Category Archives: News

This will be for news topics that are either local, community, or broader-scope stories.

Bus routes change, improve efficiency

Mallory King • News Editor

Riding the bus this year is like the new cafeteria changes; hectic at first, but in the long-run, beneficial for most students.

Last year, the bus routes were challenging for students and administrators alike.

“It took us almost a half hour every day to get kids from the bell onto the bus and out,” Principal Ric Stranges said. “Thirty minutes everyday.”

For a lot of students, this 30 minutes was not enjoyable.

“There were kids who were out in the cold, kids in the rain, kids in transferring busses, so with the help of our wonderful transportation department… they decided to look at it differently,” Stranges said.

This is when Stranges and the transportation department decided to collaborate and create a new system.

“Last year, and previous years, Hayes and Dempsey let out exactly at 2:30, and it just didn’t make any sense,” Stranges said. “So, they moved [Dempsey’s dismissal] ten minutes later, so they are 2:40, which allows us to pick up and exit in less than eight minutes.”

Many students this year can feel the effect of these changes.

“Usually I have to wait at least ten minutes, maybe, so a lot better than last year.” junior Tessa Kidd said. “Last year we had to wait for… 25 [minutes], because I was on the second round of busses.”

The changes to the bus routes has also allowed the district to become more energy efficient and save money.

This year, there are thirteen buses, instead of the thirty used in previous years.

“Thirteen buses load up and pull out in eight minutes or less,” Stranges said.” Kids can get home quicker and start their homework.”

With this being said, not all students believe the bus is the best use of their time.

“The bus ride to my house is 20 minutes longer than walking home,” junior Melissa Mason said.

Mason’s bus route was combined with another, in order to improve the overall efficiency of the bussing system.

“Dempsey kids, at one point would have to get off the bus and just stand around,” Stranges said. “Students are no longer having to transfer buses. There is one run that runs through.”

Having only one wave of buses helps the flow of buses to other schools.

“All the elementaries are benefiting, because we get out faster,” Stranges said.

When the students get out faster, that means the bus drivers get their job done more easily.

“[The bus drivers] are so thrilled, and I think the students are too,” Stranges said. “I see happy bus drivers.”

Putting the few negatives aside, Stranges believes this new system will benefit students.

“I don’t see anyone losing in this deal, unless… they are on the bus too long,” Stranges said. “I think honestly, it’s like lunch; I hope we are all going to benefit from it.”

Abduction scare prompts safety awareness

Mallory King • News Editor

It takes a village to raise a child; everyone in Delaware can do their part to help protect kids from potentially dangerous people.

According to This Week News, an adult male attempted to lure a twelve-year-old girl into a car while she was walking on Troy Road, by offering her candy. She ignored him and continued walking.

When this incident took place, the girl was unaware of her surroundings.

“In this instance, the young girl didn’t get a real good description due to self admittedly having her head down,” Officer Larry Lucas said.

Luckily, the girl was not abducted, but dangerous situations like this can be prevented.

“Probably one of the biggest prevention tools…is to try not to be alone,” Lucas said.

Being with others can help in case of an emergency.

“That’s an extra set of eyes to be cognitive on what’s going on,” Lucas said. “It’s an extra mouth to be able to yell and get help. Its an extra set of feet and arms to get away and get help.”

When walking with others is not an option, technology can be a great alternative.

“If you do have a cell phone… call a friend [or] call a parent,” Lucas said. “They’re on the other end [and] they can walk with you, so to speak.”

Taking the extra step to plan ahead can allow students the ability to remain safe in vulnerable situations.

“[Educate] kids on what to do in their surroundings so they can maintain their safety,” Wellness teacher Laura Frisch said. “We have to just make sure that we know enough about our surroundings so we don’t put ourselves in a vulnerable situation where we don’t know where we are.”

Kids can also learn self defense, in case of an emergency. Sean Duffy, a health teacher at Hayes, teaches students at Wesleyan about safety in his self defense classes.

“I teach my students an awareness and also movements that not necessarily guarantee their safety but empower them about their knowledge,” Duffy said.

According to Lucas, the best way to prevent abductions is education.

“Education is the key,” Lucas said. “The thing about abduction, and the thing about any type of crime… is crime knows no boundaries. It hits small towns, big towns, every demographic you can imagine.”

