Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Mountain Lions in California at Risk for Extinction

Recently in California, it has been found that two different mountain lion populations are in danger of going extinct within 50 years. The two mountain lion populations at risk are found in southern California, around the Santa Ana and Santa Monica Mountain areas. They think that this risk of extinction is from all of the wildfires occurring where this animal’s habitat is, and also from the genetic diversity within the population of these lions. The fires happening in California are at record levels this year, causing harm all over, including the mountain lions.

However, researchers believe that the mountain lion population can bounce back. Winston Vickers, a co-worker and veterinarian at the University of California-Davis, says,  “Improving existing highway crossing structures, as well as adding news ones, to allow the animals to move safely from one range to another will help the mountain lion population bounce back.” And this will hopefully help the mountain lion population to get back to what it should be after a while. And even though it might take a while to make these changes, they believe this is the best short-term option for the mountain lions.
Racist Intimidation at KHS
    By: Ellie Salvatore & Chloe Babb

Recent allegations towards Kennebunk High School arose as more people
found out about the apparent disregard of blatant acts of racism against a former teacher, Rosa Slack,
towards her were kept under wraps by the administration. Slack recently revealed that she
was “fearful for her family’s safety” and felt “harassed” as a student said to a school technician
that he wanted to “burn her house down.” This is only one account of the racist acts that were kept
under wraps. During spirit week, on flag day, one student came into Slacks
classroom wearing a confederate flag on his back.

The meeting originally was scheduled to be behind closed doors but was
changed to be public, to discuss the school incidents. This was a good decision
because the community has the right to know about this incident. During the
meeting, Dan Sayre spoke out to say, “We are here tonight because a crisis
was hidden from members of this board and this community.” Everyone was
astonished of the fact that this went on for so long. After the meeting they
came to two conclusions of an act they would take, the first was to have a
subcommittee determine an independent investigation and who would perform
it. The board also asked the administration to provide more information about
the policies. It is not only unfortunate that these acts of racism happened. But
what is more unfortunate is that they were kept hidden as if these acts towards
Slack were not of importance.

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

2019 Massabesic Freshman Film Festival

article Brendan Banks
edited by Caitlynn McAllister

    Everyone loves to watch a good movie. They allow people to get together with friends and/or family, whether rain or shine, and immerse themselves in another world filled with characters, stunning visuals, and effects, and (in most cases) an enjoyable and well-thought-out plot. Which is why it was no surprise that the Massabesic High School film festival for 2019 was a great success!
The filmmakers before the screening of their films
     With a total of 13 movies lasting for about an hour and 15 minutes, the directors of their respected films, along with their family and friends, all came in the auditorium on February 2nd and watched each other's movies with intrigue. There were many good movies that were shown off, including but are not limited to, “The Forest,” “My Strange Addiction,” “Masked” and “The Button.” All of the movies had many hours, takes, and overall hard work put into them, just like any other movie.

     After all of the films had concluded and the judges decided the top three winners, the directors, and actors of the film all got together and talked with one another while waiting, even showing the respect and camaraderie between them by giving praise and laughing about the good parts in each of their movies. Then the judges, along with the 3 core freshman team’s language arts teachers (Mr. Bitetti, Mrs. Bucklet, and Mr. Mercier), walked back into the auditorium to announce the winners and reminded everyone that while there could only be a select amount of winners, everyone should feel extremely proud of how their movies came out, which is definitely true. 

     As for the winners, in 3rd place was “Enlightened” by Brendan Banks, 2nd was “Part of Your World” by Grace Fleming and Avery Haskell, and in 1st place was “The Adventures of Chip, Chunk, and Chicco” by Hannah Sampson, Michala Jacobs, and Emily Jacobs. Each of the winners got a trophy (each trophy being bigger than the last) and Amazon gift cards. When asked about their wins, the third place winner responded saying that, “I feel pretty happy about the place I came in,” and told the freshmen for next year to, “Work hard on making sure everything in your movie is coherent and entertaining” as some advice. Both of the second place winners responded saying that they felt “pretty good about the place that we came in,” as well as telling the freshmen for the following year to “Have fun with it” as some advice. The first place team all agreed that they were, “Excited about it, but we didn’t think we were gonna win” and told the freshman for the following year to, “have good time management” as some advice.

3rd and 2nd place finishers (1st place not available for pictures)
     In the end, there were many feelings going through people that night: disappointment, joy, disbelief, and even embarrassment. Yet somehow everyone was still able to come to the consensus that they had a good time, and if the movies for this year were as good as they were, one can only imagine the fascinating movies that will be shown in the following year’s film festival.

