Best of SNO

Utilizing old habits: the applications of procrastination

Many students procrastinate on their work for more fun and appealing alternatives.

By Andrew Ghazouli and Owen Finigan

April 28, 2020

All you want to do is take a break, but a binder full of work demands attention. With homework at the back of your mind, the temptation to scroll through Instagram and talk to friends overpowers the need to be productive. The subconscious neglect for work continues, waiting for the perfect moment...

Climate Strikers One Year Later

Greta Thunberg came to Iowa City in October and over 3,000 gathered to hear her and the other Iowa City climate strikers speak

By Jesse Hausknecht-Brown, Iowa City High School

April 27, 2020

Sitting in class, Alex Howe ‘23, Massimo Biggers ‘23, and Ian Martinez ’23 carefully watched the clock, waiting for the time to come. Walking out of South East Junior High for the first time was scary. Teachers and students' heads turned as the then-eighth graders stood outdoors, signs in hand,...

Teenage Mental Health Epidemic: Jordan Thompson

MSMS junior Jordan Thompson tells her story as she battled mental health issues growing up. Mental health issues are especially prevalent in American teenagers today.

By Gracie Rowland, The Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science

April 27, 2020

“You can’t let it get too late. Your teenage years aren’t supposed to be sad; they’re supposed to be happy. You may have some mood swings but no one is supposed to be miserable. No one is supposed to want to die.” Jordan Thompson is a junior at The Mississippi School for Mathematics and Scie...

Danger creeps right beneath our feet

The San Andreas Fault goes through Crystal Springs Reservoir in Belmont, California.

By Nikhil Vyas, Carlmont High School

April 24, 2020

It’s Oct. 17, 1989. The Giants and A’s are about to play game three of the World Series. Televisions and radio stations across the country are tuning in to the game. Jaime Garcia, a Carlmont social studies teacher, is in the Mission District of San Francisco. Two to three-story Victorian houses...

Students at HHS and their nails

Junior Emily Nguyen enjoys different colored nails like this set. She likes to be creative and enjoys the way acrylics make her feel more confident about herself.

By Oziel Valdez, Lucia Gabel, and Grace Andrade

April 23, 2020

Various students at HHS customize their nails in different ways and for different reasons. Read about how students keep up with their nails. Nguyen finds new hobby with acrylics after parents open nail salon Some find that a new set of nails makes them feel confident and bold. Others hope that i...

A tip of the paycheck

Tips are often essential to maintaining the livelihood of workers in the service industry.

By Aleyda Contreras, Carlmont High School

April 23, 2020

Tiredness whispers through you after six and a half hours of school, the weight of your eyelids a complement to the intense yearning for rest. However, there is one more thing you have to do: you trade your backpack for an apron, and rest becomes a lapsed fantasy. You rush to work with no time for...

The Racism and Economics Behind Climate Change

Climate change and environmental issues disproportionately affecting lower income communities and communities of color

By Cecile Bendera and Victoria Weckmann

April 22, 2020

The negative effects of climate change are expected to have a greater impact on lower-income communities, according to a federal report released in 2018. Additionally, these specifically in the United States, are made up primarily by minorities. The American Psychological Association reported that 39...

FOMO: Not just a trend

Kendra Chew, a freshman, opens a Snapchat from her friends as she wishes she was with them at their party.

By Sophia Deynega and Sophia Morgan

April 22, 2020

“You’re missing out.” The grey bubble pops up on your phone as you sit in bed, “The Office” humming throughout your room. Your friends are at the movies, seeing a film you don’t even care to see. You still feel left out. You look through the various Snapchat stories of your peers....

Intertwining cultures

Katinka Lennemann stands representing society and its intricate integration of many cultures.

By Lora Simakova, Carlmont High School

April 22, 2020

Once seen through a cultural lens, the Bay Area becomes more astounding than ever. The many cultures present in the region intertwine to create a mixture of amazing people, places, and traditions. Although there are many cultures visually present in the Bay Area, there are a few larger districts that...