Even though abductions cannot be prevented, kids can learn about steps to take during an emergency situation.

“It’s key to get anything like this reported immediately,” Lucas said. “Every second in delay between reporting is going to be a second delayed in law enforcement responding.”

Taking steps to improve children’s safety ultimately prepares them for difficult situations.

“We just want people to be prepared, not scared,” Lucas said. “It takes a whole village to raise one child.”

Columbus Ronald McDonald House becomes largest in world

Mallory King News Editor

Ronald McDonald serves up more than “Happy Meals;” he gives hospital patients hope.

According to the Ronald McDonald House of Central Ohio website, the house opened in 1982 and by 2008 had a total of 80 rooms. In 2014, it was expanded again to now have a total of 137 rooms, making it the largest in the world.

When a child is admitted to the hospital, families are welcome to stay at the Ronald McDonald House, free of charge.

“We are a home away from home for moms and dads and brothers and sisters…of children who are seriously ill or injured,” said Ryan Wilkins, the Community Relations and Marketing Director of Ronald McDonald House Columbus.

This provides peace of mind to guests.

“[The Ronald McDonald House] honestly just [gives families] a place to go to have a nice sleep that is close to the child that is in the hospital,” said Erin Gassin, a volunteer at the Ronald McDonald House. “It just gives them peace of mind so that they can have a little bit of normalcy.”

The Ronald McDonald House not only cares for families with patients admitted to Nationwide Children’s Hospital, but they help other families in need as well.

“About 95% of those patients are being treated at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, but we do support families that have children in any area hospital here in Central Ohio,” Wilkins said. “The only requirement is that there would be a child that is being treated at the hospital and then the family could stay here so they can be close to their children.”

Some hospitals around Central Ohio have recently expanded their facilities in order to provide the best care possible for their patients.

“At Nationwide Children’s Hospital, there’s a brand new tower that is 12 stories tall and they are treating a million patients now every year,” Wilkins said.

This new tower allows room for even more patients, which has prompted the expansion of the House.

“All of that growth really is what precipitated us needing to grow the Ronald McDonald House,” Wilkins said. ”We were running a waiting list on a regular basis and we really wanted to do everything we could to provide a home away from home for as many families as possible… in order to do that we had to add on some more space.”

The expansion will allow the Ronald McDonald House to serve even more families.

“With our previous facility of 80 guest rooms we were [helping] 3,000 families [per year], so now we are going to be able to serve even more than that,” Wilkins said. “So right now we are able to provide 137 guest rooms for families here at the House… every single night.”

According to the Ronald McDonald House of Central Ohio website, the expansion also included a rooftop garden and larger kitchen.

With this new expansion, volunteers are more essential to the House than ever. Running the House takes the effort of many people working together for one common goal, helping families.

“Everything that you would imagine that needs to be done at a hotel is done by volunteers here at the Ronald McDonald

House,” Wilkins said. “From greeting folks at the front door to helping families get checked into their room to the housekeeping.”

The volunteers also do the laundry, cleaning and cooking for guests.

“We really take pride in what we make them,” Gassin said. “We call and find out what the people are making so we don’t repeat the dinner and…we enjoy going down there and making something good and healthy and yummy.”

Volunteers are tremendously impacted by their experiences at the House.

“Just [making] them feel like they are at home, seeing the smiles on their faces and hearing them say ‘thank you,’ that means everything to me, more than anything,” Gassin said.

Faith in Humanity

Keera Wilmoth

The power of social media is an extraordinary thing. A YouTube video can go viral in the span of hours, pictures of missing people can be spread throughout the nation by the click of a button, and a 15-second video called the “Ice Bucket Challenge” can add millions of dollars in donations to help awareness and research for  Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS).

ALS is a disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord.

The Ice Bucket Challenge includes being “nominated” by another person, having a bucket full of ice dumped on their head, “nominating” three other people to accept the challenge, then donating $10 to help the cause. If a person chooses not to accept the challenge, they must donate $100 instead.

There have been many complaints about how the Ice Bucket Challenge swallows up all social media and people are “wasting clean water to avoid donating money to charity,” but is that really correct? Donations for ALS have reached over $94 million and continue to skyrocket.

