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Category: From The Staff

From The Staff 0

Accountability, or a lack of trust?

Students look forward to experiencing the freedom of senior year—driving to school, missing morning or afternoon study halls, and squeezing as much out of the forty minutes of lunch as they can.  However, this year’s seniors walked into their first lower dining hall and were met with an unfamiliar adversary.  It wasn’t college applications; it wasn’t the workload of first semester.  It was a strange scanning device sitting on the table. These new scanners are an implementation of a Genesis feature called Turnstile, which helps the school on two fronts.  First, the system allows the administration to know where students are at any point during the day based on where they scan their student ID’s.  As of now, this includes […]

From The Staff 0

Where homework and cheating meet

  By: Diana Tang and Shaun Robinson In a school district where points and percentages seem to be the only things that motivate students, convenience often takes priority at the expense of valuable learning.  There is perhaps no better example of this here at North than at the intersection of homework and cheating. Let’s be frank: sharing and copying homework is so ingrained in the culture of North that most hardly think twice about it.  Between texting someone pictures of a worksheet or furiously scribbling down answers in the library at lunch, students share answers to homework as freely as they do gossip.  As the district is in the midst of rethinking the school’s homework policies, drawing inspiration from those […]

From The Staff 0

Addressing Dr. Aderhold’s reforms

When superintendent David Aderhold’s letter was posted to the district website, the school was abuzz with discussion and intense debate—but for no more than a few days. It isn’t hard to see why, since most of the changes mentioned in the letter hardly impact high school students at all. While statistics in the letter show that high schoolers are clearly […]

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Good night, North

by Fariha Tamboli and Lei Lei Wu “You snooze, you lose” is the mantra of North’s students. Students are constantly drowned in schoolwork, sports, and clubs, and they are overwhelmed trying to balance all their commitments. They place less value in their sleep, whereas in reality, sleep should be the most important part of their day. In order to counter […]

From The Staff 0

Staff Editorial

School-sponsored field trips come every year like clockwork.  Upperclassmen relay stories to underclassmen of the pranks and incidents that occurred on their trips, creating a sense of entitlement among the younger students.  They see these trips as their right, their opportunity to do what they like and indulge in the same misbehavior as their older peers, but these trips are a privilege and behavior must meet certain standards for this privilege to be maintained. Not only on a school field trip are you representing yourself; you are also representing the school.  Therefore, any grossly improper conduct would not only be an embarrassment to yourself but also to the school and, subsequently, to the rest of the student body.  In recent […]

From The Staff 0

Abolish the high school midterm

Last year, the West Windsor-Plainsboro school district revamped the high school midterm, replacing one-period, do-or-die cumulative tests with three smaller assessments in each subject scattered across the first semester. The new system was designed to promote the district’s 21st-century Competencies and to help students who thrive during class activities but struggle on high-stakes exams. “This fair, low-pressure system will make life easier for students,” The Knightly News wrote in a November 2013 editorial. Unfortunately, our optimistic prediction has not come to pass: The new three-part midterm has turned into an unmitigated disaster, burdening teachers with long hours of grading and overwhelming students, who now have to worry about periodic midterm tests on top of their regular coursework. The district has […]

From The Staff 0

Editorial: HVAC malfunctions are unacceptable

Books cover the air conditioning units, damp paper towels cover thermostats, artwork in the orchestra room shrivels with each passing day.  Teachers advise students to bring coats to class, and the science classrooms seem to be in an entirely different ecosystem from the English ones.  Some days the classrooms are unbearably hot; other days, they’re freezing cold.  And this isn’t anything new. Every year, something seems to go wrong with North’s ventilation system. Administration should work harder to provide students with the best possible learning environment.  The district needs to better collaborate with Aramark—the company to which the district has outsourced HVAC maintenance—to ensure that the extreme fluctuations in classroom temperature don’t undermine North’s academic standards. Over the past 18 […]

From The Staff 0

New attendance policy: is this even a thing?

You know that new attendance policy you’ve been so devastatingly angry/righteously excited about for the past month?  Well, we’re going to do a little exercise right now to help you understand this incredibly important piece of regulation.  Take out a blank sheet of printer paper (preferably 8 ½” x 11”, but legal pads are acceptable) and draw two circles (use a compass if possible).  Now, put everything that’s different about the new policy in one circle and everything you liked about the old policy in the other.  Which circle has more information in it?  Trick question: there’s only one circle. I know what you’re thinking: you’re thinking “whaaaaaa?”  But that’s what we’re here to help you with.  There’s been a whole […]