Nobody ‘screams McCallum’ quite like Jane Farmer

BOUNTIFUL BINS:  Junior Rachel Plotkin and sponsor Jane Farmer move decorated socks into the bin for the NHS sock drive. The prepared socks were then taken to homeless shelters around Austin. Photo by Isabella Dietz.

By Ella Irwin, McCallum High School

April 22, 2020

Since today is National Library Workers Day, we thought it was a good time to share one of our favorite stories that appears in the pages of the 2020 Knight, McCallum's yearbook. She was in 10th grade, but on the first day of school, Anna Nagle felt more like a freshman. That's because Anna'...

Remembering Kevin Gerke

Athletic Director Kevin Gerke smiles as he watches a Northwest football game.

By Jonny Isaacson and Ethan Knauth

April 22, 2020

Athletic Director Kevin Gerke died yesterday. He was 47 and is survived by his wife, Carmen, and three sons, Zach, Brett and Braden. Gerke served as the activities director at Northwest for the 2015-16 school year, before transitioning into the role as athletic director from the fall of 2016 up until...

STL sex trafficking scandals

Websites such as Backpage have allowed sex trafficking to enter our everyday lives.

By Amelia Hurley, Kirkwood High School

April 22, 2020

*This story contains anonymous sources. *Katie was on the honor roll at her local high school; many of her peers liked her, but Katie lacked something: a father. He didn’t come home often, but when he did, he did so in a drunken rage. She simply wanted a man to love her and make her feel special,...

Grady alumni form band, Rising Appalachia, inspired by their childhood and social justice

Sisters and Grady alumni, Chloe and Leah Smith (left to right) formed internationally recognized band, Rising Appalachia. Their music style blends folk and hip-hop, inspired by traditional Appalachian music and their childhood growing up in Atlanta. They have used their music as a platform for advocacy and social justice and have started movements such as the Slow Music Movement and %23IamResilient.

By Ava Smith, Henry W. Grady High School

April 20, 2020

“What are we going to do with the wickeds of the world? Make magic.” This is a lyric written by sisters and Grady alumni, Leah (stage name Leah Song) and Chloe Smith. Since their graduation from Grady in the early 2000s, they have gone on to create an internationally recognized band,“Rising Appalachia,” which blends the folk and hi...

CHS Graduate Continues to Climb Country Music Charts

Steven John Simon, a 1995 Crowley High School graduate, is a rising country artist.


April 20, 2020

What started as a way to inspire his daughter to pursue a music career has turned Steven John Simon, a 1995 Crowley High School graduate, into a rising country recording artist. The native of Lyons Point explained the process that started his music career. “I started by just posting videos on the...

Adolescent Addictions

Teachers and students share their opinions on whether or not cell phones should be taken up by teachers at the beginning of class.

By Faith Lawrence, James Bowie High School

April 20, 2020

You wake up on a Saturday morning and take out your phone to scroll through TikTok for several hours before getting out of bed. After getting ready, you make a cup of coffee and go back to bed, turning on your computer to re-watch episodes of The Office, eyes switching back and forth between screens as yo...

Irish dance like no one is watching

Mulhern School of Irish Dance was first established by Coleen Mulhern Malloy in 2006 and now competes internationally.

By Cedra Jazayerli & Ailish Lyman, Hinsdale Central High School

April 17, 2020

The local Irish dance school prepared to compete in the upcoming World Championships before their season was cut short. It is 4:30 a.m. and sophomore Annie Morel fights off the feeling of jet lag as she prepares herself for another rigorous day of competition. She ties her dark hair into a slick bun ...

The battle to become a man; four years later

Holding up the transgender pride flag, senior Tony Morse takes a picture in his binder. He got the flag towards the end of middle school. “The flag for me is a symbol of pride,” Morse said. “It reminds myself and others of who I truly am. I am wearing a binder in my photo; I used to be very very self conscious of letting others know I used a binder. Now, I am comfortable enough to post pictures of me in it and wear it out in the open. I feel as if I pass enough. Once I get top surgery, I am so excited to not have to deal with wearing the chest binder. It definitely takes a toll on me having to wear it. It gets physically uncomfortable and I long for the day when I can put on a shirt without having to put it on first, as well as being able to take off my shirt and be proud and comfortable.”