Are All Things Disney Disappearing From Netflix?

article by Peyton Smith
edited by Charlee Tucker

     Netflix is the streaming service everyone goes to, to watch the latest movies and television shows, this includes all of Disney’s movies and TV shows. But, in 2017 Disney's CEO, Bob Iger, announced that they would be removing all Disney movies and shows off of other streaming services, including Netflix. With this news, Mr. Iger announced that Disney would be launching a streaming service called Disney+. Disney+ would include all of Disney’s movies, shows, and upcoming entertainment. According to an article from Variety, Disney+ is starting in 2019 to no longer stream new movies and shows on Netflix. This means that new entertainment from Disney coming in 2019, such as the live action Lion King, the live action Dumbo, Toy Story 4, and so much more will not make it to Netflix. These new movies will go straight to Disney+ after in theaters.
Brie Larson as Captain Marvel
     Now, you may be thinking, Disney+ is only going to be for kids so what do I care? Disney entertainment doesn’t just include Disney Princesses like Cinderella and Beauty and the Beast. Taking all Disney entertainment off of Netflix and moving it to Disney+ includes all things Marvel, Star Wars, and so much more. This includes the upcoming Marvel movie, Captain Marvel. Caitlynn McAllister, a huge Marvel fan, when told about Disney+ and the plans of it, said, “I feel like Disney+ is not a good idea. Netflix already has everything you need, why change that?” She also stated how she likes having everything on one streaming service that she can watch. Netflix includes a lot of original shows and also shows from other stations including the CW and Freeform. Everyone, when asked, said they would not enjoy having to pay for another streaming service just to watch Marvel, Toy Story 4, and so much more of Disney entertainment.

     So, is Disney worth paying for? That is up to you, but according to Thrillist, Bob Iger said that Disney would cost less than Netflix's $8-$14 monthly rates. But is that really enough for someone to switch from their beloved Netflix to Disney+? Disney will find out when Disney+ launches in late 2019.

Ariana Grande Sued

article by Danielle Doty
edited by Charlee Tucker

Ariana Grande music video motion picture
Painting by Vladimir Kush

     In July, of the year 2018, Ariana Grande’s newest hit song/music video ‘God is a Women’ was aired for the world to see. Over time Grande’s song and music video became highly viewed, with over 200 million viewers as of August. But with all these viewers came some unwanted attention, As you can see in the images provided, the horizontal image is Ariana Grande’s picture that played for a little less than a minute in her video and the vertical image is the painting created by famous artist, Vladimir Kush. Kush was outraged with the similarities in these images and filed a lawsuit against Grande using her legal name along with the Universal Music Group, the video director, producer, and production company. Both Grande and Kush's attorneys refused to talk to the Associated Press about the case. This has been the latest lawsuit filed for copyright on Ariana, followed by two others that are known. This means it is not the first time that it has happened and couldn't have been accidentally copyright, without permission.

Spring Sports Start Up

article by Bri Stephenson
edited by Shea Lane

     With winter sports coming to an end, many are excited for spring sports to start up. Whether it be playing or even watching the excitement go down. This includes boys and girls lacrosse, softball, baseball, tennis, and track & field. And as preseason begins to roll around on March 25, each team is preparing for the upcoming season and is confident on what it is about to bring. 

     When asked about the upcoming softball season Grace Tutt, shortstop and pitcher, replied, “I feel that it's going to be a good season. We have a lot of talent coming up, and our offseason hitting sessions have been going really well...This year our team is looking good and I truly believe we will be in the final games.”
Photo of Grace Tutt
     Along with softball, girls lacrosse has also been preparing for the upcoming season, “Strength and conditioning started in September... Team leaders set up two nights a week at XL in March to help prepare,” stated head coach Coach Bowen. When also asked about the upcoming season he replied, “We’ve graduated a huge talented class, but I feel that incoming freshman and sophomores are working hard to fill in gaps. 2019 won't be, pick it up and leave where it was. Construction of something like that will be entirely different. Build it like a house and start from the foundation and work our way up...There is a tough schedule, and I think by end of season will be highly competitive.”

Photo of Skylar Renaud
     As spring sports are right around the corner, many teams have high hopes and are excited about what's coming their way. Good luck to all athletes and teams!

Boys Basketball

article by John Lessard
edited by Shea Lane

Photo taken by Jason Gendron

     Boys’ basketball had an adjustment season as the varsity team went 3-17, JV went 4-16 and the first team went 6-14. The coach had a focus on changing the culture at Massabesic and the perspective of Massabesic as a losing school into a winning school. Under the leadership of a new Varsity coach, Zach Blodgette, Massabesic has been adjusting to the new style of play implemented by the new coaches. All three teams run the same offensive schemes and same defensive philosophy, with the offense having many motion plays and sets, and defense with a help/zone defense.
Photo taken by Jason Gendron

The first half of the season was rough for all 3 teams, but as the season progressed, each team ended up winning more games and they started to get used to the new plays and defensive set. “We got the hang of everything as the season went on, and we got more plays to get more points for everyone,” says Jesse Cadigan, a player for the first team.

