the parking lot at 3228 North Carson Street at 6:30 p.m. and then at 7:00 p.m. travel down Carson Street with family and friends attending in order to show their support. Graduates have been instructed to stay in their cars at all times, but will this actually happen? It is not likely, because this is the last time CHS students will be engaging in a corporate event. However, students have been instructed to abide by CDC Social Distancing guidelines. Congratulations to the CHS Class of 2020 in fighting the good fight and making it to the finish line. 

TEACHER REFLECTS ON SUCCESS OF FIELD TRIP PRIOR TO COVID-19

On March 5 and 6, right before the school closed due to COVID-19, CHS junior English students and teachers took a field trip to Stewart Indian School in Carson City. The exciting aspect this time around was their new museum was open. Students were fascinated by the artifacts: original art, videos, and recordings of past students who attended the school, a peaceful music space, a library which houses old yearbooks, basketball footage, athletic and cheerleading uniforms lovingly and creatively displayed in this beautiful and welcoming space. In February and March, junior students were reading The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie. This book deals with the main character’s experience living on the Spokane Indian reservation and making the difficult decision to leave the reservation to go to an all white high school in another town. Despite some negative consequences, he overcomes these obstacles and goes on to become Sherman Alexie, Spokane-Coeur d’Alene-American novelist, short story writer, poet, and filmmaker who drew on his personal experiences as an Indigenous American with ancestry from several tribes. Alexie grew up on the Spokane Indian Reservation and now lives in Seattle, Washington. As stated last year, to foster empathy with the character’s journey, junior English teachers Shelly Bale, Vivian Tachiquin, Robben Williams, and Rachel Avidano chaperoned approximately two hundred juniors over the course of two days. It  is exciting to be able to directly connect a real life place only a few miles from our school with our American Literature curriculum; this particular unit dealt with the Individual v. Society and what happens when you break free of society’s expectations; English III teachers at CHS find great value in providing this experience to students, many of whom have no prior knowledge of Stewart Indian School. Even though the field trip was brief, under two hours, the new museum and new additions to the tour provided the class of 2021 with an even more vivid picture of the positive and negative impacts of attending the school. After the field trip, students were asked to complete a survey and write a reflective essay, and some of their responses show what they took away from this experience: “The Native Americans who went to that school had a school life that was drastically different from ours.” “I learned a lot more about what happened to them and what they went through; it was great to be able to put a picture to everything that happened.” “When it first started, the school was a terrible place that split families apart, but over time, things changed, like how the boarding school changed from the kids being forced to be there to them wanting to be there.” “I was surprised all this history happened in Carson City, and I did not know about it.” “The Native Americans kind of lived in harsh conditions, but they also learned a lot of things.” “…how they had to walk like five miles just to shop.” “The students built the entire campus.” “There was basketball and boxing, and they were very good at it.” Our students and teachers would like to thank Museum Director Ms. Bobbi Rhader, Museum Curator Ms. Chris Gibbons, and the volunteer UNR graduate student Tera Bruhn for leading the lectures and tours of the campus and museum. ~ Contributed by CHS Language Arts teacher Shelly Bale.

DIGITAL MEDIA STUDENTS CREATE CHS YEAR IN REVIEW VIDEO

I teach digital media at CHS, and I asked my students if they wanted to do a year in review video. Nick Baggio, who is an editor for the announcements, and Gianna Johnson, who is an anchor on the daily announcements, jumped right on the project. “I took on this project because even though the year ended the way it did, I wanted to show Senators the good times we had,” explained Johnson. Nick Baggio said he was inspired to take on the project because “I thought it would be a good challenge for me to recap the school year. “The kids worked so hard on this project, and they did not even have access to the editing program they use at school, so even though I know they will not take credit for the time they spent digging through the footage, I can only imagine the challenge they faced,” said Mills. “The footage took some effort, but it was not difficult to choose clips,” explained Johnson, “I just took my time, and I went through what I thought CHS students would like to see.” As for taking digital media, both Johnson and Baggio said the class is like one big family. “I mostly enjoy how much fun we have in the class; we are like a family, we fight sometimes, but we always have each other’s backs,” explained Johnson. Please go to the following link to enjoy their video: youtube.com/watch?v=l7OtPKIBJl8, and please go to the main office at CHS to purchase or pick up a yearbook. ~ Contributed by CHS Digital Media teacher Cynthia Mills.

