Editorial
The 'Tower' newspaper's editorial posted online each Wednesday.

0 15

With all of the hardships that South has endured this past year, the Spring Pep Assembly on Wednesday, May 21 offers students and staff a chance to come together for one “Last Hurrah” of the year.
The assembly will feature many different activities, including games with teachers, relay races and a ‘Senior surprise’. In order to accommodate the assembly, classes will be shortened and the assembly will start at 2 p.m.
Although it may be tempting to skip the assembly, it is important that everyone attends, including Seniors, to show school spirit and unity. For seniors, this will be the last assembly that they will attend at South and it is not something to miss.
Over the past four months, Student Association (SA) has worked tirelessly to come up with new and creative ideas that will make the assembly appealing to the whole school. They have put in hours of work to make it something that will bring South together and possibly start a new tradition.
As a school, the student body owes it to SA to attend and willingly participate in the assembly. The purpose of the spring pep assembly is to unite the student body and increase school spirit for the last few weeks before summer. SA aims to recognize all of the different parts of South that make it the great school that it is today. Along with various games, next year’s homecoming themes will be announced, teacher’s prom pictures will be shown, and a Blue Devil of the year will be named.
In contrast with previous assemblies, including Rick Santorum and Reggie Dabbs, this assembly will not be a motivational speech. Rather, just an opportunity for the school to come together and celebrate the end of the year.
To incorporate all aspects of South, the choir will be performing, as well as a dance crew made up of students. The senior class will also be doing their final run out at the end of the assembly, where they will then take a picture on the front lawn.
To show school unity, SA is encouraging all students to wear their unity day t-shirts from this year. Seniors should wear their Class of 2014 shirts.
The Pep assembly gives South a chance to gather for one last assembly and celebrate each other and all of the great things that South has to offer. This year has had many hardships and has put South to the test; this is an opportunity to show that the bond between students is unbreakable.

0 14

The end of the year is no doubt a stressful and busy time, especially with AP tests and finals on the horizon. On the other hand, with special events including Prom, graduation, and other exciting things occurring, students will certainly want to have a good time. However, they also need to be reminded to think before they act.
Recently, students in New Jersey pulled a Senior class prank resulting in 62 arrests, and about half of these students will be charged as adults. Through vandalism and other heinous behavior, these students will easily face tough consequences due to what began as a seemingly harmless Senior pastime. Having this type of behavior on a permanent record, especially for those who are 18 years old, will dampen opportunities in the future. While it is always beneficial to stay on task for school, the end of the year is especially a time to remain focused.
This week and next week are all about students preparing to take multiple choice and essay-based AP tests that could determine whether or not they gain college credit. With over 1,000 AP tests being given out over these two weeks to South students, clearly the student body is on edge. It is a time to pull together and work hard before the most coveted three months of the year – summer. Behavior that would be harmful to a student’s success on these exams, as well as in regular school work, should never be encouraged.
Prom and graduation, other monumental events in a student’s life, also raise concern. Particularly seniors, with the end of the year fast approaching, are anxious to graduate and take a break before moving on to college. This does not necessarily mean that poor behavior, either at school related or non-school related events, is a good idea.
The students in New Jersey will most likely miss out on some of the fun activities that close the year as a result of their behavior. Instead of being able to enjoy the end of the year, consequences will probably be sought out. Unfortunately the students did not realize that taking part in something reckless and unnecessary will affect the more important events coming up in the near future.
South students have a responsibility to maintain the school’s reputation and high standards. Making decisions such as the students in New Jersey would be a poor reflection of the school as a whole, and not simply the students involved. Every student needs to make sure that they are doing what they need to in order to finish off the school year in a strong and positive way.
Although it may sound tempting to let loose during the warm weather, remember that school is still in session, even if just for a month longer. Don’t be the one to miss out on all the fun.

0 8

With spring break beginning in just a few days, students will most likely face the temptations to participate in some dangerous and reckless activities. Despite these temptations, students must remember to be safe over spring break.

Just like any other break, spring break serves as a worry-free period of relaxation. There is no school to wake up early for every day, no homework to do every night and no tests to rigorously study for. Because of that, students will go out, and potentially do things they should not: drink alcohol or consume drugs.

No school for a week and a half is not a reason to do those things. Regardless of whether there’s school or not, they are still illegal and violate school rules. South has held its students to a high standard since it was founded in 1927,
and it is the duty of students to meet that standard.

The South Student Code of Conduct, which every student is legally tied to when they register, lists alcohol and drug consumption as unacceptable behavior. Consequences under the Michigan Compiled Law 380.1308, to which South’s code refers, include anywhere from a five day suspension to expulsion, along with notifying the local police.

Most colleges and universities require students to list any legal trouble they have gotten into when they apply. Getting into legal trouble can directly hurt a student’s chances of getting into the colleges of their choice.

And don’t forget, there are other codes of conduct for clubs and athletics, that still apply during breaks and off-season. The Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) does not take alcohol and drug use lightly. On several occasions the MHSAA has suspended athletes from across the state for use of illegal substances, and won’t hesitate to do so in the future.