By Zoe DeYoung, Parkway West High School

April 17, 2020

As a seventh grader, senior Tony Morse decided that after years of gender dysphoria, he would take the leap to come out as a transgender male. He cut his hair short and kickstarted the long process of transitioning, a journey that, years later, he is still undergoing.  In the beginning of his tra...

Refugees: A test of humanity

Left: U.S. border patrol stops a large group of immigrants who were allegedly crossing the border illegally. Right: President Ford carries a South Vietnamese orphan during Operation Babylift in 1975.

By Kai Yoshida, Carlmont High School

April 15, 2020

Diving to the floor, tucking into a tight ball, and squeezing her eyes shut, the trembling stopped. Peering out the window, she saw the thick black clouds rise towards the heavens. The restaurant with the Americans had been bombed. Caroline Hao Hoan Do was nine years old when she first experienced...

Little Free Library brings neighborhoods together

Joanne Martinez’s book exchange location stands in front of the house it was modeled after. The successful impact of Martinez’s Little Free Library allowed her to help other book exchanges in the community. “We have an excess number of books,” Martinez said. “We will oftentimes put them all in a box and go and drop them off at someone else’s little library to share.”

By Lena McEachern, Carlsbad High School - CA

April 14, 2020

Outside of a blue home lies a replica miniature house planted next to a gray bench fit for reading and discourse. Inside of the glass panel door lies two shelves of books- one for adults complete with titles like Eat, Pray, Love, and one for kids with stories like Looking for Alaska. This book-exchange...

High school & homeless: one teen shares her story with poverty, anxiety and finding herself

Homelessness is a growing problem in Montgomery County, one student shares her story about being in high school and homeless.

By Charnell Haywood and Zulema Lopez

April 13, 2020

There are over 2000 students that attend this school. Each one lives an exceptionally different life, some taking on more challenges than others. One may worry about what shirt they are to wear that day, another may worry about the test that is expected to be hard and they didn’t study for, and...

Integrating Classes, Hearts and Minds

Teachers pose for a picture at the PoCC in Seattle, Washington.

By Mila Nguyen, Greenhill School

April 13, 2020

Two months after attending the People of Color Conference in Seattle, some of the 21 Greenhill faculty members who attended the annual gathering say they are drawing on their life-changing experiences to transform their classrooms and community. Middle School science teacher Hennah Abubaker said she...

Video project preserves percussionists’ perspective

Harrington said it took him about 12 hours to assemble and edit the video that is just under eight minutes long. Other than a summer film camp and some school projects for his Spanish class, Harrington doesn't have much experience making films, but he plans to change that in the future. Photo courtesy of Oliver Harrington.

By Madelynn Niles, McCallum High School

April 10, 2020

The gentle rolls of the marimba escalating, bass drum pounding, chimes ringing sweetly; everything flowing together seamlessly, the tension rising and falling as the story of the music flows through the recording hall, filling each corner to the brim with —  Pause. Edit. Trim clip, try again. On Wed...

Along for the ride: staff explores alternate methods of transportation

Posing with his bike, Special School District teacher assistant Chris Powers gets ready for a bike ride. Powers’ rides to work can take anywhere from half an hour to two hours. “You can discover things that you would never see if you were in a car,” Powers said. “[Riding my bike] has made me more perceptive. You gain wisdom each time you ride your bike.”

By Leah Schroeder, Parkway West High School

April 10, 2020

Whether it’s a way to get energized for the coming day or a form of meditation after school, Special School District teacher assistant Chris Powers and Orchestra teacher Ed Sandheinrich advocate for the benefits that riding a bike to school offers.  Powers began riding his bike to work as a form...

Banding Together

Joshua Hezel, Zach Daubert, Margaret Wilkerson, and the rest of their band music-make in harmony on the night of their Red Cross fundraiser.