Photo taken by Jason Gendron
     As the season comes to an end, the Varsity boys went to playoffs and lost in the first round to Bonny Eagle. The score was 38-46. As the season closed, the team will continue to work hard and improve to come back next season and win more games.

Ever Heard of Japanese Club?

article by Alexis Marsh
edited by Shea Lane

     Massabesic High School is a space of learning and fun. Many clubs and activities keep students after school so that they may participate in what they would love to do. A large number of students do attend these sports and clubs but a large number of them don’t. The clubs that intrigue students will capture them and bring them in. Most of the clubs at this school have been around for years while there are some that are more new. The newer ones might not capture the eye of some but more curious students may like them. One specific club could stick out to some students while others will just see it as another random club.

     The one I am talking about is the Japanese Club. This is a club that many at the moment may not know about. Mr. Laich, the teacher who runs the club, hopes that it will grow into something bigger than just an after-school activity. When asked if it was possible to make it an actual class, he responded with, “Absolutely!” He even said it is his biggest wish for the club. Since he had run it before for, “Two years in middle school and one year in high school as a club,” there is most likely nothing within the club that he hasn’t already taught to other students. Now the language and culture of Japan have been brought into our very own school. There is no end to what both teachers and students can learn. This club gives students the opportunity to learn a completely new language besides the two we already have at the school.

     More diversity within languages in regular public schools is something that is definitely needed and Brian Laich is helping Massabesic High School to accomplish that through his club. Not only is he teaching students a completely new language but he is also helping them to learn and understand the culture. Especially since culture is something that is not normally included in a language class taught during the school day. The club is all around fun and entertaining with not a single part of the learning experience being boring. Any person who is willing to learn is welcome to attend and become a member of the club.

Lady Mustangs Take Big Strides

article by Mary Duffy
edited by Shea Lane

     If you look at the Massabesic Girls Basketball team at the beginning of the season compared the end of the season, you would see two different teams. The Lady Mustangs had a losing streak at the beginning of the season, but with hard work and determination they turned their game around and turned out to be a force to be reckoned with.

     One of the many accomplishments that the Lady Mustangs had was that Mackenzie Ouellette was the second player of Massabesic Girls Basketball history to have scored 1000 points in her high school career. Mackenzie not only made Mustang history once, but twice when she accepted a full boat scholarship to the D2 school of Saint Anselm. She is the first girl basketball player in Massabesic history to go to school on a basketball scholarship. When asked how she felt knowing that she is able to play her favorite sport for the next four years, she responded by saying, “It is relieving and exciting. I used to be nervous because I didn’t know where I wanted to go, but now that I do, I couldn’t be more excited.” This is just one of the many great accomplishments that the Massabesic Girls Basketball and MacKenzie Ouellette have achieved this season.

     Another accomplishment that the Lady Mustangs achieved was their record this season. In the previous season the Lady Mustangs record was 3-15, but this year their record was 7-11, beating teams that they were beat by in the previous season. The Lady Mustangs grew as a team and really showed their potential. All of their hard work paid off for the Lady Mustangs because it was the first time in history for the Massabesic Girls Basketball team to make it to the playoffs. They played Scarbrough, the number two seed, at Scarborough's gym. Unfortunately, the Mustang’s season came to close that Wednesday night, with the score of 41-29. Everyone played their hearts out, but sadly that was not enough to seal the victory over Scarbrough. Skylar Renaud, a senior at Massabesic, had a great game and season even after missing out her junior year due to a broken navicular on the top of her foot. She was injured during a soccer game, her junior year, and had to get surgery on her foot. Skylar was very excited to come back and play for her senior year and was very pleased with the season she and the team had. When asked about her experience at the Massabesic Basketball program, she replied with, “Playing basketball at Massabesic was an up and down experience. At the beginning of my four years, the program was struggling and not many girls were in the program. As my four years progressed the program grew and started to have some success. As I’m ending senior year, I can say I’m impressed with what new coaches have brought in and I’m overall happy with my four years here in the girls' basketball program. It is a privilege to be here,” As you can see, Massabesic has taken some big strides towards becoming a successful basketball program.

     All in all, Massabesic Lady Mustangs Basketball program is starting to come along and be a real threat for seasons to come. The team is, unfortunately, losing 6 seniors, 4 of which were starters. They will certainly be missed, and we all wish them well in whatever their future holds.