In order to help society develop and grow in a positive and beneficial way, do not be afraid to look a little silly! In the end, I would rather all of my social media accounts be dominated by videos of people throwing ice on their heads rather than have people be unaware of such a condition.

A day in the life: Marching Band

Emma Chapman • Staff Writer

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The Hayes marching band practices a routine in the grassy area in front of the building. This routine will be performed by the group for Friday night football games and at competitions.

In the past, members of the band haven’t always gotten the appreciation they deserve. Recently, I’ve had the honor of sitting in and watching their practice, and was astonished by how dedicated they were, even with the insane heat.

Personally, I could never stand the heat or the sun, being the sensitive skinned beauty I am. I burn extremely easy, and just from being with the band from 2:45-6 p.m , I managed to have decently burned cheeks the next day.

Taking in the fact that they practice Tuesdays and Thursdays every week, the members of the band either now have a resistance to the sun or douse themselves in sunscreen everyday.

Along with those two practices, the band also had a camp that took place in the summer that lasted five days and started at 9 a.m. and ended at 9 p.m. During this time, they did a majority of their practice outside in the blazing summer heat.

Besides working on memorization of their music or their dots (positions on the field), members also took time to enjoy each others company and bonded as what you could call a “family”. Many member are friends outside of school, or even dating romantically.

The trouble that came along with practice wasn’t just the sunburn, but at the end of the practice I felt both emotionally and physically exhausted due to the simple fact I was sitting under the sun for such a long time, which just drains the life out of you. I was completely shocked by how awful I felt, and couldn’t possibly imagine how the field member were feeling.

When I finally got home I had absolutely no motivation to do anything including homework, and decided let my world lit homework wait until my study hall the next day. I believe the band members must be extremely devoted to find that perfect balance between school, band, and social life that is necessary in order to strive as a member.

I have absolute no idea what was going through the field members heads as they were being commanded to run around, and re-due the same things over and over again in order to get it completely correct.

By the end of this whole experience, I have come to the conclusions that I could never be an official member of the Delaware Hayes Marching Band. I lack the dedication and will power these students show on a daily bases in school and at practice.

In the past, members of the band haven’t always gotten the appreciation they deserve. Recently, I’ve had the honor of sitting in and watching their practice, and was astonished by how dedicated they were, even with the insane heat.

Personally, I could never stand the heat or the sun, being the sensitive skinned beauty I am. I burn extremely easy, and just from being with the band from 2:45-6 p.m , I managed to have decently burned cheeks the next day.

Taking in the fact that they practice Tuesdays and Thursdays every week, the members of the band either now have a resistance to the sun or douse themselves in sunscreen everyday.

Along with those two practices, the band also had a camp that took place in the summer that lasted five days and started at 9 a.m. and ended at 9 p.m. During this time, they did a majority of their practice outside in the blazing summer heat.

Besides working on memorization of their music or their dots (positions on the field), members also took time to enjoy each others company and bonded as what you could call a “family”. Many member are friends outside of school, or even dating romantically.

The trouble that came along with practice wasn’t just the sunburn, but at the end of the practice I felt both emotionally and physically exhausted due to the simple fact I was sitting under the sun for such a long time, which just drains the life out of you. I was completely shocked by how awful I felt, and couldn’t possibly imagine how the field member were feeling.

When I finally got home I had absolutely no motivation to do anything including homework, and decided let my world lit homework wait until my study hall the next day. I believe the band members must be extremely devoted to find that perfect balance between school, band, and social life that is necessary in order to strive as a member.

I have absolute no idea what was going through the field members heads as they were being commanded to run around, and re-due the same things over and over again in order to get it completely correct.

By the end of this whole experience, I have come to the conclusions that I could never be an official member of the Delaware Hayes Marching Band. I lack the dedication and will power these students show on a daily bases in school and at practice.

Counselors improve department, help students

Mallory King • News Editor

Hayes has over 1,700 students, 85 teachers, and now 5 guidance counselors.

Megan Burwinkel is the newest member of the counseling department. This is her first year as a high school counselor.

 “I think I’m most excited about just building more relationships with the kids because I am so new,” Burwinkel said. “Basically 400 kids have me as their counselor and have never met me… I’m just excited about building that relationship with everyone.”

Four hundred students for one counselor is a lot compared to other schools.

“The national standard for the American School Counseling Association (ASCA)  is a ratio of 1 [counselor to] 250 [students],” Burwinkel said.