By Essy Ingram, Francis Howell Central High School

April 10, 2020

The night dims its sound and light to make way for a new flavor of ambiance. Metallic strings and dense speakers buzz freely in the basement air like static energy. Closer to the source of soft lavender beams, senior Margaret Wilkerson stands among her band mates, a guitar slung about her middle, microphone...

Undocumented students: finding hope through struggle

A silhouette photo, representing the anonymity and isolation that many undocumented immigrants face.

By Sam Bull, Downers Grove North High School

April 9, 2020

Sitting in class, senior Rosa Flores* hears them talk. “I can’t stand these illegal Mexicans taking American jobs!” one says. “We need to deport all of them,” another argues. “Everyone knows they’re bringing crime and drugs into our country,” a third adds. Undocumented students...

Surviving toxic relationships

Surviving Toxic Realtionships is the first story in the series. All stories marked with the Issue Issue logo were written as part of an in-depth project of the newspaper staff.

By Caleigh Nabors, Willis High School

April 9, 2020

It started with him wanting me to move away from my family and lose touch with friends.  She told me to drop my girl best friend of 10 years.  He said he didn’t mean for me to bruise.  I see him throw glass at my mom but I feel helpless. She said she would hurt herself if I left.    ...

Ligiah Villalobos: Open up yourself to the possibilities of what your life can be

Ligiah Villalobos is a Latina writer and producer, and she is pictured above next to famous actor Eugenio Derbez who starred in her film

By Meredith Prince and Allie Nunn

April 9, 2020

From a young age, famous Latina producer and writer Ligiah Villalobos knew that the arts and entertainment industry failed to tell the true stories of the Latino community. After studying dance and cultural geography in college, Villalobos dreamed of sharing the stories of her native community. Since...

Committing to saving lives

Senior Marquez King works for the Lewisville Fire Department as as Emergency Medical Technician (EMT).

By Anna Velazquez, Lewisville High School - TX

April 9, 2020

Ding. Ding. Ding. As soon as he hears the bell go off, he hurries to his car, attempting to avoid the other students trying to leave the school parking lot. Unlike his classmates, he doesn’t drive home. Instead, he sets off to work. After a quick meal, he arrives at the fire station, taking a deep...

Johnson paving career in voice acting after high school

Coppell High School 2018 graduate Macy Johnson records her lines for her character Yoshiko Hiiraji in the movie Human Lost. Johnson is a theater major at Baylor University and has been building a career in voice acting since high school.

By Camila Villarreal, Coppell High School

April 8, 2020

What do you want to be when you grow up? The response to the question every student tries to answer throughout their lives came easy to 2018 Coppell High School alumni Macy Johnson, who knew right away that theater was where she needed to be. “[Johnson] is working so hard in what she loves to do ...

Aquaponics: An urge to rethink

Ouroboros Farms, the aquaponics farm located in Half Moon Bay, California. Fish tanks circulate 9,000 gallons of water out through neighboring

By Katherine Tsvirkunova, Carlmont High School

April 8, 2020

A YouTube video. That’s all it took for Ken Armstrong to start up his chain of aquaponics farms. Inspired by the transformation of food production described in an interview with Will Allen, a MacArthur Grant-winning urban farmer in Milwaukee, Armstrong became increasingly interested and dete...

Medical journal publishes senior Alexa Choy’s research article

Alexa Choy '20 authored a research paper about access to psoriasis treatments for SKIN Magazine's March 2020 edition.

By Sydney Gallop, Sacred Heart Greenwich

April 6, 2020

SKIN, The Journal of Cutaneous Medicine, published Sacred Heart Greenwich senior Alexa Choy’s research paper in the second issue of their fourth volume.  Alexa’s research paper, “Biologic Prescribing Patterns Among Mount Sinai Psoriasis Patients: Results of a Retrospective Chart Review,” foc...

V is for vegan

Coppell High School senior CJ Konwe eats a meatless burger. Veganism/plant-based eating is becoming more popular due to a changing culture and increased dining options.

