The School Newspaper of Winston Churchill High School.

The Observer

The School Newspaper of Winston Churchill High School.

The Observer

The School Newspaper of Winston Churchill High School.

The Observer

Paws for Thoughts: new year, new EICs


L: AP season has come to a close, shorts are now a staple in everyone’s closet and you know what that means: It’s time for a new Observer staff! Amidst too many AP exams, Cecilia and I took on our new Editor-in-Chief responsibilities and are so excited for the next amazing year of The Observer. As such, we’ve decided to write our first article as EICs together. We’re going to be a regular Kreisler and Bernstein! (Get it!? Like Woodward and Bernstein!? 😂)

C: I hate to break it to you but it doesn’t get funnier the more times you say it, Leah. But in all honesty, it is a huge honor to be named co-EICs. It’s been a rewarding three years and we definitely couldn’t have accomplished everything we have without our fellow Observer staff. But Leah, I have a question for you: What do you think about end-of-year projects?

L: Once AP exams end, most classes are a stream of projects, simply waiting for the year to end and summer to begin. These projects are often an extension of the subject’s general curriculum and include movies, posters and at-home videos. While most students (me included!) appreciate the extreme grade boost and the extra time to goof off in class, it leaves one to ask: Is there a better use of school time?

C: Leah, I’m going to have to disagree with your premise here. After exams are over, there’s still a whole month left of school for underclassmen but only one or two weeks left for seniors. What do we expect these classes to do when they have a mix of seniors and students from other grade levels when it comes to assigning work? At this point, the curriculum has been exhausted and students are burnt out. If teachers want to create more organized lessons and provide higher-quality tasks, they’re not going to receive work that reflects high attention to detail and thoughtful analysis.

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L: Yes, I agree, the end of the school year is synonymous with burnt out students moving from class to class and project to project, simply waiting for the last bell to ring. However, the timing and framework of these projects make fourth quarter a surefire A in most classes and only contribute to the grade inflation that most are ardently against. Most projects are busy work, with simple rubrics and requirements guaranteeing high marks. To ensure grades are a true reflection of students’ work and performance in class, it is essential that projects and lessons after AP exams are consistent with the rigor in place before said exams are taken.

C: Wow, you’re just the Yapinator 3000 today! I can’t count how many times I have been doing a project for a class after the exam and have learned something I didn’t know before. The projects allow us to learn new things in fun and creative ways. These projects bring out students’ fun sides while still staying with the class’s actual curriculum.

L: While I admit that I sometimes find myself learning interesting tidbits of information during “project season”, it would be so much more valuable to delve deeper into topics that were skimmed over during the fast-paced year of learning. It is important to remember that students are fielding projects in most of their classes and thus don’t dedicate much time or attention to each one, simply the required amount to earn a passing grade. With fewer projects and more time spent learning or doing in-depth research on the material, the end of the school year would be much more valuable and enjoyable for students. 

C: Wow, you’re such a sore loser Leah (story for another time). You’re going to start losing a whole lot more of these arguments next year so get ready. Our staff is already working around the clock and accomplishing so many incredible things. Next year is going to be one for the books (or newspapers, haha) and I can’t wait for everyone to see what we have planned. In typical Ha-Yeon fashion, I hope to dominate the whole next year and bully you to my heart’s content. 

L: Oh no, I’m so scared!! (note the sarcasm) In all seriousness though, we are so excited and honored to be taking on this responsibility. Ha-Yeon and Jeremy, you have done an amazing job running this paper and we have such big shoes to fill (Speaking of shoes, Jeremy, once again, I am so so sorry I tripped you!). It’s hard to imagine The Observer without all our seniors and we’re going to miss them all so much. That’s a wrap on the 2023-2024 Observer!

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