The incoming freshmen will now get extra support from Hayes. Jessica Darcy is the new freshman counselor. Last year, Darcy was a counselor over all grade levels.

“From eighth grade to ninth grade, our students were struggling,” said Ric Stranges, the principal at Hayes. “So we wanted to dedicate a counselor just to them, who can meet them down there at Dempsey, who can be with them all year and can be able to meet their needs better.“

This extra support is meant to help students down the road.

“If they are successful in ninth grade, that foundation on the other end will pay dividends,” Stranges said. “If we can strengthen that foundation…I think that is going to help us when they get to be seniors.”

Current seniors are also benefiting from the changes this year.

“We did not have any counselor dedicated to career and college counseling, who could help with Naviance, who could make relationships with college admissions officers,” Stranges said.

Now, Leigh Conant, the new college and career counselor, will make those relationships with colleges. Like Darcy, Conant was a counselor covering all grade levels last year.

 “I’m starting from the center point, with Ohio Wesleyan,” Conant said. ”So I have already been in contact with them and have been meeting with their admissions counselor, just to start from the beginning, then kind of spiraling my way out.”

Making connections with colleges is important, especially for students who do not have above average grades.

“What I’m going to do, is send [Mrs. Conant] all over to meet the admissions officers, so… when you are ready to make the college choice, she will already know them on a first name basis,” Stranges said. “That connection helps our students get into colleges.”

Conant also works with the students here at Hayes.

“Right now… I have already started many students’ transcripts that decided to get a head start on them over the summer,” Conant said. “I’ve been in communication with students for months now: working on college choice, sending transcripts,… [writing] letters of recommendation. I have met with the whole senior class to work with them.”

She will also have more student interaction this year. This will allow students to have one person to help them with transitioning out of high school and into the real world.

“I’m most excited about reworking some of our programs, [and] being able to get into classrooms with students more than I was before,” Conant said.

The counrseling department thinks this new way of counseling will have a significant impact on students when they do graduate.

 “I want to see more kids go to college,” Stranges said. “If we have someone who can make that process smoother, I think we will get more students to have the college experience.”

The counselors and administrators have made these changes in order to improve the students’ lives.

“Honestly, they are the model for a lot of other districts to look at and see how this is going to be, so this is kind of neat,” Stranges said.

The ultimate goal is to guide the students to be the best they can be.

“I like the fact that we kind of reinvented the way that we serve our students in the counseling department,” Stranges said. “Instead of just being normal, let’s find a better way to serve all of our students.”

New Year, New Drama

The music and drama program is one of the most well-known and popular groups in the Delaware City Schools District, and Thespian Troupe 420 makes up a big part of it at Delaware Hayes. In just one school year, members take part in a play, a musical, two variety shows, among other things, in which they gain a considerable amount of experience and memories to last a lifetime.

With 40 to 50 members, their participation in those year-round shows and meetings keeps the students busy. “It’s horrible trying to get your homework done while you’re constantly on stage and not wanting to die because you’re so tired coming home at nine o’clock,” said Kathleen Duffy, a thespian of two years.

With the stress and work needed to accomplish a quality show, as well as to keep up with school and social work, members make a strong commitment to what they love. “It’s honestly time management because a lot of people are pretty new to that, so you have to get working and getting all of the different elements of theater together, but it always works out in the end,” said Tori Newman, the sound operator and historian of the thespian troupe.

However, that pressure allows thespians to apply gained skills to other work both inside and outside of the auditorium for possible future careers. “My favorite part is doing the dramatic shows because it’s challenging as an actor or an actress, but it’s also fun to do the musicals because I’m a horrible dancer so it’s fun to work on that part of myself too,” Duffy said.

Although diligence is a big factor to keep up with the busy club’s calendar, the rewards, memories, and relationships made in the process atone for the stressful nights. “When you’re in the thespian group, you’re kind of close to everyone there because you’re with them after school so many times during the week. You become somewhat of a family,” said Jessie O’Brien, secretary and assistant stage manager of the thespian troupe.

Reilly Wright – Features Editor

With a new school year, many changes are being initiated with new members, new directors, and a brand new agenda of shows. “We are actually doing two shows involving music and there’s a rumor about doing student directed one-acts at the end of the year,” Newman said.