By Shreya Beldona, Coppell High School

April 6, 2020

It is the little asterisk, the green leaf, the “v,” the check mark to look for. It is a symbol of inclusivity, a respite from the alienation faced when going out. It is what plant-based eaters/vegans and vegetarians look for with hope that suitable options exist when eating in a restaurant. Veganism...

Click With Caution

When connecting devices to computers, a warning appears on the phone about trusting unfamiliar networks.

By Shradha Dinesh, Rock Ridge High School

April 6, 2020

When students log on to their school-issued devices and programs, the veil of surveillance murmurs softly, monitoring, flagging, and tracking students’ every document, email, and stray social media notification that passes through the network. To students, the monitoring system exists as a nameless...

District Technology Department Proposes Technology Change

Westside School Board is considering replacing high and middle schoolers' laptops with iPads.

By Reese Pike, Omaha Westside High School

April 6, 2020

More than 6,000 new devices. Four million dollars over the next four years. A new iPad, keyboard case and Logitech crayon for every student in the district. These are all components of a possible proposal to switch from laptops to iPads in the coming school year. Put together by district Director of...

Going Beyond Bilingual: Part two

Holding the Puerto Rican flag,  Gonzalez and his parents attend an event in downtown St. Louis with other Puerto Ricans that live in the area.

By Quinn Berry, Parkway West High School

April 3, 2020

Spanish flashcards and French listening tests are part of a difficult but necessary path to mastering another language in the eyes of high school students, but for some, it’s a way of life. The number of students fluent in another language is on the rise, according to the Annie E. Casey Foundation that discovered roughly 22% percent of children speak another language at home than they do at s...

Afterimage: Former Lancers forge new pathways in rock music

Afterimage poses for a photo. The band contains two former Lancers: Casey Daron and Jason Coburn.

By Gardy Daron, Londonderry High School

April 3, 2020

The lights go out, and the low sound of Casey Daron’s bass echoes in the dark. A few cheers can be heard from the people who know what’s coming, but there’s anticipation from the rest. More notes spill from the bassist’s fingers, introducing the audience to the intense bass solo of Afterimage’s...

Insulin prices unnecessarily high

Over the past several years, insulin prices in Minnesota have increased significantly with legislators on both sides of the aisle seeking to lower the cost, according to Majority Leader of the Minnesota House of Representatives Ryan Winkler.

By Gabriel Kaplan and Noah Orloff

April 3, 2020

With hundreds of dollars every month going toward insulin, life with Type 1 diabetes for junior Thor Anderson can be costly, with the actual price of insulin varying from person to person. “With insurance, the price (of insulin) is about $270 to $300 a bottle and a typical person goes through maybe...

Foreign students face foreign problems

International students make up a significant portion of the population, but many are still unaware of the hardships those students may face in the U.S.

By Nicole Coleman and Ksenia Lapshina

April 3, 2020

Some come for a better education, some because of their parents, while others come seeking financial security. The California Department of Education recorded that there were over 2 million students recognized as English learners (EL) enrolled in California schools in 2018. Out of those, 802,293 were h...

Teens protest to drive change

Lebanese citizens fill the streets and wave the Lebanese flag in protest of taxes on internet-based calls.

By Mira Bhatt, Carlmont High School

April 1, 2020

Fourteen-year-old Yara Moawad wakes up early on a Monday morning. She brushes her teeth and gets ready for school, only to find out that it had been canceled again — for the fourth week in a row. She tries to text her friends, but the connection is too weak. She wants to go out, but she can't....

Addicted at an early age

A KECC student plays learning games on her school-issued iPad.

By Amelia Hurley, Kirkwood High School

April 1, 2020

It’s hard to believe that the first portable laptop was created only 30 years ago, a chunky device with limited internet use. As the world has evolved with technology, KSD has integrated it into their programs. But at what age is it ethical to introduce devices to students? At first, Kirkwood introduced d...

The Syrian-Clayton Connection

Photo of Debra Wiens, who used to be a history teacher at CHS, by Michael Melinger.

By Grace Snelling and Bridget Walsh

March 31, 2020

Debra Wiens: It was Thanksgiving Day 2016, and former CHS Current Issues teacher Debra Wiens had just put the finishing touches on a traditional home-cooked meal when her daughter, a college student in a social work program, saw the spread of food on the dining room table. “[My daughter] spent the...