Five Years Since Chavez: Democracy Imperiled

article by Haden Buzzell
edited by Charlee Tucker

     In 1998, the charismatic socialist and former army captain Hugo Chavez won the Venezuelan election, with promises of reform largely expelled from Latin America after the widespread proliferation of liberal capitalism in the region. He declared he wanted to retake control of the national oil company and revitalize public education and healthcare after years of languishing in privatization and free trade which benefited the rich. Venezuelans found this appeal much more believable from a man who has not been a member of the ruling class; of the two other “outsider” candidates, one was a former beauty queen and another rode a white horse. Chavez rose from 12% in the opinion polls before winning the election with a solid majority. Make no mistake, Chavez was not a nobody: already famous for his attempted 1992 coup against the failed neoliberal governance of President Carlos Andres Perez, Chavez earned a national profile during his two-year prison sentence.

     Chavez, however, is no longer the President of Venezuela. For all his reforms, the almost entirely oil-based Venezuelan economy began to slide backward in the early 2010s from what had been modest improvements in revenue and quality of life. Chavez died at the age of 58 on March 5, 2013. Vice President Nicolas Maduro, once described as the most capable Venezuelan politician allied to Chavez, was his immediate successor.

     It is five years almost to the day since the ascension of Maduro. Despite all of his laudations, Maduro almost immediately went to work diminishing the capacity of the nation’s democracy, and now functions as an effective dictator. As known to most Americans, Venezuela has been having extreme troubles recently, with poverty and food shortages rocketing out of control. The nation’s seems closer to complete ruin without hope for recovery daily. As with any country facing turbulent times under a dictator, a democratic opposition has formed; but unfortunately, we must focus on the clouded question of their motives.

     Enter Juan Guaido. Guaido is the self-proclaimed President and the head of their National Assembly that has been attempting to depose Maduro since January as a result of the financial ruin. That title seems to be all that is known about him; in contrast to Chavez, Guaido really is a nobody. He was positioned to become the new leader of the Venezuelan opposition after a few phone calls with Vice President Pence. A middling and uncharismatic party functionary for a right-wing parliamentary group, Guaido has been repositioned and advertised as a centrist somewhere between the vague terms of “progressive” and “moderate,” not unlike our own Obama. Similarly to Obama, the media immediately swooned over Guaido: the Wall Street Journal called him “a new democratic leader,” whilst the New York Times believes him a “credible rival” to Maduro. All of these accolades are strange considering Guaido effectively crowned himself king of Venezuela with support from a lily white (i.e. unrepresentative of the heavily mixed Venezuelan population) parliamentary body, and especially considering his remarkably low approval ratings amongst the lower classes.

     The reasons for the media’s support of Guaido are obvious once you consider the economic impact of an American-friendly puppet government in Venezuela. Venezuela is a key member of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), and with good reason. It has the largest proven oil reserves of any nation in the world - including Saudi Arabia. The Orinoco Belt, a shelf beneath the Atlantic Ocean and just off-coast of Venezuela, is the world’s single largest petroleum deposit. Access, or better yet control, would assert a significant stake in the current owner’s international legitimacy and influence. Such is the motives of the mainstream media, especially the aforementioned financial papers who are beholden to the ruling class. They don’t appear to care about Venezuelans, nor about freedom: they seem to care solely about lining their own pockets. This adequately explains why many in the U.S., including National Security Advisor John Bolton, are pushing for a military expedition to forcefully depose Maduro and install their regime.

     It should go without saying that U.S. intervention in foreign countries is a bad idea. Iraq (also with copious amounts of petroleum reserves), Afghanistan, Libya, Vietnam - when American troops get involved in other nations’ affairs, the result is never positive. Tens of thousands of American citizens lose their lives, as do up to many millions of native civilians. Billions of dollars are wasted, and a new generation of anti-Western fighters are born. Yet, here we are. When the United States invaded Iraq, in 2003, we did so with much of the same virtue signaling to the outside world that we commit to now. We risk making the same mistakes despite President Trump’s supposed opposition to foreign wars. As the saying goes, history repeats itself first as tragedy and the second time as farce.

     Don’t get me wrong: Maduro is a weak leader and a coward who resorts to murdering his own civilians, as he did in mid-February during clashes on Venezuela’s borders relating to U.S. aid shipments to starving civilians. Just because Maduro is bad, however, doesn’t make Guaido good by default. Guaido is a grifter all the same and is representative of the capitalist ruling class in Venezuela, and any and all coups against the legitimate government of Venezuela, Maduro’s, should be denied. This denial must come from all sides of the spectrum, including from Democrats who are appalled by Russia’s involvement in our own elections but actively encourage regime change in less affluent countries. Military intervention is the death knell of any President’s foreign policy, so if Donald Trump is smart he’ll realize that it didn’t work against Saddam; it didn’t work against the Taliban; it didn’t work against Gaddafi; and it will not work against Maduro. 