Along with the modified calendar, Thespians are gaining a new adviser, Keith Tankersley, and will have Brad Faust and Dara Gillis directing this year’s musical and the fall play, “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown.”

 “The play will be different, but I have faith that it will just as great as always because although we have a director that’s in a different area of expertise, they really know that they’re doing,” Duffy said.

DACC class of the month: zoo school

Reilly Wright – Features Editor

Not too many people can say their high school classes were taking chemistry in zoo classrooms or writing their papers next to animal enclosures, yet for zoo school students this happens every day.

The local Delaware Area Career Center, or DACC, gives high school students opportunities through classwork and credit for future college careers or an early head start into a workforce. With these classes, one of the most unique is the Zoo School Program in which the DACC partners with the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium to give junior and senior high schoolers an opportunity to learn and work in a zoo environment.

“I chose zoo school because I would love to become a zoologist someday and the program will give me a head start on that path,” said Megan Swisher, a Hayes junior involved in Zoo 1, the beginner of the two possible classes. The program appeals to students thinking or looking into majors revolving around zoology, biology, human or animal medicine, ecological studies, as well as many more fields.

The program also provides students with classes such as chemistry and statistics through the University of Findlay in which they can earn up to seven semester credits through the college at the zoo.

The year-long course puts students directly into ecological environments with the animals and their habitats that their learning and curriculum is focused around.  “I love animals and it gave me a chance to learn about them more in depth and I got to meet other people that have the same passion as I do,” said Victoria Lang, a graduate from DACC as well as Zoo 1 and 2.

The highlight of the students’ course is the eight page thesis due at the end of the year in which they create a hypothesis and do research focused on a specific animal species. Students spend a couple days a week in that animal’s habitat and focus on their traits to complete the project. “I’m mostly looking forward to our big project on our animal,” Swisher said. “It’ll be a lot of work, but a wonderful encounter with the wildlife.”

 Students are given hands-on learning opportunities through this unique program from the DACC and Columbus Zoo that will change their perspective on the gap between school and animals for years to come.

“It was the best experience I could have ever hoped for and I will always have my memories and new friends with me forever thanks to the zoo and this amazing program,” Lang said.

Hering brings new ideas to Hayes courses

Sarah Rose • Staff Writer

In the past few years, Hayes has seen several changes to the teaching staff. Perhaps one of the most impactful changes the English department has seen in a while was the exit of Ryan Schey this past year.

Most students know Schey from the Humanities courses as well as the Video Production class, D-Town. D-Town student include Marisa Sulek took the Freshman Humanities course last year with Schey and is taking the Sophomore Humanities course this year with Schey’s replacement, Tom Hering. Since the class has already started, Sulek is aware of the differences between Hering and Schey.

“Mr. Hering… is [energetic], but he’s just not as crazy as Mr. Schey was,” Sulek said.

Even though Sulek may see some differences between the two courses, Hering believes that he isn’t too much different from Schey.

“I think our personalities are similar,” Hering said.

Sulek agrees that there are many similarities between Hering and Schey.

“They both know their stuff,” Sulek said.

Along with the Humanities courses, Hering will also be teaching D-Town. He admits that he doesn’t have a lot of experience with the different techniques of video production, but he has a plan to smooth out this learning process.

“I will lean on [the second and third year students] more than Mr. Schey probably would have,” Hering said.

Meg Vonada, who has had both Schey and Hering in D-Town, said what she thinks of the new teacher now that the class has started.

“I think Mr. Hering is doing a really good job,” Vonada said.

Although this journey in the world of D-Town is different, Hering is up for the challenge. He knows that his part in the class is going to be different than a teacher because of this.

“I know my role will be more as a… producer,” Hering said.

Schey may be missed by many students who had him, but Hering is going to continue the work Schey has done for many years.

The Humanities courses and D-Town will be run differently this year, but Hering plans to widen the spectrum of the classes. Hering has specific plans for how to continue to develop D-Town.

“Every student is required this year to submit to at least one film festival,” Hering said.

Vonada says that she can tell where Hering wants to take the class in future years.

“He wants D-Town to be the biggest thing,” Vonada said.

This year, D-Town, as well as the Humanities courses, will be both new and familiar territory for students. But the changing of the guard has officially occurred, and Hering is here to stay.