An illustration that depicts the impact of fundraising on the American Cancer Society.
Joo Won Yun
Stevenson High School
Relay For Life is an annual event held by the American Cancer Society to promote the awareness of cancer. High school students form small groups to fundraise for people who are fighting against cancer and for medical advancements that can save more lives. The American Cancer Society encouraged students to have at least 15 people on each team and to raise at least $100 for every Relay For Life participant.
Buffalo Grove High School will hold Relay For Life for students from Buffalo Grove High School and Stevenson High School on June 14. Participants who raise at least $100 may stay over night until the event is fully finished. (Relay finishes at 7 a.m. on June 15). Participants who do not raise at least $100 will be dismissed at 11 p.m. All participants will celebrate the event by walking the track. By lasting all night, this walking symbolizes that the battle against cancer never sleeps.
There are more high schools in the Chicago community that participate Relay For Life. More detailed information can be found on www.relayforlife.org.
Donations to the American Cancer Society can be given in various forms. Donations can be hand delivered between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m.; mailed to the local American Cancer Society with a note including event, team, and participant information; turned in at Bank Night (a designated time when team captains turn in their teams' fundraising money prior to their Relay event); or given at the event or online. Donations by check must be given to the American Cancer Society.
During the Luminaria Ceremony, hundreds of luminaria light the track to celebrate the lives of those who have battled cancer, remember those who have lost their battles, and fight back against a disease that has taken too much. This ceremony of light symbolizes the hope and perseverance with which people continue to fight.
The Question of Summer Vacation
Naperville North High School
As school draws to a close and summer approaches, students turn their attention to sandy beaches, part-time jobs, and summer school. While most students, parents, and teachers may relish the three month vacation, some people argue that America's summer vacation, one of the longest in the world, brings about negative consequences.
Critics of America's summer vacation claim that students lose information during the long break. A study by a summer learning expert at Duke University, Harris Cooper, found that each summer, students lose about a month of progress in math and other subjects. Furthermore, a CNN article quoted fourth-grade Los Angeles teacher Marian Valdez, who said, "We spend the first couple of months, especially in math, reviewing, going back over the facts, time tests, those kinds of things."
Out of 34 nations, 15-year olds in the U.S. rank 14th in reading, 17th in science, and 25th in math. Meanwhile, South Korea and Finland, which rank 1st and 2nd in math respectively, possess a year-round schooling system in which students have shorter but more frequent breaks. The idea of a year-round system has been proposed as an alternative to the three month summer vacation, and has even been accepted in select schools throughout the U.S.
Supporters of the current system, however, believe that a three month vacation is necessary for students in order to deal with various stressors and the pressure of homework. Studies regarding year-round schooling are also inconclusive.
It seems that for now, the three summer vacation is safe, and it is unlikely to change anytime soon. In the future, though, the idea might present an interesting possibility for our current education system.
ICTM State Math Finals
Wheaton Warrenville South
The Illinois Council of Teachers of Mathematics(ICTM) hosted the State Math Finals for the high school level at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign May 4. Over 250 high schools from all over the state of Illinois competed in various categories and subjects relating to mathematics.
Being the premier organization of mathematics teachers in Illinois, the ICTM annually hosts a statewide inter-high school mathematics competition. Schools are divided into four divisions, which are further divided into regions. Of the four divisions (1A, 2A, 3AA, 4AA), 4AA is generally regarded as the most competitive.
Preliminary regional competitions took place in February. The winning school along with individual students who met the qualifying scores advanced to the state-level competition at Urbana-Champaign. Students competed in six-person subject tests, (e.g., Algebra, Geometry), eight-person Freshmen-Sophomore and Junior-Senior tests, calculator tests, two-person speed rounds, and orals.
The competition started off with the six-person subject tests at 10:30 a.m. and continued on until 2:30 p.m. The two-person speed round playoffs began at 3 p.m. and ended around 4 p.m. At the competition's end, the awards ceremony took place at Huff Hall.
In Division 1A, Cornerstone High School from Wheaton took first place with 882 points. Morton won Division 2A with 794 points. In Division 3AA, Benet Academy earned 688 points for first place, and in 4AA, Illinois Math and Science Academy (IMSA) received 989 points to win first place.
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