I’m not holding my breath.

The Alfred Shakers

article by Emily Ireland and Juliette Beaubien
edited by Lyndsey Kamszik

     The Alfred Shakers were a religious group stationed in Alfred. They were called The Shakers because of their erratic movements during the worship ceremonies. The religion relied solely on people converting, and also took in many orphans to be raised among them. The communities were also supposed to be self-sufficient and cut off from the outside world. Many communities sold items that they had made such as scarves, quilts, and baskets because each person had their own job so they had extra. The Shakers helped supply many items that people needed.

     One of the elders of the Alfred branch was named Joseph Brackett. He was born in 1797 under the name of Elisha Brackett. He lived until 1882 when he died at the Sabbathday Lake Shaker Community. He lived in Maine his entire life and first joined the shakers in Gorham, when his father used his farm to help start a new settlement. Joseph was a musician and wrote songs for the shaker community.

     One of his most famous songs is “Simple Gifts”. It became well known after Martha Graham used it in her ballet “Appalachian Spring,” and from there it only grew. This song was originally made for dancing and could be used during ceremonies. The short two verse song was easy for everyone to learn. Its simple lyrics and melody has been able to capture the simplistic nature of the Shaker people and what made their lives great.

     The simplicity of the song has allowed for it to be used in many different arrangements for choral and band students alike. This tune is used so often that it seems hard to escape from it in some people’s eyes. Mr. Goad, the MHS band director states, “There was a group of kids that did some sort of arrangement of Simple Gifts every year.” This clearly shows that it has become such a popular choice among composers that it has woven its way into the fabric of music.

     The Shaker’s way of life is very commonly perceived as simple and was valued on an aptitude for art and respect for nature. Some may say the shaker way was as harmonious as their best-known song “Simple Gifts.” The Alfred Shakers were, in fact, the last bunch of Shakers when they merged with their sister group, Sabbathday Lake, in 1931. The locals, not wanting to lose the Shaker history, formed a museum in honor of this historical group that is still visitable today. The museum will open for the season in May, with events and workshops. It's quite clear to see the shakers were very valued in Alfred as “Simple Gifts” is the town’s official song.

Clubhouse Fun

article by Jada Poisson
edited by Lyndsey Kamszik

       In our Massabesic community, we have a bunch of cool places we can go. Some people get bored at home and want to go to do something out of their house. In Lake Arrowhead and Limerick they each have a Clubhouse. Clubhouses are great ways to get out of the house and have fun with friends and family. Clubhouse 1 is located at 40 Fairview Terrace, Limerick. They have an indoor pool, weight room and a cardio room. They also have showers for before and after the pool. Having access to this great building is very convenient for the summer time or if you want to workout after being in your house for a while. Clubhouse 2 is located at 206 Old Portland Road, Waterboro ME 04061. Clubhouse 2 has an indoor and outdoor pool, a ping pong table, a pool table, an air hockey table and a meeting room, and parties movies.

       In order to use the clubhouse without a guardian you have to be 13 because there is no life guard. That also implies that you have to be 13 or older to be in the pool without adult supervision. The pool closes ½ an hour before the clubhouse does. In order to attend the clubhouse cardio and weight room you have to be 16 or older. They also request that you rinse off with the showers provided before you go into the pool. The great thing about showers and the clubhouse is that if you lose power they have a generator, so you can use the showers and bathrooms if needed. For more information go to https://www.lacinc.org/homesite/amenities/ .

Opening & Closing Times

Clubhouse 1


6 a.m. – 12 p.m. and 4 p.m. – 9 p.m.

(10 a.m. to 12 p.m. weight & cardio room only)

Tuesday through Friday

6 a.m. – 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. – 9 p.m.


6 a.m. – 6 p.m.


9 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Clubhouse 2

Monday through Friday

2 p.m. – 9 p.m.


9 a.m. – 9 p.m.


9 a.m. – 6 p.m.

"Say Something" App

article by Ridley Laprise
edited by Caitlynn McAllister

     Last week, Massabesic High School introduced students to an app called “Say Something”. Say Something is an app that creates an anonymous way for students to share important information with teachers and administrators. During Advisory, each teacher presented a slideshow showing students how to use the app and what to use it for. You can “say something” if you see warning signs from someone you know at school or even for one of your close friends, to help prevent fights, suicides, or students failing classes. A lot of administrators and teachers could be unaware when students are having personal issues or not following the school's rules or policies. This app is a great way to help make the adults of Massabesic aware when individuals are struggling and it can provide them with support. In the presentations about the app, students were shown what warning signs and threats were. This taught students how to evaluate peer's behavior and how to tell if their actions are threatening. This app is a way to take that information and use it to support classmates.