Plugged in, checked out

Constant dependence on technology can both connect society and isolate individuals.

By Megan Glasgow, Kirkwood High School

March 31, 2020

“Hey, [how are you]?” “Fine.” “Are you okay?” “Yes.” “Ok.” The next message JJ Penn, junior, received was a breakup text, sent with a few clicks on a screen in the middle of the night. They almost never talked in person and Penn said conversations always seemed deeper...


How do you learn to love your body, when that means losing your sense of control?

By Noor Jerath, Siddhi Narayan, Sofia Erlin, and Tiancheng Fan

March 30, 2020

intro. Your phone dings. It’s a text from your friend. “Want to go get food with me?” it reads. Your heart drops. You think back to earlier that day, to the donut you couldn’t stop yourself from eating. Before you can think twice, you’ve calculated how many calories you’ve eaten that day...

Making ‘special’ the new norm

Everyone has their own strengths and weaknesses. That is what makes every individual special and unique.

By Claire Tseng, Carlmont High School

March 30, 2020

She has a learning disability, so she’s special. At least that’s what everyone else thinks. These days, more and more students are receiving help from support programs that use different grading systems and allocate guidance from exterior resources. The rising number of students that now need...

What does it mean to be gifted?

What does it mean to be gifted, and what makes someone gifted?

By Ivy Reed, Sofia Erlin, Disha Chatterjee, Ruthie Pierson, Siddhi Narayan, and Grace Snelling

March 30, 2020

BACKGROUND Although gifted services in the Clayton School District have seen numerous variations over the past 10 years, 2017 marked a new phase in the program. 70 percent of all identified gifted students were actively enrolled in the program. That year, the percentage of black students in gifted c...

Dave and his daughters

Dave Geeting wraps his eldest daughter Allison up in a hug.

By Charlotte Heinrich, Kirkwood High School

March 27, 2020

This story is dedicated to the Geeting family. Dave Geeting had a way with words. When he entered a party, he’d let everyone know he had arrived. He was convinced that his Tame Impala songs were superior to his daughters’ love of Taylor Swift and Selena Gomez. And he could write a hell of a rev...

Just one bite could kill

There are many different foods that people can have allergies to.

By Kiana George and Saya Deshpande

March 26, 2020

Her group of friends had planned one last late-night dinner before they embarked on their college adventures. The trees that lined the street twinkled with lights as they walked toward the restaurant. "Are there any nuts in the pasta?" she asked. She had asked this same question at least a thous...

Mandayam, Schussheim code stuttered speech recognition algorithm

Benji Schussheim, one of the algorithm's co-creators, codes a prototype entitled Personalized Automatic Stuttered Speech Recognition (PASSR).

By Audrey Bernstein '20, Staples High School

March 26, 2020

It was summertime when Rishabh Mandayam's ’21 phone lit up with a text from Benji Schussheim ’20. “I want to create a machine learning algorithm for stuttering,” it said. “Are you in or are you out?” In the months following the text exchange, Mandayam and Schussheim coded a prototype algorithm...

Sips and Smiles: A look into Southwest Sips: a student-run business

Junior Gabi Ricci delivers a Sonic drink to athletic administrative assistant Diane Murdock.

By Rebecca Suku, Blue Valley Southwest

March 26, 2020

Spreading smiles and delivering drinks, Southwest Sips is a business managed by the students in the connections class. Connections class teacher Jackie Malec started the program three years ago. Malec said she got the idea from another teacher at Blue Valley North High School and decided that it would...

The college that students attend may not matter in the long run

While many graduates from less prestigious colleges feel like they are destined to earn less, research shows that it likely doesn't affect their future income at all.

By Wyatt Binnard, Carlmont High School

March 25, 2020

Many students and parents think that attending a prestigious college is a golden ticket to success. While students from elite schools may have an easier time finding their first job, research shows their advantage doesn’t last. “What the data tells us is the first year out of school, the biggest...

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