- Southwest HS
Weight room make-overPosted by Polly Blake on 11/6/2020 1:00:00 PM
This school year a couple of renovations have been made to the Southwest High weight room. The room has been touched up a bit, with the inclusion of new inspirational quotes for the athletes and students to adhere. Charlie Dempsey, the weightlifting coach, believes that the new additions to the weight room will increase the motivation of the athletes when they walk in and see it.
One of the most notable additions is the mighty “Horsepower” logo of the large stallion that catches your eye the moment you walk in. It is a reminder of who we are as Southwest Stallions! Strong, powerful and with the ability to persevere over obstacles. The other new quotes were often spoken by the coach himself. Now not only do the athletes hear the words of encouragement but they are able to be visually interpreted as well. The weight room is a place full of physical challenge but also a lot of mental challenges. To have it within you to keep pushing yourself to your best potential, despite every nerve in your body telling you to quit is a guiding principle that has led to tremendous stallion success on the athletic fields over the years. It is a strenuous process. But the students in Coach Dempsey’s weight room are always encouraged to “trust the process”, as one of the quotes recently added says. “It may seem difficult or upsetting”, Dempsey says, “when you are not able to reach a certain amount on your bench or squat, but if you give in the work each and every day, you are bound to see the results of your hard work. “
Cafeteria Q&APosted by J Jorgensen on 10/13/2020
One of the most overlooked jobs at any school is probably the cafeteria workers. The cafeteria employees take care of all the students almost every day out of the week making and providing food to students for both breakfast and lunch. In fact, this may be the smallest part of the job for these dedicated employees.
It is a known issue that some students will pose as another student and use other students’ lunch number when going through the line. This results in the wrong student being charged for lunch and could prevent the correct student from receiving a meal that day. Cash register workers are constantly battling this issue making their jobs significantly more difficult.
The cost of meals is determined at the federal level and is currently $1.25 for breakfast and $2.25 for lunch; however, due to the pandemic both lunch and breakfast are free of charge through the end of 2020 for any student who would like a meal.
Salary for cafeteria employees varies between $21,400- $34,500 a year determined by management level and how experienced the employee is with cooking and serving the students. One of the most interesting things that has happened to the staff during the pandemic is the rapid increase from serving 300 students a day to making over a thousand meals a day for any community member in need of sustenance. Workers and bus drivers were pulled from other schools serve over a thousand meals a day as Southwest High School served as the hub for community schools throughout the summer.
With all the hard work these employees do there are still assumptions by people about the quality of the items being served, often derogatorily called simply “cafeteria food”. The ladies work hard and one thing they wish all people would know is that the food they make is always healthier than what one would get at a fast food restaurant. The food has improved a lot over the past four years and all the workers want is appreciation for their hard work.
The school nutrition department is always looking for more items to put on the menu in order for students to have options; the person who makes that possible is the school nutrition department nutritionist. Students can request new food items be added to the menu through this department. If a student was to ask about new food on the menu or have an idea of what should be on the menu, school level servers take their ideas into consideration and let the department nutritionist know.
Another burning question students want answered is how the portion sizes are determined for high schoolers. That information is provided by the USDA guidelines and is required for all schools and counties. Dietary substitutions are offered to the students who are in need. For example, lactose intolerance is a common issue that can be easily addressed.
Overall, our cafeteria staff is composed of dedicated people who want to do everything in their power to follow guidelines and make the students happy. Be sure to thank them next time you are picking up your meal.
Back to the CorralPosted by Polly Blake on 8/27/2020 7:00:00 AM
Back to the Corral
The New School Year Brings Changes to Students and Staff Alike
The Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) has impacted our lives and communities in various ways. Face masks have become common apparel, social distancing is present in stores throughout the nation, and a multitude of businesses remain shuttered. While impacts elsewhere are certainly important to note, one group of impacts remain at the forefront of student’s and teacher’s minds alike, the impacts in our schools.
Most students are already well familiar with the “new normal” of in-person classes here at Southwest and throughout the county. Changes found around campus include one-way hallways during transitions, a new vehicular traffic pattern, and a facemask mandate. Reactions are mixed, with some championing the changes and others seeing them as an overreach. We reached out to various students and staff members to get their thoughts on the policies put in place. Here are their responses:
Michael Shiver, Spanish
“I feel it’s important to pay attention to individually teach each student and make sure their needs are addressed and that they are okay.”
John Knowles, History
“Based on everything we know the best we can do is trust the experts and follow the guidelines they recommend. As an older American I believe it’s more about keeping us safe than the students. Although having to adapt to this new model of education is quite challenging.
Jamie Pierce, Senior
“I think all of the precautions are really well thought out, especially compared to that high school in Georgia* I’m very surprised that the school system was able to come up with this, and I don’t really mind anything. I don’t mind wearing a mask, and it’s beneficial to everyone else to wear one. The biggest benefit is by far the small class sizes.”
Ariana Brewer, Freshman
“I feel like one-way hallways are a bit much since everyone is six feet apart and has a mask on, but I think lunch in the classrooms is really fun. I’ve gotten used to wearing my mask so I don’t really mind it. Everything is just so different; this definitely made the transition from middle to high school a lot more difficult.
Isaac Hughes, Senior
“I definitely feel like a lot of the responsibilities should be left more on the individual students instead of the school or county forcing us to do everything. It’s about individual accountability.”