     So far I would say the app has been successful and was a great addition to MHS. Administrators have been using the app to help supervise students actions and behaviors. Students have been taken out of classes and searched for contraband, which would not have been known about without the Say Something app. However, besides this one issue, the Say Something program has helped administrators be able to solve issues they wouldn’t have known were happening, making Massabesic High School a safer and happier place.

The Pros and Cons of Study Halls

article by Fiona Greem
edited by Caitlynn McAllister

     The definition of a study hall is the period of time in a school curriculum set aside for study and the preparation of schoolwork. Basically, a place where hard-working students go to get their work done, catch up on their studies, or even just take a much-needed break. While there are many positives that may come from school study halls, there are also some negative outcomes too.

     There are many student-athletes in each and every school. That’s why it’s important to offer study halls as an option for kids to get their work done. Some pupils just don’t have the time in their day to finish their homework assignment(s). Whether they play a sport, an instrument, or take part in other after-school activities they need more time in order to complete their work. While there may be an advisory class where they can get some work done. It is not enough. Advisory is only forty minutes, and if you have a full schedule of classes and work to do, it just won’t be much help. Especially, considering advisory time for most students is when they have to go to some of their classes to get work done or make something up. Or maybe they have an art class and they need to go and finish a project there. What are they supposed to do when they can’t get all there work done? Go to a study hall, that’s what.

     Some students take on too many classes and have too much work so that they can’t handle it. Yes, they could choose to drop some of their classes. This may help them. Although, why have students learn less material when they could just take a study hall. For instance, I asked freshman Emily Gary how she felt about study halls. Firstly, she takes all accelerated classes, as well as an accelerated Sports Biology class meant for sophomores. She stated

     Unfortunately, study halls are not always used properly. Some students take advantage of the extra time to do their work, while others see it as a time to be social with their peers.

Freshman Science Debate

article by Ryleigh Baker
edited by Caitlynn McAllister

     Students in Mr.Dalton, Mrs.Tanguay, and Mrs. Shannon’s had to research a source of energy that they thought was the best and would be the most efficient. In each class, the students had a smaller debate that helped them prepare for the larger debate to come. The selected students from the three classes would go on to debate against each other to see a final winner. The debate was on Wednesday, January 30, 2019, and the judges were Mr. Carmody, Mr. Cousins, and Ryan Topen. The winner of the debate was solar energy.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Massabesic Girls Soccer

Written by Hannah Samson

During fall sports, girls soccer hit a bit of a rough patch. With many injuries occurring and illness frequent, the girls soccer team was always at a disadvantage. However, they played their hearts out, leaving everything on the field. With a record of 0-10 they never gave up and played in very close games. Injuries throughout the year varied from concussions to sprained ankles. 

With starters getting injured younger players were forced to step up. In one particularly close game against Westbrook, two players got hurt, which shook up the team leading to a loss of 3-2. 

The JV team, however, had a more successful season winning almost all of their games. Megan Collupy is the JV coach and Jamie Alonso is the Varsity coach for the girls. Overall, the girls had quite a season and the seniors will be missed next year.

In this photo is Hayden Zielinski, Skylar Renaud, Shea Lane, Fiona Green, Sarah DesVergnes, Julia Helms, Hannah Samson, and Emily Baker.

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Extinction of the Northern White Rhino

Written by Madison Bors

The Northern White Rhinoceros (Rhinoceros Sondaicus) is a species of rhino often found in East and Central Africa, south of the Sahara. These rhinos like to graze in grasslands and Savanna woodlands. As of a number of months ago, this species was considered very endangered. On March 19, 2018, the last male Northern White Rhino was put down after suffering from “age-related complications,” says The Guardian. 

As of March 19, 2018, there are only two Northern White Rhino females left. Some people and scientists are worried that this extinction may be part of an even bigger mass extinction going on around the world. Colin Butfield, who is a campaign director at WWF (World Wildlife Fund) said that this “was a wider tragedy and was highlighted as a wider crisis”. This is concerning for not only scientists, but the people who care for these animals as well.

Monday, January 28, 2019

Massabesic Field Hockey Fights Until the End

Written by Micaela Jacobs

The 2018 varsity field hockey season was quite a successful season for the young team. The ending record for the season was, 5 wins and 9 loses, but 7 of the games were lost by only one point, proving that the team was very competitive throughout the whole season. The team ended up making it to the Southern preliminary game, where they versed Cheverus. The atmosphere was intense and emotional throughout the whole game. At half time Chervus was up, 3-1, but the Mustangs came out strong in the second half and ended up tying the game, 4-4.