CHS SISTERS FUNDRAISE FOR ADVOCATES TO END DOMESTIC VIOLENCE

Chloe and Gracie Walt, accompanied by their mutual friend Kiana Martinez, randomly decided to do a fundraiser for Advocates to End Domestic Violence. Chloe wanted to give back to the community because she is grateful for the generosity shown by those who have Adopted a Senior. She chose Advocates to End Domestic Violence because domestic violence has increased during COVID-19. We thought helping Advocates was a great idea because they were unable to hold their May food drive, in partnership with the U.S. Postal Service. When dropping off the food to the Advocates food shed, the girls were shocked at the empty shelves of dry food. My kids felt the need to help others during this time .They have been baking for our elderly neighbors, and my son Kaden is grocery shopping for an elderly neighbor as well. My kids have been raised with volunteerism in their blood, being part of the solution and not the problem. ~ Contributed by Molly Walt.

CHS 2020-2021 SPORTS REGISTRATION FOR ALL SPORTS

It is time for athletes to register for all sporting activities at registermyathlete.com. The closing dates are as follows: Football will close July 16, 2020, and all other Fall sports, soccer, volleyball, tennis, cross country, and girl’s golf will close July 31, 2020; winter sports, basketball, wrestling, and ski will close Nov 9, 2020, and Spring sports, baseball, softball, swim, track and field, and boys golf will close Feb 16, 2021. Photo or cell phone pictures of physicals will be accepted if readable. Form B of the NIAA pre-participation form must be signed by both parent and athlete with both pages uploaded together. Form D, physical history, must be uploaded separately from Form B. If no physical is needed, complete and submit top portion. Medical insurance is covered by Carson City School District for any school sponsored activity. If student already has medical insurance, CCSD will be a secondary insurance. Contact the Athletic Department at 283-1900, or go to senatorsnow.org, for more information.

CHEMISTRY TEACHER CONGRATULATES STUDENTS ON AP EXAM

CHS Advanced Placement Chemistry teacher Curtis Kortemeier said, “12 of 12 of my students successfully navigated distance learning and took the online AP Chemistry test; they werw able to upload both of the questions without hitch, and none of them needs to request a retake.” Kortemeier’s students are Jaden Anderson, Serena Dantzler, Riley Dunn, Brian Guthrie, Isaac Harrison, Emma Hataway, Matteas Klatt, Kyle Navarro, Michael Roman, Heba Syeddah, Jashmeen Thind, and Carlos Torres. “Congratulations to them for getting through the maze-like patchwork of distance learning; I am so proud of them, and, though we are of course awaiting scores, I am confident they will be fairly assessed, and many will earn their college credit” Kortemeier added.

BIOLOGY TEACHER CONGRATULATES STUDENTS ON CAPSTONE DIPLOMAS CHS Advanced Placement Seminar and Biology teacher Julie Koop said, “Congratulation to CHS’ first ever AP Capstone Diploma Candidates: Nathaniel Amrhein, Gabriella Avina, Kai Chen, Cameron Davis, Jared DeSelms, Gabriel Fanning, Alexsandra Knowlton, Elizabeth Schulze, Barbara Stankute, Sophia Taggart, Hailee Whitten, and Bradley Wiggins.” Koop added, “These students are pioneers, committed to challenging themselves, working hard, and overcoming fears as they completed the AP Quest: questioning, understanding, evaluating, synthesizing, team work, and transmitting during a year of AP Seminar, a year of AP Research, plus at least four other AP courses, and they are ready to be successful in whatever route they chose to take to better the world.”

PTA REFLECTIONS CONTEST WINNERS GOING TO STATE
Students who enjoy art, music, and dance, or have an interest in writing, producing films and taking photos, participated in unleashing their inner artist with this year’s PTA Reflections contest. This year’s 1st place winners, Mariah Dunham for photography, Kinley Daggett for visual arts, and Ryan Copeland for Literature will be moving up to the State competition. The theme, ‘Look Within’, called for unique artistic interpretations. For inspiration, visit the Reflections virtual art gallery to learn more about prizes and scholarships at PTA.org/Reflections.

DRIVE-THROUGH COVID TESTING AT CARSON HIGH SCHOOL

Free drive-through COVID testing for quad-county residents without symptoms will take place June 9 from 8:00 to 11:00 a.m. at CHS, 1111 North Saliman Road in Carson City, on a first come, first served basis. There are only 400 tests available, and no appointment is needed.  

STUDENT OF THE WEEK

The CHS Student of the Week is Mark Kirk. transferred to CHS right before his senior year. From day one, he has always had a positive attitude and showed commitment to his schoolwork; in fact, Mark didn’t have a single absence or tardy in any class for the entire first semester. During remote learning, Mark continued to work hard and maintain a positive attitude, even though we were all struggling to figure everything out. Mark is kind and out-going, always willing to take a moment to make a classmate’s or a teacher’s day better.

Phil Brady is an English teacher at CHS.