Regardless of whether a student is an athlete, is in all Advanced Placement classes, or is just the typical high school student, everyone’s held to the same high standard, as a student it is his or her duty to meet that standard. Until students graduate, they are still held accountable for their actions, even outside of school.

In addition to alcohol and drugs, students traveling to foreign countries should be careful and aware of the dangers there, and make sure to implement the buddy system and never go anywhere alone.Many teachers and administrators here at South have poured hours into helping students succeed, and poor decisions over spring break can completely ruin their efforts.

The temptation to go out and party is strong, but South students are better than that. Enjoying a beer with some friends over break might not seem like a big deal, but it is.

Besides, current students have the rest of their lives after high school to enjoy themselves. Why ruin that opportunity with bad decisions now?

0 11

To honor all facets of South employees, Student Association (SA) is sponsoring Staff Appreciation Week this week. The annual celebrations consist of a daily gift for each staff member culminating in Friday’s staff-wide luncheon.
The week is dedicated to all members of the South staff: teachers, administrators, office employees, and the custodial and engineering staff. The celebration has been recently revamped. Prior to last year, only the luncheon existed, but for the past two years SA extended the festivities to the whole week.
Though the week may go unnoticed by students, the committee is taking steps this year to get more students involved in showing the staff their appreciation. For example, students can visit the main hallway during lunch to sign a banner for all members of the staff, which will be presented to them at the end of the week.
In past years the staff received gifts that ranged from candy to a mixed CD of their departments’ favorite songs. So far this week, staff was gifted candy, and a video was shown on the announcements to celebrate the staff.
Grosse Pointe South is appreciative of the quality work its staff does. Staff Appreciation Week exists to remind faculty that the student body is grateful for all their hard work. Unfortunately the staff’s diligence in helping this school maintain its 85 years of excellence can be overlooked.
Teachers go above and beyond their call of duty, arriving at school earlier and leaving later to accommodate their students. They devote their free-time to create lesson plans to make certain each and every one of their students receives the education and attention they require.
However, teachers, in some cases, are appreciated more than other staff members due to their day-to-day interactions with the student body. Administrators, office staff and custodial staff lack the routine interaction that teachers have with students and therefore may not see the same sort of everyday appreciation. With this week, the entire staff is able to see students’ appreciation for the work they put into making the school a better place.
This school is often praised for its students’ achievements, which are direct products of the staff’s dedication. The staff works nonstop to maintain South’s greatness and to constantly challenge students to do the best they are capable of doing. By doing so, they raise the bar for South every year.
Students forget sometimes how fortunate we are to have a faculty that loves what they do; their passion for teaching makes learning from them easier to enjoy.
Staff Appreciation Week is important because it is a way to bring the staff together and convey students’ appreciation for them, the hard work they do individually, and for creating the wonderful environment South possesses. Too much can be taken for granted and Staff Appreciation Week does a great job to curb that.

0 41

In an attempt to streamline the previously controversial poster policy for both South and North, a district-level committee created new and specific guidelines. Despite these new parameters, organizations are divided into levels, certain events are exempt and placing posters in classrooms is disregarded, making for a not-so-uniform situation.

The committee’s decision to restrict poster location to four bulletin boards throughout the school makes for organized, centralized places to house this type of advertising. Although these guidelines have been set, student elections and Homecoming are exempt from the rule. At times of the year when these events take place, the hallways will be just as posterdense as before.

A question that comes into play regarding the new poster policy is how clubs are segregated into levels. Events such as student elections and Art Fest occur at the same time; elections are exempt from the rule and if over 10 students participate, hundreds of posters could fill the halls. Art Fest, on the other hand, is deemed as a level two organization and is restricted to one bulletin board in one location, despite it being directly related to the Art Department and curriculum. Certain events could indirectly be given more attention than others and competition for advertising could arise.

The new poster policy’s focus is specifically for the hallways and makes no rules for classrooms, so clubs and organizations could essentially put posters in whichever classroom they’d like. The most competition or tension could arise in these locations, where no limits or guidelines are set.

Placing posters in classrooms, in addition to having no limits, puts teachers in an especially uncomfortable position. Teachers might want to be able to support the interests of theirstudents, but might not have the appropriate
space to display every single request. Which posters would the teacher display, and which ones would they choose not to display?

Housing posters in classrooms would also suggest that the teacher encourages or supports that specific club or event. A teacher might not want posters for certain organizations displayed in their classroom, but would constantly be put in the position to have to show any and all posters that come their way.

A last problem not specified in the new policy is time limits. When events advertised by posters have passed, they are often still seen on the walls up to weeks later. If more rules are established regarding specific time slots
posters are to be allowed on the walls, this could create a more timely and organized representation of what is going on at school.

For a controversial situation, a new, complete poster policy is a step in the right direction, but more considerations should be continued to be made to ensure the most effective policy for everyone.