In overtime the lady mustangs worked very hard, but couldn’t pull out the win. Cheverus got a penalty stroke, and with all of the Mustangs watching and cheering on their goalie, Cheverus landed the ball in the back of the net and secured the win. The ladies were very upset and down on themselves, but throughout the season they all created a strong bond and got better as the season progressed. Can’t wait to see how they do next Season. Good luck lady Mustangs!

Massabesic Varsity Cheerleading

Written by Devyn Hussey

Saturday, January 5th the Massabesic Varsity Cheerleaders took to the mat at Massabesic Middle School for the MCCA (Maine Cheering Coaches Association). The team has worked hard on and off the mat getting ready to host this competition, and continued working hard that day to only get one penalty. Lewiston won over the other eleven teams in class A; Massabesic finished in 10th.

The competition team will be traveling to Gorham High School for the Gorham Invitational on Friday, where 14 teams are competing. With Massabesic Varsity cheering making some changes to their line-up, they secured a 7th place finish. The Biddeford Tigers won the tournament.

The Massabesic Varsity Cheerleaders headed to South Portland to compete at SMAA on Saturday the 19th. This competition continued the trend of improvement with all of their stunts, tumbling, and dance steps being successfully landed. At SMAA there were 14 teams and Thorton Academy took the win. Massabesic Varsity Cheerleading took 7th. MHSVC will be heading to Augusta for the Maine Regionals on the 26th. 

Government Employees Struggle Through the Shutdown

Written by Julia Helms
Today is January 25, 2019 and the government shutdown has been in place for almost four weeks. This has had a very large effect on many things such as national parks, loans, jobs, and services to provide for the nation’s people.

Since the government shutdown began 800,000 employees have missed two paychecks. Some employees affected are park rangers, TSA agents, border patrol, post office workers, and people on welfare. Many states and towns are helping these people by allowing them access to food banks and charitable donations. Federal employees are worrying about if they'll still have a place to live when the government shutdown is lifted, because they aren't able to pay their mortgages. Many of these employees have already received letters from their banks stating that their home will be going into foreclosure if they miss another payment.

Federal funding for people and projects such as the Native American reservations across the country are nonexistent. These reservations receive money to help pay for staffing and maintenance of health clinics and food pantries. They now have to use their own money to pay for this, so other services aren't being taken care of. Roads aren't being plowed, so people aren't able to leave their homes to buy food, clothing, or other things they may need. Since a lot of people’s salaries rely on federal funding they aren't getting paid. This is resulting in desperation and hardship among our nation’s working class individuals.

Giant Ice Disk Spotted on the Presumscot River

Written by Cody Charette

On Wednesday, January 16th, a giant ice disk was seen spinning in Westbrook, Maine on the Presumpscot River. The city of Westbrook posted some pictures, and the drone shots look stunning. Before people start claiming it as the work of aliens, let me explain what an ice disk is and how it forms. According to The New York Times, they occur when “a pile of slush freezes in an eddy or a piece of ice breaks off from another and begins to rotate. As it turns, hitting rocks and water, the sides are shaved down.” This causes the ice to form a disk, that slowly rotates due to the flow of water around it. Ice disks are quite rare and occur in slow moving water in cold climates.

This particular ice disk is special, though. Average ice disks are usually 20 to 30 feet in diameter, whereas the one spotted on The Presumpscot River is an estimated 300 feet in diameter. In the picture below, you can see that the ice disk is larger than the nearby parking garage on the shore. It may not be aliens, but it’s still quite a sight to see!

Yellow Vests Protest in France

Written by Oliver Robidoux

In 2018, France planned to pass a new gas and diesel tax. This started protests from “Yellow Vests,” a group of people who began protesting while wearing neon yellow vests to mimic road workers. This has been happening for the last month and is one of the most significant social mobilizations in France’s recent history. At least 280,000 protesters took to the streets in urban, suburban, and rural communities across the country, burning cars, blockading highways, and fuel depots, and engaging in battles with police and motorists. During this time they demonstrated against aforementioned planned rises in gas and diesel taxes.

On December 1, three people died after protests in France turned violent. On December 3, “the yellow vests” canceled the scheduled meeting with the prime minister, claiming they were receiving death threats. This shows just how much power this protest has.

Gilets Jaunes Colere = Angry Yellow Vests

French police have started to crack down on protesters, making dozens of arrests of violent protests. Police in the capital used water cannons and tear gas as scuffles broke out at the Arc de Triomphe, on the ninth consecutive weekend of protests. Thousands of officers were deployed across Paris. This is where the majority of the protest’s street clashes and vandalism have occurred. The police have resorted to tackling the protesters, and blockading parts of the center with riot police.

Big Changes Coming to the Massabesic Schedule

Written by Delia Harms

There are some proposed changes coming to Massabesic High School that will alter daily life drastically. The main change is a seven block schedule (6 classes and one Mustang Time period) for the upcoming school year. Classes will meet every day for 48 minutes eliminating Green and White days. Advisory will also be replaced with what is called Mustang Time. The goal of this schedule is to create more time per class per semester and ideally increase achievement levels throughout the school. According to Principal Hand, “this schedule will allow us to address the Math and English gaps many of our students have while meeting the needs of all learners.” He goes on to add, “ It will increase instructional time in a course per semester while moving away from long instructional blocks that have created a lot of downtime in a student's schedule.”

With the reworked schedule graduation requirements have also needed adjusting. The overall number of credits required to graduate will eventually be brought down to 20 credits, lowering gradually over the next couple of years. The largest changes in this credit count will be a drop to 3.0 credits of math, history, and science whereas 3.5 is currently required. More details about the graduation requirements will be released soon.

Some downfalls to this schedule have also been recognized. One major problem being that the number of classes available in a semester is going to be reduced from eight to six. This will make it more difficult for students to fit in all of the classes they need to take and find time for the electives they enjoy and/or need to take to be ready for their career and education after high school. For instance, a Freshman coming in will now have six available blocks to work with. If they wish to take all four core classes, a foreign language, and Wellness (which is required), that leaves no time for electives. The shorter blocks will also make it difficult for some classes to function the way they currently do. For example, an art class uses time at the beginning and end for set up and clean up and would then be lacking in time to actually work on their projects.

A lot of thought has been put into how students can work around these complications and find the opportunities they are looking for. The “Mustang Time” is the additional block in the middle of the day (replacing advisory) that will help address some of these concerns. It may be used to help provide time to AP classes to complete labs or assessments. It can also be used for students to do independent studies and find other ways of getting involved in their areas of interest. However, because of this, other activities and clubs that currently take place during advisory will need to be moved to outside of the school day.

The schedule will be brought to the school board to be voted on on February 23rd and more information will be released soon.

The Overnight Popularity of AirPods

Written by Ethan Paquin

AirPods are wireless headphones that were first produced by Apple in 2016, and after this Christmas they are everywhere. Some students who received these as a gift have even started to use phrases such as, “it smells like ‘broke’ in here.” Some feel as if they are a waste of money (AirPods will cost you $159), while others think they are the best earbuds around. Whatever your opinion, we can all agree that the product has blown up. However, that got me thinking; did AirPods become popular because of the bandwagon, or did they become popular because they are a good product?

To some, Apple AirPods are considered to be the best product the company has produced in a long time or even the best Apple product ever. AirPods connect to devices quicker and much more efficiently than standard bluetooth devices. Simply by opening the case they come in, a window will appear on your Apple device asking to allow them to connect. This is just one of the many features that make the AirPods a well thought out product. However, not surprisingly, these are not the only wireless headphones on the market. The brand Ikanzi has a pair of wireless earbuds that function in much the same way. They feature very good sound quality, and the case can also double as a power bank to charge mobile devices or other USB-connected devices. Plus, they cost a mere $55, much cheaper than Apple’s version.

AirPods are a popular piece of technology among students. One idea behind their sudden popularity is the concept of bandwagoning. The bandwagon is a fallacy meaning the most popular opinion is right. For example, a group of people could start wearing a new type of shoe and gain attention for it, which would create the thought that “if everybody else is doing it, I should too.” Some students, when asked on why they purchased AirPods, gave similar answers; they wanted to be able to listen to music while they charge their phone. With the release of the iPhone 7, Apple did away with the headphone jack. There are still ways of using wired headphones such as an adapter or Apple brand earbuds that come with a lightning plug directly instead of the tradition ⅜” jack, ut with AirPods, it is possible to charge your phone while listening to music, because they do not require use of the single lightning port.

Even if you believe AirPods are a waste of money and a horrible product, we can agree that Apple has produced a successful and quality product.

Lady Mustang Reaches 1,000 Career Points

Written by Emily Jacobs

Kenzy Ouellette, the starting point guard for the Lady Mustangs Basketball team, has accomplished the goal of reaching 1,000 points in her high school basketball career. In their game against Noble Kenzy achieved this milestone, and continues to raise her point total as the season progresses.

Kenzy has played on the Varsity team here at Massabesic since her Freshman year, the reason why is evident when you see her. Kenzy worked hard to reach her goal; working with the AAU team the Maine Firecrackers, strength training with coach Harry from OA sports, and working with Coach Abiola of the AAU team Thunder. All this hard work has paid off for her. She has been awarded, and has accepted, an athletic scholarship to the college of Saint Anselm, a D2 school.